When it comes to tires, a damaged sidewall means the tire is DONE.

Dear Car Talk

Dear Car Talk | Nov 01, 1995

Dear Tom and Ray:

I have a Honda Accord equipped with Michelin tires. Recently, someone (not ME, of course) caught the left rear tire on a curb and raised a "boo-boo" about three inches long by two inches wide on the sidewall. We were on a long drive, so I put on a new tire. But can I reuse the old one? Is there a reliable, maybe glue-in type of patch on the market that will reinforce that sidewall? The tire has 17,000 miles on it. Waiting with baited breath (Certs treated, of course) for your answer.

TOM: John, get serious! When you damage a sidewall, the tire is garbage.

RAY: You should thank your lucky stars that you noticed the damage and changed the tire before it blew out on the highway and caused you some SERIOUS problems.

TOM: Some of the high end tire makers warranty their tires against damage, even if the damage is your fault. So it would be worth checking with your tire dealer to see if he'll pay for part of the replacement cost.

RAY: But when he tells you to go fly a kite, here's how you reuse your old tire, John. Tie a rope to it and hang it from a good sturdy tree limb in your backyard. Letting the kids use it as a swing is the only duty it's qualified for now.

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