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Most of the time the fluid in tractor tires is a calcium chloride mix. Calcium chloride is a salt just like sodium chloride and the addition of it to the water not only lowers it's freezing point, but makes any leak corrosive. Most older rims that I have seen that had fluid filles tubes on them for any length of time were either very rusty or rusted out.
Most all of those who run fluid in my part of the country has seepage due to tiny thorn or wiregrass cuts.
Sometimes wheelweights are not feasible and the tires will need to be fluid filled, but I would recommend wheel weights if they can be found. One local has made them from Quickcrete and pieces of pipe and they work well.
My father forgot to put the calcium chloride back into one tire one year after he had "teporarily" filled it with straight water. Can you imagine his surprise when he went to use the tractor after the first hard freeze only to discover that the water in the tube had frozen?
Most around here do. It is not cheap, will make for a rougher ride, but it saves a lot in flat repair time!
Rules of Repair:
1. If it ain't broke, give me a hammer, it will be!
2. You only need 2 tools in life - WD-40 and Duct Tape. If it doesn't move, and it should, use WD-40. If it moves, and it shouldn't, use Duct Tape!
3. If you can't fix it with a hammer, you've got an electrical problem.
If its leaking around the bead, its a good indication that the calcium has deterioted the rubber and rim. On tires that use calcium for weight, sometimes it will seep into to bead and corrode the wire to.
We used the stuff a lot on the farm I worked at as a kid. I had an 1948 Bolens Husky made by FMC. It had fluid in them. One of the rear tires had a leak on the bead like yours. It was so bad we had to cut the tire off the rim. The bead area on the rim was corroded and had pits going thru and thru. We couldn't find a rim, so we cut the center out of the old rim and welded it into a good rim of the same size. We found painting the inside of the rim with epoxy paint helped reduce the corrosion. Sometimes around the valve stem is areas that usually show leakeage and corrosion also.
If it is a full size rear tire and full, be very careful. Had one farm worker who dropped on on my foot one time. One of the most painful things that can happen to a person. Probably like having your foot in a bear trap. A wrecker boom is the way to go to handle the big tires. Good luck Lester and please be careful.
BTW, I think Tractor Supply carries the fluid you need to put back in. Calcium won't freeze and has a heavier content than that of water.
BEER........Helping ugly people find true Love since 1862
Just bought a tractor last year (Case DX45). Ordered dual rear weights (4 - 125 lb), and single fronts(2 -45 lb). Still too light in the rear, so took it to the tire shop to have fluid put in (480lbs -- A SIDE!!!!) Makes a huge difference, but having restored several tractors (Farmall M, H, and 2 cubs), I know what happens to the rims if there's ever a leak. Just destroys them.
That being said, when we took it to the tire shop, we learned that there wasn't a tube installed in the new tractor's tires. In fact, most of them are that way. Get this... tire shop guy 'recommended' that we install a tube -- after making fun of him, he says 'you'd be surprised how many idiots don't want a tube because it's an extra $35 a tire.'
You probably have a leak in the tube. 90% + use tubes inside tires even if they are tubeless when they are filled. Regardless..... it will have to be broken down and refilled. Calcium Chloride is the common additive and it is highly corrosive so make sure the wheel/tire are washed (and scrubbed) completely before it is refilled. If the leak is in a front wheel have both sides refilled. The fronts are usually stressed just by turning and cornering...... if it is a rear wheeel just have the fill checked on the other side.
Chances are if the reason you have a leak is from the age of the initial fill ..... the others might be soon to follow.
I have a Mahindra 5500 (54 hp) that has 14.9X28's on the rear. They are filled with water and antifreeze even though we get very little freezing our way. Its more for corrosion protection than freezing. Weight on a tractors drive tires are one of the best things you can do, the more weight the better.
It is a sign of strength, not of weakness, to admit you don't have all the answers. John P. Loughbrane
Yeah, rimguard is what most people use around here. It's beet juice. Non-corrosive (unlike calcium chloride, but just as heavy), non-polluting/deadly to critters (unlike antifreeze). Many people also use windshield washing fluid (methanol/water). If you get a leak in a CaCL filled tire nothing (I mean nothing) will grow on that ground for a long time...
Whether or not to load the tires really depends on your tractor(?) and what you're doing with it. If you're plowing, or otherwise engaging the earth, you may need the weight. If not, you may just be wasting fuel and putting more stress on the driveline components. So, what do you have and what do you use it for?