Focus Fanatics Forum banner

Got a stealthy flat..........

1541 Views 11 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  emsvitil
Going from Los Angeles to Bakersfield.

Going 75 on the 99 freeway and am almost there when I start to feel a vibration.

Feels like when the road gets rough.

Slow down a little, no change.

Change lanes in case it's that particular lane, no change.

Other than the vibration, car feels normal, no pulling, and doesn't feel or sound different when you hit a bump

Decide to get off freeway, when I'm on the off-ramp vibration goes away.

Now I'm thinking it may have been the freeway surface, but I'm going to check anyway.

Park in parking lot near exit, and start to smell burning rubber......

Get out and find left rear tire flat.

When I finally get the tire off, I can see a tiny little piece of sheet metal in the tread.

Evidently it didn't seal the hole like a screw or a nail would. (where the tire goes flat overnight sitting parked)

Wonder how long it took to slowly lose enough air to start a vibration.

And I think the tire is ruined because the sidewall is soft all the way around where the side wall would have folded against the ground.

Never thought the tire pressure monitor systems were worth anything till now. Wonder if I would have had a warning if the car actually had a TPMS....
1 - 7 of 7 Posts

· Registered
1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
The little piece of sheet metal wasn't the problem. It was just a staple.

No sign of what did the puncture.

Started adding air, and found a hole in the middle of the tread.

Which would be good, except that the sidewalls started to look wavy and bulgy.

So the tire is probably toast.

· Registered
1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Collateral damage

Collateral damage............

The wheel cylinder started leaking on that wheel.

I think it got hotter than normal and cooked the seals a bit.

Although I took it apart and it looked fine.

I'm now wondering if it did something to the wheel bearings.....

(look, feel and sound fine at the moment)

· Registered
1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
It was hot enough for the smell of burning rubber when I stopped.........

And the rubber gasket thingie around the cylinder where it meets the backing plate was melted.

Wheel cylinders were done with the rear brakes @ 100k miles just over 2 years ago.....

· Registered
1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I've had wheel cylinders go bad from heat.

Had a dragging brake, and the wheel cylinder started leaking.

When I took the cylinder out, the cups had lost their cuppyness from the heat......

Anyway, I'm going with the vibration idea.

The bleeder valve didn't seem all that tight, and seemed to have brake fluid on it.
I had used Teflon tape on it so it wouldn't rust weld (I didn't on the brake line, and had to use vise grips to loosen the nut). So it could have loosened, and it took 3 months to be noticeable.

Didn't think it was the bleeder valve originally because the drip wasn't on the outside of the backing plate where you'd expect it with a bleeder valve, but on the inside with the shoes.....

Changing the wheel cylinder anyway, don't want to take the brakes apart again.........
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.