We spend hours a week behind the wheels of our automobiles. In a way, our vehicles have become something of our second homes. Despite all the time we spend with our cars, many people don’t know how to perform any kind of specific car maintenance.
For example, one in four drivers do not know how to fix a flat tire. Failing to learn this skill could leave you in quite a tricky situation should you experience a flat while out on the public roadways.
Learning how to change a tire is an important task for any driver. It doesn’t have to be difficult either, as changing a flat is actually quite simple of a task. What do you need to know about making a tire change? Read on and we’ll walk you through it all.
A flat tire is most often caused by a sharp object on the roadway that can puncture your tire.
Nails or shattered glass that have fallen out onto the road are among the most common causes of flat tires.
In some cases, there might be an issue with the tire itself that leads to it becoming flat. A broken valve stem, for example, can cause air to leak out of the tire until it becomes flat.
A tire with low pressure can also eventually become flat if it is continually driven on. The weight of the vehicle can eventually push all air out of the tire itself, creating a flat.
It’s important to always keep a close eye on your tires and ensure that you are taking proper care of them. Tires in good health will be less likely to become flat.
If you’re driving down the open road, what should you be looking out for in terms of a flat tire? In most cases, the moment you get a flat will be quite obvious.
If you get a flat from a puncture, you’ll likely hear a loud popping sound at the moment of impact. This sound will then be followed by the fairly constant whoosh of air leaving the tire.
In addition to these sounds, you should feel a sharp pull in one direction from the wheel. The car will likely want to veer in the direction of the flat tire and it will be harder to maintain speed, turn, or control your vehicle.
If you experience these signs, you need to get off the roadway as soon as possible. Quickly and safely navigate to a safe location off the side of the road.
You’ll want to make sure that you are as far away from the flow of traffic as humanly possible. You don’t want to put yourself in harm’s way by being too close to other vehicles as you attempt to fix your own.
When you pull over, you’ll also want to throw on your hazard lights to indicate to other drivers that you are having an issue. This should signal to them to slow down as they come to pass your location.
If you don’t feel safe changing your tire at the location you’ve pulled over, consider calling a service like the one at https://www.allcoasttyres.com.au/mobile-tyre-van.
You’re over on the side of the road, your tire is confirmed flat, and you’re essentially stranded. Now comes the moment where you can put some knowledge to good use: you can do your own tire change.
You’ll want to start by pulling the spare tire and kit from the back of your vehicle. Each vehicle has its spare tire located in a slightly different location, so you might need to check your manual to see where you need to look.
Alongside the spare tire should be a jack and a wrench. Take the wrench first and get down and level with the flat tire. If there is a hubcap on the tire, you’ll want to pry this off first.
This should be as simple as pulling it off using your fingers. Pry up the corners, pull it off, and put it to the side. Underneath you should see a number of lug nuts.
Use the wrench to loosen each of these lug nuts in turn. Don’t pull them completely off, but get them to a place where they are fairly loose. Once you’ve done this with each lug nut, grab the jack.
You’ll need to place the jack under the firm, the metal part of the vehicle. Somewhere where you can get a really good grip. Once you’ve found a good spot, rotate the jack so it begins to lift this side of the vehicle up. Keep going until the front of the vehicle is about six inches off the ground.
Once the flat wheel is suspended, use the wrench to finish the job with the nuts. Slide the flat tire off completely and replace it with the spare. Use the wrench to screw the nuts back on and keep the new tire in place.
Lower the jack and make sure the spare tire feels safe and secure. If it is, you’ve done it! You should feel proud.
If you’re going to be driving a lot, learning how to change a tire is a must.
You don’t want to get caught on the side of the road with no way of helping yourself out. Learning a few flat tire solutions isn’t too tricky and the above information can be a big help.
Need more tire-changing tips? More advice for your automobile? Keep scrolling our blog for more.