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Tyre Pressure Monitoring System replacement valve

One of today's jobs was to replace a Tyre pressure sensor valve (TPMS) on a Peugeot 407. The customer had bought the car recently and one of the valve stems was broken. He called us at Hometyre to visit him at home to replace the stem. This is something that is possible on only a few makes of car with TPMS. With most you have to change the complete unit at a cost of around £70 ~ £80, but with the Peugeot as long as it hasn't corroded to the main sensor, then you can change just the stem, a much cheaper option.

One thing to consider though is the age of the main sensor unit, as these are generally fitted with a sealed battery that lasts for between 5 to 7 years. So if the sensors are nearing that age, then it might be worth changing the complete unit.TPMS unit fitting_1


4x4 tyres with Tyron bands

Had a job this week for a customer who had an ex-MOD Landrover Defender that needed new tyres fitting. Being ex-army the vehicle was fitted with Tyron bands in each wheel. This caused him some problem in finding someone to change his tyres, as many fast fit tyre depots do not want to work on vehicles that have Tyrons. The reason being that they are difficult to remove and refit, especially if you do not know what you are doing. He found Hometyre by contacting Tyron UK and asking who they recommended in the area to refit his tyron bands, and they pointed him in our direction.

Tyron bands are a safety feature often fitted to leisure vehicles as they allow you to keep going under control in the case of a blowout. The army have them fitted to their vehicles, so that should they get a flat tyre while out on patrol, they can continue driving to a place of safety before needing to change a tyre.

Should you need Tyron bands for a Caravan, Motorhome, or Trailer then give us a call at Hometyre, as we can both supply and fit Tyrons for you.

landrover defender_4Tyron caravan_1


Tyre Bulges are dangerous

Should you ever see a bulge in your tyre, then get the tyre replaced ASAP, as this is a breakdown of the tyres layers and could burst at any time (Blowout).

Bulges are often the result of hitting a pothole or kerb, it can cause the inner lining to split allowing air to penetrate the the layers that make up a tyre and show as a bulge on the outside.

Bulges cannot be repaired, you will need a new tyre. The photo shows a bulge on the tyre of a Peugeot, where the driver had hit a kerb entering a carpark.Tyre_bulge



Today's a day for Punctures

Have been hear, there and everywhere today, carrying puncture repairs on a variety of vehicles.

The first was a Rover 75 in Littlehampton with a screw in a rear tyre. Luckily his neighbour saw that it was flat and told him before he drove on it.

The second was a Ford Fiesta in Hassocks with a small screw in its front tyre. The customer was under a time constraint, so I had to get to him within 30 minutes and get him back on the road within an hour as he had kids to pick up at school. It was an easy repair and he was back on the road within 50 mins.

The third was an Aston Martin in Haywards Heath, with a roofing nail in the front tyre. The customer had seen the nail when he went out to the car, and tried to pull it out. The air started coming out so he put the nail back in and gave us a call.

Three lucky customers who all managed to get their tyres repaired and saved themselves from having to buy new tyres.



Missing locking wheelnut adaptor

Should you trust the person selling you a used car? Unfortunately my customer did when he bought his VW van a few months ago. He asked the seller "Is the locking wheelnut adaptor inside the van" the seller said that "yes, it is in there".

He now needs some new tyres and decided to get the lock nut adaptor ready, only to find that is is not in the vehicle at all. A phone call to the seller didn't help, as he said " It was in there when I sold it to you".

He tried searching online for somewhere to buy an adaptor, but without the adaptors code number he was stumped. Luckily he found Hometyre on the internet, and called us out to remove the offending nuts for him. It took me around 20 minutes to remove the nuts, and he is now looking at us to supply and fit his new tyres.lock_nut_2


Nissan 100 NX 4x4 require tyres and tracking

Called out Saturday to replace all 4 tyres on a Nissan 4x4, this is a repeat customer where I replaced their caravan tyres last year. Nissan_100They liked the hometyre service and appreciate that we come to them.

