Inovex Automotive, shortly after being founded in 1995 was renamed Inovex Industries, Inc. Inovex was founded by two Chemical Engineers, who happened to be brothers. The first two years of Inovex were spent on evaluating and testing every tire sealant that the brothers could find commercially available globally. The goal of these evaluations was to determine the strengths and weaknesses of the products already on the market. What the brothers learned from this testing and research was the basis of our initial Ride-On formulations. The initial Ride-On formulations were very similar, albeit superior, to the other sealants that had been on the market for more than 30 years, as they relied on the same thickener, sealing, and corrosion inhibition technology used by virtually all the commercially available tire sealants.
As we continued to conduct our field testing, we realized there were limitations to the products already on the market. The thickeners and corrosion inhibitors found in these sealants would break down in high-speed, hi temperature, hi g-force over-the-road applications. Therefore, we started an exhaustive new R&D program in 1999 through 2001 to address these shortcomings. We worked closely with our chemical suppliers, vendors, and outside testing facilities to look “outside the box.” This led to the implementation of technologies not previously used in the tire sealant market. In some cases, we were given access to beta products that had not even been released to the market.
After years of testing and siphoning through over 100 different test batches, we unveiled our next generation of sealants based on the new unique technologies we developed. These products were the first true high speed tire sealants that could sustain years of hi g forces, and extreme temperature fluctuations and thermal cycles without falling apart or separating. We also were able to confirm another benefit that our tire sealants had over the competition. Not only did our products not separate and fall apart like our competitors did, but were also able to help balance the tires were installed in. We had developed the world’s first and only line of tire sealants and balancers.
In late 2003, several of our customers brought to our attention a phenomenon that was occurring in a small percentage of their tires. In these tires, the Ride-on appeared to lose its viscosity and separate. This was puzzling because the same sealant was working fine in their other tires, same brand, model and sometimes even on the same vehicle. After several months and more exhaustive testing, we uncovered that our sealants were having an adverse reaction to a particular mold release compound applied at the factory during the manufacturing process. These soap-based release compounds were reacting adversely to the polymers in our products, which caused them to degrade and become acidic. This acidic environment overwhelmed our corrosion inhibitors’ ability to protect the wheels. As these release compounds were commodities and from batch to batch, a tire manufacturer would often change the compound thus making the isolation of the issue particularly difficult.
Once we isolated the source of the problem (with the help of our distributors and select test fleets such as Best Cartage and other Ride-On test fleets), we quickly took steps to reformulate our sealants. The next generation of Ride-On tire sealants were formulated to fortify their ability to withstand the adverse affects of certain chemical and physical contaminants they could come in contact with.
After the data collected from the test fleets confirmed that our improvements had addressed the issues with the contaminants, we introduced our new and improved line of tire sealants to the mass market in 2004. These new formulations were more robust and designed to better withstand the harsh conditions of commercial tire duty. During the next three years, we were in constant communication with our customers to make sure that our sealants were performing as required as we continued to test, research, and improve our products. After 2 years of working closely with our suppliers, specifically one of our specialty polymer manufacturers, we were ready to launch our third generation of sealants.
2008 to present
We launched our third generation of tire sealants in the early spring of 2008. Utilizing recently developed state of art polymer and corrosion inhibitor technologies. These improved formulations further separated us from the rest of the sealants on the market and enhanced our ability to better meet the needs of our clientele.
We at Inovex will never believe that having the best products on the market are good enough. We are continuously testing and developing our sealants to ensure that we remain at the forefront of all available technology. Our ability to manufacture the best sealants on the market relies heavily on the feedback we receive from our customers and dealers. This feedback drives our ceaseless pursuit of creating the next generation sealant. Please stay tuned, as new innovations will be unveiled. As they say “the best is yet to come”.