A valve stem on a tire consists of a rubber sealed metal tube, a valve core and a valve cap. The rubber surrounding the metal tube provides an external seal to the valve stem against the rim so that air does not escape. The valve core provides an internal seal for the same purpose. The valve cap operates as a backup to the valve core, helping to keep dirt and debris from damaging the valve core while assisting in maintaining a seal. When the valve core is damaged, you need to replace it, using a valve core removal tool available at any auto parts store.
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Things you need
- Valve core removal tool
- Needle-nose pliers
Remove the valve core using the valve core removal tool. The valve core removal tool slides into the valve stem and, just like a screw, twists out the valve core.
Remove the valve core with needle-nose pliers. Be careful not to damage the internal threads of the valve stem. If the valve core breaks off in the valve stem and cannot be unscrewed and the needle-nose pliers cannot remove it, you will have to replace the whole valve stem.
Install the new valve core into the tire using the valve core removal tool. Twist the new valve core clockwise until it is firmly seated in the valve stem. New valve cores are available at any auto parts store.
Tips and warnings
- Valve cores will pop out once unscrewed if the tire has some pressure in it. Inflate the tire to 10 psi before removing the valve core to assist with getting it out of the valve stem.
- Due to possible flying debris and particles, wear safety glasses at all time when working with tires.
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