Monday, October 17, 2016

Feeling deflated

Ah, that feeling one gets when discovering a flat tire. A flat that you drove on for a while without noticing because the ground was lumpy. A flat that can't simply be patched because the sidewalls are all buggered up. The third flat in three years. Sort of a holiday tradition. I don't know which holiday. Halloween seems appropriate this time. Boo!

The puncture

The buggered sidewall

The spare in place

I suspect the hole was made by some bit of trash left in the desert by human trash.

Now, here's a challenge for GM engineers. Completely flatten a rear time on an Express or Savana, then try to get the spare out from under the van. No fair jacking up the van first, because it would dangerous to get under there with only the factory-supplied scissor jack. Oh, and you're on rocky ground. And it's about 55 degrees. (Not cold, but not pleasant.) Having fun yet?

Luckily, this flat happened just outside a city with several tire buying options. And with friends to watch me change the tire while offering their condolences. That's the proper way to do things like this.


  1. Sorry about the flat ! the positive aspect of it is your location, close by help & in town. It must be lousy to reach under the vehicle to be able to grab the spare, what a pain in the U know where, that's why I prefer those spares attached / hanging from the rear door, easy & accesible to us !!

  2. I'm wondering if road hazard coverage is something that wouldn't work for a full timer? I mean that tire had a lot of life left in it and they aren't cheap. You being a smart guy and very experienced at this, how do you deal with it?

    1. It has come in handy. When I first got the van I put all new tires on it at Discount Tire. The road hazard coverage was $35. They replaced my first two flats. But there's no Discount Tire where I am now, so...

  3. Friends to watch you change the tire WHILE DRINKING COFFEE and offering condolences - thank you very much. ;))

    Big O Tires is mostly out west here but they have repair/replacement agreements with chains nationwide. Sadly, like you, I found out Discount Tire does not. I now keep the booklet that lists all the Big O partners handy with all my other vehicle papers. Handy.