No one likes getting a flat tire. They always seem to come at the worst times, right as you are in a rush to get somewhere. If you’re lucky, you walk out to your car and notice it, rather than having it happen while you are driving. Whenever it happens though, it is annoying. What can be a major inconvenience can turn into a slight problem however, as long as you know how to deal with it. If you are unsure of how to change a flat, then read on.
First, you want to make sure the car is in a safe place for you the change the tire. If you are driving, pull over to the side of the road as soon as you can. Preferably, have the tire that is flat on the side of the road away from traffic to give yourself more room. Get the car onto as flat of a surface as you can find in order to make changing the tire easier. Once the car is into position, put on the parking brake, and if you are on the road, turn on your hazard lights.
Now it is time to get out your tools. In most cars you will have an emergency kit, so you’ll want to get this out along with your spare tire. The things you’ll need are the tire, a jack-stand, and the tire iron. Get these out and put them near the flat tire. The first tool you are going to need is the tire iron. Use it to loosen the bolt on the tire just a little bit. You don’t want to remove them all the way yet, just loosen them so that they are easier to remove in a few minutes.
With the bolts loosened, it is time to start jacking up the car. Slide the car underneath the car, near the flat tire. On the underside of the vehicle there will usually be a little sign for where to position, or a piece of re-enforced metal. Line the jack up here, and start cranking it up. Depending on what kind of jack you have, this could take a while. Just keep cranking it hire and hire until you see the flat tire is completely off the ground. You want the tire to be about an inch off of the ground to give you enough room.
Now that the car is up, you can go ahead and remove the bolt from the tire completely. Put these to the side and make sure that you don’t lose them. Once off, remove the flat tire and put it to the side. It may be a little stuck, so just give it a quick kick or elbow to knock it off. Slide the spare tire onto where you just took the flat one off, and begin putting the bolts back on. Once safely on, you can lower the car back down to the ground. Then go ahead and tighten up the bolts as best as you can. And that’s it! Put everything away and you are good to go.
Remember to get a proper tire put on as soon as you can. You don’t want to drive around on your spare too long, just in case you get another flat. Also, it’s a good idea to practice doing this before if you have never done it. Take some time one afternoon to change the tire in your driveway, just so you can be sure you know how to do it.