ATVs (All Terrain Vehicles) are known for their versatility and durability, but even the toughest off-road vehicles can suffer from tire issues.
One common problem with ATVs is tire leaking around the rim. This issue not only affects safety and performance but can also waste time and money on constant tire pressure adjustment.
In this article, we’ll take you through a step-by-step guide on how to fix ATV tire leaking around the rim, so you can get back to your off-roading adventures without any worries.
So, let’s dive in and fix that tire!
ATV Tire Leaking Around Rim
Before, we look at the step by step guide of fixing ATV tire leaking around the rim, let’s first get a better understanding of the issue.
ATV tire leaking around the rim can be cause by a number of different factors. These include; a damaged or worn out tire bead, a damaged rim or just poor tire mounting.
The best way to fix this will depend on exactly the cause of the leak. Inspecting the tire bead and the rim for any damages should be your first step.
If any of them are damaged, you’ll need to replace them. It’s recommended to replace any damaged tire beads and replace or repair the damaged rim depending on the severity of the damage.
Next inspect the tire mounting and ensure the tire is properly seated on the rim. If not, that could be the cause of the leak – and should be fixed as soon as possible.
Dismounting the tire and re-mounting it correctly should fix this. If the leak persists after this, It may be necessary to use a tire sealant to plug the leak
Steps To Fixing ATV Tire Leaking Around The Rim
Tools Needed To Fix A Leak Around A Rim
Step 1: Be Sure Of The Rim That’s Leaking
Before you venture into dismantling your tire into bits, you have to be sure of the source. Leaks can occur from a punctured tire and the rim/bead, bent rim or cracked rim, or a tire valve. The next step will show you how to go about this.
Step 2: Remove The Tire And Place It On A Flat Surface
The first step is to remove the tire and place it on a flat surface. Next, keep an open ear by listening closely to the tire rim, as well as other parts of the tire.
If the leak is a significant one, you are likely to hear the leak making a slight whistle sound, or feel the air on your cheek.
If you didn’t notice or feel anything, then the next step below will be essential
Step 3: Fill The Tire Rim With Soapy Water
Filling the tire rim with soapy water will indicate if the leak is from the rim or not. Use your Bar5F Plastic Spray Bottles to spray soapy water around the rim; the leaks around the rim will be seen by bubbles made from the leaking air.
Remember to do this for both sides of the rim. You can also use plain water is soapy water is not close by, but note that it will be more difficult to spot the bubble generated from the leak.
Step 4: Get All The Air Out
After you notice the spot of the leakage in the ream section, get all the air out from the tire, but ensure you have an air pump close by. Also, ensure you mark the area of the leakage with something visible, say a little scratch from your key. (Read Also: Can Tire Rotation Throw Off Alignment?Find Out)
Step 5: De-Bead The Tire From The Ream
As you should know by now, fixing a leak from the rim of an ATV tire will require you to remove the tire, not only from the wheel but from the rim; and the process of removing the tire from the ream is called de-beading. There are multiple ways to achieve this feat, but I will be going with the easiest possible way.
Get a set of BeadPro spoons. I prefer these BeadPro spoons because they are quite easy to come by, and also easy to use. BeadPro spoons don’t take a lot of time as long as you adhere to the instruction spelled out in the package.(Read Also: Best Floor Jack For Jeep Grand Cherokee)
You can also preferably use a heavy hammer and wooden plank if a BeadPro spoon is out of reach at the time of reading this article.
Put the plank close to the tire rim seal and use sufficient force to hit the plank, this should get the rim out, but it would take a longer time, compared to when you use a set of BeadPro spoons.
Step 6: Wipe Clean The Edges Of The Rim And Proceed To Repair
Clean the edges of your tire with a cloth as soon as the de-beading process is complete. The clean process will get rid of any debris that might be lurking around such areas. Put some repairing solution around the leakage area and get ready to re-bead.
