Why You Should Check Your Tire Pressure in Cold Weather

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How Cold Weather Affects Tire Pressure

 

With the cold months ahead, your car is at liberty of being damaged by the frigid winter breeze. Many people do not think twice about their tire pressure during the winter months, but an underinflated tire can be a recipe for disaster. With our knowledge on tire pressure at TreadHunter, protecting your car should be a breeze this winter.

 

Cold Weather Deflates Your Tires

The freezing temperatures of the air in the winter months tend to have a negative effect on your tire pressure. Cold temperatures cause your tire to underinflate, whereas hotter temperatures cause them to overinflate. Checking your tire pressure at least a few times per month will help you stay on top of it. Some cars have a built-in tire monitoring system, but for others you will need to use a tire-checking gauge.

 

Underinflated Tires Cause Blowouts

When driving with one or more underinflated tires, your risk of having a blowout vastly increases. Not only do blowouts put the driver at risk, but also everyone else on the road. Depending on the severity, a blowout could cause the tire to combust, breaking off into debris and shrapnel. The blowout may even cause you to lose control of the car and crash, putting the lives of others at risk. Don’t rely on eyeballing your tire and take the time to properly check your tire pressure with a gauge. It only takes a few minutes and can save your life.

 

Decreased Tire Usability

Driving with an underinflated tire causes the original shape of the tire to become deformed. The more and more you drive without enough pressure – the constant wear and tear will cause your tire to bend. Bending of the tire builds up internal heat, causing an increase in rolling distance that lowers the fuel economy by five percent. Bending can also cause your tires’ tread life to be reduced by up to 25 percent. Your steering and corner stability may suffer as well, making it much more difficult to drive. Once your tire loses more than 6psi, you should add air to your tires, but anything below that is fine.

Lowers the Amount of Weight Your Car Can Carry

Each car has a weight maximum in which they can hold or carry. If your tires are underinflated, that weight limit decreases. It can be extremely detrimental to you and your vehicle if you overload your car especially on bad tires. For example, if you have a truck and you’re used to driving around with heavy amounts of weight in the bed, by the time you get down the street your truck will be down to its frame. A few minutes of tire maintenance will save you from a lot of trouble.

Purchase New Tires from TreadHunter

Do you need a new set of tires? Or how about a spare set for the winter or summer? Here at TreadHunter, we have different seasonal tires and many different brands for you to choose from. Give us a call today at (888)-847-3755 for more information.

6 Tips for Using Snow Chains

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Snow might be pretty to look at from your window, with a cup of hot cocoa in hand, but it does not make for the best driving conditions. With colder weather quickly approaching and snowy days right around the corner, having the tips and tricks necessary to combat harsh driving conditions is imperative. This being said, investing in snow chains, also known as tire chains or cables, is a winter weather essential. Unsure whether you need snow chains or why you should utilize them? Keep reading to learn 6 tips for using snow chains.

6 Tricks to Using Snow Chains on Your Car

1. Understand How and Why They Work

When roads get icy or snowy, you want to make sure your tires have proper traction to avoid accidents. Snow chains provide the peace of mind you need because they cover wheels of a vehicle and give tires better traction when stuck in snow. They help tires get a stronger grip on the harshest and slipperiest of roads, allowing improved rotation of the wheels. The chains also prevent skidding and aid with hydroplaning if you are driving on black ice or through melting snow.

2. Explore Different Chain Features

All chains are not created equally, as some handle certain types of terrain or road conditions better than others. Make sure you know how many chains you need, and what type they should be. If you have a 4-wheel drive or all-wheel drive vehicle, you will probably need 2 sets of snow chains instead of just one set for 2-wheel drive. Do your research before you buy, learning which chain suits your vehicle, the terrain you most frequently encounter, and what kind of chain you can buy within your budget.

3. Choose the Right Size for Your Tires

Snow chains are useless if they do not fit snugly around your tires. Incorrect chain size can undermine performance of your tires, and may even cause damage and stalling to tires and your vehicle. To find out if your tires can be equipped with tire chains (not all vehicles can), make sure you know how to check your tire size, and then consult your vehicle’s manual, maintenance guide, or tire dealer accordingly. Once you have verified that there are no warnings or regulations you should by mindful of, you are ready to purchase your snow chains.

