Flat tire question

lilsproutJune 1, 2014

I've got a cub cadet zero turn that I bought last season. Today I found the rear tire completely flat. I used it a week ago and it was fine. I used a tire pump to fill it back up. I have just shy of an acre and checked it half way thru and it felt alittle soft so I put some more in to finish.

I'm a single mom and not mechanically inclined lol.

My question is....can I use fix a flat in it?

Thanks!

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mownie(7)

Fix a flat is really intended as an emergency inflation type of product, not a repair.
But, you could use Fix a flat to inflate it, and promise you are going to have the tire repaired properly.

The real question you should be trying to answer is: What is causing the tire to deflate?
Fix a flat will usually only address small punctures in the tread or side wall of a tire.
Fix a flat will not do anything to stop a large leak.

Using Fix a flat in a tire creates a potential hazard to someone breaking the tire down for repairs unless they follow the instructions on the can regarding purging all the flammable gas out of the tire before working on the tire/wheel.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 12:04AM
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cold_weather_is_evil(9)

Those cans have naptha (lighter fluid as a sealant solvent), ammonia, and a fluorocarbon-like refrigerant gas as an expansion gas. They are mild compared to the nasty things they used to be.

Since you're not running your cub cadet down the freeway, use a little bit of a can and don't worry about it. If everything fails spectacularly, you'll just have another flat.

I have used one full car-sized can on two hand truck tires and they're fine, even when I wind them all the way up to four miles an hour. If you can, get the one sized for a compact car or (even better) a motorcycle.

There is also this blue goopy sludge you squeeze into a tube or tire before inflating. Maybe it'll work for you, who knows? Don't mix the two, though.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 12:19AM
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justalurker

Cure the disease and don't treat the symptom...

You might be dealing with a leak as simple as a loose or defective valve stem core.

Get a spray bottle and mix some dish washing liquid with water. Air up the tire and spray the soapy water around the valve stem core (with cap off) and where the valve stem pokes through the wheel and then around the tire tread looking for bubbles.

If you find the leak in the tread area you can plug it with a cheap plug kit available at Walmart or install a tube. If the leak is in the sidewall replace the tire.

OR... take off the wheel and take it to an L&G shop or a tire store and have the tire fixed.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 12:58AM
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rcbe(6)

ditto JAL's advice... and believe that tire and rim assy is a bolt-on item, easily removed so as to take in for tire repair.
Some of those "repair in a can" deals can leave quite a mess behind inside the tire and rim, making a later tire repair/replacement a real PITA. (aka more $$$)

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 2:16AM
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lilsprout

Thank you all for the quck responses.

So to take it off I have to jack it up? Then put a block under it? Sorry I just don't want to mess it up. Would I use a car jack?

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 6:32AM
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lilsprout

Thank you all for the quck responses.

So to take it off I have to jack it up? Then put a block under it? Sorry I just don't want to mess it up. Would I use a car jack?

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 6:34AM
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justalurker

lilsprout,

With respect, if you don't know how to raise the wheel to remove it back away from your mower and get some help. A neighbor or friend or family member who has some mechanical experience.

OR...

Find a local L&G shop and have them come out on a service call. Consider the expense tuition.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 9:05AM
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lilsprout

I really would like to do it myself if possible. What if it happens again?
Thank you.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 9:16AM
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justalurker

That you haven't tried the soapy water tells me that you lack the mechanical experience, and maybe the tools, for this repair. Most anything is possible if you have the knowledge and the tools. Lacking either or both usually ends in disappointment and some times injury and almost always a more expensive repair.

The Cliff Notes version is... with the correct size socket and breaker bar crack the wheel lugs loose. Raise the axle and support adequately. Remove the wheel lugs and take the wheel to have the flat repaired. Reassembly is in reverse order. Run the lugs down to only snug and lower the wheel to the ground. Make sure the lugs are then correctly torqued to specification with the wheel on the ground.

This post was edited by justalurker on Mon, Jun 2, 14 at 10:14

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 9:31AM
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lilsprout

Yes I'm severely lacking lol that's why I'm here!

Even if I tried the soap what good would it really do? Tell me where the leak is? It still would need to be removed and repaired right?

Thank you for your time and patience ;)

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 10:10AM
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mownie(7)

To repeat some of what JAL said, "Find a local L&G shop and have them come out on a service call. Consider the expense tuition."
Concentrate on two words......expense, tuition.

If you have never changed a tire on a car (spare tire in trunk to flat tire on ground), this could be a real teachable moment for you.
If you have any kind of video capability, you could video the the process when the hired tech comes and does the work.
Alternatively, you might browse Youtube for how to vids on changing flats on a car (how to install a spare tire).

Your naivete (no offense intended) in not grasping that the soapy water would make visible bubbles reveals a lack of basic skills/knowledge in things automotive.
So, yes, you do need to learn some stuff about basic maintenance for sure.
I say if you can learn to operate a ZTR mower you should be able to learn some other stuff you need to know in life.
Or you could end up like my MIL who has never learned how to pump gas to fill her car.

This post was edited by mownie on Mon, Jun 2, 14 at 10:25

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 10:20AM
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justalurker

"Even if I tried the soap what good would it really do?"

Your reluctance to take direction when you say that's what you came here for sustains your lack of knowledge and that's why we're encouraging you to seek out professional help... for the tire.

If the soapy water shows the puncture in the tread area then a simple plug could resolve the problem without removing the wheel IF you have a tubeless tire.

Again, the leak could be as simple as a defective valve stem core but we'll never know because you didn't try the soapy water. You've wasted more time typing than it would take to do what we told you to do that would have yielded valuable diagnostic information.

We're trying to tell you that flat repair is a real PITA for even those with experience so we look for the quickest, easiest, and most effective repair.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 10:51AM
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lilsprout

Thanks for all of your kind wonderful help.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 11:41AM
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