How Long Can A Car Be Driven On A Spare Tyre?

Published On 10-May-2021By TyreDekho Team

Can you use spare tyre for longer duration just like normal tyre or are there limitations to it? Read on to know.

  • A spare tyre is the best option available when you are stuck in the middle of the road.
  • Full-sized, Space-saver or Donut and run-flat tyres are the three types of spare tyres.
  • Most SUVs and MPVs come with a full-sized spare tyre.
  • Generally, space-saver tyres should not be driven more than 110 kilometres and not over 80km/hr speed
  • Full-sized tyres offer more performance, and are more durable but need more space in the trunk.
  • Space-saver or Donut spare tyres are lightweight, inexpensive, and typically offered with small cars.
  • Space-saver tyres do not last long, as due to their small size, they spin faster.
  • Run-flat tyres are generally offered with luxury cars and are expensive as compared to other types.
  • Run-flat tyres come with the special ability to maintain suitable air pressure, in case of puncture.

How Long Can A Car Be Driven On A Spare Tyre?

It is frustrating to see your tyre is flattened in the middle of the road. But when you have a spare tyre under the belly, it is the best option available at hand before you safely drive your car to the nearest repair shop. But, if the repair shop is not near or you are stuck in situations such as curfew or lockdown and not finding a new tyre, still you will be pretty much in the safe zone. Here, we will find out how long you can drive your car with a spare tyre before buying or repairing the existing one.

Type of spare tyre makes a difference how long will it work? 

Full-sized spare tyre 

For so many years, passenger cars were built with the capability of carrying a full-sized spare tyre with them. Still, it is the case with many SUVs and MPVs that comes with a full-size spare tyre. 

Performance – Pros and Cons

While these tyres are heavier and may need more space for storage, on the performance front, they are much more durable and capable of handling similar (but not equal) drive as the normal tyre does. So, rest assured of hundreds of kilometres of driving before you can afford to get a brand new one or repair the injured one. However, if the tyre is lying under the trunk for several years, a brief inspection and cautious driving are highly recommended. 

Also Read: How Does Tyre Pressure Affect The Handling Of The Vehicle

Also, many car manufacturers don't give the same stock tyre as spare or it may be produced by different tyre brand, just for the sake of cost-cutting. If this is the case, you would surely experience a decrease in traction and handling.

Space-saver or Donut spare tyre

As the name denotes, these spare tyres usually carry less weight and are produced for small cars to save space. Space-saver tyres are inexpensive and the benefit is usually passed on to the customer by the manufacturer.

How Long Can A Car Be Driven On A Spare Tyre?

Performance – Pros and Cons

Generally, space-saver tyres should not be driven more than 110 kilometres and not over 80km/hr speed. Longer than this, there will be the failure of the lubricating grease, resulting in excessive wear of the gears and clutch plates. The reason behind this short range and slow speed is that these tyres come with very little tread, making them susceptible to road hazards. Secondly, as donut tyres are comparatively smaller in size, they spin faster to keep pace with the moving car.

Run-flat tyres

This is the third category but you won’t find cars carrying spare run-flat tyres. These tyres generally come as stock with luxury cars such as BMW, Audi or Mini. Run-flat tyres have the special capability of maintaining apt pressure even after a puncture. However, they are expensive than the standard tyre and have to be replaced completely, in case of a tyre  puncture.

 How Long Can A Car Be Driven On A Spare Tyre?

In terms of performance, run-flat tyres remain inflated for about 80-150 kms and can be driven at a reduced speed of 70-90 kms, depending on the vehicle brand. The pressure monitor keeps you updated as to when you need to stop your car at a nearby safer place. The bottom line is, irrespective of the type of tyre, spare is spare and should not be used for a longer time. Ideally, in case of unexpected circumstances, you should be near a repair shop as soon as possible.

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