So you’ve got a flat tire and wonder how much it will cost for a tire patch. Here we’ll discuss how much major shops and chains charge for patching a tire and where the best place to take your car is.
Remember that you may already have tire road hazard insurance.
It is often sold as an extra when you change your tires. So look at the paperwork if you have it, or call the tire shop.
They should have your details stored and can let you know if you have this option.
If you don’t have tire hazard insurance, you’ll pay between $20 and $40 to patch a tire. The patch is cheap, and most of the cost is the tire shops’ labor and operating expenses.
Briefly, before we go on is important to recognize the difference between a tire patch and two tire plugs. Forgive me if I’m writing the basics here.
People often use patching and plugging interchangeably, adding to the confusion.
You must take the wheel off the rim to patch a flat tire. This allows access to the inside of the tire.
A plug is typically inserted from the outside of the tire. This means it can be put into place without removing the tire from the rim.
Many do-it-yourself mechanics use plugs rather than patches because it saves them the time and effort of removing the tire from the wheel.
The best patch repair involves a plug inserted from the inside of the tire outward and comes as one unit.
These are the best patches and last the longest.
Some people claim that their flat tires are as good as new after they’ve had a plug put in, and they get thousands more miles out of the tire.
Plugging a flat isn’t as good as a patch.
Plugging “fixes” often leak very quickly and are looked upon as nothing more than stopgaps.
How Much Does It Cost To Patch A Tire?
A tire patching kit costs between $10 and $20 if you have the tools to remove the tire, or you can make an appointment with a tire shop.
If you are buying a kit, it will come with more than one patch—so if (when!) your tires spring another leak, you’ll be able to save on the cost of a visit to a tire shop. You’ll also have the satisfaction of doing something yourself that saves money long-term.
A quick check on Amazon will tell you which patches are highly rated, and give some indication of how well they stop leaks over time.
If you are like many people who don’t have the tools or time to remove their tires from their rims, many places will patch your flat tire for a small fee.
Important Facts You Should Know About Patching Flat Tires
- A tire sidewall can’t be patched.
- A tire shoulder – the curved tread area – can’t be patched
- It may be more cost-effective to replace a tire with less than 5/32 of tread left on it.
- It is recommended to balance the tires after a patch repair as it will never back on the rim in the same place.
What To Expect At A Tire Shop
Most tire shops offer a free inspection of all four tires when you get one patched. They do this because it allows them to identify other issues with your vehicle and potentially sell you new ones to increase their profits.
Furthermore, failing to visibly inspect a tire that later causes an accident would reflect poorly on the company. It is in businesses’ best interest to offer this kind of protection for their customers—especially if they want to avoid negative publicity and lawsuits.
Tire shops often include a brief note in their receipts advising additional repairs, and the driver may accept or reject the advice.
Often read next: How To Patch A Tire From The Outside – You Can’t!
- The usual procedure to patch a flat tire is first to remove the tire from the rim.
- The rest of the inner tire is inspected for additional damage.
- The area is sanded and prepped to accept the patch
- The patch backing is taken off, and the patch is applied to the hole.
- A roller is then used to push down on the patch to make sure it tightly seals against the tire.
- The tire is then fitted back onto the rim.
- The tire is inflated and balanced.
- The tire is given one final check before the car is returned to the customer.
It takes about 30 minutes to patch a tire. As you can see, the preparation for repairing a flat tire requires several steps to ensure the safety and proper application of the patch.
Related Articles: Tire Plug Vs Patch Cost [ANSWERED]
Carzaza.com is an Amazon Associate. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
We like this mushroom tire plug kit at Amazon. Even if you don’t need to repair a flat today, they are a must-have glove compartment accessory to stop you from ever being stranded with a flat in the future.
Sometimes a new tire is the better option if your tire is old or has been damaged before.
We recommend Priority Tire. They often have clearance sales that result in the cost of a new tire being little more than the cost of repairing the damaged one.
Some links on Carzaza.com are affiliate links from which I receive a small commission from sales at no additional cost to you.
How Much Do Dealerships Charge To Patch A Tire?
Dealerships usually charge more to fix flat tires than other repair shops do.
Some luxury brand dealerships will patch a flat for free, hoping it will lead to another sale down the road.
If you just want to get your flat tire fixed, there are better options than what is offered here:
Walmart charges $15 for a tire repair.
Discount Tires Offer a FREE tire repair service.
Costco: Offer a Free Lifetime Repair if they originally fitted the tire.