How to change a tyre

Getting a flat tyre can be a real nuisance, but it doesn’t have to be a major ordeal. It’s very important as a driver to be able to change a flat tyre yourself. You want to be prepared for the unexpected, so knowing how to change a flat can put you at ease before a long journey. At Insuremycars.ie we’ve put together an informative break-down guide to help you out when you get a flat tyre. Follow these simple steps and the process of changing your tyre should only take around 30 minutes.

Before you change your tyre.

It’s imperative to have a break down kit in your car at all times. Getting a flat tyre is annoying but not having the equipment in your car to replace your tyre is a lot more inconvenient. The absence of a kit will require getting in touch with someone who can come and bring the equipment needed or it will result in having to call breakdown assistance. This will elongate the time you spend at the side of the road and will just make the all-round experience more in cumbersome.

So, what should you have in your break-down kit?

  • A flashlight.
  • A spare tyre.
  • A warning triangle.
  • A hi-visibility jacket.
  • A pair of gloves.
  • A wheel wrench
  • A car jack.
  • A wheel nut removal tool.
  • A wheel chock.
  • Your car’s manufacturing manual.

So where do I start?

  1. Stop at a safe location.

When you notice that you have a flat tyre, it’s vital to identify a safe place to pull in. You should look for a part of the road with a hard surface. Do not attempt to park your car on a soft surface. This is problematic because soft ground such as grass can cause the jack to tilt over and subsequently cause your car to tip over too.

  1. Make yourself as visible as possible.

When you have a flat tyre and you pull in to change it, it’s essential that you have the maximum visibility available to insure other cars on the road can identify and avoid you. Turn on your hazard lights immediately as this will communicate to other cars that you are having an issue.

Once you have parked safely in your position, produce and enable your warning triangle for maximum recognition. If you find yourself in a position where you must change your tyre beside heavy moving traffic, try to do so against oncoming traffic to avoid a collision.

  1. Secure your car.

When you have found your desired location, it’s important to secure your car. Make sure the engine is fully switched off and the hand-break is in-place. Place the wheel chocks from your breakdown kit in front of your wheel so they don’t roll.

  1. Prepare your jack.

Once your car has been secured you can remove your jack and place it under the tyre that you want to change. It’s important to have the car jack at a 90-degree angle to the road. Some older cars have moulded plastic along the bottom so if you don't place the jack in the right spot, it could crack the plastic when you start lifting.

Hence, it’s important to read your owner’s manual. If you have a more modern unibody car, there is a small notch or mark just behind the front wheel wells, or in front of the rear wheel wells where the jack is intended to be placed.

  1. Raise the jack.

Start raising your jack until it is at the same level as your car, the jack at this point should be lower than your car until the tyre just about touches the ground. Now you can tighten the wheel nuts with your wheel wrench.

  1. Remove the hub-caps loosen the nuts.

Use your wrench to remove the hubcap first (if you have one). Then, turn the wheel nuts anticlockwise a few times until you can start to turn them with your hands. Then place your damaged tyre aside.

  1. Put your spare tyre on

Make sure there is no rust or debris on your spare tyre and hub surfaces before attempting to refit your spare wheel. It is important to align the rim of the tyre with the wheel bolts.

  1. Put on your wheel nuts.

Once the tyre is positioned correctly start hand tightening the wheel nuts.

  1. Lower the car and finish tightening the nuts.

Lower your car until the tyre just about touches the ground. Now you can further tighten the wheel nuts with your wheel wrench.

  1. Lower the car completely.

When your wheel has be effectively secured you can remove your jack and lower your car in its entirety.

  1. Bring your car to the mechanic.

As soon as you can, bring your car to the mechanic so you can have your tyre pressure checked. It’s a good idea to ask them to inspect your handy work too just to ensure the tyre as been changed effectively and is secure.

Things to note:

  1. When you have a freshly changed tyre it’s imperative to note that that you shouldn’t drive any faster than 80 km p/h. This is important because you do not want to damage your spare tyre as you’ll be out of options if you damage the spare and will have to ring road side assistance. Wait until you have had your tyre professionally checked before you increase your speed.
  2. Have you tyre pressure checked regularly. Your tyres are an essential aspect of your car and their maintenance ensures your safety on the road. If you haven’t had your tyre pressure checked in a while, then pay a visit to your mechanic.

At Insuremycars.ie we can help you to protect your vehicle against an unforeseen mishap. We can offer you the best cover for the best price so, why not reach out to us today?

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