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Tire Rack's Tires, Wheels, Brakes & Suspension
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Old 12-03-2012, 02:42 PM
MotoWPK MotoWPK is offline
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Location: Colorado
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Mein Auto: '13 128i vert, '14 X5 35d
Flat Strategy with RFT's

Just took delivery of our 2013 328xi. Reviewing the manual it indicates max speed/miles on a flat RFT is 50 mph/50 miles (the latter for an average load).

It is my impression that RFT's are less available than regular tires and one would likely need to order a replacement (especially a replacement matching the brand/series of the other tires on the vehicle).

So, what's the strategy for a trip where you don't want to risk being stranded somewhere waiting for any of the tire outlets within 50 miles to have to order a replacement in, not having any in stock? My first (and so far only) thought is to use a flat tire sealant. Do these work reasonably well and could one reasonably depend on it to last for, say, several hundred miles (where your next planned stop is and you can ordered ahead so a replacement is waiting for you)?

Somewhat related, in case you have to replace one tire, is there a need to replace others so that diameters are matched? I've read that the AWD systems on some cars require tire diameters to be very closely matched so avoid the system trying to continually transfer torque due thinking a tire is slipping due to wheel speed variation resulted from mismatched tire diameters (and I'm talking here about a diameter mismatch due to tire wear, not due to fitting a brand/series of replacement different than on the other wheels).
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Old 12-04-2012, 05:47 AM
gpburdell gpburdell is offline
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Mein Auto: 2010 335i Cabrio
I bought my 2010 335i Cabrio in September, got a flat in November. Lucky me: happened early Saturday morning when I didn't have a lot to do, so easy to just drive to the dealer and get it replaced. Tire was in stock. I did not have to replace the other rear, but it also wasn't like I had a nearly worn out tire on one side fighting a new tire on the other.

Cans of fix-a-flat are bad news. They make a mess inside the rim and can mess up the TPMS sender. I'd avoid unless I had no other option than sitting on the side of the road.

My strategy for trips if I get a flat is to carry small compressor and a plug kit. A fast leak is usually easily found and decent plugs can definitely last for enough miles and a couple days. A slow leak can be managed with the compressor if I can't find it. I'd drive pretty cautiously with an plugged tire; I don't want to find out how exciting it gets if the tire spits a plug. An independent shop might even do an internal mushroom patch on the tire if you couldn't get a replacement in short order.

Last edited by gpburdell; 12-04-2012 at 05:49 AM.
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