How to Get a Proper Tire Seal

January 27, 2012

To get a proper tire seal, you have to first ask yourself what it is you are trying to do. There are ways to ensure no air escapes from between the tire and wheel rim by using a tire bead seal. You can also repair and prevent flat tires by using a tire sealer such as Myers Tire Seal or tire seal by Slime. Bead sealer creates a thin rubber seal between the wheel rim and the tire that prevents minor leaks, while the more comprehensive tire sealers fill your tire with a sealant that works by filling any punctures from the inside out when they happen. Whatever way works for you, you can do it yourself quickly and easily.

Tools and Materials

  • Valve core remover
  • Air compressor
  • Tire pressure gauge
  • 5-gallon tire sealer
  • Bead sealer

Step 1: Seal the Bead

At the point where the wheel rim meets the tire, minor air leaks can lead to flat tires. A bead sealer takes care of this, though, by creating a small rubber seal. Simply take the can of bead sealer, and with the brush provided, apply a layer of sealer as recommended by the manufacturer. Follow any specific instructions. After it dries, a layer of rubber will protect that portion of the wheel from minor air leaks.

Step 2: Tire Sealer

First, remove the valve core of the tire you wish to seal using the valve core remover. Allow the tire to deflate completely.

Step 3: Prepare the Sealant

Prepare the 5-gallon bucket of tire sealer by priming the pump. Follow the directions listed by the manufacturer for priming information specific to the product.

Step 4: Fill the Tire

Fill the deflated tire with the tire sealer by pumping it in manually. Tires of different sizes will require different amounts of sealer, so you should check with the directions for the appropriate measurements. Let the tire stand if the sealer requires time to set.

Step 5: Replace Valve Core

Reinstall the valve core into the air valve on the tire. Check the sidewall for the correct tire pressure and check it with the tire air pressure gauge. Use the air compressor to fill up the tire with however much air is required to get the pressure to its norm. Now that your tire is sealed, any punctures that occur in the future up to 1/8 inch will be filled from the inside. Tire sealer does not work should serious damage happen to the tire--it is designed to prevent small punctures only. Since that is the most common type of tire damage, though, it will prevent many possible flat tires in the future.

Whether you are only sealing the bead between the wheel rim and the tire or filling the tire with a tire sealer to guard against future flat tires, getting a proper seal on a tire is something you can do yourself. With practically no tools these jobs can be done in a short time. Damage to your tires is a routine complication when you drive. If you can take care of minor punctures proactively, why not do it?