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Old 03-26-2013, 01:42 PM   #1
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Forgive the Rant, Heed the Warning

The Rant:

What is it about tire guys and their impact wrenches?!?!?

I had a flat on the RAM 2500 this morning. Great way to start the day, I know, but I dragged out the jack, tire iron, and spare a got to work. Or so I thought, I'm not a Mechanical Engineer, but I've changed enough tires to know that a guy my size (and I'm a big boy!!!) standing full weight on a 14" long tire iron should create enough torque to break loose a properly torqued lug nut. Nope, couldn't get seven of the eight loose. With the assistance of AAA's 3' long breaker bar and my lug wrench we were able to change the tire without wringing off any of the studs. I'll take small miracles, since I was watching my 5/8" inch bar stock lug wrench flexing before the lug nuts moved!!!

The Warning:

While we were in a safe place, on the quiet street in front of my house. I would not have wanted to be fighting this with my butt hanging out on the Interstate!! So, whenever you have any work done requiring the tires to be removed and reinstalled make sure they don't over-torque the lug nuts!! There is no way that it should require a 4' long wrench and a couple of hundred pound guy to break them loose!!! These lugs were definitely over-torqued.

Mack
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Old 03-26-2013, 05:58 PM   #2
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Forgive the Rant, Heed the Warning

I had a similar issue. Had new tires put on and a few months later had to do the brakes. Couldn't get ANY of the 24 lugs off! Went to the shop that put the tires on. Made them loosen all and properly torque them.

I know exactly where you are coming from.
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:26 PM   #3
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Like Jay, I had a similar issue several years ago. New tires then I put on new brakes for state inspection sticker. Broke a Craftsman socket using a long breaker bar. I went back to the tire store and found the guy that did the tires and told him the lug nuts were over tightened. He said they were not. My LOUD one word reply described male bovine deffication. When the service manager asked what the problem was I told him. They put it on a lift and had trouble using their own air impact wrench removing the nuts. Then I showed him what torque to set the tool for and he redid all the lugnuts while I watched.

Sad to hear there are still poorly trained tire jockeys out there .... and people that let them loose on the unsuspecting public.
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:33 PM   #4
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The place where I get my tires (Belle Tire) torques all lug nuts manually. They advertise this now. It's great, because I've had many a warped rotor over the years from uneven lug nut torque.

Unfortunately, they have no clue how to do an alignment. I mean, they can do it, but they do not seem capable of re-centering the wheel. Nothing is more annoying than holding a wheel cock-eyed to go straight.
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Old 03-27-2013, 08:02 AM   #5
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Quote:
My LOUD one word reply described male bovine deffication.
I love it!!!

My favorite expression when my kids (or anyone else for that matter) tries to pull one over on me is "Have to throw the BS card on that one". My son actually made me one......half an index card with a hand drawn picture of a bull squatting....

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Old 03-27-2013, 11:20 AM   #6
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Instead of just a socket on the impact gun, a good tire/repair shop will have a set of torque "sticks". They are dumbbell-shaped extensions with a 1/2" drive connector on one end and the different lug nut size sockets on the other end. The shaft that connects the two ends comes in different diameters so the stick will twist at the proper torque value and not overtighten the lug nut.
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Old 03-27-2013, 04:16 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gene View Post
Like Jay, I had a similar issue several years ago. New tires then I put on new brakes for state inspection sticker. Broke a Craftsman socket using a long breaker bar. I went back to the tire store and found the guy that did the tires and told him the lug nuts were over tightened. He said they were not. My LOUD one word reply described male bovine deffication. When the service manager asked what the problem was I told him. They put it on a lift and had trouble using their own air impact wrench removing the nuts. Then I showed him what torque to set the tool for and he redid all the lugnuts while I watched.

Sad to hear there are still poorly trained tire jockeys out there .... and people that let them loose on the unsuspecting public.
Many years ago I did the same thing after a flat. They installed 4 new tires and I made them loosen the other three while I stood there.
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Old 03-27-2013, 05:17 PM   #8
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It's good to know that there is a torque tool that insures the lugs are tightened correctly....but how often, if you don't watch them like a hawk, do they use it...or is it pretty common practice now?
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Old 03-27-2013, 05:49 PM   #9
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My father has worked on Volvos for about 30 years now and those sticks are to be used everytime you put a tire back on a car. At these quick tire shops most of the time they never use them or the wrenches. You do have to watch them like a hawk sadly.
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:32 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay View Post
At these quick tire shops most of the time they never use them or the wrenches. You do have to watch them like a hawk sadly.
I was a shop foreman at a VW dealership and we had a standing rule: use a torque wrench on lug nuts.
That being said, one of the problems is that most shops make the individual mechanic buy, maintain and calibrate his torque wrench. If all shops required their use and supplied the wrenches, things would be different.

Just sayin'
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:47 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MACK C-85 View Post
.....half an index card with a hand drawn picture of a bull squatting....
Now that is funny, love it.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:28 AM   #12
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I have had my issues with overtightened lug bolts over the years, but my father once had this go the other way. The tire shop only finger tightened the lug bolts. After he noticed some wobble in the wheels checked and and discovered the error before he had the wheel fall off. The folks that work in these shops are really pushed to mount as many tires as possible and sometimes they do really dumb things.
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:12 AM   #13
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One more issue on tires.I recently purchased a used ram and while out on first trip had a flat at 1130 pmWent for jack under seat and nut holding it to floor was stripped also the cable holding the spare was stripped and would not lower the spare so make sure you check the tools needed to change a tire before leaving I used more then the word bull when i returned to dealer!!!!!
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:24 AM   #14
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Followup on my experience......

I went Saturday to have tire repaired, told the counter person the bad tire was in the bed and it went on the right front. They pulled the truck into the bay and the tire dude is taking off the left front?!?!??!?! I stuck my head out of the lounge and asked why they were pulling the left front......"oh, it's got a nail in it and I........" SOB, it did have a nail in too. Fortunately, it hadn't gone through yet. the tire shop broke it down, made sure it hadn't gone all the way through and remounted and balanced the tire. The flat was broken down, repaired with a combination patch/plug (that's was pretty cool if you've never seen that, a round patch with a plug stem in the middle of it. They roughed up the inner surface around the hole, applied adhesive to the roughed up area, then pulled the plug through the hole until the patch was tight against the inside of the tire, then they used a roller to insure that the patch was well adherred.) Tire was then remounted and rebalanced.

They did use the tool on the impact wrench and hand torque them.

Total Cost = $0.00, all was covered under road hazard coverage that came with the tires when I bought them.

Mack
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