19" rim owners w/ AWD, dont use your spare tire !! - Nissan Forums : Nissan Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 Old 05-16-2019, 01:20 AM Thread Starter
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19" rim owners w/ AWD, dont use your spare tire !!

Hi all, we replaced our 2005 Altima with an AWD '19 SR , 19" rims. I was wary about buying a 1st year redesign, especially with the AWD, but the wife really REALLY wanted it. At about 1000 miles, she ran over a nail, and I threw on the donut so she can do some local driving and get it to the tire repair shop. After just a few miles , she got a warning on her dash to "PULL OVER , her AWD was overheating." ( I cannot tell you exactly what the message was ) She had to pull over several times on local roads, driving less than 30mph. When she brought the car home, I measured the wheel Vs. the spare and it is about 1" smaller in diameter. I spoke to a couple mechanics, and they told me its ridiculous that the donut doesnt have the same circumference as the rest of the tires. I mean, I have heard tires with uneven wear causing AWD problems , an INCH less? That just seems crazy to me.
I called the dealership, they advised to bring it in. Of course, they check out the car , check it all OK , and they say everything is fine. What if we needed the spare on a freeway? Are we expected to pull over every mile for a cool-down? Completely unacceptable in my view.
I opened a case with Nissan, and they want to take no responsibility for this issue. Both the dealership and company admit the cause for the overheat message is the spare, yet they say this is NORMAL. As far as Im concerned, this is a recall issue for everyone with 19" rims, and Im worried about the stress we put on the components of our AWD system already. I will be using their roadside assistance from this point on, they should not even include a spare, if it isnt compatible.
I am NOT happy with this purchase, and I need to consider other options like writing a letter to corporate, or National Highway Safety. Thoughts?


Last edited by ITALIAN926; 05-16-2019 at 01:27 AM.
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post #2 of 7 Old 05-16-2019, 01:32 PM
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That IS a little bit of an oversight on Nissan's part....and you know what, it will likely affect ALL vehicles as the circumference of the tire is generally the same, regardless of the rim diameter. This is less of an issue with FWD as the differential can take more abuse...but even then, if I lose a front and all I have is a donut...I'll put the donut on the rear first, and then put the rear on the front...twice the work, way less trouble down the line though!

In both of my Altima's I have always carried a full size spare....the first, an '03 came with a donut, which as soon as I replaced my tires shortly after purchase, I kept one on a new steel rim in the trunk (it was almost big enough...bulged a bit, but definitely doable once you rip the foam spacers off the hardboard cover). My '09 SE came with a full size 5th alloy rim which as I understand it was a factory option, and even though the tire was brand new, never used, I replaced it with a used newer tire after it turned 7 years old (rubber doesn't age well beyond 4 years or so, especially when it's super cold out).

Where I'm going with all this is a recommendation to find a circumference appropriate spare and put that in your trunk...the only issue might be the diameter of the spare well in the trunk...you'll need to measure that against your 19's.

Last point...if your tire had more than 3-5Kmi on it...technically you really should replace all 4...otherwise you have one tire that is bigger than the remaining 3 and causes the same kind of issue, albeit less severe, that you are experiencing with the undersized donut. This is the dirty little secret of AWD cars.

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post #3 of 7 Old 05-16-2019, 03:53 PM Thread Starter
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Yea we didnt replace the tire, they were able to repair it. Car has 1000 miles on it, we're not off to a good start with our new Altima. When the wife gets home, Im going to jack up the car and measure around the wheel and donut, and compare. Also, this whole overheating issue occurred with placing it on the front.
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post #4 of 7 Old 05-16-2019, 04:47 PM
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Save yourself the jack time and use and online tire calculator to calculate the circumferences just based on the tire sizes.

Stock tire is a 235/40 19.
Likely compact spare is a 155/90 17 on an 17x4 rim (please check your sidewall)

Using something like tiresize.com

You can calculate the difference as about 6% between those two tire sizes...and the donut is actually the larger circumference of the two. Regardless the AWD differential system will hate the 764 vs 721 revolution/mile difference caused by this as it generates a lot of waste heat.

The other thing about temp spares is that you aren't supposed to exceed 80km/h (50mph)...if you do, you will generate exponentially more heat in the drivetrain.

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post #5 of 7 Old 05-16-2019, 04:50 PM
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Using above calculator...you could consider replacing your poorly sized donut with another smaller tire, say a T135/90 17 which has only 0.8% circumferential difference

https://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires...tnum=39MD7CSV2

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post #6 of 7 Old 05-16-2019, 11:02 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your help, using that calculator, Regular wheels of 235/40/19 Has a Diameter of 26.4 Circumference 82.9 and spins 764 times a mile. The stock donut of 135/90/16 has a D = 25.6 C = 80.3 and 789 Rev/mile. So why would they use a SMALLER donut? . Are they accounting for wear of the tires over time? A hypothetical spare in the size of 145/90/16 would have a 26.3 D , 82.5, and spins at 768 Rev/mile, almost identical stats for new regular tires. As the regular tires wear, those numbers will diverge from each other.

Youd think that someone at the dealership OR the company would have mentioned wear on the stock tires as an excuse, but nope.

For shits and giggles, I checked my 2003 Altima, 215/55/17 Vs 135/90/16 , almost the same differences statistically. 16 years later, they are using the same donut size lol (26.3-82.6-767)

So what is a better fit for this car, a 135/90/16 or a 145/90/16 , when wear on a normal tire is accounted for? Stock tires have a tread depth of .31" , so if the stock tires were run bald, that is a difference of .62" in diameter. Differences in diameter of the new stock equipment is .8" , so I think Nissan would be better off, slightly, using a 145/90/16

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post #7 of 7 Old 05-17-2019, 11:47 AM
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Smaller donuts are lighter and cheaper. FWIW never even thought to look at 16" donuts...but if the shoe fits...

I think you'll find that there is one size that comes closest...and given that you'd never let the tires get anywhere near bald before replacing them, I think you have your answer.

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