Flat tires are never anticipated, but it’s always a good idea to be prepared. Luckily, changing a tire is easier than it seems and all of the items you will need should be stored in your vehicle.
Items You Will Need
- A fully inflated spare tire
- Reflective warning markers
- Lug wrench
- Vehicle owner's manual
PREPARE: Keep all items to change a flat tire in the vehicle in case of an emergency. Check if your vehicle comes with a spare tire. To increase fuel efficiency and space, most newer models of vehicles do not come with a spare tire.
BE SAFE: Pull over to a safe location. Put your car in “Park” and engage emergency brakes. Chock the wheel to the opposite side of the flat tire. Turn the hazard lights on and place reflective warning markers at approximately 30 feet behind the vehicle. Pull out the owner’s manual.
REMOVING THE FLAT TIRE: The “jack point” can be found in the owner’s manual or the frame of the vehicle. Place the jack beneath the vehicle’s frame near the flat tire. Raise the car carefully, making sure the car is completely stable. Do not place arms or legs under the vehicle in case the jack gets loose. Once the tire has completely cleared the ground, remove the lug nuts. Using the lug wrench, turn the lug nuts clockwise until all lug nuts are removed.
REPLACING WITH THE SPARE TIRE: Remove the flat tire and replace it with the spare tire, resting the spare tire on the wheel studs. Position the spare tire and tighten the lug nuts clockwise by hand. Use the lug wrench and tighten the lug nuts only until they are “firm”. Lower the jack carefully until the wheel is firmly on the ground. Using your lug wrench, tighten the lug nuts in a star-type pattern to apply equal torque on all the wheel studs.
COMPLETING TIRE CHANGE: Completely lower the jack so the vehicle is back on the ground. Remove the jack. Do not exceed the highway speed while driving with the temporary spare tire.