This time they opted for Goodyear wranglers to be fitted to their towing vehicle. At the same time they asked if I could look at the tracking on the vehicle as the front tyres were showing abnormal wear on one side. (See photo) Tyre_tracking_off

One the tyres had been replaced and I had settled the 4x4 back onto its suspension, I then put the laser alignment equipment on and checked the readings. Front to back was pretty good, but the toe in/out across the front was showing -4, and according to Nissan it should have been +2.2 So adjustment action was required.

Loosening the tracking bolts took some doing as the nuts had not been touched for some time and they were rusted in place. It took a while, but I managed to get then free and moving, then adjusted the wheels to get them properly aligned. The bolts are then tightened, and the vehicle is taken for a test drive before handing it back to the customer.


Even expensive cars need Puncture repairs, Mercedes R Class

Had an emergency call out to a Mercedes 'R' Class with a flat rear tyre. The owner had only driven out of his garage and travelled around 10 yards when a light flashed up on his dash telling him that he was loosing pressure in one tyre.

Once I had removed the tyre, the cause was easy to see, as there was a roofing screw in the centre of the tread. Luckily he had not driven on it while flat, so it was an easy repair, and he was soon back on the road.

Not all drivers are luckily enough to have pressure sensors on their tyres, and you need to 'feel' that something is wrong. With a modern car, this is not so easy as the suspension helps to hide some faults until it is too late and the tyre is completely flat.

If it had been driven on when flat there is a good chance that the internal structure of the tyre would have been damaged, and it will not be repairable. ( A new tyre will be required).



Potholes still causing damage

Called out to Chichester Uni today as one of the guest lecturers had hit a pothole in his Chrysler Crossfire while driving into the college.

It had put a split right across the tyre, which is unrepairable. Luckily we were able to source a Continental Sport Contact 2 tyre for him that same day, and as he told me - at a price that beat the fast fit companies by £20. When leaving the college, I had to steer around two potholes that were at least 18" long.

This is the second car I have been called out to that has had pothole damage this week. (And its only Tuesday). Chrysler_crossfire


Bulge on Hire car tyre.

How many people check the tyres on a hire car when they pick it up?

I had a customer who has rented an almost new Ford Mondeo for a month (It only had 3050 miles on the clock). 3 days after picking it up he noticed a big bulge on the passenger side front tyre. He is absolutely certain that he has not hit any potholes or kerbs in the last few days, and thinks the bulge may have been there when he picked the car up.

He called the rental company who told him that unfortunately as he hadn't taken out the additional tyre cover, he was now responsible and has to replace the tyre at his own cost. Also being a rental car, they will not allow you to put a cheap budget tyre on the car, and it must be replaced with a tyre similar too or the same as those already on the vehicle. In this mans case it was a Bridgestone which cost him around £158. He had already shopped around and Hometyre were around £15 cheaper than any other local tyre dealer, also the fact that we came to his was a bonus.

But this did make me think, I have rented cars 5 or 6 times in the last 10 years, and apart from a quick look around at the bodywork, I have never looked at the tyres. This could be a costly mistake and in future I will add tyres to my check list.

It also makes me wonder what happens if you pick up a car with Runflat tyres, and one has a slow puncture. It could have been noticed by a previous driver and just pumped up, so that the warning light doesn't come on. but over the few days that you have it, it could easily go down and cost you for a replacement (Runflats are non repairable). As a rental customer how much checking of a vehicle do you need to do? Mondeo_1


Rover 75 with a puncture that's not fixable

Had a call from a previous customer to say he had a flat, and could I come round to fix it. Luckily it was just round the corner and was on my way home. Got to the Rover and jacked it up, only to see that the main spring for the suspension had broken and pierced the tyre, putting a 300mm split through the inner sidewall of the tyre.

Unfortunately, this is a job for a garage to repair the spring before the tyre is replaced. So I was not able to help my customer this time. As putting a new tyre on the vehicle would not sort the problem, and the spring would soon damage any new tyre.


Mitsubishi Shogun tyres and tracking.

