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Old 06-02-2006, 07:18 AM   #1
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Fixing a flat tire on a 987...

This was posted by a user named "Alan" over at PPBB. Hope he doesn't mind me copying and pasting (with attribution) to here, as I thought it was great.

Got a chance to repair a flat tire on my 987S today using the new Porsche "no spare tire needed" approach of goop in a can.

It barely works, and I wanted to give you my observations.

If you have a slow leak caused by a nail in the tread, putting the goop in according to the instructions may be adequate. But, with a slow leak, just pumping the tire up with the air compressor Porsche provides is usually good enough.

But I had a leak caused by an object that didn't remain in the tire. So, when I poured the white goop in, all it did was sputter out of the hole (real easy to find the leak!). After putting the goop in, I managed to limp to a service station that was very close by and there we plugged the tire (more on that later).

I spoke with the Porsche service manager who had some suggestions about how to get the goop to work better in situations where there is a more rapid leak (like mine). He said the first thing to do is to let all the air out of the tire so there is no pressure to force the goop out. He then said that you should position your car so that that hole is actually being plugged by the road surface. Then put the goop in and let the car sit for about 15 minutes so that there is time for the goop to "set". Then pressurize the tire and drive to the nearest service station. If you're lucky and frequently stop to refill the tire, you might make it (I did, but the service station was only 1/4 mile away -
As I drove, the tire was making nice white evenly spaced white dots on the road). If you're unlucky you have to call Porsche roadside assistance.

Once I got to the service station, the repair was made quite quickly. They simply removed the tire and plugged it from the outside with material that is pushed into the hole. The heat of the tire causes the material to heat, expand and melt to fill the hole. I was able to drive home the 50 miles with no other incidents. I will undoubtedly replace the tire.

But the kit that was used in the service station is really easy to use and I highly suggest that we should carry one (if you don't already have it). It consists of a cylindrical rasp that you first push into the hole to rough the surface in a uniform mannner. Then there is a 4" piece of sticky brown cord that you thread the the eye of another tool (like threading a needle). You then force the brown rope down into the hole (it doubles up as you force it down), cut off any remaining piece at the surface of the tire, set the tire pressure and you're good to go.

I bought a kit in a parts supply store and will never drive a non-spare tire car without it again.

Hope this helps


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Old 06-02-2006, 07:46 AM   #2
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plugging the hole is the easy the part. Figuring out how to use the mini jack properly is the hard bit! Built in jacks would be so cool.
The plug strips are cool but a can of slime or flat fix might be better in a down pour or if you can't find the puncture.
The 987 comes with a compressor? pretty nice.
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Old 06-02-2006, 09:49 AM   #3
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This has been discussed before. A proper Plug Repair entails not only inserting the Plug, but also adding a Patch on the inside covering the Plug. Also, only Punctures in the Tread area should be repaired, if the Sidewall is punctured, replace the Tire. See: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/rules/TireSafety/ridesonit/brochure.html

Also, there is some disagreement on repairing a Performance Tire, especially if the Car is driven spiritedly. A repaired Tire will likely let go at High Speed where the Pressure, Heat and Stress are greatest, or in a Panic Stop, two situations where you don't want Tire Failure.

Whether the repair will hold or not is possible but not guaranteed and is debatable, but the one thing which isn't is that the Tire has been compromised. My personal choice would be to replace the Tire, or to refrain from getting my foot in it until I did - Safety First!

An interesting aside, for the 986, Porsche advises against removing the Spare Tire stating that it plays an integral role in the Front Crumple Zone. On the 987, has Porsche significantly strengthened this area or has Occupant Safety been lowered on the Priority Scale to provide greater storage capacity? ...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99

Last edited by MNBoxster; 06-02-2006 at 07:50 PM.
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