Changing a tire is one of the basic processes that all vehicle owners should learn. Although it is a simple task for some, it is a daunting task for others. The following is a step-by-step guide to changing a car tire.
Secure your vehicle to avoid rolling
First, get the spare tire out and place it near the flat tire. You should never change your tire on a hill or an incline. Always find a flat surface even if it means driving on a flat tire. In case this is impossible, use wooden wedges, bricks and metal wheel chocks to ensure that the other wheels are blocked and the car will not roll.
Loosen the lug nuts
In case the wheels have a wheel cover, use a screw driver to remove it. Loosening the lug nuts is commonly referred to as breaking the lug nuts and involves the use of a wrench that fits perfectly to loosen the lug nuts by turning the wrench counterclockwise. This process is to loosen up the nuts and not to completely take them off. Just ensure they are loose enough to remove by hand after you jack up the vehicle.
Jack Up the vehicle
Jack up your vehicle about 6 inches off the ground. The proper location of the jack will vary with vehicle models and you will need to look at the owner’s manual for the perfect location. There are different jacks and you need to know how to work the one available. If it is a scissor jack, insert the wrench or rod and crank it. If it is a hydraulic jack, put it in place and start pumping.
Remove the flat tire
When the vehicle is properly jacked up and the tire is about 6 inches from the ground, you can now remove the lug nuts and put them in a safe place. Grab the tire with both hands and pull it towards you. It should not rub against the threads of the bolts so you need to ensure you are giving it a lift. Roll the flat tire to get it put of the way.
Lift the spare to the lug bolts
This is the trickiest part in changing a tire. This is because the tire is filled with air and might be heavy. It will be a tricky process especially if you are not used to lifting heavy objects. If this is too much of a task, get someone else to help you out. You can also use a wooden block or a brick to assist you in raising the tire spare tire to the lug bolts.
Replace the lug nuts
After the spare tire is in place, replace the lug nuts and tighten them by hand. You can use the wrench to get the nuts firmly into place but wait until you have lowered the vehicle to tighten the nuts.
Lower the Jack
Once the vehicle is on the ground, use the wrench to tighten the lug nuts as much as possible. You have successfully changed your tire and ready to go. Ensure you have the flat tire fixed or replaced for the next time you are in the same situation.