4. Practice Installation at Home

If you know how to use the chains before you head out, the experience of using them will be much easier and less stressful when it matters. Understanding how to keep chains from tangling, how to tighten them as needed, and how to take them off ahead of time will make you more prepared to use the chains in the future.

5. Be Mindful of Driving Habits

Your driving style can affect the performance of your chains, so be extra careful about spinning tires, hitting curbs, locking wheels when you brake, or driving on bare pavement that is not covered by snow or ice. Also, be sure to stay under 30 mph and accelerate slowly and evenly. Any of these poor driving habits will compromise how well your chains work, jeopardizing your safety and causing premature wear on your chains and tires.

6. Only Use Chains as Necessary

Another big component of learning about snow chains before you purchase them is knowing when you do or do not need to use them. You do not need snow chains when driving in wet weather or on snowless roads. Additionally, if you already have snow tires, it is likely that chains are not needed because snow tires are designed with deeper tread and rubber that is more appropriate for cold weather. Whether you need chains also depends on local requirements, as snow tires will suffice a lot of the time.

Shop for Tires Online

With the 6 tips above and a little bit of research, you will be a pro at driving in snowy conditions. It is essential to learn how, why and when to use snow chains before you buy them, and TreadHunter helps make all of your driving experiences a breeze. Learn how simple it is to buy new tires with us once you start your search today!

How to Avoid a Tire Blowout

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As the seasons change and you travel back and forth for holiday dinners, gift shopping and time spent with your loved ones, you tend to utilize your car more often, making it more fragile and prone to damage. One of the biggest car issues cars face is a flat tire. Even if you are lucky enough to avoid the dreaded recurring flat tire, you have surely witnessed other cars pulling over on the side of the road to cope with their tire troubles. How do you keep your tires from blowing out? Read below to find out.

Tips to Prevent a Tire Blowout

Check Tire Pressure Regularly

The most common cause for flat tires is over- or under- inflation. Air is what allows the tires to carry the weight of the vehicle and its cargo, and proper tire pressure is key in ensuring that your tires do not overflex, or weaken, and eventually fail. Unsure of what the proper air pressure should be for your car? Check inside the driver side door or in your car’s manual; newer cars even have automated systems that tell you what the current pressure of each tire is. If all else fails, see a tire dealer or stop by your local gas station and make use of their air machines.

Steer Clear of Potholes

Road conditions are not always the best, but avoiding potholes will prolong the life of your tires and save you from wasting time at a mechanic or pulling over to change a flat. Hitting a pothole can affect a car’s suspension and if the hit is hard enough, they can cut or fray a tire’s internals. In some situations, the pothole will cut all the way through fabric and rubber, and the tire will die right there. If that’s not bad enough, sometimes the damage will not be noticeable for months and then the tire will begin a slow leak of air, making it unrepairable.

Do Not Overload Cargo

Tires are only capable of handling so much, especially if they have inaccurate air pressure. Make sure you are aware of how much of a load your vehicle can handle, and do not go against the manufacturer’s Gross Vehicular Weight Rating (found on the same card as the car’s necessary air pressure). Taking a few trips to and from your destination may be tedious and inconvenient, but it is better than paying to repair or replace busted tires.

Be Aware of Wear and Tear

Weather conditions, rigorous use and driving practices are all things to consider when looking for wear and tear on your tires. Rash driving, dirt, debris and improper inflation cause tires to deteriorate much faster and make them much more prone to becoming flat. If you are checking your tires and observe nails, tears, bubbles, etc. or feel a difference in how the car is driving, have a professional inspect the car immediately. The longer you wait to have the car inspected, the closer to a blowout you will get.

Replace Tires in a Timely Manner

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, tires should be replaced every six to ten years, or when significant wear and tear is observed. If you are unsure of the age of your tires or do not know how to check how old they are, use our guide to learn how to tell the age of your tires.

