Puncture-Proof Tyre : Advantages, disadvantages (and how they work) Cubzauto

While you may not have heard of run-flat tires, they are not new to the automotive world. They were first used in the 1930s but have recently become more popular on today’s vehicles. With the reinforced sidewall design, a puncture-proof tire can support the weight of the vehicle after it loses its air pressure, so you can get to a service center safely.

But is the run-flat tire worth the cost? We look at the reasons to consider this technology and some of the drawbacks you may not have thought of.

What is a puncture-proof tyre?

Run-flat tires are reinforced to ensure they can temporarily support the weight of the vehicle when the air pressure drops. However, they are not designed to be driven on as many can only go 50 miles at a speed of 80 mph or less.

Normal tires are not made to support the weight of the vehicle without air pressure. The air pressure itself is what provides the support. Driving a normal tire without the correct air pressure causes a build-up of heat that leads to tire damage and failure.

Types of run-flat tires

1. Self-supporting anti-puncture tire

The most common form of run-flat tire is the self-supporting construction. This band does exactly what it sounds like.

When air is lost in the tire, the sidewall construction can support the weight of the vehicle. However, there is a limit to how long it can be kept.

2. Tire support ring system

With the support ring system, the reinforcement is not on the side wall. Instead, this flat configuration contains a physical structure that attaches to the wheel itself.

With this design, it is the wheel that bears the weight of the vehicle, not the tire. However, these tires also last a while without the right amount of air pressure.


Flat tires: pros and cons (and how they work) 32

Benefits of run-flat tires

1. Allows you to drive without air pressure

The most obvious benefit of the run-flat tire is that you can continue driving after you lose air pressure. Instead of going out in the rain or at night, drive to a safe place and have your tire repaired or replaced.

You should consult your owner’s manual to find out how long you can ride on the tire and what the safest speed is. Some can go 50 miles while others can go up to 100 miles.

2. Stability after a blowout

When the tire breaks in the normal setup, handling and steering become an immediate problem. This problem puts you at risk of an accident or the overturning of the vehicle.

However, this is not the case with a run-flat tyre. These tires support the weight of your vehicle, so the ride itself doesn’t change much. You can safely go to the nearest tire shop for assistance.

3. Reduce Vehicle Weight

Without the need to carry a spare tire or tools, the overall weight of the vehicle is also reduced. The weight isn’t much different though as the run-flat tires weigh a bit more due to the added support.

That said, if you drive a sports car or convertible, it can be helpful not to need a spare tire anymore. Instead, you can use what little space you have for storing groceries or a suitcase.

Disadvantages of flat tires

1. No spare wheel

If your vehicle has a puncture, you do not need a spare wheel. Also, you don’t have the tools on board to change a tire.

While this allows for using the space in other ways, such as adding a third row or creating more cargo space, it can be a problem if you ever need a spare. Run-flats are foolproof and you may be in a time when you need the tools to quickly change tires or another tire, but you won’t have one.

2. The tread does not last that long

Run Flat tires have a tread that wears faster than most conventional tires. Some people speculate that it is because there is a soft compound in the tread that sits on a flat surface to counteract hard driving.

While they may need to be replaced more often, there doesn’t seem to be a lack of satisfaction. In fact, many reports show that customer satisfaction is about the same as that of conventional tire owners.

3. Eruptions May Occur

While less likely, there are things that can go wrong with run-flat tires. If you don’t notice the warnings or drive past the run-flat restrictions, the tire itself may begin to disintegrate. This concern would have the same destabilizing effect as having a flat tire.

Debris can also pierce the sidewall. In this case you would be forced to stop and call a tow truck because you would not have a spare wheel on board.

4. Difficult to Diagnose

When you ride on a normal tire, the whole ride changes as the air pressure drops. This change and modern tire pressure sensors make it easy to tell when one of your tires is flat so you can fix the problem before you get stuck.

However, the sidewalls of a runflat do not change when the air pressure is low. This stiffer construction forces you to rely on the tire pressure monitoring system if something goes wrong. If that system is not working properly and you are not checking the air pressure, you may not know there is a problem.

5. Drive faster

Flat-free tires have a stiff sidewall that provides a harder ride. If you add runflats to a vehicle that didn’t have them from the factory, you will likely feel the difference.

Buying a new car with a running flat is often no problem. The manufacturer tends to tune the suspension for the stiffer ride, which brings more comfort.

6. Higher Cost:

There are two ways the puncture proof tire will cost you more. First, the price of tires is, of course, higher. In fact, you can expect to pay $35 to $75 more per tire.

Other than that, the run-flat is less likely to be repairable if something happens. What would have been a $25 patch from the tire store on a regular tire turns into a replacement with a flat tire, costing you more. Your tires should also always be replaced in pairs.

7. Less Available

Run-flat tires are not as popular as conventional tires. Therefore, you may find it more difficult to find the game you want on the shelf.

If you’re in a big city, you’ll have better luck. Otherwise you want to reserve your tires for your appointment. If you need to replace tires right away, you may have to wait a few days for them to arrive.

Flat tire cost

Run-flat tires cost about $150 to $500 per tire on a standard passenger car. That is between 35% and 200% more than conventional tyres. You will probably pay even more if you drive a heavy vehicle or a luxury model.

Since your tires will need to be replaced at least in pairs, you’re looking at $300 to $1,000 per set. However, if you need all four tires, it’s not uncommon to pay $600 to $2000 for tires without factoring installation and alignment costs.

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