Changing car or van tyres doesn’t have to mean a trip to the garage. It’s easier than you think. Changing your own tyres is a job you can handle yourself if you already have rims attached to your tyres.
But is it safe to do the actual tyre change?
Yes, it is safe to change vehicle tyres on your own, once you have the know-how and have the right kit
What equipment do you need to change a car tyre?
You will need the following and it is worth familiarising yourself with these items at handover or before you go on a journey.
- Spare tyre – know where it is situated – under the boot usually!
- Wrench – for taking off the wheel nuts
- Jack – for lifting the car off the ground
- Wheel chock – to stop the car from rolling (bricks can be used instead)
- Wheel nut key – if locking nuts are fitted
- Car handbook – for reference (e.g. on jacking points)
It is handy to have a safety kit in the boot at all times, particularly in Winter:
- Reflective jacket
- Torch – (check batteries regularly)
- Warning triangle
- Tyre pressure gauge – for checking the new tyre is fully inflated
Here are the Top 10 steps to help you change your tyre:
1. Pull over safely
If you suspect your tyre has gone flat, slowly pull over to the side of the road, away from passing vehicles. If you can, park in an area with a flat surface. Put on your hazard lights and make sure the car is in park with the handbrake on.
2. Loosen wheel nuts by one turn
If you have hubcaps on your car, be sure to remove them from the flat tyre (they are likely to be clipped on). Then use your wheel brace to loosen each wheel nut, Remember, turning anti-clockwise will normally loosen it.
3. Place jack under the car
Once all the nuts are loose, look at your car handbook to find the correct place to put the jack The correct spot is normally underneath the car frame along the tyre that is flat.
4. Raise the car
Slowly wind the jack to raise the vehicle. Raise it till there is about a 5-10cm gap between the floor and your tyre.
5. Remove wheel nuts
Completely remove each wheel nut. Be sure to put them in a safe place.
6. Replace flat tyre with the spare
Slowly remove the flat tyre. You can place the flat tyre under the car and use it as extra support. Take the spare tyre and line it up with the wheel holes. Once the tyre is lined place the tyre onto the wheel hub.
7. Put wheel nuts back on
Put the wheel nuts back into place and tighten them as far as you can.
8. Lower the car and tighten wheel nuts
If you put the flat tyre under the car for support, be sure to remove it before winding down the jack. You can now wind the jack down until the spare tyre is taking on the vehicle’s weight. It is now safe to remove the jack. Use the wheel brace to fully tighten your wheel nuts.
9. Put hubcap back on
If you removed the hubcap earlier, it is safe now to put it back on.
10. Put away equipment and drive
Before leaving the location be sure to pack away all your equipment. Once everything is packed away and you are happy with the tyre you can now drive your vehicle.
Is it safe to drive afterwards?
A wheel can’t just fall off. If is loose, you will hear loud knocking noise while driving. Ensure you have time to pull over to check the wheel nuts and re-tighten them and see if that fixes the issue
Please let us know if this has been helpful to you. Drive safely!