Shop for Tires Online

Having to replace an unexpected flat tire can really put a damper on your day, especially during the holiday season. Be proactive and let our tips help you stray away from any unpleasant surprises. If you are in the market for new tires, TreadHunter’s deals will make shopping for tires online as easy (and cheap) as can be. Sign up for a free membership today!

How to Drive Safely on Ice and Snow

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Tips to Stay Safe When Driving in Inclement Weather

Black ice hidden under a white, slushy layer of snow is a recipe for disaster if your car isn’t properly equipped to take on harsh winter conditions. Your car can spiral out of control, putting your life and other passengers in danger. To avoid an unfortunate accident, below are some tips on how to drive smart and stay safe when driving on ice and snow.

1. Stay Home

If there are extreme winter conditions hitting your town, it’s best to stay home and off the road. If you can’t see out of your own bedroom window, chances are you won’t be able to see out of your windshield either. However, if you NEED to be somewhere important, patiently wait for better weather.

2. Have the Right Tires

Tires are a deal-breaker when deciding to drive through the ice and snow. Standard all-season tires will not be adequate enough to handle such rigorous winter conditions. They may be able to handle light winter conditions and wetness, but they are not made to handle heavy snowfall or extreme icy conditions. Choosing the right tires, such as winter tires, will drastically improve your safety while on the road. If you have the right tires for your vehicle, double check to make sure they aren’t balding and that the treads are up to par.

3. Drive Slowly

No matter what tires you have, speeding in rough winter conditions can result in an accident or a lot of close calls. Slowly accelerate and decelerate to allow you car to get the most traction when driving on snowy or icy roads. Also, don’t forget to give yourself enough time to stop at signs or red lights. If you’re accelerating to quickly, you may hit the brakes too hard and possibly skid into oncoming traffic. Your safety should be your number one priority, not how fast you get there.

4. Keep Your Distance

When driving on icy or snow-filled roads, try to resist tailgating as much as possible even if you are in a rush. When it’s snowing, there should be ample distance between you and the car in front of you more so than on a sunny day. This tip goes hand-in-hand with driving slowly. If you’re going too fast and speeding up to the car in front of you, there’s a greater possibility for you to rear end them if they were to stop short.

5. Have a Car Emergency Kit

If you are planning to travel somewhere far in the winter, pack a car emergency kit in case you encounter snow or icy road conditions. An emergency kit provides extra precaution in case your car breaks down or if you’re involved in an accident. Things to consider packing into your car emergency kit include jumper cables, flashlight, working jack, roadside flares, first-aid kit, blankets, brake fluid, gloves, ice scraper, tire inflator, AAA roadside emergency card, tools, granola bars and water. If you’re stranded somewhere on the side of the road, these items will come in handy.

Find Winter Tires on TreadHunter

Driving through ice and snow can be extremely dangerous, but following these tips will help you get through the rough winter conditions. If you’re looking for winter tires to help you get through the upcoming months, TreadHunter can help you find the best winter tires for your car. We’ll help you get the best deals and ensure your tire safety for the winter season. Sign up for your free membership today!

Winter Tires vs. All Season Tires

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The Difference Between Winter and All-Season Tires

If you have all-season tires, you may be wondering if you even need to invest in winter tires for the months ahead. To better understand what tires you need this winter, you need to know the difference between the two and consider the road conditions and weather you normally experience during this season.

Winter Tires

Driving in the wintertime can be very dangerous, especially when your car does not have the right tires. Thick snow and ice, accompanied by either hail or snow is a recipe for disaster if your tires are worn down and not made to tackle such inclement weather. From heavy snow to black ice, winter tires are designed to perform well in any winter condition. A winter tire can provide strong traction and acclimate to sharp turns, making it versatile for snow – something that an all season tire cannot do.

Winter Tire Features

There are specific factors and features that make winter tires unique and preferred for winter conditions. Due to different tread rubber compounds than all season tires, winter tires are more flexible and allow the tire to grip the road better. Another unique feature of winter tires is their deeper tread depths and tread patterns. With deeper tread depths, winter tires can reduce snow build up and provide better traction, and tread patterns can expel water and channel snow and slush. Winter tires also feature biting edges, which are thousand of tiny slits that provide increased traction and grip on the ice.

