As we all know, many unexpected things can happen when we are driving on the open road. While we never expect to have our vehicle sidelined, sometimes it happens. One of the most common reasons that a car becomes inoperable is a flat tire. While getting a flat tire is as annoying as any other break down, it doesn’t have to be the end of the world. Even for the non mechanics, changing a flat tire can be pretty easy if you know what you are doing.
The easiest way to change a flat tire is to call roadside assistance or AAA, but this will keep you from getting back on the road for an hour or two while you wait for someone to come to your rescue. That wait is no fun, especially if you are in a hurry. The better way is to change your tire yourself, which will cost you about 10 minutes before your car is back up and running. Rather than try to describe each step, we have compiled the infographic below with basic instructions for changing a tire.
The steps in the infographic are summarized below:
1. Make Sure Car is on Flat Surface
Make sure car is on a level surface in a safe location to change a tire.
! Engage your E-Brake
! Turn on your hazard lights
! Chock wheel in opposite corner of tire you are changing
2. Loosen Lug Bolts
Using a lug wrench, turn lug bolts counter-clockwise (1 turn only) to break loose. This will allow you to finish loosening the lug bolts once the car has been raised.
! Do NOT remove lug bolts completely
3. Locate Jack Points
Locate the jack points for your car. Typically these are found in the owner’s manual or are otherwise marked on the car itself.
! Do NOT jack the car up using any other location
4. Raise Car
Using a floor jack and designated jack points, raise the wheel a couple inches off the ground. Place jack stands in appropriate locations to support vehicle.
! Prior to lifting car, double check that E-brake and hazards are on
! Prior to lifting car, double check that wheel in opposite corner is chocked
! Do not rely solely on floor jack to support your car to avoid injury
5. Remove Wheel
Removing lug bolts completely and remove wheel from car.
! Support wheel prior to removing final lug bolt to prevent injury.
! Set wheel on side to prevent rolling
6. Replace Wheel
Align wheel on hub, install lug bolts, and tighten with lug wrench until wheel sits flush to hub and lug bolts are snug.
7. Lower Car
Remove jack stands and lower car using floor jack until all wheels are on ground. Remove floor jack.
! Lower car slowly in a controlled fashion
8. Torque Lug Bolts
Using a torque wrench, tighten lug nuts to appropriate torque spec per your car’s owner’s manual. Follow a star pattern to ensure that bolts are loaded evenly. After applying correct torque to all lug bolts, recheck torque.
! Failing to properly torque your lug bolts can result in extreme danger when driving your car.
! Do not remove wheel chocks until completing this step
We hope that you have found this tire change infographic helpful! Happy wrenching!