Australia can be a daunting place to break down due to a flat tire. If you are in a rural area, the sun can be dangerously oppressive. If you are in a wild area, you might need to remain in your car. If you have cellphone coverage, you might consider searching Google for “car mechanic Nerang Gold Coast.” That said, if you are in a relatively safe spot and want to save money or impress your passengers, you might decide to go the DIY route and swap that flattened tire with a spare. If you know-how, you can be done in a few minutes. If you need a refresher, you need to only remember three things: brakes, belts, and body.
1. Everyone Out
To keep everyone safe, all bodies must remove themselves from the vehicle and stand at least 10 feet away. If anyone remains in the car, he or she might move. If the car sways while up on a jack, it could fall, potentially killing the person attempting to jack up the car and change the tire.
2. Secure The Brakes
The next thing to do is to depress the parking brake. Doing so will ensure that the tires do not spin as the vehicle is lifted off the ground. If your vehicle has an automatic transmission, you can place the transmission in “park,” but it is still prudent to set the emergency brake.
3. Chock the Tires
A chock is simply an angled block that can be pressed beneath a tire. It is usually large enough to prevent the tire from rolling over it, and it often has a rope attached to it, which allows you to pull it free when necessary. That said, a large rock without any sharp or overly smooth edges can serve as a chock, but if you use a rock, the entire rock must span the entire width of the tire. Such a rock might be too heavy to lift. As an alternative, you can use a large wedge of firewood. Do not use a stump as these can roll.
To place the chock, all you have to do is push the wedge point at the point where the tire meets the ground.
4. Position the Jack
The body of every car is called the frame, and a car’s frame should have a jack depression that will accommodate a jack. It is a solid piece of the frame that is flat.
If you cannot find such a place, you should then select a spot on the car’s frame that is no more than 18 inches or so away from the flat tire. If the front tire is flat, you should place the jack 18 inches toward the rear of the car. If a back tire is flat, you should place the jack 18 inches toward the front of the car. Do not place the jack beneath a door or a bumper. Doing so will rip off the door or bumper.
If have passengers, you can ask someone to watch the choked tires and ensure they do not roll over the chocks.
6. Loosen the Lug Nuts
Using your tire iron or hex iron, you should loosen the lug nuts without completely removing them.
7. Ratchet the Jack
Once the jack is in place, you can slowly ratchet the jack until it reaches the car frame. At this point, you should check the jack and ensure it is firmly positioned on the ground. It should not wobble or feel unsteady.
Next, you can jack up the car until the flat tire is off the ground.
8. Off with The Lug Nuts
Once the tire is free of the ground, you should remove the lug nuts.
Once the lug nuts are off, you should place them nearby in a cup. Doing so will keep them organized. If you have a hubcap, you can place them in the hubcap. If someone is nearby, you can ask that person to hold the lug nuts.
10. Remove and Replace
With the flat tire removed, you can insert the spare tire. You might need to jack up the vehicle a little higher to allow for the extra size of a fully inflated tire.
11. On with The Lug Nuts
Carefully, you should tighten the lug nuts. When tightening them, do so in a diagonal fashion. For instance, you should tighten one nut nearly all the way and then tighten a lug nut opposite that one. Doing so will ensure proper pressure across the entire surface of the wheel.
Use your tire iron to gently tighten the lug nuts until they are snug. Do not tighten the lug nuts very tightly as the tire might spin or turn.
13. Lower the Jack
With the tire replaced and the lug nuts snug, you can gently lower the vehicle by ratcheting the jack slowly in reverse.
14. Fully Tighten
With the vehicle back on the ground, you can tighten the lug nuts as tight as you can. Again, as you tighten them, you should do so in a star-shaped manner, tightening one and then another that is opposite it.
15. Gather the Chocks and Everything Else Into The Trunk
At this point, you can remove the chocks and place everything back into the vehicle’s trunk.
16. Everyone in
Once everyone is in, you can release the brake and resume your drive. Of course, you should watch out for any sharp rocks or holes in the road because you do not have another spare.
Eric Reyes is a passionate thought leader having been featured in 50 distinguished online and offline platforms. His passion and knowledge in Finance and Business made him a sought after contributor providing valuable insights to his readers. You can find him reading a book and discussing current events in his spare time.