Do you ever wonder why tyres always get flat and why they always happen at the most inconvenient times? You’re going to a party; you’re already late for work; you’re on that most anticipated road trip. But then, you just gotta pull over because you’ve noticed something’s not right. So why? Is it because of poor maintenance or bad luck? Well, one thing we know for sure. If you are in that unfortunate scenario, playing the blame game isn’t going to miraculously get you out of that situation. You got to do something.
Which brings us to one very important thing: knowing how to change a flat tyre on your own. Being reputable and trusted car wreckers in Melbourne, we couldn’t stress more that this is one skill that every car driver and owner must have. Sure there are 24/7 roadside emergencies available and there are (hopefully) still some good samaritans around. But like we said, they always happen at the most unexpected situations. When your cellphone is out of battery, when there is no reception, or when you are in a place where there’s rarely a number of cars and people passing by, you are left with no other choice. You have to learn how to change your tyres.
That process need not be daunting. As responsible and reliable car wreckers Victoria has, we are here to provide you a step-by-step guide so you would know how to change a flat tyre, without any help.
First things first— You won’t be able to successfully change a flat tyre if you don’t have the essentials in your car. These are the things that should always be in your trunk:
- Well-inflated spare tyre
- A jack
- Lug wrench
- Wood or wheel chuck
- Emergency essentials like flashlight, flare, emergency triangle or cone, etc.
If all these are in check, you may now proceed to changing your flat tyre.
Here’s a simple step-by-step guide:
- Take your car to a safe location. If you are on the side of the road, pick a spot that has a wide shoulder. Since you are still running on a flat tyre, do not abruptly turn. Slowly lead your car to that spot you have chosen. The wider the area and the flatter the surface, the better.
- Pull your hand brake. Stay on neutral gear or in Park if your car is an automatic.
- Turn on your blinkers or hazard lights. If you have an emergency triangle or cones, place them in front and at the back of your car to warn other motorists.
- Apply wheel wedges (or a piece of wood or big rock) to ensure your car won’t roll off as you change a flat tyre. Place them in front if you’re changing a flat rear tyre. Or put it behind your rear tyres if one of your front tyres are flat.
- Remove the hubcap or wheel cover. You may use the flat end of your lug wrench to take it off. Some hubcaps may be removed using a different tool so make sure you check your manual to know what you need.
- Loosen the lug nuts with your wrench by turning them counterclockwise. You may have to use your foot and all of your strength to loosen their grip. But remember not to remove them completely just yet.
- Get your jack and place it underneath your car. The proper spot for the jack is usually the flat surface in your car’s frame alongside the tyre. Most of the cars we use today usually has a particular spot or notch that is specifically for your jack.
- With the jack properly positioned, raise your vehicle about 6 inches off the ground.
- Now unscrew the lug nuts so you could remove the flat tyre.
- Take your spare and insert it by lining up the rim to the lug bolts.
- Put the lug nuts back and screw them first by hand.
- Lower your vehicle and then securely tighten all the lug nuts again using your wrench. Place the hubcap back.
- Remove the jack and put the flat tyre in your spare tyre compartment. Get all the tools and equipment you have used so you could find and use it again in the future.
At the end of the day, being prepared is always best to combat any car or road mishap like having a flat tyre. But simply knowing how to change a tyre isn’t going to cut it – you don’t want to change flat tyres often, right? Checking and maintaining your tyres regularly, along with this knowledge and skill, will perfectly help you be that prepared and responsible driver.