How To Perform A Tire Change

When it comes to changing a tire there are many things to consider. Of course, you could simply pick up the phone and call HPC Auto Towing to change your tire for you and we would be happy to accommodate you. But, if you prefer to do it yourself, here are a few things to think about before you do.

Flat Tire Change Tips

One of the most important factors when you have a flat tire while driving is safety while stopping. Too many times motorists will panic and attempt to jerk the steering wheel one way or the other when they have a flat. This is a mistake as you can lose control and quite possibly roll your car.

When you have a flat tire while driving, reduce your speed slowly and look for a level part of the road with sufficient shoulder for maneuverability. You’ll want to pull as far off the road as possible while keeping your vehicle on a solid level surface, preferably the shoulder.

After you have driven your car to a safe spot turn on your emergency flashers. This will help to alert oncoming traffic that you are roadside, especially at night. Once you are at a complete stop and your flashers are on, consult your vehicle’s owner manual for the location of the spare and tire changing tools.

Note: Not all vehicles have spares and of the ones that do the spare and tool placement can vary. Some may be in the trunk, under the back seat, and even underneath the vehicle attached with a wire winch. Consulting the manufacturer’s instructions on location and the proper use of the tools is the highest best use of the do-it-yourselfer’s time.

Once you have found your spare, you’ll need to apply the parking brake before going forward. If you’ve never changed a tire before, doing so under fire (stranded with cars whizzing by at 80 miles an hour) can be quite stressful. Below are a few tips to help keep you safe.

Flat Tire Change Safety Tips

When changing a flat, loosen the lug nuts a little before you jack up the car. Many times the lug nuts will be hard to remove and you don’t want to be jerking and pulling from all sides of your car while it’s propped up on the jack. Doing so is risking injury and quite possibly death.

If possible wear gloves when removing the damaged or deflated tire, depending upon the reason for the flat, there may be steel belting poking out from under the rubber. If you are not careful, you risk cutting your hands.

If after you’ve removed the lug nuts and you are still unable to remove the flat tire from the hub, it may be “fuzed” to the hub. If this is the case you’ll need to safely dislodge it. This can be done in many ways, the safest of which is to use a 4×4 piece of timber and a 3-pound sledgehammer. Placing the 4×4 on the bottom of the rim so that it spans from right to left, use the 3-pound sledgehammer to hit in the middle of the timber. Do this again on the top and left and right of the wheel, alternating until the wheel starts to become dislodged.

When You Call Us For Tire Changing Service

If you would prefer to have a professional change your tire we can certainly oblige you. There are a couple of things we’ll need before we can complete the task properly.

  • We ask that you confirm that you have a good spare. (It doesn’t need to have air, we bring air, but if you don’t have a spare you’ll need a tow truck)
  • We ask that you locate your owner’s manual. (not all tire changing instructions are the same.
  • If you are on the side of the road we suggest that you move as far out of the way of traffic as possible.
  • And, we’ll need to know if you have locking lug nuts and the key to unlock them. (it’s usually in the glove compartment)

Once we have all the necessary information we will be on our way to assist you and get your back on the road again.

Rather than ruining your clothes and fighting with a lug wrench call HPC Auto Towing. We’ll bring all the experience and know-how we’ve garnered from the more than 30 years in the automotive industry to serve you.

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