If you use your lawn mower frequently, you’re bound to come across some situations where one of the tires on the mower goes flat. This mainly happens due to punctures from thorns, nails, or sharp terrain and due to corrosion and poor rim sealing.
One thing that many people think of at that moment is Fix-A-Flat, which is a popular tire sealant used for cars and trucks for emergency punctures on the road. The short answer is yes, but it’s not a good solution. It is a temporary fix for sealing small tire punctions in automotive tires. It is not recommended to use on power washers, mowers, tillers, etc.
However, if you’re in the middle of mowing your lawn and the tire goes flat, Fix-A-Flat is a good solution to help you finish the job.
Today’s article will provide you with a complete answer to this question, including the proper method to restore and fix your flat lawn mower tire. So without further ado, let’s jump right in!
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How Does Fix-A-Flat Work?
Fix-A-Flat is a popular flat-tire solution. This product comes in the form of an aerosol canister containing a white goo that turns into a latex material once pushed out.
This material then seals the tires from the inside and prevents the air from leaking out of the wheel.
Although Fix-A-Flat is branded as an emergency leak sealant, a lot of people use it for the long-term sealing of punctured tires due to its effectiveness.
Should You Use Fix-A-Flat on a Lawn Mower Tire?
As previously mentioned, Fix-A-Flat is mainly an emergency solution to fix flat tires on the road. However, if you’re using it to squeeze a few months out of your old worn tires, it’s a great option.
To make the most out of Fix-A-Flat, you’ll need to know how to use it properly to limit its drawbacks, which we’re going to discuss in the following sections:
The Drawbacks of Using Fix-A-Flat on a Lawn Mower Tire
Before walking you through the proper way of using Fix-A-Flat, here are some of the drawbacks of this method:
- It’s only suitable for small holes that are less than 1/4 inches in diameter
- It May cause uneven wear on the tires, although you can fix that by driving for a few minutes after applying
- It can get quite messy if you’re not careful enough while using it
- Not suitable for extremely cold regions
How to Use Fix-A-Flat to Fix On Lawn Mower Tires?
First, you should understand that tire sealants are only suitable for emergency situations only and can only be used if the puncture is in the tire’s tread. Here’s an easy method to minimize the mess and apply the sealant properly:
Step 1: Align the Tire Properly
Before starting, you need to align the wheel properly while applying the sealant. If you already know where the leak is, leave the object that has punctured through the tires. If you remove it right away, the sealant may not work properly.
If you can’t find the leak, use the air pump to put some air into the tire, then spray some soapy water around the tire. The tire should be bubbling where the leak is. If the puncture is larger than 1/4 inches, you’ll need to replace the tire.
Once you find the leak, adjust the wheel so that the valve stem is on the top side of the wheel (preferably at the 2 o’clock position) to prevent the Fix-A-Flat liquid from spilling out.
Step 2: Check the Instructions for Proper Amount of Sealant
One of the reasons many people think that Fix-A-Flat doesn’t work is that they use too much or too little of the product.
Step 3: Fill Up the Tire
With everything ready, shake the Fix-A-Flat can then remove the valve stem cap and core to connect the Fix-A-Flat sealant tip to the valve through the hose that comes with the bottle. Make sure that the connection is secure and air-tight to prevent mess.
When the bottle is connected correctly, put the can on the ground in a standing-up position, and push the button to let the goo inside the can fill up the tire.
Step 4: Remove the Connection
After filling up the tire with the sealant, you’ll notice that the tire takes back its original shape. Once you’re done, you need to remove the Fix-A-Flat connection hose.
To do that, hold a rag or any piece of clothes around the hose while unscrewing it. Some of the sealant will come out with the hose, which is alright. Simply wipe off any excess and tighten the valve stem core and cap again.
Step 5: Adjust the Pressure of the Tire
Another step that many people overlook while using Fix-A-Flat is adjusting the tire pressure to match other tiles, which makes them uneven.
To solve that, reconnect the air pump into your stem valve can and restore the proper pressure of the wheel.
Once the pressure in the wheel is established, you can remove the object that punctured your tire.
Step 6: Distribute the Sealant Inside
Lastly, before using the lawn mower right away, you need to drive it for about 5 minutes at a constant low speed to apply the Fix-A-Flat goo evenly on the inside.
This step is essential for proper weight distribution and applying even wear on the tire in the long run.
How to Replace the Tire If Fix-A-Flat Doesn’t Work?
As previously discussed, Fix-A-Flat doesn’t always work for lawn mower tires. It shouldn’t be used for any punctures that are towards the side of the tire. In that case, you’ll need to replace the tire with a new one. Here’s how to do it:
- Make sure that the lawn mower is turned off and disconnect the spark plugs on the mower.
- Use a wooden block or a stone to block off the wheels that aren’t going to be raised (if you’re replacing one of the rear wheels, block the front ones, and vice versa)
- Put a jack under the lawn mower. Then push the jack to raise the tire that needs to be replaced above the ground.
- Put a jack stand under the frame of the raised wheel to support the mower, then remove the jack.
- Remove the wheel by removing the axle cover and pulling off the retaining ring and washers used to fix the wheel.
- Take the entire wheel off the mower’s axle.
- Remove the valve stem, including both its cap and core, then allow the tire to deflate completely to make the removal process easy.
- Using a crowbar, pry off the wheel from the metal rim little by little on one side, then repeat the process on the other side.
- Lay the new tire on the floor and apply some soapy water on its edges to make it easier to insert the rim.
- Pry the new tire over the rim from both sides
- Secure the tire with straps, then install the valve stem core and cap.
- Inflate the new tire with air
- Reverse the process to put the new tire in place, then remove the jack.
- Reconnect the spark plug and give your new wheel a test run.
There you have it! A comprehensive guide that shows you whether you can use Fix-A-Flat on lawn mower tires.
As you can see, you can use Fix-A-Flat on lawn mower tires, as it works for punctures on the tread of the tire.
However, Fix-A-Flat isn’t a guaranteed method and may fail to seal the leak in the case of large punctures. In that case, replacing the tube of the tire is your best bet.