All-Season Tires

A majority of the cars that are sold come with all-season tires. All-season tires are popular for their fuel economy, good tread life, and their ability to provide a quiet ride. These tires are also designed to provide an all-around good performance in wet conditions as well as in light snow. They combine the benefits of a summer tire and a winter tire, however they are not designed to handle extreme winter conditions. They are not ideal for drivers who encounter extreme cold, ice and snow in the winter.

All-Season Tire Features

All-season tires are offered in many models, sizes and load capacities. They are easy to handle, and feature moderate tread depths that provide a longer tread life. All-season tires perform well in warm weather and light winter conditions, but they do not offer adequate grip and lack in some steering, braking and cornering capabilities. They are capable of providing traction in the winter, but are not best in extreme winter conditions. All-season tires are often a better option for driver in moderate climates and less extreme driving conditions.

Which Tires are the Best?

Now that you know the best uses and features of winter and all-season tires, which one is the best? The answer to this question all depends on where you live and the driving conditions in your area. If you only see moderate winter weather and a couple of light flurries throughout the winter months, then all-season tires may be the best choice for you. But if you encounter severe winter conditions, invest in winter tires to get you through the winter and ensure your safety.

Find Winter and All-Season Tires at TreadHunter

If you’re looking to by winter or all-season tires, at TreadHunter, we can help you find tires that best suits your needs. We offer a wide variety of tires and brands that will get you through the long winter months. You can easily search for tires by location, tire size, tire brand or by car type on our website. Contact us today to get the best local deals on tires and to see how it works.

5 Tips For New Drivers

Drivers’ Ed is a good start to understanding the rules of the road, but it does not cover everything you need to know. The best way to improve your driving skills is to practice with fresh knowledge at your disposal. Whether you are an experienced driver or a new driver, these 5 tips can benefit you greatly on the road.

Seating Matters!

Besides putting your seatbelt on or adjusting your seat so you are sitting up straight and can easily reach the gas and the brake pedal, a lot of people forget about the headrest. It is not just for neck comfort. A correctly adjusted the headrest should sit behind your head to reduce whiplash during an accident.

Keep Your Tires In Good Condition!

Tires are the most important part of your car because you depend on them entirely, especially in extreme weather conditions. Make sure you have uniform tires to prevent uneven tread, rotate your tires regularly to improve tire longevity, and be wary of tire pressure in dramatic changes in temperature. TreadHunter offers local and national deals so you are never caught with mismatching tires. If you are missing a tire and know exactly what you are looking for, use TreadHunter to search for a replacement.

Look Both Ways- Even When Driving

There are many situations this rule applies to, but the basic principal is to always “double check” while driving. When at a stoplight, check the intersection when the light turns green; sometimes drivers do not stop. After you indicate your intention to change lanes or merge, check your blind spots carefully. Be the most cautious driver you can be, because other drivers may not be as cautious.

Preventing Problems In Rainy Weather

In wet weather, be generous with the space you leave between yourself and the car in front of you. This is because you should brake gently on wet and slippery roads to reduce your chances of hydroplaning. If it is raining too hard for you to see the car in front of you, pull over into the nearest safe place until the worst of the rain is gone.

How-to Handle an Accident

Accidents for drivers new and old can be overwhelming. Being prepared, however, can reduce your anxiety and keep you calmer. These steps can help you move on from an accident more quickly.

  1. Call 911 before anything else. This is important not only for possible injuries but also for reporting the accident. There are drivers who might try to tell you that it is not necessary to involve the police. It is.
  2. Try to take photos of the cars before they are moved. Pictures should include the position of the cars during the crash and the damage done to each car.
  3. Inquire about basic information from the drivers involved. This includes their names, addresses, phone numbers to reach them at, their license plates, and their insurance carriers.
  4. If someone witnessed the accident, ask for their name and number.
  5. Call your insurance agent and quickly process any necessary claims.

