tire shop series: myth-busting and tire service facts

Tire Shop Series: Myth-Busting and Tire Service Facts

We’re your local friends in the tire business, and we’re also experts at what we do. Here are some questions and answers to some myths or common practices concerning tire repair methods and
mounting wheels on vehicles that might be of interest. This information comes from The Tire Industry Association. We are members of the organization and use them for some of our training.

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1. An employee in a shop insists on blowing air onto each cemented area in a tire that is being patched to insure there is no wet spots. Is this necessary?

It is unnecessary and can cause problems. No matter how hard you work at it, eliminating all contamination from you air lines is nearly impossible. If there is concern about wet cement, add
another 15 minutes to the drying time.

2. Can we use anti-seize compounds on stud-piloted wheel fasteners to prevent them from freezing together?

Stud-piloted wheel systems require a dry torque setting, which means lubricants should not be used. Rust, corrosion, and damaged threads are the leading causes of frozen cap nuts, so the use of anti-seize compounds actually keeps bad fasteners in service for a longer period of time. If the inner and outer cap nuts freeze together at removal, they should be replaced. Lubricants, also, change the torque of the fasteners on any type of wheel assembly, which may cause damage to the wheel assembly and/or the fasteners. The fastener may come loose causing equipment damage and/or personal injury.

3. Does over-torquing lead to broken studs hundreds of miles after installation?

Yes. When a fastener is installed with more than the recommended torque, the stud can be stretched to a point where the integrity of the metal is compromised but not broken. In some instances, the increased stress on the stud is not fully realized until after the axle is loaded for a few hundred miles. All fasteners (lug nuts) should be torqued to manufacturers’ specification. It is recommended that the fasteners should be checked after the vehicle has been driven. Fasteners will loosen for various reasons. Those are but not limited to; cooling and heating of the wheel or rim, dirt or grime on the surface of the hub assembly or mounting area, and studs or nuts that have been compromised in the past. An overtight fastener is as much of a problem as a loose fastener.

4. Are there any rules regarding wheel and rim reconditioning?

Besides the basic inspection criteria for any wheel or rim, the only “rule” for wheel and rim reconditioning is the thickness of the new paint. Manufacturers collectively agree that the paint
thickness should no more than 0.003 mm, or the thickness of a magazine page. Cracked wheels and rims should never be repaired. OSHA 1910.177 (f) (9) states that “cracked, broken, bent, or otherwise damaged rim components shall not be reworked, welded, brazed or otherwise heated.” Using a hammer to beat the rim back into shape counts as reworking. Welding a cracked or heating the metal to bend it back into shape would be considered a violation of OSHA regulations. Any repair will compromise the integrity of the metal in the rim. The rim or wheel must be replaced.

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