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View Poll Results: Got a Flat, Who Are You Gonna Call?
No problem - I'll fix it myself 71 57.72%
No problem - That's what roadside assistance is for 46 37.40%
No problem - That's what a spouse/friend/good samaritan is for 2 1.63%
Problem - I'm totally unprepared 1 0.81%
Other 3 2.44%
Voters: 123. You may not vote on this poll

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Poll: If You Get a Flat Tire, Who Are You Gonna Call?
Old 04-25-2014, 10:46 AM   #1
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Poll: If You Get a Flat Tire, Who Are You Gonna Call?

Lately, I've been spending time, a lot of time , in search of the perfect tire inflator to carry along in my car for emergencies. I thought I already owned the perfect one (a Craftsman, C3 battery operated one, drill type) but that's a bit finicky as the LCD is temperature sensative (doesn't turn on initially in cold/mild weather).

I've found that the problem isn't that there aren't any emergency inflators (at least of the 12V cigarette variety) to choose from, but too many.

My thought now is to still use my finicky Craftsman, but to also get a nice 12V as a secondary backup.

But back to the poll... if you are out and you get a flat, who are you gonna call?
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Old 04-25-2014, 10:57 AM   #2
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I've changed tires many times (several times roadside for others in all but one case, many other times putting snow tires on/off), almost anyone can learn to do it. One training session and following the car owners manual, it's a 5-10 minute job, provided you maintain your spare within reason at all. Getting safely out of traffic and finding a reasonably level surface can be harder than changing a tire itself.

Choosing to call someone is another option, but most people here seem pretty resourceful and frugal.
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Old 04-25-2014, 10:58 AM   #3
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A simple flat tire should not strand you, learn how to deal with it yourself. Either know how to change a spare; or many new cars do not have spare tires and have an inflator. Learn how it works. A cheap can of fix-a-flat is easy.

If your tire shreds or has a large cut/hole, then you have to use a spare. Or take the wheel off and get a new tire. Learn how to use a jack properly for your vehicle.

Roadside assistance may be valuable for some, but the wait is too long for me. I can swap the spare on and be on my way long before any roadside assistance shows up.
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Old 04-25-2014, 11:07 AM   #4
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Depends on what vehicle has the flat:

- If it's DW's car, she calls me.
- If it's my truck, I change it.
- If it's the RV, I call roadside assistance.
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Old 04-25-2014, 11:13 AM   #5
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For me, the days of changing a flat tire are gone. I currently have 2 new cars, so we're covered by their roadside assistance. But I also have AAA. In the handful of times I've needed roadside, the wait was never long.
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Old 04-25-2014, 11:16 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by REWahoo View Post
Depends on what vehicle has the flat:

- If it's DW's car, she calls me.
- If it's my truck, I change it.
- If it's the RV, I call roadside assistance.

Same here with the exception of #3 as I don't own an RV.
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Old 04-25-2014, 11:23 AM   #7
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I do it myself so I can get back on the road quickly. Since I change between summer and winter tires every year I have it down to almost pit crew speed. Plus, I actually own two vehicles that have spare tires. I'm hoping to avoid run flats as long as I can.
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Old 04-25-2014, 11:31 AM   #8
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In my younger days when changing a tire was fun, I would do it myself. And used to carry a tire repair kit and pump when I was 4WDing fossil hunting in Utah. Now I unashamedly use AAA and have always found them to be responsive. They have even come out to give me a start when I was stranded with a dead battery when camping off an unpaved desert road or tow a friends 4WD out of a ditch in another stupid off-road experience. I have always made sure the kids and DW had an AAA card for roadside assistance, pretty useful IMO.
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Old 04-25-2014, 11:56 AM   #9
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Everyone in our high school drivers education class had to change a tire or they wouldn't pass the class. It's not rocket surgery.

Even when I had AAA, I usually ended-up changing the tire myself because I could be back on the road in 15 minutes (or less) that way (insert link for Ralphie's Dad and the "Oh Fudge" tire change). When I tried AAA, it took hours for them to show up.
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Old 04-25-2014, 12:14 PM   #10
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I always change my own flats by fixing the leak or replacing the tube. If it is not fixed right away, it can be a long walk home and pushing that bicycle, with a flat, is no fun at all.
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Old 04-25-2014, 12:27 PM   #11
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I'm calling Freebird5825.
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Old 04-25-2014, 12:41 PM   #12
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My car I'll change it. If it's DW's car or my company pickup then a call is placed for roadside assistance.
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Old 04-25-2014, 12:46 PM   #13
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On my car I'd change it myself. DW's car has no spare, so I put a can of fix-a-flat in her trunk. If her tire was blown, then we'd call USAA roadside assistance.
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Old 04-25-2014, 12:55 PM   #14
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I probably should have made the poll select more than one possible.

For me, I voted fix it myself. Especially now since I have an impact wrench that can take lug nuts off a semi (no kidding) in case the car guys decide to over tighten the lugs.

But I'll call roadside assistance if I'm in a heavy traffic area.
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Old 04-25-2014, 01:22 PM   #15
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AAA

They are very responsive - have never had a long wait.

I learned how to change a tire decades ago when I started driving - have been there, done that two times. The charm of changing it myself wore off quickly.
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Old 04-25-2014, 01:27 PM   #16
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Quote:
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AAA

They are very responsive - have never had a long wait.

I learned how to change a tire decades ago when I started driving - have been there, done that two times. The charm of changing it myself wore off quickly.
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Old 04-25-2014, 01:40 PM   #17
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I've changed many tires over the years but these days I call AAA. The last flat I had was at home at ~8am so I called AAA and they were there in 10 minutes, and this is the only time so far I've had a flat since deciding to give up changing wheels myself.

I carry a foot pump in the back of the car in case of a slow puncture, although both times I've noticed a slow puncture in recent years has been via the indicator on the dashboard and I've had time to drive home and re-inflate the tire with my 110v compressor. Then drive to a shop to get it repaired or replaced.
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Old 04-25-2014, 01:42 PM   #18
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I note that most of us are talking about changing the tire, not actually repairing it. Now back in the old days it was pop the bead on the rim, pry the loose tire bead off the rim, pull out the tube and patch it and then reverse the process. Tubeless meant pull a nail out off the tire and plug the hole and re-inflate. Times change. Seems like tires went flat much more often back in olden times as well - or maybe that speaks to the will-pops I could afford.
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Old 04-25-2014, 01:57 PM   #19
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My options....

1. DH takes care of it
2. I have a road side assistance # in my cell
3. I look pitiful and hope a passerby will help me
4. If none of the above options are available, I'll drive on a flat.

I refuse to break a nail.
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Old 04-25-2014, 02:06 PM   #20
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Probably went 15 years without changing a tire and then had two opportunities to change tires this winter. Elected to change them myself since it only takes about 10 minutes and I wasn't sure how long road service would take. In the first instance I was on the way to a meeting in sport coat and slacks but managed to be on time and stay clean - I was quite proud of myself. In the second instance it was near 0 degrees and a nice young lady stopped to see if I needed help. Managed to get it done real quick, partially motivated by not having hat or gloves.

A banker friend was recently on his way to work dressed in a suit and spotted a young lady on the side of the road looking down at her tire. He stopped to help, which she accepted. On the way back to the truck to get the spare he saw a guy asleep in the back seat. He asks her "who's this in the back seat" and she answers "that's my boyfriend and he's been really sleepy". His reply - "I'll wake him up for you".
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