Screw + AO48's = bad

My neighbor is having work done to their house. I think they had a debris removal last night and no one bothered to sweep up…so this afternoon, after taking a drive this morning, I noticed this stowaway on my offside front tyre. It is a wood screw. (In case this is not obvious…)

So, can anyone come up with some suggestions for what to do with it? Since it is close to the sidewall it may be entirely within the rubber…so maybe I could just screw it out. Or should I just leave it alone? Or should I clip off the head at the rubber surface and leave the embeded bit? Don’t worry I realize that I will need to replace it, it’s really a question of getting to a dealer. Also, with only 1300 miles on the tyres could I replace only the damaged one and pair it with the existing onside tyre? Or should both be replaced at the same time?

Any help would be appreciated.




That’s bad luck, however, I reckon you’ve probably got away without needing a new tyre.

I wouldn’t drive it anywhere at the moment, but take the wheel off the car & go to a tyre specialist (preferably an independant, not a national chain!).

Any damage is not too close to the sidewall for the tyre to be scrapped (IMO), & there’s a good chance that the screw has not gone all the way through.

However, if money is no object…

However, if money is no object…

…trade the whole car in and get a 240R! It’ll come with a whole brand new set of tyres!


Money is always an object. And nothing more.

But this realization does not help my current situation. I’m tempted to check the pressure, remove the screw, drive around a bit, and then check the pressure a second time.

I’m not even sure how I would jack it up to remove the wheel.

What a drag.


If you remove the screw - & the tyre goes down, what will you do??? If you drive on a flat tyre you WILL definately knacker it - that’s why I suggest taking the wheel off, & taking it to a tyre specialist.

To jack the car up, easy - “RTFM”

PS “RTFM” could be substituted by “phone your auto breakdown people” (Lotus Assist???)

PPS I may be old, but I’m not completely useless - yet!


Thanks, you are absolutely right. Sometimes my American upbringing gets the better of me.

I’ll just call assistance tomorrow and have them deal with it.

Thanks again,


If you want to know if it’s leaking or not mix a bit of water with washing up liquid and poor it onto the area with the screw in, it will be easy to see if it’s punctured or not by all the bubbles.

Dave that’s perfectly true to test the present state of play. But I wouldn’t drive a yard, without that screw being removed first


I had the same misfortune in a (then new) S1 Elise rear tyre, in about the same position on the tread.

Went to Kwikfit , tyre off, screw removed, hole ‘regularised’ & a rubber plug fitted. Cost about a fiver…in 1998.

I was even quoted a further 2no similar failures before a new tyre was required.

Should be no problem.

Good luck.


ahh sheeite Robert – nightmare… I am gutted for you… puctures are a pain in anything but to get one in a nearly new A048… booger.

Firstly, replacing only one tyre will be no problem (assuming you replace it with an A048 of course)

Secondly it looks pretty close to the sidewall and duobt it’ll be fixeable - in any case getting an A048 fixed will be debateable anyway especially if you track it.

thirdly, i think you already decided to use you breakdown cover which is the best bet - but i would almost guarantee that when you remove that screw the tyre will deflate - also you don’t need to be fancy with soapy water and stuff like Dave suggests… just spit on it and i’m sure you will see it bubbling (just like i would be if it happened to my A048’s)

i think you will have to shell out…

i think you will have to shell out…

Nah, it’ll be fine with a proper plug & repair - although it wouldn’t surprise me if “they” try & sell Rob another tyre. If the first place it goes to can’t be arsed repairing it, try somewhere else!

My comments are assuming that the flipping screw isn’t more than 1" long, & that the carcass isn’t ripped, just holed.

Put it another way, if you replace it Rob, I’ll buy it off you - subject to the above comments & agreement on price

Secondly it looks pretty close to the sidewall and duobt it’ll be fixeable - in any case getting an A048 fixed will be debateable anyway especially if you track it.

I had a similar problem a while back when I got a nail in a AO48. Spoke to my local tyre specialist (they supply tyre support on some of the ‘expensive’ Trackday organisor days at Spa etc) and the wouldn’t plug it because it was a softer tyre compound and used regularly on Trackdays, they also don’t supply AO48’s so they actually lost a sale.

I had the same thing on a North Weald day and the local tyre place did not seem surprised when I showed up. It was fixed and then I spent the rest of the afternoon on the coned circuit and the high speed turn without issue.


I should add that I went on to do 4 trackdays with the repaired tyre & not a single problem occurred.


Well, when I called Lotus Assitance they said I should drive to the locat tyre repair specialist…

I have an appointment with Plans to have the brakes upgraded next Tuesday, I suppose I could just wait until then and have them take a look at it. Or drive to the local KwikFit and have them do it…

It still has not gone down, but then again I also have not driven it. (I promised my wife a full day of garden and family time today…)

I’ll post a follow up after I get it sorted.

Thanks to everyone who provided responses.


Just got a 5 inch nail in a 2 week old rear tyre on my Mister 2. It was very close to the wall and my local tyre man said it looked fixable (i was very surprized). When he got the tyre of the nail had (conveniently) bent 90 degrees and the point had started to rub into the sidewall. He wouldn’t repair it. I appreciated his safe thinking even though he could not supply the type of tyre I needed.

Fingers (and whatever else you have two of) crossed that it will fix!

Put it another way, if you replace it Rob, I’ll buy it off you - subject to the above comments & agreement on price

A man that puts his money where his mouth is …

I’m in two minds about this - I have had a tyre repaired with two plugs in a single hole (huge screw) on my Discovery by an independant landrover dealer. My local tyre centre wanted to scrap the tyre and sell me a new one! I am quite happy to run on this tyre.

However, I have different thinking when it comes to the Exige, especially if its to be tracked. I would write the tyre off and fit a new one.

I’m not sure what would happened to the clamshell if you had a rapid deflation…I have images of the damage done to an F1 car when a tyre shreds and it acts as a flail on any bodywork in the vicinity! Also the wheel can be easily damaged if run flat - �440+VAT new from Lotus - so a h’penny of tar…

Well to add my .2p, I ran a repaired tyre on my MR2 until the tyres were totally shot (you know the driving back from a trackday with metal slicks) and it never gave me a problem again…

…But that was a nail through a fairly central bit of tyre…