Water-based Tyre Sealant versus Aerosols
One of the problems that OKO faces as the leading tyre sealant company is that people constantly confuse its products with those which come in an aerosol can. Even official online retailers use the term ‘aerosol’ interchangeably with ‘bottle’. To be clear from the outset, OKO only makes water-based preventative sealants that are designed for permanent use in tyres: whereas aerosol products are only designed as a short-term temporary after-puncture repair.
The biggest drawback with an aerosol is that it faces a huge problem in replacing the large volume of compressed air in a flat tyre.
To quote tyre manufacturer Trelleborg, “Aerosol type cans which include a sealant for sealing minor punctures or leaks do not create enough pressure to fully reinflate the typical pneumatic tire to its normal operating pressure.”
Remember also that an aerosol is not just injecting air into your tyre: it is introducing potentially flammable chemicals under (some) pressure and this could be dangerous when you get your vehicle to a tyre bay: be sure you warn the operative before he removes the tyre from the wheel.
Another drawback reported by users is that the aerosol can requires considerable shaking to activate the sealant inside, just as with spray paints. Also keep an eye on the ‘best before’ date on the can as the propellant will not remain active for ever.
What sort of sealant can be injected through a tyre valve without removing the valve core? The hole is very small and the only liquid that you can get through there, and indeed successfully push by aerosol pressure, is a runny latex-based solution. This sort of tyre sealant is only capable of plugging the smallest punctures of maybe 2mm diameter.
Another problem with latex products is that they can easily gum up the valve immediately after use or when you later try to blow up the tyre properly.
So what is the superior solution for fixing your tyre after suffering a flat? OKO as a preventative tyre sealant is not primarily designed for repair purposes. The company responsibly points out to users that if they have, even briefly, driven a flat tyre on the rim they may have damaged the tyre structure, must drive with care after repairing it, and must get it inspected by a tyre bay as soon as possible.
Having said that, it can be used for repairs: the correct type of OKO bottle for the vehicle may be carried on board, together with a compressor that works from the car cigarette lighter. All OKO bottles come complete with a valve core remover for unscrewing the core, and a filling tube that fits snugly over the valve stem for easy squeezing of the sealant into the tyre. After filling, you simply screw the valve core back on and inflate the tyre to its full recommended pressure then immediately drive off to effect the puncture seal: it requires movement to activate it.
So if you find that the only anti-puncture security measure on your vehicle comes in a can, step up your protection and make a modest investment in OKO and a compressed air supply. It will increase your peace of mind.