Flat Tire Inflation Kit OK?


#1

Are flat tire inflation kits being offered with some new cars good enough every time or is it still better to have a compact spare tire?


#2

Good or bad, there is no substitute for a spare tire either regular or compact. Damage to your tire may make it irrepairable. Simply put on the spare and keep going. An inflation kit would clearly be useless.


#3

You are better off with a spare (compact or full size). If you have a blow out or dent a wheel on a pothole, what are you going to do with an inflation kit? ( That question could be a very interesting thread!)

My father in law just bought a Cadillac CTS. It has no spare and no jack. The caddy dealer says he should call roadside assistance. Many people won’t change a flat tire, so maybe this is the way to go for them. I’ll change my own tire, thanks.


#4

Refuse to buy any car without a spare tire and jack. Why should you be exposed to a potentially huge towing bill and a half a day lost time?

When sales are lost because of this, the spare tire will come back…


#5

Some cars it’s not practical. Take the Corvette, it has run flats and pressure monitoring. If you suffer a loss of pressure, you have a minimum of 50-100 miles of use to find a repair shop or get home. Where on that car would you propose storing a jack, let alone a wheel and tire?

I personally like to have a full sized spare. I hate donuts and run flats are too pricey for my frugal nature.


#6

Yes, indeed. I carry an inflation kit in the event of a flat caused by a nail, etc. when I have to travel more than the 60 miles allowed on the mini spare. Other than that, Iwould not recommend its use.


#7

You mean the inflation kit replaces the spare? That’s just crazy. If you want to add an inflation kit, I say “good idea,” but keep the spare tire too…and don’t forget to check the pressure of in the spare regularly.


#8

Well guys, if you want to mandate high fuel mileage and many pounds of “safety equipment” at an affordable vehicle, this it the kind of nonsense you will get. Getting rid of the spare is a cheap way to save weight/space.


#9

No, they are not good enough.
Yes, they will become more and more common in lieu of spares.

Craig “hit the nail on the head”. Eliminating the spare tire saves weight and increases cargo space (or allows a smaller car). Wait 'til we all have to live with the results of tougher CAFE requirements!

A pal has a new 'Vette. Blew a front tire (decking screw). $490 it cost him for a new tire. Blah!


#10

I added a full-sized spare to the trunk of my car. That is in addition to the miniature spare that came with the car. I haven’t noticed any appreciable drop in fuel economy.

No matter what you think the manufacturers’ motivation is for 86ing the spare, it is foolish to do it, and you can’t convince me to abandon CAFE standards just because some companies make lazy choices rather than innovate. Car companies that make foolish decisions are not going to suddenly loose their common sense because CAFE standards are incresed. Stupid car companies will make bad decisions with or without tougher CAFE requirements.


#11

I agree that not having a spare tire is dumb, all my cars have full size spares anyway. My point was that these are the kind of silly unintended consequences that we will start seeing.

I honestly don’t care about CAFE standards, they don’t affect me. They are mandating some kind of fleet average for new cars. Personally, I don’t drive new cars and I will simply buy the specific car I want anyway. The worst thing that CAFE standards can do is increase the price a little. I will always be able to buy what I want by writing a big enough check. If they want to decrease total fuel consumption, there is only one answer: more expensive fuel, everything else is political showmanship.


#12

Based on this example, we don’t need higher CAFE standards to get these silly consequences. Evidently, this kind of silliness exists with or without higher CAFE requirements.


#13

“Based on this example, we don’t need higher CAFE standards to get these silly consequences. Evidently, this kind of silliness exists with or without higher CAFE requirements.”

Very true, no-spare and CAFE standards may be two examples of unrelated silliness. This is very entertaining, but I’m really glad I don’t buy new cars.


#14

Car companies have been trying to get rid of the spare and other items (vent windows, parking lights, etc) even before CAFE standards came in, because it saves $$$. CAFE standards drive some weight saving actions, but sliding roofs, for instance, add a great deal of weight; however they are very profitable. The CAFE EPA test, of course would be run on models without sliding roofs, and the car sits stationary in the lab anyway during the test. Years the Plymouth Duster, a compact coupe had enough weight taken out of it to fit it into the subcompact class, and thus subject to less weight on the test rollers in measuring fuel consumption.


#15

Yup, it’s really just a silly game. The industry will always be a few steps ahead of the regulators.


#16

They found room for a spare in 'Vetts for MANY years, when they were smaller and lighter than todays cars…Space saver spares don’t take up that much room and they don’t cost $500…


#17

The guy that redid my Chevelle has a 56 vette and the trunk floor is basically wood over top of the spare tire well.
When I ordered my new rims, I made sure to get a 5th one, since I didn’t want to be driving on 3 15" rims and a donut. Granted, I can only replace the right side tire if I get a flat, but I think I could limp to a tire store with the right side on the left in an emergency, just wouldn’t have the wet/snow traction I’d have if I had it on correctly.


#18

Our previous best car, an 08, had no spare; just the kit. One tire was punctured but only slow leaked so we could add air each day until we got the tire repaired. I can’t recall ever getting an instantly flat tire; just slow leak situations. I later paid $300 for a kit with a small spare, a lug wrench and a jack but never used it. Our latest best car has no trunkwell for any kind of spare tire. Don’t like no spare but we can live with it.


#19

Yet another ancient (10 year old) thread comes back from the dead. :scream:


#20

Wow, have I really been here ten years?