When you have a flat tire, it can be quite an inconvenience. This usually happens when you least expect it, especially when you are in a rush. You cannot continue with your journey when you have a flat tire and as such, you would need to change it. If you have ever changed a tire, then this would be a good guide to follow so as to achieve good success. You need to have the right tools and equipment so as to complete this crucial task. Here is how you can change your car tire easily:
When you want to change your tire, you should take safety precautions by ensuring that you have the car on a safe location. Here are some of the key safety measures to take:
- You should move away from traffic and ensure that the car is parked on a flat surface. This will make it easy to jack it up. The car should be in the park gear for the ones with automatic transmission, but if you have a manual car, it should be on reverse gear or gear one.
- You should turn the hazard lights on, before attempting to change the tire. This will not only notify the other road users of a potential danger, but also helps in giving your vehicle stability when being elevated. Most vehicles have and ARS feature, which stands for Air Ride Suspension, which will be disabled when you put the hazard lights on.
- You should restrain the car and make it completely immobile before lifting it. You need to find the tire that is diagonal to the one that you are changing and place wheel chocks behind that tire. This will prevent the car from moving when you are changing the tire and enhances your safety. In the event that you do not have wheel chocks, you can use a big rock to serve the same purpose.
- Place the road cones and flares near your car so as to alert other cars that you have an emergency, which will prevent any accidents or incidents.
- Gather all the equipment that you will need in the process of changing the tire. The main ones are the wheel spanner, lock nuts and the car jack that you intend to use. When it comes to the floor jack, you can either use the hydraulic or scissor jack.
- Finally, you should locate the spare tire on your vehicle. In most cases, this will be in the trunk, but there are some models where the spare tire is placed on the underside and secured properly.
Steps to Change the Tire
Step 1: Placing the Jack
The first step is to position your floor jack in the right place. This will relieve the pressure from the lug nuts and also elevates the car to an ideal height so as to be able to replace the tire. For most vehicles, there are specific places that have been marked, where you can place the floor jack, with others having rubber pads on such places. You should make sure that floor jack is placed at the right place to avoid damages and injuries. If it is not marked out, you should refer to the owner’s manual for the same.
Step 2: Lifting the Car
You should loosen the lug nuts slightly when the car is still on the ground and then start lifting the car. When you begin lifting the car, you should check the floor jack to ensure that is not angled and it stable enough. In the event that it starts to wobble, you should lower it and reposition it in the correct manner. The vehicle should remain stable and straight when you are lifting it.
Step 3: Place the Jack Stands
Irrespective of the type of jack you are using, it is important to remember that it is a mechanical device, which can fail without prior warning. As such, once you have lifted the vehicle, insert the jack stands to enhance the support.
Step 4: Remove the Wheel
Remove the lug nuts completely and put them aside and then use both hands to pull off the wheel. If the wheel feels stuck, you can use your foot to kick it slightly, which will loosen it and make it easier to remove it.
Step 5: Place the Spare Tire
Take the spare wheel and install it in the hub, where the flat tire was. . Once the wheel is in place, you should screw in the lug nuts until it is tight enough. You should use the floor jack to lower the car in slow motions so as to prevent any damages. Once the car is on the ground, use the tire wrench to tighten the lug nuts completely. Remove the floor jack under the car and confirm that the nuts are secure.
Step 6: Check Tire Pressure
Before speeding of with the new spare tire, the last thing you should do is check the pressure of the tire. You should ensure that the spare tire is the same as the others so as to give your vehicle the stability that it requires on the road. If you can a pressure gauge you can use it, but if you do not have one, drive to the nearest gas station to check the tire pressure.
Step 7: Clean Up the Area
After you have successfully replaced your spare tire, you should clean up. Start by taking the flat tire and placing it where the spare wheel was. Next, you should gather all the tools and the equipment that you has on the road when changing the flat tire. You should remember the wheel chocks on the opposite wheel. Ensure that you have taken the key to lock nuts with you for the future’s sake.
When all is said in done, you need to locate the nearest tire shop right away. You should never make the mistake of moving around with a flat tire in the trunk. In the event on another flat tire, you would be completely stranded. As such, make it a priority to go to a tire shop to have the tire fixed.
With these simple steps, you would be able to change the tire in your car without much difficulty.