What Are Run Flat Tyres?

Put simply, run flat tyres are tyres that continue to work for a period of time after suffering a puncture. The idea is that, because your vehicle now requires the attention of an experienced mechanic or tyre technician, you should be able to drive just long enough to reach a nearby garage.  

There are a wide variety of different run flat tyres on the market today, all of which come with a range of specs and features. In this article, we’re going to be taking a look at run flat tyres in detail, helping you make a decision on whether they’re right for you.

Run flat tyres in garage


How do run flat tyres work?

To ensure that they can survive a puncture, run flat tyres are built with reinforced sidewalls. These sidewalls mean that the structure of the tyre isn’t entirely reliant on the air inside it, and can act as a last line of defence before the tyre finally gives out.

How long can a run flat tyre last with a puncture?

Run flat tyres are great, but they’re not invincible. Realistically, you can expect to drive for about 50 miles at 30 mph with a puncture – much shorter if you try and drive faster. Of course, other variables such as vehicle load and weather conditions will also affect just how far you can get.

The benefits of run flat tyres

  • The key benefit of run flat tyres is that you can continue driving with a puncture, assuming of course that the sidewall hasn’t taken any serious damage. Ultimately, this allows you to safely reach a garage and get the tyre fixed, without having to call a breakdown service.
  • Another benefit of run flat tyres is that, thanks to their strong sidewalls, they are far less prone to blowouts than regular tyres. For those who are unsure, a blowout is a more severe form of tyre damage where air is lost at rapid speeds, usually due to some sort of collision, whether it be with the kerb or another vehicle.
  • Of course, if you can rely wholly on your tyres, then you don’t have to worry about carrying a spare tyre in your boot. This can save you a great deal of extra room and is extremely helpful, especially if you are going on a long trip and need the space.

Can run flat tyres be repaired?

Most manufacturers advise against repairing run flat tyres following a puncture. This is because if the deflated tyre has been driven on, it could have compromised its strength. The problem here is that it’s impossible for a fitter to know if the tyre was driven on for longer than recommended, or at a quicker speed. 

While this is a general rule of thumb, it’s always best to check with the manufacturer of the tyre and see what they think first.

How long do run flat tyres last?

Given that run flat tyres are made from exactly the same materials as normal tyres, you can expect the two types to wear at a very similar rate. While the reinforced sidewall might help combat wear or structural atrophy to a certain extent, the difference isn’t notable.

Can you fit run flat tyres to a car not designed for them?

No – run flat tyres should only be fitted for cars specifically made for them. This is because, without TPMS (Tyre Pressure Monitoring System), the driver will not know if a puncture has occurred. This is very dangerous and could cause a serious accident if the driver decided to speed up.

If you need one or more of your tyres changing, if your vehicle needs servicing or if it needs an MOT, then look no further than Auto Exhausts and Tyres. We offer high-quality workmanship and a wide range of services to help you get back on the road in Lincoln. For more information, get in touch with us today – we’re always happy to help.