No one likes getting a flat tire. They always seem to come right at the worst moments, like when you are already running late for work, or when you are coming home after a long day. If it is a rainy day out, you may soon find yourself stuck on the side of the road trying to change your tire as quickly as you can so that you can get out of the rain. In order to do this, you have to know how to change a tire a head of time. This is a skill that everyone who drives should know, since you never know when a flat will happen to you.
The first step is to get to a safe place. If you get a flat while driving, you want to get over to the shoulder or into a parking lot as soon as you can. You’ll need some room to work when changing your flat, so get as far off the main road as you can before trying to change your tire. Try to find the flattest possible spot to work to make it safe for yourself. Once you have found a good spot, put the car into park and put on the emergency break.
After doing that, you need to get out your tools. Most vehicles come with an emergency car jack, a tire iron, and a spare tire. If you are missing any of these in your car, you will want to replace them as soon as you can, because changing your tire without them is basically impossible. Place the jack on the ground near where the flat tire is, along with the spare tire. Use the tire iron to loosen the bolts on your wheel before jacking your car up. Don’t take the bolts off all the way, just loosen them a little bit so that they are easy to take off once the car is up.
Next, look under your car to see where to place the jack. There is usually a spot marked underneath your car, or it is written in your owner’s manual. Putting the jack in the right spot is important to ensuring that the car stays up while you put the new tire on. Once you have the jack in place, start raising your car up. Most jacks will either have you turn a nob to raise it up, or push on a lever. It shouldn’t be too hard to figure out yours after looking at it for a few minutes. Keep jacking up your car until the tire is off of the ground. Depending on your jack this may take a while, so keep at it.
With the tire off of the ground, take the bolts off all of the way. Now you can remove the flat tire and put it off to the side. If the tire is stuck at all, just give it a little kick to loosen it. Slide on the spare tire, and put the bolts back in to secure it. You don’t have to tighten these too much yet, but make sure they are on there pretty good. Now lower the car back down to the ground and take the jack out of the way. Use the tire iron to tighten up the bolts and make sure they are on there nice and tight. Once you’ve tightened up the bolts as much as you can, you’re done! Put away your tools and store your flat tire in your trunk for now.
Once you have changed your tire, be sure to get a replacement as soon as you can. You don’t want to drive around without a spare tire for too long, just in case you get another flat. Also, if you have never changed a tire before, we recommend going out and practicing how to do it, so that when the time comes you will know what to do. Changing your tire is a simple process, and one that you don’t really need to call roadside assistance for. You can be on your way a lot quicker if you take a few minutes to learn how it’s done.