Follow these five easy steps to change a tire without a hitch.
Whether you're a hard-working professional, a homemaker, or a retiree, your vehicle is one of your most valuable and most important assets. Subsequently, it can be a huge problem when it lets you down with something like a popped tire. This is why it's so important to always be prepared, and knowing how to change a tire is one of the most basic and essential skills you need to master. However, there is more to it than simply knowing how to properly change a flat tire; you also need to ensure that you have the right tools on hand to do so. You won't always have the luxury of doing it in the comfort of your garage, after all, since most flats occur when you least expect it.
In the event that your car's tire gets a puncture, follow these five easy steps and you'll be back on the road in no time:
If you need help finding the ideal tires for your vehicle, please take a look at this guide on buying tires.
New cars for sale in the US usually come standard with the tools required to change a flat tire. If you're unsure that this is the case with your car, or if it is a second-hand purchase and you would like to confirm that you have the right tools, these are what you'll need to look for:
While it is certainly important to know how to fix a flat tire, you also need to be aware of a few other things, especially if your spare is a compact tire. Firstly, because of their diminutive sizes and small contact patches, they usually have a very limited top speed and road life. The top speed limit will be displayed on the sidewall of the tire and in the owner's manual. Remember that these are designed to be sufficient to get you to safety after a burst, not for long-term use. It's also important to regularly check the pressure of your spare tire as it won't do you much good to replace one flat tire with another. Lastly, different vehicles have different tire fitting requirements based on the size of the wheels, which is vital information if you need to shop for a new one. Below is a tire-fitting guide that could help:
|Rim width (inch)||Min. tire width (mm)||Ideal tire width (mm)||Max. tire width (mm)|
|5,0||155||165 or 175||185|
|5,5||165||175 or 185||195|
|6,0||175||185 or 195||205|
|6,5||185||195 or 205||215|
|7,0||195||205 or 215||225|
|7,5||205||215 or 225||235|
|8,0||215||225 or 235||245|
|8,5||225||235 or 245||255|
|9,0||235||245 or 255||265|
|9,5||245||255 or 265||275|
|10,0||255||265 or 275||285|
|10,5||265||275 or 285||295|
|11,0||275||285 or 295||305|
|11,5||285||295 or 305||315|
|12,0||295||305 or 315||325|
|12,5||305||315 or 325||335|
Having either an air pump or mobile compressor/tire inflator at hand could prove handy if your spare wheel has deflated over time.
There are several reasons this could happen including improper inflation, misalignment, poor driving conditions, and much more. A professional would have to examine your wheels to provide a more accurate answer. Fortunately, many service centers in the USA offer free evaluations and advice.
This will depend on various factors but manufacturers always provide these requirements. Most often, this information is displayed on a sticker located inside the door jam on the driver's side, as well as in the owner's manual.
Many insurance companies offer roadside assistance, which includes a call-out service for flat tires. So, if you don't know how to replace a tire, they will send a professional out to do it for you. We do advise educating yourself though, as the process itself isn't too difficult.