What to Do If a Tire Plug is Leaking?

Plugging your tires is a quick way to fix the tire, and if not done properly, it could lead to further damage to the tire. After the tire has been plugged, the repair kit can fall out or leak again, that is why you need to know what to do if a tire plug is leaking.

Personally, I had my tire repaired before and experienced a further leak after driving a few miles. I discovered that the best option is to replace the tire when you have a leaking plugged tire. It will save you the stress of having to fix the tire repeatedly.

We’ve compiled a detailed and actionable guide on what to do if you experience a leak after a tire plug.

what to do if a tire plug is leaking

What is a Tire Plug Leaking?

A tire plug leaking is when an existing repair is done on a tire, and it begins to leak due to many factors. If your tire has been damaged initially and you have a tire plug done on it, only to leak in the same area where it was repaired, then you have a big problem with it.

Tire plugs involve having to stop leaks in tires by using sticky rubbers which are inserted into the leaks. The rubber is then sealed using a special cement sealing, which holds the kit in place and does not allow it to come out.

When the plugged tire still leaking, then it could be due to some factors. One of which is due to an incorrect process. If you allow the cement sealing to dry, the procedure is correct. After applying the sealing, you must wait for tire plugging about 3 minutes to allow the cement sealing to dry properly.

Also, when you drive with a plugged tire for too long, you experience leaks. Unlike the tire patch, a plugged tire is a temporary fix for leaks. The repair allows you to get to a place where a permanent fix is done. Driving too long for this repair will open up or widen the leaks even more.

What to Do If a Tire Plug is Leaking?

When you experience a leaking tire, you should not have any further repairs done on the tire. You must change the tire and get a new one immediately. Repairing the leaking plugged tire is risky because you stand a chance of having a tire plug blowout, which could eventually lead to shredded or blown-out tires.

However, if you need to have the tire repaired, you can perform a temporary repair. First, you will have to determine if the item is still in position in the tire. Can a tire plug fall out? Yes, it can if it needs to be inserted and sealed properly.

If the plug has been blown out, you can have a tire patch on your vehicle. You can also have another tire repairing done on the vehicle. However, if the plug is still in, do not attempt to remove it; take your tire to a professional to have it fixed properly.

Signs of Plugged Tire Leaking

If you have a leaking plugged tire, it comes with the normal symptoms of a leaking tire. The tire will constantly become deflated or imbalanced, losing pressure by parking and more. Once you notice that your tire is always losing air pressure, the plug might leak; the next step is to have the kit tested.

To test the plugged area of your tire, first, inflate the tire. Once properly inflated, you can inspect the repaired item and other parts of the tire for any damage. You must inspect other parts of the tire, and this is because the leak can come from other parts of the tire.

After inspecting the tire and you do not see any damage, you need to get soap water. Apply the soapy water to the plugged part of the tire. If the tire part bubbles, then it is leaking. Once the leak has been recognized, you can choose whether you will be replacing the tire or having it repaired, which is not advisable.


Can a Leaking Tire Plug Be Fixed and How?

It is possible to have a leaking tire fixed, but this will not guarantee it will not leak again. A permanent solution is to get the tire replaced. To get a tire plug leak repaired, you can repair the tire just like a regular leak. You can patch the tire and fix the leak.

If you have another plug done on the tire, you need to get a tire repair kit. Besides, you can follow the steps below to learn how to do a tire plug.

It would be best if you got your tools ready. Below is a list of tools you will need to plug the tire again.

1. A jack

2. Needle and plier

3. Plug insertion tool

4. Reaming tool

5. Spray bottle

6. Strips

7. Rubber cement sealing

Once you have the necessary tools and materials, you can plug the tire. You will first have to jack up the tire and remove the tire. Use your ream tool to ream the tire’s leak, allowing the plug to fit in properly. Get the strip and insert it in the hole using the insertion tool. Make sure the process is deep enough.

Tire Plugging You Tube

After the insertion, have the cement seal applied and wait for the seal to dry properly. After that, cut off the extra strip and inflate the tire, ensuring the plug has properly blocked the leak.

Does Plugging a Tire Ruin It?

A plug is a good temporary way to fix a leaking tire, but sometimes people need help understanding how to install the tire plug without having their tires blown. You must understand that when you use a true kits for your tires, the problem is partially gone. If you continue to drive a vehicle with a plugged tire, you will further damage the tire and slim the chances of a better and more reliable repair on the tire.

Can You Plug a Tire Twice?

We only recommend getting your tire plugged in once, except if you have the plug done in different positions on the tire. If the repair is done in different vehicle parts, they should be at least 16 inches apart. Having the plug done close to another repaired part of the vehicle will cause serious damage to the tire. The leak expands, connecting the previously plugged part and damaging the tire.

It is possible but unsafe if you are looking to plug in a leak that has already been plugged in. It can only be done for a short period, after which you can replace the tire.

plugging a tire

How Much Does It Cost To Repair a Tire Plug?

Getting your plugged tires repaired can cost from $10 to $100. The tire repair is influenced by many factors, including the size of the leak on the tire and what type of repair will be done on the tire.

If you have a professional repair the damage, it may incur an extra cost of up to $100. 


What to do if a tire plug is leaking? When you discover your tire is leaking repeatedly, you need to have the tire replaced immediately. Managing and having the kit fixed again is not right and can blow out the tire causing damage to the wheel. Also, if you repair the plugged tire now, you may have to repair it again.


Mr. Shafiqule Islam is a graduated Mechanical Engineer and has more than 15 years experience of repairing and maintenance of different brand vehicles like Toyota, Mitsubishi, Ford, Mercedes, BMW etc. He is also giving training to Mechanics. He has started writing to share his practical knowledge to Vehicle Owners, Drivers and Mechanics to keep their cars at best fit.

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