Providing expert knowledge and a wide array of deals on local tires, TreadHunter has everything to keep you safe on the road. Register for a free account today!

Steer Clear of a Summer Blowout

Tire blowouts are not uncommon during the hot summer weather. As your car gets exposed to high temperatures, the air in your tire expands and the internal pressure increases by up to twenty percent. Eventually your tire may experience a blowout. Here are some tips on how to avoid a tire blowout this summer.

Measure the Pressure

Measure the tire’s current pressure against the manufacturer’s recommended pressure amount and make sure they match. Do not measure the pressure against the recommendations of the car’s guidelines. The tire manufacturer will likely have a higher level of expert knowledge on tire pressure than the car manufacturer.

Check the Door

Properly inflating your tire is one of the best ways to avoid a tire blowout. The placard on the inside of your car’s door will tell you how many pounds of pressure your tire needs. Make sure the tire is not over or under inflated as either may cause car damage including a tire blowout.

Prevent Overload

Travel relatively light before heading on that summer road trip. Hauling extra-heavy loads like big mattresses can cause significant car damage. You should also avoid overcrowding the vehicle with more bodies than available car seats. You can look at the placard on your door to check your vehicle’s weight capacity.

Avoid Potholes

Slamming into a pothole or any other road hazard may severely damage your tire’s internals. If the impact is powerful enough, the pothole may even kill your tire completely by cutting through the fabric and rubber. Carefully drive around potholes whenever possible.

Drive Carefully

Being a careful driver is probably the best way to avoid blowing out your tires. Maintain a calm and cool mental state to avoid road rage. Be a defensive driver when you come across aggressive drivers on the road. Avoid speeding and slamming on your breaks to avoid tire blowouts and accidents with other drivers.

Avoid Construction Sites

Construction sites and other hazardous roadways are perfect locations for tire blowouts. These zones may contain large potholes, metal, and sharp rocks that may lead to a blowout upon a fast and powerful impact. If you can’t find an alternative route, make sure you drive carefully and cautiously in these areas.

Check the Tires

A great way to avoid tire blowouts is to simply check the current status of your tires. Take note of any visible tears or other tire damage. If there are any signs of potential damage, don’t take the risk of driving. Have your tire checked out by a professional immediately.

Rotate your Tires

Rotating your tires will dramatically reduce the probability of a tire blowout and extend the life of your tires overall. It ensures that all four tires maintain an even level of treadwear. You will also enjoy smoother car rides and improved gas mileage. Treadhunter offers supplemental information on why you should rotate your tires.

 Update Your Tires

If your tires are approximately six years old, it’s time to update your tires before they take any more damage. When you purchase a new tire through Treadhunter, you can search for the tire of your choice. Contact us for more information about our tire selection.

Summer Tire Safety

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No matter the season, a tire’s nemesis is inflation. Whether it is over-inflation, with too much air in the tire, or under-inflation, with too little air in the tire, a car depends on good air pressure to navigate the road safely. As temperatures rise, air molecules inside the tire move faster, typically causing overinflation in the summer. The hot weather essentially weakens the tires, and puts extra stress on the entire vehicle. Some risks of overinflation are insufficient control while steering, balding spots on tires, and problems braking effectively. However, there are easy ways to protect tires from overinflation in the summer.

Watch The Air Pressure

Tires experience enough problems on the road, but what about when they are left in the sun? If you commuted to work when it was cool outside, but parked your car and left it in the midday sun, a 10° Fahrenheit change in air temperature could cause a tire pressure change of roughly 2%. Direct sunlight will continue to increase the tire pressure and possibly cause overinflation while you are at work. If possible, find a shady area to park your car in order to avoid this risk.

Rotate Your Tires

Your tires should always be rotated every 5,000 miles, especially in the summer. During a rotation, the wheels change positions to evenly distribute tire wear. During this time, your mechanic will also adjust the tire pressure and inspect the breaks. Having these little adjustments will get more life out of your tires and improve your car’s overall health.

Tire Weight Ratios

Summertime is best spent outdoors: hiking, camping, boating, and fishing. However, a lot of summer activities involve heavy equipment that can overburden your car. If the car exceeds its tire weight ratio, the tread could wear out much faster.

