Tire Repair for preppers

tire repair

When there is no electricity and one of your truck tires has a puncher and is flat, what do you do?  Years ago, when the tires contained inner tubes and everybody had a old hand operated tire pump in their garage it was not as much of a problem.  So how do you handle a tire repair after TEOTWAWKI.

Hopefully the tire has a small hole that you can locate without dismounting the tire from the rim and you have a tire repair kit for plugging holes.  If you do, it is not hard to repair the tire.  If you don’t have a tire repair plug kit and some vulcanizing patches you need to stock some in your preps.

tire repair
This is a vulcanizing kit for repairing larger holes when you have to dismount the tire

Your next problem is how to re-inflate the tire.  If you have access to an electrical operated air pump, the type that runs off your cigarette lighter will work fine, you are golden.  If not a bicycle pump will work, but it will take awhile.  You may want to find a good hand operated bicycle pump now while they are easy to find.  I suggest a good quality one, because it can take a lot of pumping with the more inexpensive ones. The old upright T handled pumps or the foot-operated ones work the best.

Make sure that your bicycle pump is adaptable to a Schrader valve.  Some bike pumps work with a Presta (bikes only) valve and these will not connect to your car tires.  A good hand pump I have had recommended to me is the Topeak’s Joe Blow Sport II.

tire repair
This is the style tire pump I recommend

If you have to dismount and remount the tire, you have a much bigger problem.  First, you need to have a sledge hammer and several large bars.  You use the hammer to separate the bead of the tire from the edge of the rim. The bead of the tire is the portion of the tire that makes contact with the rim.  If you have another vehicle available you can drive it on the side of the tire to break the bead loose. The bars are used to take the tire off and put it back on the rim after it is repaired.

After you have repaired the tire, you have the problem of how to re-inflate the tire.  Since you don’t have an inner tube you have to get the tire to expand so that the bead makes contact with the wheel.  In a tire shop, they use an air tube that causes the tire to expand.  In an emergency, you can use a ratchet operated tie down.

Keeping inner tubes on hand for an emergency doesn’t work, the new radial tires are not compatible with inner tubes and inner tubes are getting hard to find.  You do have the option of keeping a second set of tires already mounted to rims.

tire repair
This is the band that is used in a tire shop to expand the tire so that the bead makes contact with the wheel. A ratchet operated tie down can be substituted for this in an emergency.

If you have never fixed a flat tire I strongly suggest that you find someone who is willing to teach you how to repair a tire.  This could be a very valuable skill.



5 thoughts on “Tire Repair for preppers”

  1. John Alexander

    Thanks for giving me such valuable skills.These tire repair kits are most helpful for any type of tire repair processes.


  2. Collette Desmarais

    I found a bicycle hand pump about a half a year ago sitting on top of the garbage in a dumpster I was walking by. It looked good, so I grabbed it and kept in my car; thinking it’d be useful to have someday. I actually used it just last week to inflate an almost-flat
    tire that had a slow leak in it. It did take awhile, but it got the job done! This pump that I found is a “Raleigh” brand, and is equipped with a great option: the part that attaches to the stem has a rubber insert in it that is ‘reversible’. That is to say, you can unscrew the piece that holds it in there, turn the rubber insert around to accommodate a larger or smaller diameter valve stem on the tire! How useful is that?!!

  3. I love plugs, I have success filling side wall slits with plugs, I just keep slipping them in till I fill up the slit. I put 20 some thousand miles on one of these repairs. I keep several cans of the Fix a flat in my rigs, not that they really “Fix a flat” but they do fill the tire and the junk might help finishing sealing if needed. Check out the repaired slit here!

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