I went to replace two tyres on a Mitsubishi Shogun Sport today, with 18" wheels. The job in itself was easy enough, as some of these large tyres can be easier than small tyres such as those on a mini.

But upon checking the tyre wear, it was easy to see that the tracking was out of line, I showed the customer, and she agreed to allow me to correct the tracking, as this will give better tyre wear and handling.

I can only guess that the tracking had not been adjusted for many years, and the track rod locking nuts were rusted solid, and with the Shogun there are two lock nuts on each end of the track rod. It took me almost 30 minutes just to get the nuts free, and be able to start the tracking.

Once free, it was a simple case of checking the existing condition (+6) and adjust it to the correct setting (1.8). Hopefully the customer will now get much better even tyre wear.Mitsubishi_Shogun_1


VW Polo with corroded alloys

Fitting 4 tyres on a VW Polo today and came across a problem that is often seen on older alloy wheels. Moisture gets inside the tyre and causes the alloy wheel to corrode on the inside. This then bubbles up the paintwork which allows air to slowly escape, making it look like a slow puncture.

There are two options:

One is to have the wheels properly refurbished, not only is this costly, but it takes some time, so your vehicle will be off the road for a day or so,

The other option which Hometyre can do, is to clean off all the loose paint with a scraper, then wire brush the alloy to remove all the corroded aluminium, we then paint on a coat of liquid rubber to act as a sealer, before fitting the new tyre. This sealer will generally last as long as the tyre, and you just re-coat it when you next change your tyres.VW_Polo


Honda CRV - 4 wheel alignment

Had a customer who has had some abnormal wear on all 4 wheels. He asked me to carry out a 4 wheel alignment. This involves putting the laser gauges on the rear wheels first and centralising them with the front, at the same time adjusting the toe settings to the required Honda requirements. It is then a case of moving all the gauges around and repeating the exercise on the front wheels. Luckily this vehicle has been tracked regularly so the adjusting bolts were easy to undo and move to the correct settings.

Should you need 2 or 4 wheel tracking on your vehicle, call Hometyre and book an appointment at a time and place to suit you. A properly aligned vehicle will handle better, have improved tyre wear and can save fuel.


Vandals damage vehicles in Emsworth

Had an emergency call out today (Easter Friday), to two vehicles in Emsworth. A Volvo & a Ford Transit had both had the valves on their wheels cut in half, can only guess wire or bolt cutters were used. Surprised no-one heard anything as they should have made quite a lot of noise, when they were cut.

From the amount of people who stopped to comment on the flat tyres, I heard that there have been a spate of attacks on vehicles in this area.

Both vehicle owners were only in the area to carry out some work on a house in the street, and needed to get away back to their families for Easter. Luckily the Hometyre sales office was open today, and I was willing to go out and get them back on the road.

Once there, I had to remove the tyres from the wheels and replace the valves, as well as adding a rim sealer, as all the wheels were slightly corroded. I also checked all their other tyres and pumped them up to the correct pressures before completing the job.Slashed_tyres


Tyron bands fitted to a Bailey Caravan

Today's customer is a caravan owner who wanted to feel more safe on the roads, after some investigation he decided on having Tyron bands fitted.

He contacted Tyron UK who recommended Hometyre, I was booked in and went to his house in Lewis where I fitted the Tyron bands. He was happy as he didn't have to hitch up his caravan and tow it to a tyre depot, then wait around to see if they could even fit them correctly.

His caravan was completed within 40 minutes and he is now ready for his trip away this Easter.


A puncture that was not the tyre

One of the jobs I was called to today was a flat tyre on a Range Rover Sport, with 20" wheels. The owner had a flat tyre yesterday, and pumped it up, by today it was flat again. He ordered a new tyre and I went out to fit it. Upon checking the tyre I found there was no problem with it, I then checked the wheel and found a split in the alloy rim that was causing the tyre to deflate.

I informed the customer and put his spare wheel on to keep him moving. His choices now are to source a new wheel or to get his existing wheel repaired.


Does it need changing?

I am starting to think that a tyres condition should be part of the driving test.


