Tools to use when changing a flat tyre
It’s a great skill for all drivers to know how to change a tyre especially if you aren’t able to call for help. A flat tyre can happen anywhere, so it’s best to learn how to change a tyre for emergencies. The process isn’t hard and it would take about 15-30 minutes to change a tyre. There are step-by-step manuals that guide you and specific tools to use when changing a flat tyre.
Causes of a flat tyre:
- puncture – nails, glass, or any sharp object
- failure or damage to the valve – air leaks out which is caused by corroded, loose or dirt clogged stem
- rubbed or ripped tyre – worn out tyre, worn areas, deeply scuffed
- tire bead leaks
- over-pumped tyres (tyres normally have the maximum amount of air needed). Vehicles going over rough (non-tarred) roads need to be deflated a bit less than the maximum for extra grip and to prevent a tyre burst
- under-pumped tyres – when carrying a heavy load the tyres need to be pumped enough compensate for the extra kg’s
- separation of the tyre and rim caused by a collision with another object
- road hazards - potholes, humps, cracks, uneven tar
Tools needed when changing a flat tyre
Some of these tools will come with the car, but others have to be purchased separately. Replace lost or old tools immediately.
- Lug wrench
- Spare tyre
- Car owner’s manual
- Orange or yellow road cones / triangle to protect yourself from moving vehicles on the road.
- Torch with working batteries
- Wheel wedges
- Wooden 2”x6” plank to secure the jack
You can’t completely prevent a flat tyre but maintenance is goes a long way to avoiding one. Regular maintenance will ensure that your tyres are in good condition. Tyre maintenance will extend life of the tyre, reduce chance of flat tyre, and will improve performance.
- Safety first – always make sure that you are changing the tyre without risk of being hit by another driver. Put out the road cones and triangles a few meters around the vehicle so that they have enough place to move around yourself.
- Make sure that you have all your tools in your car.
- The size of your car and wheel can make a difference - smaller cars and wheels are easy to work on but bigger cars and wheels may be a challenge
- Ensure your hazard lights are on.
- Make sure to keep tyres inflated including the spare tyre for emergencies
- >Check for tyre pressure on spare tyre to ensure a safe drive
- Clean rims of dirt and rust from lock ring and gutter
- Discard damaged, corroded or worn parts
- Take the flat tyre to a technician for a repair or replacement.
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