Life Motor Talk

Sunday 21 September 2014

Angst over the growing absence of full-size spares

Tell Eddie

Published 03/09/2014 | 02:30

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Flat tyre: space saving spares are only designed to be used over a short distance.

We have had a number of letters this past while from frustrated readers over the absence of full-sized spare wheels in their cars. Here is a sample.

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Eddie,

When will you write about the lack of full-sized spare wheels in our new cars? It is a disgrace.

I have a new car without one and I am not happy. How come you never report on whether a car has one or not?

I am telling you now that it will be the first thing I check the next time I go to buy a new car. And if it doesn't I will take my custom and my money somewhere else.

Irate, Laois

Eddie,

It is a terrible feeling to find yourself not knowing where to start when you get a flat on a wet night.

It happened to me recently. I ended up crying with frustration and ringing my next door neighbour to come and rescue me because I don't know the first thing about pumping stuff into a tyre.

Nobody ever showed me.

Please use your influence to get car makers to give us proper spare wheels.

I'm still worrying I'll find myself in the same mess at some time in the future.

Alice, Kildare

Eddie,

My car has a space-saver wheel as they call it. How long can I use it?*

Dublin reader.

Eddie writes: The reason for space-saver or others devises that the wheels add weight to the car and therefore increase fuel consumption.

It may be a marginal increase but it could tip a car into a higher taxation bracket.

And that means more cost for you and them.

And no one wants that.

By the same token, there are people out there who are simply not happy to rely on small spares or other options such as in the race for lower emissions.

The recent letters bear that out.

TIP: Your car may not have a full-spare when you buy it but dealers will, in the main, supply you with one for a reasonable sum.

Ask them.

They would be foolish to let a deal go over something so small - but important to so many people.

*As little and as short a time as possible. There are speed and distance limits on these space savers.

They are only designed to get you to the garage and get the normal wheel repaired.

Indo Motoring

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