How To Change a Flat Tire Essay Example
While traveling in cars, people always equip themselves with flashlights, fire extinguishers, and cell phones for emergencies. Engine shut-downs that need jump-starting, running out of gas and a flat tire are problems that can make a traveler stranded on the side of the road. Despite the emergencies motorists go through, a flat tire remains the simplest to overcome when it occurs while on the road. Therefore, all drivers should have the skill of changing a flat tire safely. Having the knowledge to replace a spare tire can considerably help a driver save money and time. The simple steps to be followed make it a straightforward task that requires little energy; but some strength. These instructions are a great guide on safety, assembling of tools, and the actual replacement of a flat tire.
To begin, the driver needs to keep safe from oncoming traffic. Pulling off far enough from the road reduces interference with traffic and the risk of being hit by passing vehicles. Driving to the nearest firm and the leveled ground will help the driver to start the tire replacement process after pulling off the road. One should find a well-lit area, in case of low visibility or at night, preferably at a parking lot. The driver should judge the security and lighting conditions of the scene.
Secondly, the driver should put the car in park and make sure that the emergency handbrake is on; to prevent the vehicle from rolling away while it is lifted off the ground. If the tire has to be replaced on the highway, then reflective triangles should be placed behind the car at a minimum distance of 30 meters; to alert other road users. Once it is safe and the vehicle is set, locate the lug nut, car jack, and spare tire beneath the floor mat in the car trunk. Next, place wheel chock wedges under the remaining three tires to restrict the movement of the car in any direction. The tools required include; at least a pair of wheel chocks if not three and a 2-foot long metallic pipe for fitting at the end of the lug nut wrench. Other tools that may be necessary include; thick gloves and a tarp.
After locating all the necessary equipment for changing the tire, place the items around the working area. If you have a tarp, this is the time to lay it on the ground. In case it is windy, place stones on the corners of the tarp so that it does not blow off the ground. The tarp gives comfort while replacing the tire instead of kneeling on the ground. Put on gloves to effectively handle the task without hurting your hands. Remove the wheel hub cap cover; however, this step can be skipped if the lug nuts are exposed.
Pry off the cover using the flat end of the lug wrench. Use the lug wrench to loosen the lug nuts but do not remove them. While kneeling, move the jack underneath the car and refer to the vehicle’s manual, to ensure it is appropriately placed to minimize accidents. Raise it to be in contact with the metal part of the car. When lifting the automobile, stability for both the jack and the vehicle should be observed. If instability is noticed, lower the jack and adjust the placement before the automobile is fully lifted. In case the jack lifts at an angle or is leaning; it should be lowered and repositioned so that it lifts straight up. The lifting is made high enough to allow replacement of the flat tire with a fully inflated spare wheel.
Once the car has been lifted to the required height, the lug nuts are removed by turning them counterclockwise until they come off entirely. Remove the flat tire and place it under the vehicle so that in the event of the jack failing, then the car falls on the old wheel, preventing an injury. The spare wheel is placed on the hub, which links the tire to the axle. Caution should be taken so that the spare wheel is aligned with the wheel bolts or lugs. Then, put on the lug nuts and tighten the nuts using your hand until they are tight. Using the lug wrench, tighten the nuts one at a time following the star pattern around the tire. Double-check the lug nuts to ensure they are tight. Lower the automobile sufficiently to the ground and remove the jack from under the car. Finally, tighten the nuts and replace the wheel cap. If you are overwhelmed at any given point during this process, grab a cell phone and call out for help.
After the replacement, gather all of the tools and the flat tire. Return the equipment into their compartments inside the car trunk. Before driving back on the road, always consult the owner’s manual for important information. For instance, the travel distance the spare tire can manage as well as the maximum speed it can handle. Once on the road, the next first stop should be at a tire shop to repair the flat tire. Drivers should always practice safety during tire replacement, keep all of the necessary tools in the car trunk, and know the above procedure so that there is no inconvenience while traveling.