Everything You Need To Know About Spare Tyres

Everything You Need To Know About Spare Tyres

Written by Deepak Bhagat, In Automotive, Published On
September 8, 2020
Last modified on December 14th, 2021

Having a spare tyre is critical if you own any sort of vehicle. In the unfortunate event, you have a flat tyre, it is best to change the damaged tyre with the spare one and continue. However, it is important to remember that the spare tyre is not meant to last forever, it is not a replacement of the normal tyre, but is a substitute for a limited time.

Let’s understand the basics together.

Where is the spare tyre located?

Spare tyres are usually located in the trunk of the vehicle. They are fixed using bolts and screws to ensure they don’t topple over and move about in your trunk while you are driving your vehicle.

Types of Spare Tyres

Maybe to a car-enthusiast, it is obvious, but for the layman, let’s just clear this up – not all spare tyres are like your normal tyres. They come in different variety and categories and it’s better to know what kind you are dealing with.

  1. Normal Tyre

Some tyres are the same as the ones you are using. If that is the case, lucky you! You can just replace the damaged tyre and continue as normal. Although, experts do advise to inspect and make sure all tyres have similar treads, to maintain uniform functionality and control of the tyres.

  1. Donut Tyre

These are the tyres manufacturers started to make when they realized that most customers never used the ‘extra tyre’ as they generally just replaced all of them. Donut tyres are skinnier and compact. This makes them a cheaper option for the manufacturer and also helps to reduce the weight of the car and the space it occupies when stored in the car. These tyres are not a permanent solution and need to be replaced as soon as possible, as they are not designed to last long.

  1. Run Flat Tyre

These tyres are the latest invention in the tyre world. They are sturdy and have a unique and interesting mechanism – they can still function when punctured. That’s right, you read correctly. These tyres are self-supporting and have a strong sidewall that provides extra support in case of a flat tyre. Due to these qualities, the Run Flat Tyre is pretty costly. However, they too, cannot be used indefinitely and have to be replaced as soon as possible.

Now that you know the different tyre of spare that exist, you can examine the one stored in your car or the one your car is using and be prepared.

When to replace the spare?

In the unfortunate event, you do experience a flat tyre and are using a spare, you might be tempted to continue using it, or at least be wondering how long you can use it for before you have to replace it. Well, here is the rundown.

Most spare tyres – whether the Donut Tyre or a Run Flat tyre – can be used for up to a 100 Km or so and the maximum speed they can withstand is around 80 km/hr. That should be good enough speed and distance for you to get to a safe place or get to a mechanic to have it replaced.

Why replace the spare?

The reason Donut Tyres cannot last long and are considered a temporary fix is that they are not thick enough and they have very little treads. After about 100 km, these treads tend to wear down, which may cause your vehicle to skid and spin out of control. While, Run Flat Tyres are punctured and though they have a powerful sidewall to support, the air pressure will eventually decrease due to the weight of the vehicle and the constant spinning, which again, may cause your vehicle to skid and spin. Regardless of what type of spare tyre you have, it is important to replace them with the first opportunity you get. When replacing it with the actual tyre, make sure you get the tyre that is similar to the ones you are already using, e.g. if it is a Dunlop Light Truck Tyre or a Dunlop Passenger Tyre. This will be indicated on the sidewall of your tyre. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

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