Think you have a slow puncture? Here is what you should do
Unlike a standard puncture, slow punctures are more difficult to detect.
What is a Slow Puncture?
Unlike a standard puncture, slow punctures are more difficult to detect. But they are more or less the same thing, just a slower loss of air and drop in pressure. A slow puncture is typically a small puncture caused by a sharp object or a sudden impact such as going over a pothole.
A slow puncture will cause your tyre to underperform and compromise safety, getting progressively more dangerous as more air is lost. By not detecting a slow puncture and fixing it early, more damage will be done to your tyres.
How to Detect a Slow Puncture
Slow punctures are sometimes difficult to detect for a long time especially if you are not particularly tuned in to how your car behaves or if you don’t have an electronic pressure monitoring system fitted to the car. The loss of pressure will slowly cause faster tyre wear and eventually it will affect your handling and safety on the road.
Here’s what you can do to detect a slow puncture:
- Compare your tyres yourself and see if one of the tyres looks a little deflated, especially if you’ve recently put air in them
- Listen out for a regular clicking when you’re driving - this might be a nail or screw stuck in the tyre thread hitting the road surface
- Relax your grip on the steering wheel as you drive – if you can feel your car pulling slightly to one side it is a sign that pressure is lower in one of your tyres
- Use a tyre pressure gauge to measure your tyres – check your pressures a few times over a short period and if you can see a noticeable decrease in one tyre more than the others, it’s likely to be a slow puncture
What to do if you have a slow puncture?
If you discover that you have a slow puncture, we recommend that you avoid driving on it for a long period of time as it will get progressively worse and more dangerous. It’s always best to bring it to your local HiQ centre for inspection and repair.
Another thing to bear in mind is that sometimes you could be losing pressure from a damage in the sidewall. Don’t try to repair this with a puncture kit as this kind of damage weakens the structure of the tyre and it cannot be repaired. In this case you have to replace this tyre with a new one.
In any case if you know that one of your tyres is losing pressure contact your nearest centre in order to have professional advice.
Can You Repair a Slow Puncture Yourself?
You can pick up slow puncture repair kits that can seal a slow puncture. However, when it comes to tyre safety, we’d always recommend seeking the advice of an expert tyre technician such as those at your local HiQ Centre.
Will a Slow Puncture Fail my MOT?
As slow punctures are sometimes difficult to detect, they may not be detected by a standard MOT. However, if you know you have a slow puncture, speak to your local HiQ Centre, where you can quickly get your tyre fixed alongside your MOT booking. If the slow puncture has damaged the sidewalls of your tyre, the tyre will need to be replaced to keep you safe.