Changing a tyre is probably the one single bit of car maintenance that every motorist will have to do at some point in their lives. The major repairs can be left to mechanics, checking oil and water, tyre pressure or fuel levels can be done by service station staff, but if you get a flat while you’re driving, you can’t avoid having to change the tyre. Thankfully, it is a really easy task to perform, as this guide from Highway Bakkie Hire proves.
Learning how to change a tyre should be part of the course we go through when we prepare to get our driver’s licences. It is a simple but crucial task that everybody should know how to do. If you don’t know how, there is no need to worry. Just follow these simple steps. Take a look at our blog for more motoring advice.
When you realise that you have a flat, don’t panic and don’t suddenly brake or turn. Slowly reduce your speed and look for a straight stretch of road with a good, wide shoulder – or even a parking lot if you can – where you can pull over.
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Even before you come to a stop, put on your hazard lights to warn other motorists.
When you find your spot, pull over, apply the parking brake, keep your hazards flashing, pull the boot release and get out of the vehicle.
If you have a reflective traffic warning triangle, take it out and place it about two to three metres behind the car. Next take the jack and place it beneath the vehicle frame beside the flat tire. On most vehicles, there is a clearly distinguishable ridge that is meant to slot into the top part of the jack. Open the jack up just enough so that it is standing flat on the ground and so that the ridge on the ridge on the bottom of the car wedges into the top of the jack. However, do not raise the car just yet.
Use the crowbar end of your wheel spanner to remove the hubcap, exposing the four nuts on the wheel. Next, loosen the nuts but do not remove them.
Now, turn the lever on the jack to start raising the car. Lift it until the tyre is about 15cm off the ground.
Now remove the wheel nuts completely. Then gently pull the tyre towards you until it comes off the wheel hub. Place the damaged tyre to one side.
Carefully position the spare tyre on the lug bolts and push gently until it sits firmly against the hub and the lug bolts show through the rim. Put the wheel nuts on and tighten them with your fingers.
Close the jack so that the car stands firmly on the ground again. Then, tighten the wheel nuts using the spanner. Make sure that they are as tight as they can go. Remove the jack and return it to its case or its position in the boot of the car. Give the nuts one more turn with the spanner, just to be sure, and then replace the spanner in the boot or toolkit. Put the flat tyre in the boot where the spare was stored.
Once you leave the spot where you changed the tyre, it’s best to look for the nearest service station, where you can check the pressure of the spare tyre and pump it up if necessary.
Highway Bakkie Hire is committed to offering well-serviced, quality vehicles. We ensure that each car is fitted with safe, quality tyres, as well as all a spare and the tools you’ll need in a roadside emergency. Contact us for more information on our rental options.