Changing a Tire
Changing a Tire
The basics of inspecting and changing a tire
Automotive safety is a top concern for Bill DeLord Cadillac Buick GMC. As such we understand that not every situation can be prevented. There are times when you will find yourself in an emergency situation (often caused by someone else’s neglect) and need to know what to do. One common roadside emergency is the need to change a tire. From the debris in the highway, to that unseen nail or screw, a blown out tire can put a damper on anyone’s day. If you don’t know how to change a tire then the already frustrating situation can become downright unbearable. But there’s no need to fret! Changing a tire is very easy to learn. Just follow the steps below:
Step one: Park the car OFF of the road
Pull your vehicle to a safe location. If possible, pull off the road so that you are allowed a safe amount of space between you and oncoming traffic. Do not park your vehicle in a main lane and just put on the headlights. Other drivers may not see the hazards in time. Additionally, many states require by law that an operational vehicle be moved to the side lanes. It’s also important to try to find as flat an area as possible to park your vehicle in order to maximize safety and minimize hassle.
Step Two: Engage your emergency brake
Once you have parked your vehicle, engage your emergency break. This will keep your tires from rotating when you lift and change the tire. In addition to using the emergency break, put a stopper (it can be a large stick, a large rock, or car blocks if you have them) behind the rear tires. You want to minimize the risk of the car rolling as much as possible.
Step Three: Find your Jack
This is the step that aggravates a great many people. Generally, your car jack will be located in one of two locations. The most common will be a side panel in your cargo area. If you have this option, be sure to remove all the components of the jack. The second common option is that the jack is located right next to the spare tire.
If you are having trouble finding your car jack refer to your owner’s manual (which I keep in my glovebox) to show you where it is.
Step Four: Placing the Jack
I know you’re eager to get that busted tire off of your precious ride, but aligning the jack correctly is crucially important. To set the jack look for the lip of the frame of your vehicle. Usually this is about a one inch strip of metal that runs the entire length of the bottom of the frame. Once you have found this lip look for two markers or extrusions which indicate where the jack should be placed. Typically these are found close to the tire. Place the jack under the indicated spot and raise the jack so that it just touches the frame but does not lift the vehicle. Most modern jacks work by implementing a cranking motion rather than an up and down motion to get the jack to open or lift.
Step Five: Loosen the Nuts
Use your lug wrench (usually included with the jack crank or as a separate tool in the compartment) to remove the nuts completely. Be sure to place the nuts in a secure location to avoid them getting lost or scattered. Once the nuts have been removed, you can safely lift the vehicle and remove the damaged tire.
Step Six: Putting on the spare
The spare tire will get you down the road and to a dealership who can patch or replace the faulty tire. It should not be used as a primary tire, as the design is for temporary use. When you put on the spare tire, hand tighten the bolts as much as possible. Once this is completed, lower the jack (to avoid tire slippage) and then use the lug wrench to tighten the bolts securely. Do not let the jack down too quickly or you may blow the spare tire. Do it gently.
Step Seven: Get the vehicle to a dealership
Once you have secured the spare tire then you are ready to get your vehicle to a dealership. Remember to take off the emergency break as well as put the jack and the car blocks back into the vehicle. Do not leave the blown tire on the highway but take it with you. The dealership should be able to tell you what caused the blowout as well as replace the tire.
To prevent blowouts, check your tire pressure and treads often. If you need assistance in checking your tires, wish to have your tires rotated or balanced, or just want a general inspection of your vehicle before taking a trip, Bill Delord Cadillac Buick GMC would love to help you. We are located in Lebanon, OH with locations serving Dayton, Cincinatti, Middletown, Xenia, Wilmington, and Hamilton. Please use our website to find the service location closest to you and drive safe.