One job I went to had a flat tyre, where it had burst as the lady was overtaking a lorry on a dual carriageway. Luckily the lady was able to make it to the side of the road and called out the emergency services to be brought home on a trailer. When she called us, she suggested we bring two tyres as she wasn't sure whether her other front tyre was 'OK' or not. It was NOT - see picture. This is the 'Good tyre' or so she thought.

It's not just the ladies though, as yesterdays job was a callout to a man with a flat on a Mazda, the problem was easily visible... there were 2mm wide cracks all around the tyre in the tread (8 year old tyres). I also informed him that his other front tyre was exactly the same, and really he should have had both tyres changed.

Jobs in and around Worthing & Brighton today

First of today's jobs was a new tyre to be fitted to an Alfa Romeo Spyder, finding the car was a bit of a problem as it was parked on a street, Alfa_Spyderand the customer just gave the address of the nearest building. luckily he saw me going around in ever decreasing circles and waved me down. His tyre was flat mostly due to age as there were cracks all over it. He had ordered a Firestone TZ300 to match his other front tyre. His rears were Pirelli's, and they were showing signs of ageing with cracks all around (Yet it had just passed its MOT). The new tyre was soon fitted and he was on his way.

The next job was 4 new Michelins to be fitted to a Landrover Discovery, this was his wifes car, and he took it for a drive yesterday and noticed that the front tyres Landrover_Discowere right down to the legal limit, with the rears not far behind. One quick phonecall and he had his new tyres ordered from Hometyre.

Being a vehicle that is mainly used on the road they had opted for Michelin MX4V tyres, which have a tread pattern very similar to a car tyre.

The third job was a Peugeot 308 stranded in a pub carpark. This was a rental vehicle being used by a pair of Americans Potholeover here on holiday. They were concentrating on driving on the 'wrong side' and didn't see the pothole till too late. It tore a chunk out of the side wall of the tyre, ruining their day out. I found them sat in the pub having some lunch, and told them to stay in there in the warm, while I went and sorted their car out for them. Being a rental vehicle, means a load of paperwork for me, and phoning through all the cars details before being allowed to start the job. This papertrail can take as long as changing the tyre.

Also being a rental car, means that we have to put premium tyres on it, in this case the leasing company opted for Avon AV5 tyres. Once completed I gave a copy of the paperwork to the Americans, who were then planning where to go with what was left of their day.

Mazda_3My final job of the day was a Mazda 3, this is a regular customer, who is planning a trip up to Manchester for Easter, and wanted to make sure she had good tyres. The old tyres were down to just below 3mm, so it was the ideal time to change them anyway. So if you are planning a holiday this Easter where you will be doing some driving, please check your tyres firs and don't leave it till the last minute.


Puncture repair on a Honda Jazz

Had a call from a gentleman today Honda_Jazzwho had gone out to find his Honda with a flat tyre. Luckily it was just a nail in the tyre and I was able to carry out a puncture repair to British standards. This involves removing the tyre, cleaning up the inside and gluing a mushroom shaped patch over and through the hole in the tyre. This is then covered in a sealer, before cleaning up and replacing the tyre.

Once inflated the tyre is ready to drive on immediately.  


4x4 tyres on a Range Rover sport & a Jeep Cherokee

Not the best of weather today to be out fitting tyres, but when customers need tyres, then off we go.

Todays first job was to fit tyres to a Jeep Cherokee in Rustington, these were 255/60 R18 tyres. We found that the vehicle was fitted with Tyre pressure monitoring sensors (TPMS). These are the original sensors and they are 7 years old, the valve cores had corroded, but because the sensors still worked the owner wanted them to stay in place. My guess is that these will need to be replaced in the not too distant future.4x4tyre_lp

The second job of the day was to fit 275/40R20 tyres to a Range Rover Sport. We noted unusual wear to the inside edges of the remaining tyres. Upon checking the tyre pressures they were found to be around 13psi low. Which may well be the cause of this uneven wear. The customer was informed, and told to keep an eye on the tyres and call us as soon as they need replacing.



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