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Find the Leak In Your Tire


Bubbles bubbles everywhere.

The bubbles will show you the leak.

Matt Wright
As somebody who lives your life in the Automotive Empowerment Zone, there's no way you're paying somebody $20 to plug your tire when you can do it yourself for $5 in 5 minutes. All you need to do now is find the hole.

If you don't see a screw, nail or piece of garden equipment sticking out, it can be tough to figure out where the air is escaping your tire. Whether it's a slow leak that you're sick of filling or a total eruption of the tire, finding the hole is all about the bubbly.

Before you open the 'fridge and reach for that bottle of Brut Pink Sparkly stuff, get your bubbles straight. We're talking about soapy bubbles this time (which mix well with champagne but that's a different website).

All you need to find your puncture is a squirt bottle filled with pretty much any type of bubbly cleaner. Window cleaner works great, as do the clean-all grease cutters like Fantastik or 409. If you have a compressed air supply like a compressor or air holding tank, you can do this at home. If not, just toss the flat tire in the trunk and service it in front of the air pump at the local Quickie Jiffy Spiffy & Gas mart.

With the tire inflated, or as much as you can get in there while it leaks, spray the entire tire with the bubbly. It might help to do it in sections of 1/4 of the tire at a time. As you watch the cleaner run down the tread of the tire, you'll see a little volcano of bubbles erupt right where your puncture lies!

And there's your hole. Now plug it up and ride off into the sunset.

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