Q: Can you drive immediately on a plugged Tire or is it best to wait 24 hours

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My son's tire was punctured and he's getting ready to take a five and a half hour trip from West Virginia to Baltimore I was worried that it wouldn't be safe for him to drive immediately after having a tire plugged. But isn't it also unsafe to drive on a donut?

After the tire is plugged, you can spray soapy water on the area to make sure the leak has actually stopped. Any air escaping will cause bubbles. Either situation whether driving on a plugged tire or spare for a prolonged period of time is not necessarily safe, but it happens. The spare tire is to be used on the vehicle for about 50 miles under 55mph so you can find a repair shop to repair or replace the flat normal sized tire. A tire plug will stop an air leak and in many cases I have seen customers have a tire plugged and continue to use the tire for the rest of its wear life. If you have to plug a tire more that twice, the integrity has been compromised and the tire has become less safe than a comparable tire without plugs and you should replace the tire, but it can be driven on as long as the air leaks have stopped. Only plug a tire in the tread surface. If the plug has to be inserted on the edge of the tire or the sidewall, get rid of the tire. Consider hiring the services of an experienced technician like one from YourMechanic who can come out, inspect the tires and offer a more personal diagnosis.

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