Usability Testing: How to Change a Flat

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Replacing a flat tire with a spare

Step 1:

Step 2: Safety First

Bring your vehicle to a stop away from traffic. Preferably on a flat, stable surface. Now engage the parking brake and turn your hazards on.

Step 3: Gather Your Materials

You will need a jack, a wrench, and a spare tire from the compartment of the vehicle storing your spare. While not required, you may also want some gloves.

Step 4: Begin to Loosen the Bolts

The lug nuts on your tire may be very tight, it's best to loosen them up while the care is still on the ground. Also worth mentioning is that you may have to remove a hub cap to access the lug nuts. The hub cap simply pops off the wheel once pried.

Step 5: Lift the Vehicle

Bring the jack under the vehicles jack plate, if applicable for this car. Lift the car until the flat tire is a few inches off of the ground.

Step 6: Remove the Flat

You should now remove the lug nuts completely and place them somewhere accessible to be used later. Now firmly grasp the flat tire and pull straight out, removing the flat from the wheel housing.

Step 7: Replacing the Flat

By aligning the 5 holes in the tire with the lug nut posts, push the spare tire into place where the flat once was. Make sure the spare is seated as far back as possible.

Step 8: Lug Nuts

Tighten down the old lug nuts on the lug nut posts.

Step 9: Lower and Tighten

Use the jack to lower the vehicle completely, and remove the jack. Now go back over each lug nut with the wrench to assure each lug nut is fastened completely.

Step 10: Clean Up

The flat tire can go in the compartment for the spare tire. Assure all of your belongings are picked up and off the side of the road.

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    2 Discussions

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    chokapi

    1 year ago

    I own that very vehicle, and I recently had to change to the 'donut.' Some things to be aware of when using a 'donut.'

    It's much smaller than your other tires -- it will affect the performance of the car, especially if the 'donut' is up front; it will pull to the side the 'donut' is on. If you have AWD, it will likely disengage after a bit. The tire pressure sensor on that wheel will register '0.' As happened to me, you might get a message to service the tire pressure monitor.

    If you haven't used the spare for a while, best to check the pressure every now and again.

    I would also suggest that you do more than tighten the wrench by hand. Earlier in your 'structable you showed having to stand on the wrench to break the lugs. It's good practice to tighten them the same way. Also, when putting the 'donut' on, be sure to alternate the lugs by tightening the furthest lug from the last.

    Oh, and the flat will fit in the cargo area, but not where the 'donut' is stored. On my Buick Encore, the subwoofer/noise cancel system sits on top of the spare, so I wouldn't want to put that big heavy tire in there with it, anyway.

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    Great tutorial. This is really important information that everyone should know. Everyone should be able to fix a flat tire.