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Alloy wheel rim causes loss of air pressure

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Apr 28, 2013, 3:52 PM

Post #1 of 3 (1298 views)
Alloy wheel rim causes loss of air pressure Sign In


I own a '97 Toyota RAV4. The driver's side front wheel always loses air pressure (which, according to the Toyota sticker, is supposed to be 28 lbs. in the front wheels) when the other 3 wheels hold their air pressure. I know this has to be a rim problem because putting on new tires didn't end the problem in that driver's side front wheel. The wheel rims are alloy. What can be done to the rim so that air pressure is held? Does a tire shop easily find the problem area on the rim and then correct it in some way? What's actually done to fix a rim if a rim fix does exist?


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Apr 28, 2013, 3:59 PM

Post #2 of 3 (1289 views)
Re: Alloy wheel rim causes loss of air pressure [In reply to] Sign In

A tire shop may be able to locate the problem with some soapy water but you will likely have to find an aluminum welder to repair it if it's even repairable.


We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Apr 28, 2013, 4:44 PM

Post #3 of 3 (1258 views)
Re: Alloy wheel rim causes loss of air pressure [In reply to] Sign In

That is so common at least to me. Rim to tire probably isn't sealing from corroded alloy. Not to bash anyone but tire places are rushing. Been there, done that as I did work tires in some emergencies at tire only places.

You'll see the rim to tire foam up with soapy water like that of common dish soap and water or even a car wash soap and sponge - you want soap that foams.

The fix and a tire customer shouldn't have to ask IMO is put the rim only on the wheel balancer, wire brush the thing up then not just rubber lube but a much thicker product used that slows the corrosion. It will come back again but could take quite a while if done right. These shops don't take the time for that MOST of the time.

If one is doing it now the others will soon. That is IF THAT IS IT. Back when tire valves (not way too long ago) were just .17cents if bought by 1,000 units.

Not worth saving those even at 3 times that price. Those should be lubed too before pulling one into place and bet not. Rush, rush, rush is too often the game. check that too and even with the cap off for the Shrader valve. Most people don't have the ability or the real problem is a machine to take an automotive tire off so no matter what is leaking where it needs a tire shop. You could have picked up a nail before you got home with new tires too!

If rim corrosion do them all. If just a damaged or (happens) defective valve stem just one do just that one is OK and you/they can index the tire such that you don't need to rebalance it but would check anyway. That's what they do! Many have no clue!

Long retired now

Alloy wheel rim causes loss of air pressure

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