Full Size Spare

I have a 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee and I have a slow unrepairable slow leak in my front right tire. I have a full size spare and am wondering once I put it on how long I can drive it for on it. Due to hard economic times I can not afford new tires right now. I bus it to work and don’t use it too often but would of course like the option.

You can drive on it until the tire wears out, just as you would your regular tires.

What makes the slow leak unrepairable?

Well, I took it into les schwab and they looked at it for me and told me that it was unrepairable and also said they weren’t sure why. I did take it in for a 2nd opinion and they said the same. I don’t know a thing about cars so… I have no idea why!

“they looked at it for me and told me that it was unrepairable and also said they weren’t sure why”

May I suggest that you get a second opinion from a different tire shop? Even if that second opinion agrees with what you were already told, there is a decent possibility that someone at the other tire shop can actually give you a reason for his opinion.

If you went to a doctor and he told you that you had an incurable disease, but upon further questioning he could not tell you why he came to that conclusion, would you have faith in that doctor? In that situation, I would hope that you would seek another opinion that could be supported by something factual.

Yes, I know that a tire problem is not really akin to an incurable disease, but if I was short of funds and wanted to drive my car in safety, you can be sure that I would not rely on the unsupported statements from the guy at Les Schmuck.

If the spare is the original, then it is 12 years old. From what I’ve read the tire manufacturers recommend replacing tire when they’re are 6 or 7 years old (probably on the conservative side).

That said, I just replaced 10 year old tires on my 1993 Chevrolet Caprice. The tread was good, but the tires were showing a lot of cracking and rain traction was terrible.

The Caprice is only driven 3 or 4 k a year and I kept the speed 50 mph or less with the old tires. If you have to use the spare, put it on the back and stay off the highway. Here is a link to an article about spare tire blowouts.

Good luck and be careful,

Ed B.

What comes to mind is a leak in, for example, the sidewall which could be unsafe because it implies there may be cord damage. This may not be the case, but I have had that sort of problem in the past.

But, those who tell you not to repair a tire are supposed to tell you why they think so.