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Old 04-17-2016, 11:04 PM   #1
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Tires perforated by cactus. Slime them?

I thought it was a myth, but apparently cactus spines actually do puncture tires.

At least some cactus from my recent Baja trip did a number on my two passenger-side tires (General Grabber AT2, aired down). I never had this problem in the past with my old BFG T/A KOs, but maybe I was lucky.

After I got back home, I noticed a slow leak in each tire -- a few PSI/day. The soapy water trick turned up bubbles, so I plugged each tire. Slow leak remained. More soapy water turned up more tiny leaks. I found a total of five holes in the right-rear tire and four in the right-front, some in the tread and some in the sidewall. I plugged them all, but there are more to find: I am still getting slow leaks.



So, my question is: should I slime the tires?

They still have plenty of tread on them, so I'd hate to just replace them.

-- Geoff
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Old 04-18-2016, 09:05 AM   #2
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Never seen that on a big truck tire, happens all the time on motos!

Slime might work, but keep in mind it creates a bit of a mess on the rim, so when you next replace tires you'll have a bit of cleanup.
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:47 AM   #3
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I recommend against sliming your tires. It may cause problems with tire pressure sensors in the wheels (if your van has these). It will cause balance problems. It will gum up your valve stems if you air down, or even bleed a little to adjust the pressure, unless you are very careful about the orientation of the valves and purging them with a blast of air prior to bleeding.

Slime is good for ATV and bicycle tires, but I would only use it inside tubes, not tubeless, and I recommend against using it in any tire that needs to be spin-balanced. If you do use it for an emergency, be sure to tell your mechanic before he takes that tire off the rim! He'll appreciate the warning.
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Old 04-18-2016, 12:06 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BVerhulst View Post
It will gum up your valve stems if you air down, or even bleed a little to adjust the pressure, unless you are very careful about the orientation of the valves and purging them with a blast of air prior to bleeding.
Thank you for that advice! I wouldn't have thought about that. Glad I asked.

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Old 04-24-2016, 06:24 AM   #5
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Might be worth the time to see if the tire shop where you bought them from can warranty, road hazard plan them or prorate to help you get a new tires. With that many holes I'd be a little worried about failure down the road.
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