Step 7: Re-Bead The Tire To The Rim
This is where your air pump or air compressor comes in. Start the re-beading process by spaying a good amount of soapy water to the bead section of the rim to act as the lubricant needs to ensure that the whole re-beading process is seamless. Remove the stem core of your ATV tire to allow the free passage of air.
Read Also: How To Identify Tubeless Tire Puncture Plus Quick Fix
Simply fill the air with the air pump as usual, and along the line, you are likely to hear a pop sound as soon as the tire fits inside the rim, one for each side.
If this doesn’t work out, try strapping a ratchet strap around the outer walls of the tire. Tightening the ratchet strap will help push the tire walls out against the beads, which would now require a lesser airflow for the tire to fit into the rim.
Once you are done strapping the tire, get an air pump and pump in air through the valve. Ensure that you don’t pump in too much air while the strap is fitted to your tire, all you just need is a little amount to just fit your tire to the rim.
As soon as this is achieved, ensure that you don’t pump in too much air as soon as you hear the pop sound. (Read Also: Can Tire Shine Damage Rims?)
The standard gauge for seating a tire is around 15lbs, which is equivalent to 1 bar of air pressure; while ATV tires with very stiff sidewalls will require about 40lbs (2.67 bar of air pressure) to seat properly.
Following these simple steps should get you up and running in no time.
Below are some FAQs you might have regarding tires and leakage, kindly drop any further question you might have with regards to tires in the comment section, and I will gladly attend to it.
What Causes A Tire To Leak Around The Rim?
The following are the common reasons why people get leaks in their tires;
1. Unclean Bead
ATV tires and other tubeless tires run at a low tire pressure which can cause sand and other muddy particles to come between the rim and the bead, which can create a leak if it’s not properly cleaned when washing the tires of your vehicle.
2. Rusty Rim
This experience is prevalent in steel wheels due to their ability to corrode easily. When the wheel is rusted, it weakens the bond between the bead and the wheel that keeps the air in place. This can cause air to gradually leak out from such areas over time.
3. Rim Damage
Rim damage can occur when you are involved in a minor accident that involves you hitting your rim badly on a surface. In most cases, you are not even aware of the severity of damage until after some time.
Read Also: How To Remove Tubeless Tape Easily With Steps
How Do You Stop Or Prevent A Tire From Leaking On The Rim?
I will answer this question based on the causes I outlined above, so here is how you can stop the following occurrence;
1. Unclean Beads
To prevent a frequent re-occurrence of leaks as a result of unclean beads, break the beads from the rims of your tire at least once a year, and do a thorough clean.
If the problem continues, apply this bead sealer just as I explained earlier on, and rub it around the bead and the lip of the rim after cleaning; this should do the trick, except the tip of the rim is rusty which is an easy phenomenon to tackle.
2. Rusty Rim
To treat a rusty rim, simply follow these easy steps you can do without the help of a mechanic.
- Let out the air in the tire by removing the valve stem core, then remove the tire from the rim using the method I explained earlier on.
- Use a sponge and soapy water to clean the lip of the rim that comes in contact with the bead since that’s where the rust has affected. This is called crevice corrosion since water gets trapped between the tire and the rim with no place to drain out.
- Use sandpaper to remove as much rust as you can.
- Once you are done with the sandpaper, then proceed to dissolve the remainder of the rust using a phosphoric acid solution (such as RUST BULLET Automotive – Rust Preventive Protective Coating). You are likely to see small bubbles in the gel as you apply it to the rusted area, but that should tell you that the phosphoric acid is doing its job. Using phosphoric acid to get rid of rust has an added advantage because it doesn’t affect the good metal.
- You can also prefer to leave the acid overnight on the rim lip for a more effective result
- Apply silicone or bead seal on the lip of the rim and the bead of the tire, then pump in the air.
- You are most likely to solve the problem permanently if you follow the steps above, but in a situation where the lip of the rim is heavily rusted, take it to the mechanic workshop, and let them do their magic.
