How to Get a Proper Tire Seal
Getting a tire seal right can be a tricky task. While the tire sealant bottles help to guide you through the process, those labels are only so big and can only give so much information. Instead, you need to know how to be certain that tire seal is as strong as possible.
Supplies You Will Need
To seal your tire, you will need: tire pressure gauge, bottle of tire sealant, brush to apply sealant, materials to clean tire, and soapy water mixture
Learn the Signs of a Tire Leak
If you've noticed your driving is slightly bumpier than usual, go out and check the tire pressure of your car tires. You may find one or more are losing air. Check the tire pressure again after driving to see if anything has changed. If so, you may have a leak in one or more of the tires. Other signs of tire leaks are tires that look like they are flat in comparison to the ground on which they're parked.
Find the Leak
Before adding the sealant to your tire, you need to find the leak. Take a solution of soapy water and spray it all over the surface of the tire. This will help you see where the leaks may be. Wherever there are bubbles on the surface, this indicates there is air escaping from the tire. If you do not see any bubbles, try spraying the area again. If there are still no bubbles, you may not have a leak. Check with a mechanic before you proceed in that case.
Clean the Area
Once you've found the leak, you need to clean this tire off. By removing any dirt or other debris, you will ensure that that sealant is sticking to the tire and to nothing else. When debris is on the tire, the sealant can not cover that completely, causing the leak to continue, though perhaps at a slower rate. You can clean the tire off with warm soapy water to make sure it's as clean as possible. A wire brush is another way to clean the rim if it's dirty and coming into contact with the tire.
Add the Sealant
After the tire has dried off from the cleaning, add a few beads of the sealant to the surface. Use a brush to add this sealant to the area, brushing a thin layer on the surface. Then paint a thick coat of the sealer on the tire again to ensure the seal is completely covering the leak.
Check for Remaining Leaks
Once you've brushed on the sealant and you're satisfied, put the tire back on the car. Take the soapy water solution again and spray it on the tire. Check to make sure there are no new bubbles coming to the surface. If there are bubbles, you need to add more sealant to the tire to make sure it's a proper seal. If not, you can fill the tire with air and continue on your way.
A proper tire seal is simple to manage when you understand how to find the leak, how to cover it up, and how to ensure your work is complete.