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The last thing any driver wants to find is tire sidewall damage, but when is it better to repair the damage or replace the tire altogether? Keep reading to learn about the most common types of tire sidewall damage and what drivers should do if they find such damage on their car’s tires.

Types of Sidewall Damage

While road conditions can damage your tire’s sidewall in many ways, the most common sidewall damage are bubbles, punctures, and cracks.

Bubbles and Bulges

Tire sidewall bubbles or bulges are quite easy for drivers to spot—it’s not normal for your tire to look like it’s blowing a massive bubble! This bubbling or bulging occurs when the impact of an object on the road pinches and damages the inside tire layer, causing excessive protrusion.

These protrusions can also appear in underinflated or old tires. But whatever the cause, they’re a serious risk and can precipitate a blowout. They weaken the tire’s structural integrity, and there’s no way to fix them, so drivers must replace them before they blow out.


Another common form of tire sidewall damage is a puncture, but should drivers repair or replace these sidewall punctures? Unless the object that caused the puncture is still in the tire sidewall, these can be difficult to spot if they’re small and only cause a slight decrease in air pressure.

Some may consider pulling out their tire patch kit, but this is a mistake. Tire patch and repair kits are only for punctures in the tire’s tread area, not sidewall punctures. You should scrap tires with punctured sidewalls and replace them immediately to avoid dangerous blowouts.

Cracks and Deformation

As tires age near their expiration, it’s common for cracks and deformations to form. These cracks can also come from excessive sun exposure, so if you have an off-roading car or live in a frequently sunny area, you should look for sidewall cracks.

If you barely notice the cracks and deformations of the tire, and they’re slight, they’re likely still drivable and not dangerous. However, as the tires age, the cracks will develop until they severely compromise the tire’s integrity. So once you notice deformations, you should plan to replace them soon.

Repair or Replace Tires at RNR Tire Express

In most cases, tire sidewall damage is a death knell for a tire. The sidewall is integral to the tire’s structural integrity, and if it becomes compromised in any way, the tire is beyond repair. If you notice any of these types of damage on your tire’s sidewall and need a replacement, we have you covered!

RNR Tire Express has a wide selection of high-quality and affordable tires in Corpus Christi and other cities across the country. Browse our inventory of tires to find your replacement, or schedule an appointment with our tire experts today!

Locations: Corpus Christi, TX

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