Gateway Insurance

Changing Tires: You, Too Can Do It

Apr 9, 2014

When you watch a NASCAR race, you watch a pit crew change 4 tires and fill a car with gas in less that 14 seconds. For F1 pit crews, that same pit stop for 4 tires and fuel can be under 6 seconds. Unfortunately, changing a flat tire on your car can take just a little longer than that. However, with a little know-how and a little patience, you can change the flat tire on your car so you can have it repaired or replaced. Here are the steps:
  • Prepare ahead by making sure you have the proper equipment in your car. You'll need a jack, a spare tire that is properly inflated (check at least once a month), a flashlight and extra batteries in case you have to do it at night, and a lug wrench. If your car has hubcaps, you may want to make sure you have a large flat-head screwdriver to pop it off.
  • Make sure the emergency brake is on and that your car is in Park or 1st gear. Use a large rock or log to make sure the car isn't going to roll by putting it under a wheel (not the one to be replaced.)
  • Next, know where the jack points are on your car. There are usually 4 jack points for most modern cars. Make sure the jack has stable footing (flat concrete or asphalt is best. Don't use blocks or any type of supports if at all possible.)
  • Carefully begin jacking up your car. Stop immediately if the jack begins to shift or you notice the car trying to roll.
  • Once the wheel to be replaced is off the ground, take the lug wrench and remove the lugs and keep track of where you put them. Remember, lefty loosey, righty tighty.
  • After the lugs are off, remove the flat tire, replace it with the spare. Put the lugs on the tire and tighten.
  • Lower the jack. Once the "new" wheel is on the ground, go back and tighten the lugs again as much as you can.
And there you have it. One changed tire. Unfortunately, there are times when a blow-out happens and an accident occurs before you can get stopped. That's why having the right auto insurance coverage is important. If you're in the Vacaville, California area, check with Gateway Professional Insurance Services to review your car insurance policies to make sure you have the financial coverage you need.
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