How to Change a Tire


How to Change a Flat Tire


Knowing how to change a tire is something that everyone with a driver’s license should learn to do. While it may seem intimidating, with just a little bit of practice, you’ll be an expert in no time. Follow these steps to learn how to change a tire.


Before you start you’ll need a jack, lug wrench, fully inflated spare tire, and your vehicle’s owner’s manual. These items may have come with your car. In addition, you should keep a working flashlight, rain poncho, and a small 2x6-inch piece of wood to secure the jack. You’ll also need to keep work gloves and wheel wedges in the car, too.


1.    Stop in a safe place. When you realize your car has a flat tire, slowly come to a stop in a safe place off the road. Apply the parking brake, turn on your hazard lights, and place wheel wedges on the tires you won’t be working on.


2.    Remove the hubcap. If your vehicle has hubcaps, remove those to expose the lug nuts.


3.    Loose the lug nuts. Using the lug wrench, turn the lug nuts counterclockwise until they start to turn. Loosen them about ¼ to ½ a turn, but don’t remove them yet.


4.    Put the jack under the vehicle. Follow the directions listed in the owner’s manual for proper jack placement. Use the piece of wood to provide a flat, secure surface for the jack.


5.    Raise the vehicle. Once the jack is in place and secure, raise the vehicle until the flat tire is about six inches off the ground. Do not put any part of your body under the vehicle while it is raised.


6.    Remove the lug nuts. Completely remove all the lug nuts. You should be able to remove them by hand, but can use the wrench, if needed.


7.    Remove the tire. Securely hold the flat tire and pull it off of the hub. Place it on its side so it won’t roll away.


8.    Mount the spare tire. Place the spare tire on the hub and line up the rim with the lug bolts.


9.    Tighten the lug nuts. Tighten the lug nuts as tight as you can, using just your hands.


10.    Lower the vehicle. Use the jack to lower the vehicle until the spare tire is resting on the ground. Then, using as much force as you can--even all of your body weight--tighten all the lug nuts.


11.    Remove the jack. Continue to lower the vehicle until you can remove the jack. Check all the lug nuts to make sure they are as tight as possible.


12.    Replace the hubcap. If you had a hubcap, put this back on.


13.    Clean up. Pick up all of your equipment and properly stow it in your vehicle.


14.    Check the pressure. Check the pressure on your spare tire to make sure it is safe to drive on. If it is too low, slowly drive to the nearest service station to add more air.


15.    Get a new tire. You’ll need to repair or replace your flat tire. Visit Griffin Ford Lincoln and we'll help fix or replace your tire.