Plugging your tire


So I found a slow air leak in my tire caused by a screw. I pulled it out and plugged it following the guide now I paranoid to see if it’s safe. I’ve left it all night and there is no leaks. So is the tire safe to ride on till tread runs low or should I get a new tire. P.s the hole was in the tread near center


You can get it permanently repaired at the garage, the idea of the plug is to get you to a garage.

However many people have used them and not had a permanent repair, personally I always get them repaired by the garage, got to take mine on Monday to FWR after getting a screw in the tyre


Yeah use the plug to get you to a garage… I rode on mine for a couple of days to work but it was 40mile per day mostly at low speeds.

Not sure I would have liked to ride on it for motorway or going to country lanes on a day out.


It’s your only contact with the road. Play it safe and get it professionally repaired or replaced.


What sort of plug is it and where’s the hole? Modern tyres have much more structural mechanics going on inside them than you might suspect.

Personally, if it’s on the tread area my concern would be more about leaking rather than anything structural.


Get it professionaly repaired and vulcanised it will be fine, providing the hole is not more than 50% beyond the centre of the tyre and the side wall has not been comporomised.

If you get a professional internal repair done it will last you thr life of the tyre.

An extermnal repair is temporary. There are speed restrictions (usually about 40MPH) as the external plugs cause delamination and overheats and I have lost count of the number of crashes I have dealt with over the years because people have forgotten that they have a temporary repair in,

As mentioned by previous posters, the external plug is just temporary to get you to a garage.

Ultimately, its down to you as to which route you go.


In the past I used to plug and forget about it. Once I had three plugs in operation and I rode the tyre at normal speeds until it lost its tread.

Today I’m more sensible and would plug until I had time to get to a garage.

My point is that if you plug properly you’ll be fine and it will get you to the garage.


Something that may have been missed is that ‘getting to the garage’ doesn’t mean a new tyre. The plug a garage will do is different to the one you do as they remove tyre do it from inside (assuming it can be fixed, I.e. not on side etc). With that type of plug you can ride it normally.

If the tyre has little life in it, it may be better to just replace tyre… It’ll cost about £30 (maybe prices have gone up since I last did it) so you’ll need to weigh up cost Vs benefits.


Thanks for the many replies I’ve just finished work so I’m off now to get the wheel seen too. Rather be safe than sorry


So off to the tire shop I went and showed the the wheel he took one look at it checked the pressure and said it’s fine. There is no need for him to replug it for £30 and I have loads off tread left. Come back when I need a new tire. So second opinion or should I take his advice?


He’s a cowboy.

Take it to another garage and get it plugged from the inside.


I’d be very much inclined to agree with eezie on this…


I’ll find another garage


as above! go somewhere else.

Guy I take mine to last time was about £15-£20 and once you see the difference between what he puts in and what is in you will feel much more confident.

Would you trust someone you don’t know with your life for the sake of £30!


I’ll go to protyre tomorrow after work thanks


Protyre are great. They have a separate booth for bikes that’s not part of the rest of the workshop. I was really please to find them after Essential Rubber closed.


Pro tyre in Enfield? If so, can’t do bikes at mo as their mechanic is on holiday hence why I’m heading to FWR…


I had a tyre plugged by the RAC once, they insisted I get a new tyre. It survived without losing any pressure going from Bristol to down to Newquay and then back to Hertfordshire.

edit: that was fully loaded with luggage too.


You would expect the likes of AA and RAC to say that to cover their arses. If it is holding tight and not losing air I don’t see the issue, it not like new tyres don’t get punctures so where’s the added risk?

I have read on various forums that the strings are not recommended for track use but the stop and go type should be okay. The shop fitted are sturdier but they have been known to fail also.


Trust the RAC and the AA as far as you can spit when it comes to bikes.

Here is another perspective.

I used to sit on the BSi committee for tyres which along with the manufacturers theselves made recommendations about tyre repairs.

The chairman of this committee owned a company that made internal repair plugs for motorcycle tyres and also worked with all the major tyre firms.

They were all happy for a tyre to be plugged internally providing it met the guidelines I mentioned in an earlier post.

Also have a read of my blog here at Motorcycle Direct where I didcuss tyre repairs.

Maybe that will help you