Haunted by many drivers, the flat tire often arrives at the wrong time and in the wrong place. Although many drivers subscribe to roadside assistance services that take care of moving around to change your tires, it is nevertheless wise and intelligent to know how to do it yourself. Punctures being a fairly common phenomenon, car manufacturers have done their best to make the tire change process feasible for everyone. Here are the 7 points that will help you deal with any puncture.
Stop the car in a safe place
The first thing to do is to find a safe place to stop. If the puncture occurs on a highway, take the next exit even if it means driving with a flat tire. Do not park in the middle of a curve; incoming cars may not see you. Find a place that is both far from traffic and stable, serviced and flat.
Take out the tools
When parked, turn off the ignition, turn on your hazard warning lights, and apply the hand brake. It is preferable to engage a gear (first or possibly reverse). If your gearbox is automatic, choose the “Parking” (P) position. Then fetch the jack, key and spare wheel from the trunk of the car and place them near the flat tire.
Position the jack
Proper positioning of the jack is very important. Depending on the car model, the location of the jack can vary. Feel free to consult the instruction manual. The jack has a small claw to place in the notches just behind the front wheel arches, or in front of the rear wheels.
Remove the nuts
Once the jack is properly positioned, raise the vehicle without lifting it off the ground. Then remove the hubcap and unscrew the wheel nuts by turning the wrench counterclockwise to the left without removing them from the rim. A cross key is to be preferred for ease of use.
Lift the car up
Raise the car until the tire is about 15 centimeters above the ground. Be very careful with the jack. The latter must remain stable, straight and perpendicular. If this is not the case, lower the car down and replace the jack correctly.
Remove the flat tire
With the car lifted, remove the nuts one by one, unscrewing them counter-clockwise. Then pull the flat tire straight towards you, in a horizontal movement, to pull it out of the base of the wheel.
Put the spare wheel in place
Check the direction of your spare wheel before mounting. The inflation valve must be positioned outwards. Place the wheel on the car and screw the bolts by hand. This operation must be carried out without resistance.
Put the vehicle down on the ground
Gently lower your vehicle to the ground and finish tightening the wheel. Take your wrench back in hand and tighten the bolts as much as possible. Then replace the hubcap.
Once the operation is complete, all you have to do is store the flat tire and tools in the trunk.