From time to time, every car owner experiences a loss of tire pressure. A simple addition of air from an air compressor often solves the problem. However, have you ever wondered why a tire keeps losing air or what causes tires to lose air pressure?
If you constantly deal with tire pressure issues and keep asking yourself the question, “Why does my tire keep losing air?” G&O Towing created this post to highlight the causes of low tire pressure or tires slowly losing air.
Keep reading for more information and never have to say, “My tire keeps losing air” again without a solution.
G&O Towing is one of the most trusted professional towing and roadside assistance companies in Placerville, CA, and throughout El Dorado County. With over 20 years of experience in towing, roadside assistance, and more, our team of experts can handle even the most complex tire pressure issues.
If you have a tire losing air or need a dependable roadside assistance company in Placerville, CA, look no further than G&O Towing.
The Importance of Proper Tire Pressure
Your tires, in addition to your brakes, are your vehicle’s most crucial safety feature. Properly inflated tires maintain the right amount of traction between your vehicle and the road, facilitate accurate and responsive steering, and absorb shocks. Poorly inflated tires won’t do their job very well.
Correct tire pressure matters because it affects your car’s safety, comfort, gas mileage, and tire lifespan:
- Safety: Under-inflated tires create more friction between the tire and the road, generating excessively high heat levels that may weaken a tire to the point of failure. At high speeds, a rapidly deflating tire may cause the driver to lose control of the vehicle.
- Comfort: An over-inflated tire compromises ride comfort and causes uneven tire wear.
- Longevity: Improper tire pressure, whether under- or over-inflated, can lead to uneven or premature tire wear.
- Fuel efficiency: Incorrect tire pressure reduces fuel economy. For instance, uninflated tires have higher rolling resistance, forcing the engine to work harder than it should and consume more fuel.
What Causes Low Tire Pressure and Why Does My Tire Pressure Keep Going Down?
“So, why does my tire keep losing air?” you may ask. Tires lose pressure primarily because of wheel issues, tire damage, or temperature changes that affect tire pressure.
Tires may incur damage for several reasons and lose air slowly.
Tire Tread Puncture
Punctures are one of the obvious ways tires lose pressure. Tires typically sustain different types of punctures. A severe puncture might blow out your tire, while a slow leak puncture gradually drains your tire.
When a nail, pin, piece of glass, or other sharp object punctures your tire, it may remain embedded in the tire and cause seemingly insignificant air loss. The best way to go about a tread puncture caused by a nail, for example, is to extract it as soon as possible.
Otherwise, the puncture could worsen, and your tire may need urgent repairs to prevent a flat tire.
The bead refers to the part of the tire that seals against the rim of the wheel. Sometimes bead damage stems from wheel corrosion, and other times it results from debris finding its way into the gap between the wheel and tire.
Bead damage can open a small window for air to leak out of your tire. Old age may also break the seal. As the rubber weakens over the years, it loses its elasticity and breaks. An inexperienced technician may also improperly position the bead, leading to slow air loss from the tire.
If your tire suffers from a bead leak, usually removing the debris causing poor sealing or eliminating any rough edges with a steel brush may fix the problem. Once you have a clean surface, the mechanic may apply an adhesive to the rim to ensure the bead sticks to the rim.
Damage Due to Road Hazards
Driving over a large pothole or curb may damage the tire sidewalls and make your tire lose air. If the wheel incurs no damage, re-inflating the tire should suffice. However, you want to inspect the sidewall for any bulges, punctures, or cuts.
Sidewall damage may point to an issue contributing to the leak. Exercise caution and pay attention to the terrain when driving. Going into potholes at high speed, for example, can cause new tires to leak air.
A Wheel Problem
Damaged, warped, or deformed wheels due to impact could be to blame for your tires losing pressure. You also need to keep an eye out for valve stem failure or no valve caps. While the latter may lead to a negligible loss in tire pressure, it may have a significant impact over time.
Fortunately, you can easily and affordably replace wheel valves.
Regarding stem failure, it helps to know that valve stems deteriorate over time. Exposure to the elements, road salt, and chemicals may cause the rubber on your car’s tire valve to become brittle, resulting in slow leaks. An overly tight valve core can also cause air leaks.
Whenever you install new tires, consider replacing the valve with a new one. You also want to check the valve regularly to ensure it works correctly.
Temperature Changes (Cold or Hot)
Pressure changes according to temperature because it shrinks when cooled and expands when heated. So you need to check pressure levels, especially during weather extremes, to maintain pressure at the proper level.
What You Can Do
Whenever you notice your tire pressure keeps dropping, don’t hesitate to schedule a routine check to look for any damage. Your mechanic will quickly diagnose and fix issues like a small puncture. The sooner you do it, the better.
The easiest way to locate a slow leak in a tire is to feel the tire or listen for a hissing sound. Soapy water also comes in handy for detecting air leaks in tires. You can spray the tire with soapy water or immerse it in water, then watch for bubbles at the source of the leak.
Inspect the tire thoroughly, including the bead area, rim, side, and valve, to avoid missing anything.
Sometimes your tire may only lose air when you drive. Possibly, your tire may have a pinhole puncture so tiny that it only widens enough to let air out when your tire heats up while driving. The temporary expansion of the hole, water, coupled with the increase in tire pressure, pushes out air with more force.
Leaks where the bead meets the wheel, like pinhole issues, may occur intermittently and prove challenging to find.
If the wheel itself leaks, you must take appropriate safety precautions. Your mechanic can repair a tiny pinhole leak and declare the vehicle safe to drive. However, a cracked wheel warrants immediate repair or replacement.
If your mechanic fixes the leak and deems the car safe, but you still experience leaking, you may have to install an inner tube inside your tire.
Tips to Keep Your Tires Safe from Losing Air
For safety reasons, check your tire pressure regularly. Since leaks can happen slowly and silently, consider a weekly check to detect and fix issues promptly. A standard tension gauge comes in handy for checking your tire pressure.
Contact G&O Towing for Professional Tire Repair and Replacement Services in Placerville, CA
Now that you have an answer to the question, “Why does my tire keep losing air?” trust our G&O Towing team for all your tire diagnosis, repair, and replacement needs. As a family-owned and -operated business, we value client satisfaction and safety. Count on us to go above and beyond to exceed your expectations.
Reach out any time 24/7/365 for emergencies, and we’ll arrive on time. We also offer affordable prices to meet your needs and budget.
Call us today at (530) 539-2413 for top-of-the-range tire services in Placerville, CA, and the surrounding areas.