A leaking tire stem will slowly release the air from your tire, which will eventually cause it to deflate. You’ll also notice that you have to inflate the tire more frequently than usual, a common sign that something is wrong with the valve stem.
Do you want to know how to fix a tire stem leak? Then, continue reading and follow our step-by-step guide!
The Dangers of a Leaking Tire Valve Stem
A leak in your tire valve stems will cause the tire pressure to drop. This results in poor fuel economy, compromised braking performance, and handling problems.
If you wait long enough, you’ll be dealing with a flat tire, potentially causing your tire to retire. If you suspect that one of your tire valve stems is leaking, you need to inspect and change it as soon as possible to prevent further damage to the tire or other components of the car.
How to Spot a Leaking Tire Valve Stem
Before you try to fix a tire stem leak, you need to verify that it’s leaking in the first place. You can easily inspect the tire valve stem by spraying some soapy water with the cap removed.
If you see bubbles, then the valve stem is indeed leaking.
How to Fix a Tire Valve Stem Leak
To fix a leaking tire valve stem, follow these steps:
1. Loosen the wheel’s nuts with a lug nut wrench.
2. Get rid of the old valve core.
3. Use a valve stem tool to install the new valve core.
4. Unmount the wheel and put it on the ground.
5. Separate the tire’s bead from the rim. You can use a metal bar or sledgehammer to make things easier.
6. Remove the tire completely to inflate it. Use an air compressor to pump up the pressure to that recommended by the manufacturer; you can find the nominal pressure in the owner’s manual.
7. Once the tire is inflated, make sure that the new valve core is adequately tightened. Then, spray it with soapy water again to ensure the leakage has stopped.
8. Install the wheel on the car and lower it. Go for a test drive and measure the tire pressure with a gauge as a final assurance that all is good.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Fixing a Leaking Tire Valve Stem Effective?
Yes, you can fix a leaking tire valve by replacing the valve core with a valve stem tool. However, in some cases, repairing the valve stem isn’t the best course of action to take because the valve stem will likely start leaking again sooner or later. It’d be better to replace the whole valve stem just to be on the safe side.
What Causes a Tire Valve Stem to Leak?
Some of the most common reasons behind a leaking tire valve stem include aging, UV exposure, chemicals, and salts. Try to invest in high-quality tire valve stems if you want them to last a little bit longer.
By now, you should know how to fix a tire stem leak. The process is pretty straightforward; just make sure that you have the required tools, and the whole thing should be done in a few minutes.
On a final note, if you can afford to replace the entire valve stem instead of fixing it, then, by all means, do it. You’ll save yourself the hassle of having to unmount the wheel all over again within a month or two.