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How to change a tire in record time

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How to change a tire, woman, car
How to change a tire (Photo: Shutterstock)
  • How to change a tire fast.
  • It’s important to be prepared on trips.
  • Follow this easy guide.

Picture this: you’re cruising down the highway, the wind is blowing through your hair, and suddenly — thud, thud, thud — your tire goes flat.

The thrill of the drive instantly fades, replaced by the dread of a forced pit stop.

But here’s the good news, you can swap that tire out yourself, and you can do it in record time.

This article will guide you through the nitty-gritty of changing a tire like a seasoned mechanic.

How to change a tire: Safety first

How to change a tire, black woman, car
Photo: Shutterstock

Before diving into the mechanical process, it’s crucial to set the stage for safety.

Pull off the road to a spot far away from the whirlwind of passing cars, if possible.

Flick on those glaring hazard lights and put on the parking brake — these actions are your first line of defense against any unforeseen danger.

Additionally, using reflective triangles or cones would be the cherry on top of your safety sundae.

Gather your tools

car, tools
Photo: Shutterstock

Before embarking on this tire-changing adventure, make sure your toolbox is ready.

Retrieve your spare tire, jack, and lug wrench, which are usually hidden in the trunk.

If you find yourself in the dark or in a chilly environment, a flashlight and a pair of gloves will be your trusty sidekicks.

Having all your tools within reach is like having all the right ingredients before cooking — it makes everything flow smoothly.

Loosen the lug nuts

How to change a tire, man, lugnuts
Photo: Shutterstock

Once you’re geared up, it’s time to get down to the nuts and bolts of how to change a tire.

Use your lug wrench to give those lug nuts a preliminary, gentle twist to loosen them.

Don’t fully unscrew them yet — we’re merely setting the stage.

Doing this step while the tire is still grounded ensures you’re not fighting against the tire’s weight later on.

Jack it up

changing a tire, tires, car, woman
Photo: Shutterstock

The time has come to elevate your car into the air.

Carefully place your jack under the designated lift point, usually indicated in your car’s manual, and start pumping.

Lift the car just high enough so the flat tire is about six inches off the ground.

Make sure the car is stable and balanced, this isn’t the time for wobbling.

Remove the flat tire

car jack, woman, street
Photo: Shutterstock

With the car hoisted, remove the lug nuts completely.

Then, with a firm grip and a bit of a wiggle, slide that flat tire off as if you’re pulling off a heavy boot.

Place the defeated tire to the side — you’ll eventually need to take it in for repair or disposal.

Don’t underestimate its worth; today’s tragedy could be tomorrow’s restored gem.

Mount the spare tire

Photo: Shutterstock

Time to introduce your car to its replacement tire.

Align the spare tire with the lug bolts, then slide it into place with a satisfying swoosh.

Hand-tighten the lug nuts for a snug initial fit, ensuring the wheel doesn’t wobble.

At this stage, you’re threading the nuts just enough to keep everything in place for the next steps.

Lower the car

woman, road trip, repair
Photo: Shutterstock

Begin lowering your car using the jack, but stop when the spare tire lightly touches the ground.

Use this opportunity to give those lug nuts a final, strong twist with your wrench, securing them like a fortress.

Once you’re confident they’re as tight as can be, lower your car completely, reuniting all four tires with the open road.

Before you roar off into the sunset, there are a few last-minute checks to tick off your list. Double-check those lug nuts to ensure they’re seated like a king on his throne, and stow away all your tools.

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