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Losing 1-4 psi of pressure per night in one tire

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Old 12-17-2007, 06:07 PM   #1
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Default Losing 1-4 psi of pressure per night in one tire

Hey guys, I was wondering if any of you guys had any ideas because this issue has me totally stumped. I have had my tire and rim checked by a local service shop, and also at my local Ford dealer(it was weird driving in with my Chevy). Basically, my front right tire is losing air pressure, and only at night. The tire has been completely checked and no leak can be found. Even the valve stem was checked as well. The colder the night is, the more air pressure I appear to be losing from that tire. Any ideas on where I should go next? The rim appears to be completely fine. I've hit my share of potholes, but none of them should have been bad enough to cause any damage as I can't see any. Last night was probably the coldest of the winter so far. I made sure the cold air pressure was at 34 psi yesterday afternoon, and it was down to 27 psi this morning. It has been doing this since I got back from Detroit and Chicago.

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Old 12-17-2007, 06:45 PM   #2
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Did you see the shop actually dunk your tire in water to check for leaks? You may have a small nail or puncture that is not visible without taking the tire of the wheel.

Tire pressure drops in the cold weather.

It increases in the heat. I live in Las Vegas and my tire pressure goes up when it is 110 in the shade during the Summer.

Does the tire keep leaking down, or does it go back up if you check it midday?

Spray some soapy water around the bead and valve stem to check for a leak. You may get away easy with just a bad valve stem.
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Old 12-17-2007, 09:30 PM   #3
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Tires with nicked or bent rims may retain air during warm weather, but often leak in subzero temperatures.Effective psi loss of 1 lb. per 10 degrees of daily temperture drop is normal,regardless of any other problems.Shocks and struts are subject to the same variences in pressure in extreme weather.Not to mention belts,hoses,and engine seals.You just need to monitor you machines closer in the winter months........or, just move somewhere warmer....
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Old 12-18-2007, 06:45 AM   #4
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As BNCR said, you need to go to a place that submerges it under water, 7 lbs overnight is quite a bit and would show up.

I had a nail recently in my tire that would only leak about 1lb per day. I located it by inspection and sprayed water on it, sure enough it bubbled slightly. As mentioned, soapy water is even better.

Good luck, it's a major pain especially at this time of year.
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Old 12-18-2007, 08:49 AM   #5
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Yeah, I visually inspected the tire and rim myself before taking it to the Ford dealer. I also dissolved some Dawn into a bucket to see if any bubbles would pop up, which I couldn't find at all(those factory dubs are heavy!). What the dealer told me was that anything that is leaking roughly 1lb per night is going to be nearly impossible to detect by spraying it down, or dunking it into a tank. Since it got really cold last night, they suggested that I monitor it again this morning to see how much pressure I lost. I guess i'll do that in a minute after a shower and something to eat. I would be out and about earlier, but I don't work till later and it is damn cold. What I might try today is to replace the valve stem as a start since that is not going to be too expensive to begin with. It is worth a try as that is the only leak point I can think of. Some of the guys over on the TBSS forums are telling me that it could simply be condensation freezing inside the stem causing air to leak out, which could explain why it only seems to leak at night, and why it seems to leak worse the colder it is at night.
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Old 12-18-2007, 08:58 AM   #6
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I've got some old chromed rims and run into this problem on occasion, turns out to be a rim design flaw. If I unbond the tire/rim; usually from hitting a curb too hard, pothole etc.. I lose a few pounds each night.. over the week I'm down ten pounds. The solution is a buff and polish of the rim and rebonding.. usually holds until the next big hit.

I might suggest some of that 'flatproof' liquid if it's a hole... but this will not work if it's a rim leak which is what I suspect.
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Old 12-18-2007, 02:30 PM   #7
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I would take the tire off the rim and clean the bead of the tire and the lip of the wheel also. I have ran into the same thing with one of my old mustangs.
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Old 12-18-2007, 03:30 PM   #8
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Do you have surveillance on your parking space at night? Are you sure someone isn't coming and draining some air in the middle of the night just to mess with you?


Last edited by Diamond Ace; 12-18-2007 at 03:41 PM.
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Old 12-18-2007, 07:54 PM   #9
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Well here is the most darn interesting thing. I checked the air pressure earlier today, and it did not lose any air pressure at all. That was wierd as it got really cold last night. I think this further strenthens the argument that there was indeed water in the valve stem that was freezing up and causing it to leak at night. Just before going home yesterday, I evened out the air pressure in every tire. Maybe in the process of adjusting the air pressure in that tire, I blew out any moisture that was trapped in there? Either way, i'll continue to monitor it tomarrow morning again.

I am a rather paranoid person(i'm actually obsessive compulsive) and it had occurred to me that someone might be messing with me, but I havn't pissed anyone off lately that I can think of. Cleaning the rim lip and remounting it is a good idea to try if it does start leaking again. I'll probably do that after trying the valve stem replacement first. I do remember hitting a curb a couple nights ago, and I did hit a LOT of potholes while in Detroit. I felt dumb as the curb looked like one of those soft rounded ones, only to realize it is just a regular wall like curb.
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Old 12-18-2007, 08:04 PM   #10
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A decent tire shop will give you the option of filling your tire with nitrogen when they remount it. Nitrogen = No moisture.
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Old 12-18-2007, 09:01 PM   #11
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Good option noted.When it comes to tire inflation, nitrogen has many advantages over oxygen. With nitrogen tire inflation, improvements can be noted in a vehicle's handling, fuel efficiency and tire life through better tire pressure retention, cooler running tire temperatures.
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Old 12-19-2007, 11:56 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enmoco View Post
Good option noted.When it comes to tire inflation, nitrogen has many advantages over oxygen. With nitrogen tire inflation, improvements can be noted in a vehicle's handling, fuel efficiency and tire life through better tire pressure retention, cooler running tire temperatures.
Yeah, I thought about Nitrogen inflation but the only local shop that does this is Tire Discounters. They charge a bit for it, and they overprice their tires since they include a 4 wheel alignment with every purchase of 4 tires. I don't see how it will be of much use when i'm going to be pumping good old regular air into it when adjusting the air pressure anyway.
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Old 12-20-2007, 08:12 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by junehhan View Post
Yeah, I thought about Nitrogen inflation but the only local shop that does this is Tire Discounters. They charge a bit for it, and they overprice their tires since they include a 4 wheel alignment with every purchase of 4 tires. I don't see how it will be of much use when i'm going to be pumping good old regular air into it when adjusting the air pressure anyway.
Cosco here in Canada does the nitrogen fill with any tire work.
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Old 03-02-2008, 11:26 PM   #14
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Change the valve regardless, the seal must be going bad.
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Old 03-02-2008, 11:43 PM   #15
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you might want to go to your local shop and have them seal the bead with bead sealer...My family was in the tire business here in Florida for quite a while before my dad had his heart attack

Also with Nitrogen, you will find yourself adjusting air pressure less should you choose to use it. In many cases tires last longer when using it.
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