Spare Tire DIY?

Spare Tire DIY?

While I just received the compressor/chemical combination (along with the floor mats), I was wondering if anyone decided that "No Spare Tire" was inappropriate and cobbled together the materials (tire, rim, balancing, jack) so they (ahem, their family) did not have to worry?

Any thoughts are always appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

madbuns | August 17, 2013

Any hindsight consideration is also appreciated...

bdukov | August 17, 2013

I'm concerned, and am on the search for a 21" donut to keep in the frunk. That way, at least, any roadside service can get me up and running quickly.

michael1800 | August 17, 2013

Keep in mind the torque requirement for attaching a wheel--130ft/lb. This makes the standard jack and tire iron a less than suitable approach, regardless of whether you have a spare.

Warkovision | August 17, 2013

Holy cow. So one would need a torque wrench too?

michael1800 | August 17, 2013

Saying a torque wrench is required is debatable. Tesla owners can be an ingenuitive bunch...I'm sure there are work-arounds that will suffice and allow you to get to an area to call for a tow. The point is that the fix-a-flat solutions are easier, take up less space, cheaper, safer and faster. If you do work a spare tire solution, complete with appropriate torque, you STILL have to get her to a service center.

There are plenty of arguments for a full spare tire backup. I agree with a few of them (very specific scenarios); it's just not economical (for me) as far as the cost ($, prep, space) matching up with the probability of those specific situations. Better than Sex Panther, it will work 90% of the time, everytime.

michael1800 | August 17, 2013

Oops, I drifted off-topic a bit into a different argument. To clarify, my point was to make sure to address the required torque if'n yer goin' fer a spare tire as a back-up.

fritzlan | August 17, 2013

I just got my S 85 and would like to know about the tire patch kit that people have been talking about that Amazon sells. Would someone please tell me what that product was.

Thank you.

Musterion | August 18, 2013

Teslatap has a list
(note the site is pretty careless with proper links and you'll have to manually edit some to get to the page, but it goes to the Amazon and other listings.)

jat | August 18, 2013

You aren't going to find a 21" temporary tire, but you probably could get a cheap 19" wheel and a really low profile tire that will fit in the frunk (it will be a lot smaller outside diameter just like a temporary spare). You will still have to carry around a jack/etc, and watch out for the load rating on the tire, as the Model S is a heavy car and narrower tires aren't going to support the weight.

I haven't missed a spare in any of my last 3 cars, and in my 32 years of driving I have only ever had one flat that a compressor wouldn't have let me get back to someplace to fix the tire.

A bigger concern is finding a place with a replacement tire in stock if you have to replace a tire.

thranx | August 18, 2013



madbuns | August 21, 2013

Thanks everybody for your thoughts and experiences - methinks that I will work with the kit and should a flat tire prove to be too difficult for me, well, flatbed tow truck...

MichaelN | September 3, 2013

I have researched the spare tire issue after having a blowout (clip on metal steel rim weight right through the tread) - inflator of no use, hole to big - got towed, long wait and then tow company damage the car - so started looking around and here is what I found - a 19" or 20" rim with a 235/35/19 or 20 is about 26-27" tall, inflated - this will easily fit in the frunk (actually tried it) 21" Tesla rim with tire is 28"- spare rim $100-250 , spare tire $100 - 200 - Zinik, Avarus and Rial make compatible wheels - the Rial Lugano being a 19" bladed rim, but also $250 - Nankang or similar tire - remember this is a spare to get to somewhere from nowhere -
Harbor Freight sells a 2 ton hydraulic jack that is just over 17" long, so my frunk organizer from Tesla has a jack, a compatible size socket, breaker bar for 1/2" drive socket, long handle socket ratchet - towel, and I have the tire inflation kit - all fit neatly in the organizer bag which fits into the frunk cubby -
and then the 27" tire - since I will only put it on the front, the size is not an issue - if I have a flat/blowout on the rear, I will change the front tire first, using the spare, move the front 21" to the rear -
You don't need the jack if you have AAA or Tesla Roadside - they will change the tire if you have the spare - but being a somewhat limited thinker, I change the darn thing myself -
As far as weight goes, wheel and tire 75-85 lbs, jack 17 lbs, misc 5 lbs - so 100-110 lbs (kid weight) and no blowout anxiety -

MichaelN | September 3, 2013

Ditto on finding the replacement tire - hard to do, so I bought an extra set, now sitting in my garage - got a deal at Sears

madbuns | September 11, 2013

+1 @MichaelN

Thanks for the detail on how you are tackling the spare tire problem. I took delivery just short of a week ago (ehm...5 days 13 hours 17 minutes...changes your life the Tesla does...) and I witnessed a minor accident involving another car and a piece of wood on the expressway - so much to say, they ended up fine with a flat tire...

Made me dwell on the spare tire issue...thanks...

Dramsey | September 11, 2013

I already have one car with no spare-- a 2007 Saleen Mustang-- and carry the following kit in it when I travel:

-- Tire repair kit (punch-through type)
-- Small jack
-- Extensible breaker bar with proper socket
-- Bicycle pump
-- Needle nose pliers

In case of a puncture-type flat, I jack the car up, remove the wheel, use the pliers to pull whatever punctured the tire, repair with the punch-through kit, reinflat the tire with the bicycle pump, and put the wheel back on.

I've done this once, but will be getting an electric pump since it takes over 500 pumps to re-inflate a 20", 35-series tire!

DallasTXModelS | September 12, 2013

I have driven everyday for the last 32 years and have had 8 new vehicles in that time. I have had one flat that would hold air until I drove to the tire store to have a nail removed and plugged the hole, I had one blowout, that was the time any of the fullsize spares I have driven around in my vehicle, adding weight and taking up space ever touched the ground in 32 years of driving. Many new cars are now coming without a spare. Toyota Rav4 even brags about it in their commercials. This is not some new idea or oversight by Tesla.

theray | September 12, 2013

I picked up my P85 with 19" tires this past Wednesday; less than 90 hours later I hear a pop while driving on the freeway at 65mph. Didn't see a nail or puncture but I was able to drive home slowly as I was half a mile away.

Apparently, Tesla doesn't offer a loaner for anything tire related. It was a huge bummer because I had my car less than 5 days, tire goes out, no spare available to get around, and I'm stuck without a car! They only offer you the ability to tow the car to the yard (and take you home if you're stuck on the freeway).

Long story short, I explained the situation to a manager to get a loaner (plus, I reached out to Jerome). I ended up paying for the tire to get replaced, tire inflation kit, and I bought a full rim with tire (inflated) and put the tire in my garage. Total cost was about $1,100 for everything.

Next time my tire decides to get a huge gash in the tire that is unrepairable I won't be without a car. I'll call the roadside assistance to tow the car to my house, replace the tire, then I take the tire to the service center when they open.