Since Tesla vehicles do not include a spare tire, if you get a flat tire, your options are limited. You can have it replaced, repaired, attempt a short-term repair on the spot, or have the vehicle trailered to a service station for tire repair or replacement.
For on-the-road repairs, the options available are:
- Contact Tesla Roadside service. In many areas, they can come with a temporary replacement tire, which can get you to service to repalce the tire.
- Re-inflate the tire if the leak is very slow. Keep in mind that a slow leak when stationary can be a big leak when driving. This solution is not recommended.
- A can of tire sealant (also called slime) that you inject into through the tire stem that may seal the hole temporarily until you can get to a service station. Review the tire sealant’s list of limitations and cautions, as it cannot be used in some cases. Often once slime is used, tire service centers will not repair the tire and require replacement.
- A tire plug kit. This allows repairing SOME types of damage to the car. For example, a nail or screw that is in the main tread that you can find and remove. Tire plugs are also a temporary repair and should be examined when you can get to a service station for possible additional damage. Plugs cannot be used on the sidewall, and cannot be used for any kind of slit type cut.
If the leak can be sealed, then you need to inflate the tire. There are a number of compressors available that run off the 12 V battery. Some connect via the 12 VDC power outlet in the cabin, and others connect directly to the 12 V battery or battery jumper posts. Note that on Tesla vehicles, the 12 VDC outlet is good for 15 amps maximum. Compressors that require more than 15 amps must connect directly to the battery or jumper posts.
There are so many repair kits, tube sealants, and compressors, you’re best to just do a search for them.
Tesla used to offer a branded compressor with a can of slime, but was discontinued in 2021.
Spare Tire option
Some owners elect to carry an additional 19″ spare tire in the frunk. You can call a tow service to install it or buy a jack and lug wrench. When changing, if you have the air suspension option, don’t forget to put the car in Jack mode (in the Control Panel). As an option, you can also buy an electric scissors jack and electric impact wrench which will make the job a lot easier. You’ll need 2-ton jack or better (you’re only lifting half the car).