3. Rim Damage
If you happen to hit your rim on a hard surface, there is a good chance that a leak might occur in the nearest future, but this also depends on the severity of the collision.
To act on the side of caution, simply remove the tire from the rim, and straighten out any bump using a Dremel tool or sandpaper.
Also, make sure you apply a bead sealer before going about the refilling process.
Does Tire Sealant Work On Rim Leaks?
Yes, they do. Tire sealant creates a rubber-like surface between the rim and the tire that fills up most of the areas that have tiny spaces in them.
This rubber created helps to block out any space that would have otherwise allowed air to escape from.
Also Read: Can You Use Tire Shine On Leather?Find Out)
ATV Tire Bead Sealer
ATV tire bead sealer is used to prevent or repair leaks in ATV tires. It’s applied to the bead area of the ATV tire where the tire meets the rim. It’s purpose is to prevent air from escaping.
It creates an airtight seal ensuring that your ATV tire is properly inflated – improving it’s performance and safety.
Bead sealers come in different forms such as sprays, liquids and tapes. Make sure to always follow the right instructions carefully to ensure proper application and to avoid any damages to your tires or your rim.
Please note, ATV tire bead sealers are not a permanent fix and should only be used as a short-term fix to get you out of a fix. You should get the affected tire inspected and fixed before your next long journey.
How Much Does It Cost To Fix A Rim Leak?
The vast majority of persons who ask how to prevent a tire from leaking around the rim can’t help but wonder how much it cost to fix the leak. If you are certain that the rims are the source, then you can be certain that the wheels have also developed a problem as well.
At the mechanic, the workman will remove the tire, clean the rim within, then apply a bead sealer before fixing it back. He is also likely to changes the valve stem for you. The total expense is around $20 – $40 for a wheel.
The issue is, many shops, rather than fixing the issue on the rim, some workmen will insist it’s something terrible so that they can charge you more for the issue. Although, many workmen also display this kind of appalling attitude of playing on your ignorance.
Sometimes, your vehicle will be fine for about a week or two, then your tires will return to what they were previously. Plus, a few shops may simply use something around the shop and smooth it out.
They simply streamline the surface where the leakage happens to occur, then slap on a lot of bead sealer. So once again, you are back to where the whole problem started.
Will Fix-A-Flat Fix A Rim Leak?
For starters, you should know that fix-a-flat is a temporary solution, and not a permanent one and it is only sufficient until you find a more lasting solution.
In the case of a rim leak, using fix-a-flat is not ideal for the situation because the spinning wheel will just fling the product away from where you spotted the leak, to the inside of the tread area. (Read Also: Can You Check Fuel Pressure With A Tire Gauge?Find Out)
How Do You Seal ATV Tire Beads?
Sealing an ATV tire bead is no problem at all. Simply follow these steps to ensure a smooth process.
- Remove the tire from the wheel following the steps as I earlier pointed out in the course of writing this article.
- Once you have located the source of the leak, as soon as you have deflated the tire beads, place a pry bar between the rim and the tire beads and push the pry bar forward until the bead is pushed back from the location the leak was noticed.
- Apply a good amount of bead seal on the area of the tire where the leak is located.
- Pump air into the tire based on the recommended specification as stated earlier, then try replacing the valve core with the removal tool.
- Check if you have done a nice job by spraying the entire bead with soapy water while the tire is still lying flat, look out for air bubbles, and if there is none then it means you have done a good job.
Conclusion – How To Fix ATV Tire Leaking Around The Rim
The steps in this article are simple DIY instructions that can save you some bucks that you would have otherwise given to the workman.
It can also serve as a source of adventure to test how handy you can be. Kindly drop any suggestion or question you might have with regards to the topic discussed in this article in the comment section below. Cheers!!!
I am passionate about all things automotive and have a deep understanding of the topic. As a mechanic, I use my free time to share knowledge of everyday challenges that any car owner can experience – helping you make informed decisions about tires.