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How to Fix a Tire Valve Stem Leak

by Frank Whittemore

Flat tires frustrate everyone. Your first reaction might be to change the tire and have it repaired, but that might not be necessary. Your tire might just have a bad valve stem. The valve stem provides the means to fill the tire with air. If it fails, it can begin to leak, allowing the tire to go flat. Checking and replacing a valve stem is a relatively easy process you can do at home, saving you time and money.

Replacing a leaky valve stem

Step 1

Put on goggles. Fill the tire with air again. Spray soapy water into the valve stem opening. If the valve stem is leaking, the water and soap will bubble as the air pushes past it. Press the valve stem core in to let all of the air out of the tire.

Step 2

Insert the forked removal tip of the valve core tool into the valve stem. Rotate the valve core tool counterclockwise to remove the valve core from the valve stem.Clean the threads inside the valve stem with the threaded end of the valve core tool.

Insert a new valve core into the valve stem. Insert the removal tip of the valve core tool and screw the valve core into the stem. Fill the tire with air.Place a valve cover on the valve stem.

Items you will need

  • Valve core tool
  • Valve core
  • Goggles
  • Soapy water in a spray bottle

About the Author

In Jacksonville, Fla., Frank Whittemore is a content strategist with over a decade of experience as a hospital corpsman in the U.S. Navy and a licensed paramedic. He has over 15 years experience writing for several Fortune 500 companies. Whittemore writes on topics in medicine, nature, science, technology, the arts, cuisine, travel and sports.

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