I bought my 2015 Hyundai Sonata last March (2015) and it has about 17,000 miles on it. I just found a screw in the rear driver side tire. Shows a slow leak when I took to a tire shop and they applied the soapy water 'test'. However, the screw didn't deflate the tire upon entry even after I had driven almost 50 miles before I saw it when filling up my car with gas. The tire shop tells me the tire cannot be repaired due to sidewall damage. A friend tells me there is no way that the screw could have penetrated into the tire's sidewall. He says it wouldn't have been long enough to penetrate the tire's sidewall because there is a thick enough amount of rubber on the tread before it would get to the sidewall. Do I really need a new tire or should this situation require only a removal of the screw and a repair to the tire?

  • 2
    Do you have a picture of the screw? I think that would go a long way to answering this question. Just as a side note, if the screw is still inside the tire, how do we know how long it is?
    – cdunn
    Jan 24, 2016 at 5:09

1 Answer 1


If the screw penetrated the sidewall, and it leaks when you pull the screw out, then a tire shop cannot and will not repair it.

The sidewall of a tire is the thinnest place on a tire. A 1/2" long screw could easily penetrate through the sidewall. It is very usual for a nail or screw to enter a tire at any location (sidewall or tread) and not cause the tire to deflate. There is usually enough of a seal around the penetrating object to almost completely seal it. You can drive like that for many, many miles before you realize there's any kind of issue.

  • Yeah, the sidewall is where a large part of integrity is. Jan 23, 2016 at 23:32
  • The screw appears to have entered at what some people call 'the shoulder' of the tire. It's higher up than the sidewall. It's right on the treads and the screw looks to be poking right into a tread indention (?).
    – Linda G.
    Jan 23, 2016 at 23:32
  • So, DucatiKiller, if it is in the 'shoulder' instead of the sidewall, does that still mean it could penetrate to the sidewall? It looks like a regular situation where a nail or screw pokes into a tire tread. Linda G.
    – Linda G.
    Jan 23, 2016 at 23:38
  • Some shops will look at it and say no. Others might be willing to fudge a little bit. What really maters is where it comes out inside of the tire. If you are a handy person, you could easily get around this by fixing it your self using a tire plug. These work very well ... done at least a hundred of them and never had an issue with leakage. Jan 23, 2016 at 23:39
  • So, Paulster2, you do think a tire plug could be used in this situation? The screw is really on the tread part and not in the sidewall. But it sounds like you're saying that most tire shops will not just plug it. I don't think I can personally remove the screw. It's pretty tight in there. I just want to make sure I'm not changing the integrity of my tire.
    – Linda G.
    Jan 23, 2016 at 23:44

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