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WHEN YOUR TIRE GOES FLAT
Nobody enjoys a flat tire, in fact getting a flat tends to bring out the worst attributes in the driver in terms of annoyance and frustration. Flat tires always seem to happen just when one is dressed for an important meeting or when they're in a hurry to make an appointment. One could sometimes swear that these tires have a mind of their own and are deliberately choosing to impact your life at the most inopportune moment.
So, that being said, the best thing to do is, of course, to maintain your tires regularly to ensure proper air pressure and condition. But, this isn't a foolproof way to prevent flat tires… They happen despite our very best efforts. It's good to be prepared in case of a flat and to have the knowledge on how to properly change a tire.
HOW TO CHANGE A FLAT TIRE
As soon as you get a flat on a tire, stop driving as soon as it's safe to do so. Pull over, after checking for other motorists, as soon as you can. Attempting to drive with a flat tire will only damage the wheels of the car and the flat tire will cost you a whole lot more than just the cost of a tire.
First know where the spare is located along with the jack and tire iron. In most cars, it's found in the trunk. On SUV's, minivans or trucks they could be found under the vehicle or mounted on the back. One of the things you'll want to do is always be prepared in case of a flat tire by keeping your spare tire filled with the proper air pressure. Many people tend to forget about the spare tire and find that when they need it, it's flat as well as the main tire.
Make sure your car is in park or in gear depending on whether it's an automatic or manual transmission. Set the emergency brake and wedge a rock or a large block behind the tire opposite of the flat tire. The more precautions you take to prevent the car from accidentally moving while changing the tire the better.
Before jacking the car up, you'll want to take the tire iron and loosen the lug nuts. Do this before raising the car because you'll have more friction in which to twist that lug nut off. If you raise the car first then the wheel will move around to much while you are trying to loosen the lug nuts. After they've been loosened and the car is as secure as you can make it, put the jack under the car and raise it up so that the flat tire is well off the pavement. Your car manual will have the proper instructions on where to place the jack under the car.
Now that the wheel is off the pavement, unscrew the lug nuts all the way off and ease the tire off of the wheel studs. Take the spare tire and line the holes in the tire wheel with the studs. Once you've gotten it on, screw the lug nuts back on by hand at first then finish off with the tire iron. Just make it tight enough to keep the wheel flush against the hub. Once that's done, lower the jack carefully until all four tires are flat on the ground again. Now that the tire is back on the pavement, take the tire iron again and this time tighten the lug nuts completely.
REPLACING THE FLAT TIRE
our spare tire is designed to just temporarily transport you until you can get a new tire or get the flat fixed. It's not a tire that's designed for speed or long distance driving. It's just enough to get you home or to the nearest tire dealer.
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