SOLVED! FRONT TIRES WON'T HOLD AIR - 2005 4.2

Petnatcar

Original poster
Member
Oct 17, 2017
75
Watertown, NY
Hi Guys,

My front wheels won't hold air even after having them sealed.

I'm tempted to use a can of Fix A Flat to see if that plugs the leaks but it might be a big surprise for the mechanic taking the wheel apart someday. That stuff blows all over the place when you remove the air valve from the stem, so stand back.

Any suggestions on how to fix the leaky wheels ?

Thanks,
Pete Carbone
 

Ilikemy3s

Member
Dec 3, 2011
364
Hi Guys,

My front wheels won't hold air even after having them sealed.

I'm tempted to use a can of Fix A Flat to see if that plugs the leaks but it might be a big surprise for the mechanic taking the wheel apart someday. That stuff blows all over the place when you remove the air valve from the stem, so stand back.

Any suggestions on how to fix the leaky wheels ?

Thanks,
Pete Carbone
tighten the valve stems ? The rubber part fo the valve stem not seated ? .. rim has slight bend bead seal? did you take the wheel off and place it in a kiddie pool of water to look for air bubbles ?
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Nov 20, 2011
10,654
Tampa Bay Area, FL
I'd spray soapy water around the edge of the rim, and see if there's any leaking there. If so, that fix a flat won't help at all. Do you have any corrosion on the rims at all?
 

Petnatcar

Original poster
Member
Oct 17, 2017
75
Watertown, NY
I'd spray soapy water around the edge of the rim, and see if there's any leaking there. If so, that fix a flat won't help at all. Do you have any corrosion on the rims at all?
Yup, did the soapy water trick and nothing.

But it's low again after just filling it so it's gotta come off and go to the repair shop.

Thanks guys.
 

TJBaker57

Member
Aug 16, 2015
2,892
Colorado
I once had a leak on my Yukon, I heard it when exiting the vehicle. Took the wheel off and brought to the shop. Shop calls later says they cannot find the leak. Mind you I _heard_ the leak! I tell them I will find it, mark it, and bring it back. Sure enough no bubbles anywhere. Only when I bled the pressure down to maybe 5 or 6 psi and put pressure by hand near the area did the leak show itself! I must have been parked in just the right spot of the tire to produce the leak that I heard.
 

Mike of Maine

Member
Sep 6, 2023
27
Maine~
I had a slow leak on an alum rim. Had it sealed, new stem and it leaked down overnight. I was unable to locate the leak with soapy spray or submerge in water tank.
Returned to shop for a re-check. They resealed, kept overnight to be sure and no leaks some 6 months afterwards.
Also had a wheel develop a leak where the weight was placed on bead. That was visible with soap tho.
 

budwich

Member
Jun 16, 2013
2,018
kanata
Yup, did the soapy water trick and nothing.

But it's low again after just filling it so it's gotta come off and go to the repair shop.

Thanks guys.
you likely got a nail in the tire and it has worn the "tell tail" off and is not very easy to spot. You are spraying / checking the bead (and maybe the valve) but not the tire body itself. You also need to over fill the tire to help with the "leak process".

You indicate at the start "front TIRES" but in this post you indicate its "it's gotta come off" which seems like only one. ????

IF you have a little kid's plastic wading pool. Fill it with water and test the tire in it.
 

Redbeard

Member
Jan 26, 2013
3,451
About 10-15 years ago I had some valve stems leak (the core), even brand new ones. So I started purchasing metal valve stem caps with o-rings inside so just in case the valve started leaking it still couldn't get past the o-rings. Lastly, just FYI, has the temperature changed a lot during this leak? For me it seems that tires loose about 1 psi for every 10 degrees F lower it goes. If maybe you traveled from a warm area to a cold area you might loose some psi. And as mentioned above it is easy to miss a nail when the head has wore off. Just look for it in bright light conditions and moving slowly all the way around the tire.
 
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Mooseman

Moderator
Dec 4, 2011
25,177
Ottawa, ON
Yeah, I wouldn't use fix-a-flat. Techs absolutely hate that stuff and may even charge extra to clean it up. If you have TPMS, it also destroys the sensors.

Move the valve stem around while spraying soapy water. Sometimes the centrifugal force moves it and induces the leak. If it's a solid metal stem, it could be the rubber stem to rim seal. A good shop should be able to find it.
 
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Petnatcar

Original poster
Member
Oct 17, 2017
75
Watertown, NY
Hi Guys,
Got an update on the tires:

It looks like the beads get a little sketchy on these trucks and even when spraying the soapy water you may not see the leaks if they're on the back side.
A trip to the tire shop solved the problem.
They scrapped and cleaned the beads and replaced the Valve Stem and they are still holding pressure after 2 weeks

Yabba Dabba Doo !
 
Dec 5, 2011
570
Central Pennsylvania
Hi Guys,
Got an update on the tires:

It looks like the beads get a little sketchy on these trucks and even when spraying the soapy water you may not see the leaks if they're on the back side.
A trip to the tire shop solved the problem.
They scrapped and cleaned the beads and replaced the Valve Stem and they are still holding pressure after 2 weeks

Yabba Dabba Doo !
Not always popular, but when I've had issues with leaking beads I've had the shop use bead sealer. Essentially, it's uncured rubber they "paint" on the unseated bead when they mount the tire, then when the tire is inflated it essentially glues the tire bead to the rim. Works a treat, but makes breaking the bead on the next tire change a bit of a pain for the tech.

I had a particularly corroded set of factory rims on an S10 that I had to have this done on for 3 consecutive sets of tires.
 

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