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What Causes A Tire Blowout? [7 Reasons]

What causes a tire blowout

Have you ever been in a situation when you suddenly hear a boom while driving?

The car starts wobbling and you lose control.

Do you know what just happened?

The tire just blew out.

But let’s just start with what a blowout is.

The sudden loss of air pressure in any inflatable tire, frequently accompanied by the sound of an explosion, is known as a tire blowout.

Blown Out Tire
Figure 1- Blown Out Tire ©DreamsTime

Cause of Tire Blowout

The main causes of tire blowout are under-inflation, overloading, potholes, punctured or worn-out tire, any manufacturing defect, and in some cases extreme hot conditions.

In this article, we are going to discuss each cause one by one.

1. Under-Inflation

One of the main causes of the tire blowout is under-inflation.

When the tire pressure is low compared to the recommended tire pressure, the tire sags. Since the sides of tires are thinner compared to the edges when the pressure is low, the tire’s shape distorts and it cannot withstand the vehicle’s load properly.

The higher friction causes the tire to overheat, this weakens the rubber bonds, and the tire may blow out due to any weak spots.

Most modern vehicles are now equipped with Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), which alerts you when the tire pressure becomes lesser than the recommended air pressure.

So, this may not be the problem in these types of vehicles.

Under-inflation is not the only factor, which is responsible for blowout, multiple other factors may cause a blowout, such as hitting a pothole.

2. Potholes

A sudden impact by hitting something, such as one a pothole, can cause serious damage to the tires. Similarly, a damaged patch of the road can severely damage the tire and cause the tire to blow out.

3. Puncture

Sometimes, your car’s tire is punctured due to a nail stuck in it, without you knowing it. As a result, the air slowly keeps seeping out. This weakens the tires slowly. And once the whole air seeps through the tire, it blows out.

4. Over Loading

Though the car gives you the facility to travel with your family, take your luggage. But that doesn’t mean you push a car beyond its limits.

If you are going on a vacation with your family, you unconsciously put a lot of weight on the car. When the car is overloaded, the whole force is on the tires, since they are the ones supporting your car. Due to this huge stress, one weak tire can rupture.

5. Uneven Tread

If you don’t rotate your tires on regular basis, the tire wears out, the treads become uneven. And due to excessive weight, the weakest tire, which is unevenly worn, can blow out.

6. Manufacturing Defect

Tires can also blow out if the tire has a manufacturing defect. A tire on the outside may look alright, but sometimes the rubber layers inside are not intact.

Similarly, at times the tires are not installed properly, and this may cause a tire rupture. So, if in the first place you don’t know how to install a tire, don’t do it by yourself.

7. Extreme Heat

Heat alone does not cause a tire to rupture on its own, but it is a contributing component in the demise of tires. Tire blowout season runs from May to late August, and it’s at this time that many people overburden their automobiles and go for long trips on hot roads.

Now, after causes, we need to look for things which can do to avoid a blowout.

How to Avoid a Blowout?

Prevention is better than a cure. A blowout can be prevented by regularly checking your tire pressure, and not driving with old and worn tires.

Check your tire Pressure Often: As mentioned earlier, the prime reason why tires blow out is low pressure. So, the best way to prevent tire pressure is by regularly checking the tire pressure. This regular monitoring will help you know about the tires. If the tire pressure is often dropping, that means your tire has a puncture, or sometimes there is a leakage in the tire’s nozzle.

Nowadays, vehicles have Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), which is quite useful. It constantly monitors the pressure in all four tires and alerts you if any tire has lower pressure. Any time your tire pressure light warns you, get the tire checked by an expert technician.

Don’t drive with worn-out tires: Tires wear out after spending their lives. So, if your car’s tires are worn out and their tread depth has significantly reduced, you should replace them without any delay. If you don’t know much about tire depth and wear, get your tires inspected after 6,000 miles.

How to drive with a blown out tire?

Whenever your tire gets blown out, firstly you don’t need to panic instantly, calm yourself.

Most people start to press the brake pedal, as soon as they know that the car tire has ruptured. That’s not the right way.

  • So, in case you face this kind of situation, don’t press the brake. If you do so, the wheels will lock up and the car will get out of control. This can be quite dangerous for you and the people on the roads.
  • What you need to do this slightly accelerate the car to maintain the speed; keep the steering straight. You won’t be able to properly accelerate since the blown-out tire will create drag on the vehicle.
  • Turn on the emergency lights. Then, move to the side of the road by gently reducing the speed of the car. The car will slow down and come to rest.
  • Now, you can change your tire if you how to do that or call a mechanic that could help or you can tow the car to the nearest repairing facility.

Are Tire Blowouts covered in Insurance?

Tire blowouts are normally not included in the insurance policy. But if you have a comprehensive insurance policy, then the damage caused by blown-out tires to your vehicle will be covered by the insurance company, not the damage to the tires. But to make sure you can claim the damage caused by blowout tires, you need to thoroughly go through the insurance policy.

I hope this would article would have enlightened your knowledge on the main causes of tire blow out, and how you can drive with a ruptured tire.

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