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Spare Tire? Changing a flat tire can be extremely frustrating. Once the old tire is off your car, it is your responsibility to get your car safely to the nearest auto repair shop. If your old tire has minor damage, it may cost as low as $10-$15 for the quick fix. But in other situations, you may have to replace the entire tire if it is beyond repair.

Spending hundreds of dollars on a new tire may seem out of the question. So some will ask, “How long can I drive on a spare tire?” We are here to answer that question.

Full-Size Spare

In the past and even today, large vehicles such as trucks SUVs were built with enough room to hold a full size spare tire. While a full-size spare is heavier and requires more space for storage, these tires are more durable and can handle a drive similar to a normal tire.

However, the spare has not been used to the same extent as the other 3 tires (and may be a different type of tire altogether). In this case, the wheel will handle differently than the other tires and this may become unsafe.

Donut Spare

These narrow, compact spares were designed to save space and weight in the vehicle. Donut spares have little to no tread and are NOT built to last. This makes the spare vulnerable to road hazards. Your owner’s manual will give the recommendations for driving time and speed. But in most cases, it is advised to drive no more than 70 miles and no faster than 50mph before replacing your donut tire. Over time, the lubricating grease will break down causing increased wear on the gears and clutch plates.

A Run-Flat Tire

Run-flat tires are becoming more common as manufacturers are realizing that they cost less to maintain compared to traditional tires. If you drive a recent model BMW, your car most likely came with run-flat tires. These tires are tough, but are not designed to last forever.

Run-flat tires are built to withstand most road hazards, including punctures. A normal tire will go flat or blow out if it is punctured. Run-flat tires on the other hand can continue to drive after about 50 miles before needing to be replaced.  However given these features, run-flat tires typically cost more to replace than a traditional tire.

Regardless of the type of tire, your spare needs to be replaced sooner rather than later. Getting a flat tire adequately taken care of isn’t a matter of maintenance; it’s essential to your safety. Have a flat tire? Schedule an appointment with us today!