Changing a tire
Even the best of driver’s experience it at least once in a lifetime. And as luck goes, it always happens on a crowded roadway or when you are running late. This is, yet, another important reason for regular car care and for having your cars’ owners manual nearby. If you have a blow-out or if your tire is flat, you will feel shaking of your car as you are driving and you will hear a loud ‘thumping’ sound. But don’t panic. Turn your emergency flashers on to notify other drivers, and then slowly decelerate and let your car come to a slow stop, bringing your car to the shoulder of the road. Do not use the brakes or steering suddenly; just let your car slowly coast to the side of the road.
Now that you are safely on the side of the road and out of harms way from moving traffic you can change your tire. First, be sure your car is on strong, level ground. If the ground is sand or grass then try to pull the car slowly to a more solid area ahead, without getting back into traffic on the roadway. Once you are on a more secure and solid area you should put on your emergency brake and turn off the car engine.
Now find your spare tire, a lug wrench and your car jack. Typically, these are stored in the trunk of the car. Before you can jack up your car you should loosen the lug nuts on the flat tire. The lug nuts are located under the hub cap. So, first remove the hub cap, using a screw driver or the lug wrench. The lug nuts are the large ‘bolts’ that screw the tire to the car. Do not remove them yet; just loosen them. And now you can jack your car up using the jack. Consult your owners’ manual to locate the best area of the car to use for jacking the car up. Be sure the jack is placed on solid and level ground, to prevent falling.
After the car is jacked up correctly and everything is secured, you can begin by removing the lug nuts completely (making sure that you do not lose any).After you loosen them before you jacked the car up, you should be able to remove them using only your fingers but if necessary you can use the lug wrench. Now that the lug nuts are off you can slowly take off the flat tire. The wheel that is your spare tire is a ‘doughnut’ tire and not very reliable for long distance driving, so be sure to go to a car repair shop as soon as possible to have the flat tire fixed or buy a new tire. Put the spare tire on the car and tighten the lug nuts on it as much as you can, they don’t need to be as tight as they can possibly be because after the wheel is on the car securely you will jack the car back down and then tighten the lug nuts as tightly as possible. You can replace the hub cap on the spare tire now and put the lat tire and jack along with the lug wrench securely in your trunk.
Be sure to maintain and check your spare tire during your regular car care routine.
In the event of a flat tire, avoid driving speeds in excess of 50 mph and bring your car to an car repair shop as soon as possible.