Changing a Car Tyre
Changing a car tyre is a simple task, so long as it’s done safely and carefully. Before starting, consider the following points:
- Have a plastic sheet (or floor mat) to kneel on as well as a pair of gloves and torch handy
- Read the car manual to ensure compliance with your vehicle type
- Ensure the tools and jack are in the vehicle and in good working condition
- Don’t attempt to change a tire if your safety is at risk (or if any of the tools are missing or in poor condition).
Step-by-step instructions when changing a car tyre
- Ensure there are no passengers inside the vehicle.
- Ensure the vehicle is on a flat surface. Apply the handbrake and ensure the vehicle is in park (automatic) or in gear (manual).
- Block wheels on the side not being changed.
- Remove hubcap/wheel cover (if fitted) to expose wheel nuts.
- Loosen nuts with the wrench while the vehicle is on the ground (but don’t remove them).
- Place the jack under the jacking point and slowly raise the vehicle. Refer to your manual if necessary.
- Remove the nuts and wheel – pull the wheel towards you with both hands once the nuts are removed.
- Place the spare tire into position. If you are using a “biscuit” spare tire, remember that it is not designed to travel long distances and that you are restricted to a maximum of 80 km/h.
- Replace all wheel nuts and tighten by hand
- Lower and remove the jack and tighten wheel nuts with the wrench.
- Refit the wheel cover or hubcap if necessary.
- Take the punctured wheel to a tire shop for repair or replacement.
Some points to consider when changing a car tyre
Not all cars are the same, and there may be some extra challenges when changing a tire on certain vehicles.
- Some cars don’t have studs by which to “hang” the wheel but rather small pins that help you to center the wheel. These are easier to change with two people – one to guide and the other to maneuver the wheel.
- Some wheels have locking nuts and need a special wrench to remove them – always check that this is in the vehicle.
- It can also be tricky to change tires in a vehicle with heavy wheels. This generally requires two people and you may even need expert assistance.
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