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Check your valve stems
11-11-2017, 11:16 AM (This post was last modified: 11-11-2017 11:18 AM by Black Ice LSC.)
Post: #1
Check your valve stems
This is something that has never happened to me in my 30 years of driving:
woke up to head to work -- I manage an auto repair shop---at 6:00am and had a flat. DRAT! got my portable 12v inflator/compressor out and a flashlight. I was going to air it up, look for the leak and plug it on the spot if I could(I'd properly patch it at work)...I drive 25 miles to work, and wasn't going to put on the pizza-cutter spare. I aired it up to 40psi and was spraying the tire with soapy water from a spray bottle looking for a puncture. Couldn't find any leaks. as I was removing the compressor from the valve stem it started to HISSSSS....the valve stem was cracked but only leaked if I pulled it outward, away from the rim. Being a direct descendant from McGuiver himself (not really, but I like to think so), I used duct tape to hold the valve stem IN towards the wheel and drove to work...didn't lose a single psi !!!
I replaced the valve stem that day, and all was good. I even bragged about my ingenuity.

3 weeks later....got to work, and another tire was going flat.. WTH??? two flats in 3 weeks?
I checked, and sure enough...another cracked valve stem! I was already at work (Thank God) I went and replaced the remaining 3 stems.

My tires are all good, with a production date from 2012, so they are "old" by time, but not by miles/tread-depth. But either my valve stems are not up to the 5 year life they have OR the last shop that put tires on the car never changed them and they are ORIGINAL!

or perhaps it is the wheel design that causes excessive outward air flow pushing the stems outward, away from the wheel while at speed causing undue stress to the stems.
why knows?
Just be sure to check your valve stems visually, and move them in and out to see if any cracks are forming or if they are getting "soft".

Do it...go check them now...RIGHT now. 2 minutes could save you from being stranded, or getting in a wreck. Replacing stems does not require re-balance or even full tire removal from wheel...most shops charge $3 a stem and $10-$15 labor per wheel to replace them.
Many of you have TPMS systems...but most of us have older cars.

My 06 has a TPMS symbol on instrument panel from factory, but it doesn't light up, and the vehicle was never equipped with the TPMS system.
Former Lincoln Mark VIII owner/specialist
Former P71 owner
Current 2006 MGM owner
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