What do you think of inflating tires with nitrogen?

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I have to agree here with Edwin. At least in my area, you can't find a shop that doesn't use an impact wrench to put the lugs back on. And I am talking all the way from the "best" tire store, right down to Costco. The last time I had tires done for me (I usually do them myself at work now if the auto shop guy gives me permission) I had to demand a torque wrench be used. I think they only agreed because the prior visit to them resulted in two broken studs on one of my Elantra's. One of the mechanics had to drive across the street to Sears to BUY a torque wrench. Can you believe they didn't even HAVE one! The even funnier thing is that I went with a friend recently to Sam's Club (like Costco) and while I was waiting for him to shop, I was watching the tire installation department....they were actually using a torque wrench...go figure.
Eric
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"One of the mechanics had to drive across the street to Sears to BUY a torque wrench."
ROFL!
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Oh, I wasn't laughing at the time, but it is hillarious now. How does someone call themself an auto mechanic and not even own a torque wrench!!?? I have 3 of them myself and wouldn't even call myself a mechanic. Although I pretty much do swing wrenches all day at work, but it sure isn't on automobiles. If I didn't use a torque wrench, I would void the warranty on most of the equipment here at work. And believe me, when I have to call a manufacturer for service, that is usually the first thing the tech will check.
Eric
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hyundaitech wrote:

That obviously isn't a true statement. A mechanic would already own a torque wrench. The person who went to buy the wrench was not a mechanic.
Matt
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Edwin Pawlowski wrote:

Sad, but true. I rotate my own tires partially so that I can ensure they are torqued correctly. The other reason is that it gives me a good chance to inspect the brakes, suspension, etc., when I have the car off the ground and the wheels off.
Matt
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Matt Whiting wrote:

How do you torque a tire?
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Wayne Moses wrote:

It still isn't free. Even it if only costs $5/tire, that means that Costco could use air and lower their tire costs by $5.
Matt
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And what if I didn't even bought my tires there? My tires doesn't come from Costco, and they charged me a big 0$ So the price of their tires doesn't affect me. I never bought tires from them, and I think never will.
Shaman
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I do too. About 78% of the air in my tires is Nitrogen. So, inflated to 38 PSI, even if the other 22% escapes, I'll still have the 30 PSI recommended by Hyundai for my tires.
Eric
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Eric G. wrote:

I like your logic and use much the same logic. I tend to run my tires at 35 psi and check them every month or two. I rarely lose more than a pound a month and that just isn't consequential. And the more times I add air to my tires, the more pure the nitrogen inside is getting as the oxygen "leaks" out!
Matt
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False. As you add new air, you add 21% of oxygen and 1% of other gases, wich I don't know what gas it is. So when you add air to you tires, you contaminate the Nitrogen in it. That's my logic. So you wil always have 78% of Nitrogen.
Shaman
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False. If you start out with 78% nitrogen, leak out some oxygen, then replace say, 5% of the total volume with air, the nitrogen is still increasing, albeit by a smaller amount than adding pure nitrogen. Only 20% of the 5% is oxygen wile 78% of the 5% is nitrogen.
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Edwin Pawlowski wrote:

Ed, I think this is a lost cause. Folks that get their tire information from Costco surely aren't going to understand even basic physics.
Matt
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Shaman wrote:

You need to study your physics. If you start out with 80% nitrogen and 20% oxygen (rounding to simply the numbers) and all of the oxygen leaks out, you have now 100% nitrogen, but your pressure is down by about 20%. If I now add air to bring the pressure back up to where I started, I have 80% nitrogen, plus 80% of the 20% air that I just added is nitrogen, so I now have 96% nitrogen and 4% oxygen am at my normal pressure again. If all of the oxygen leaks out again, I'm not down only 4% in pressure. So, I add enough air to bring me back to normal pressure. I now have 96% nitrogen, plus 80% of the 4% air that I added, which gives me 99.2% nitrogen. I will asymptotically approach 100% nitrogen, however, even after one cycle I have as pure a nitrogen fill as the Ford article claims was adequate.
Matt
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Right
Maybe should go back to school to study me physics, as you said...
Shaman
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Shaman wrote:

Well, I have going on eight years of college, six of that in engineering. What is your experience with physics? I'd like to see your explanation as to why you think adding air won't increase the nitrogen fraction if the oxygen is continually leaking out.
Matt
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On Fri, 20 Apr 2007 07:39:51 -0400, "Shaman"
N2 is slightly better inside a tire than O2. It will probably make a tire last a week or 2 longer over a 20 year life.
-
Bob
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wrote:

I've been a tire engineer for 15 years. N2 won't hurt anything but I wouldn't pay an exrta dime for it. If you go that route you still need to check your tire pressures regularly. In theory, N2 does permeate a tire's innerliner slightly more slowly than normal air, but if you pick up a nail or are leaking at the rim or valve it won't help a bit. Checking your tire pressure is also your best chance to notice irregular treadwear patterns before it's too late and to spot any potentially dangerous tire damage (like a bulge) before your tire falls apart at 70 MPH.
N2 is not drier than dry air. Any decent tire shop you go to will be using dry air (to protect their air tools if nothing else).
Getnitrogen is a sales group for nitrogen, it shouldn't surprize anyone that they support its use.
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Why not Carbon Dioxide? What's it's molecular size, and how does it behave with regard to volume / temperature? According to Michelin's web site, Air, Nitrogen, and Carbon Dioxide are allowed for inflation purposes.
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Bob wrote:

There you go! If we all inflated our tires with CO2, we could prevent climate change! ;-)
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