Purchase Summer-Specialized Tires

Tires are specifically designed with different types of roads and temperature variations in mind. Summer-specific tires are the most successful against overinflation and handle the best on hot roads.

Winter tires are created to get better traction on cold, gritty roads. The rubber is able to remain flexible, allowing the tires to grip sufficiently despite slippery conditions. Deeper grooves in the tread are another added benefit in the winter, as they filter out more water and sludge. However, in the summer this is unnecessary, and the rubber that is used to maintain in cold temperatures does not hold up well in the heat. Summer tires are less flexible, because the soft winter tread will wear out very quickly on hot, dry pavement. Winter-specific tires cannot handle the same way firm summer tires do: the car will not respond as smoothly. Summer tires are the best way to protect your car from the heat.

Find the best deals on new and used tires in your area at TreadHunter! Contact us today and we’ll help you choose the right tires for summer.

Getting Ready for your Summer Road Trip

Stay ahead of the curve with these tips for a smooth summer road trip.

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You’ve earned the vacation days, mapped your route and coordinated with your closest friends. You’re ready for a summer road trip. For all its effort, this journey will be an experience of a lifetime.  Use these tips to avoid rookie mistakes and ensure safe and smooth travels.

Make Sure Your Car Is Ready

Is your tire pressure low? Does the oil in your car need to be replaced? If you’re uncertain, get your car fully inspected before hitting the gas. If your tires are worn and out of shape, save yourself the stress and the time and replace them before you go. Your car should be in its best form before heading out. If it’s not, let us help you find the parts you are looking for.

A Little Cleaning Never Hurt Anyone

No one says your car needs to be spotless for a road trip. That being said, your passengers would appreciate a quick clean sweep before being locked in for days. Chuck the leftover food wrappers, empty water bottles and month-old receipts. Plus, there is a 100% chance that garbage will pile up in your car on the road. Don’t add new garbage to old garbage.

Know Your Wheels

Don’t know how to change a flat? It may be worthwhile to brush up on your skills. And if you don’t, make sure you have the proper signals/road flares to call for help. Keeping a jack, a spare tire and a tire pressure gauge in your trunk can clip hours off of an unfortunate situation. Don’t know which tires are best for your car? Our convenient search tool can help.

Pack Your Favorites

This includes everything from music to food. Cruise to a playlist of your favorite summer jams and make sure you and your buddies can enjoy the trip as much as possible. Your favorite snacks will also keep everyone happy and hunger at bay.

Have A Loose Plan

Delays happen during long-distance traveling. Take care to not to overbook your trip. Usually things take longer than we expect. Construction, detours and reroutes come up. You might spot a restaurant or festival that looks interesting and choose to check it out. Don’t ruin your summer road trip by stressing over making time. Keep your plan loose—but not too loose to keep the energy positive and enjoyable.

Pack Emergency Supplies

Sometimes car trouble happens. An extra supply of oil and radiator coolant will be handy for moments like these. So will a small funnel, a flashlight, a first aid kit and simple tools like a hammer and wrench. A copy of the directions is also a basic backup that everyone should pack.

Check Your Phone Plan

If you’re already attached to your phone this may be a no-brainer. However, if you’re planning a road trip, ask your phone provider about roaming fees and coverage country-wide. No one wants to come home to a huge phone bill.

Learn The Numbers

You’ve chosen your direction. Now it’s time to get to know your highways. Not all interstates are the same. Two-digit numbered interstates (I-95) are generally more direct routes through cities while three-digit interstates (I-785) generally travel around cities. Also, odd-numbered highways run north to south and even numbered highways run east to west.

Don’t Forget To Enjoy The Ride

Take care of safety and supplies ahead of time so you can focus on the important stuff like relaxing and enjoying the ride. Don’t forget to rock out and take in the sights!

 

Flat Tire 101: What to Do

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Most people think that having a flat tire is no big deal. Yet, do you know what to do if you actually get a flat? Think about it for a moment, don’t just assume. Do you have all of the tools in your car or truck? Do you have a spare tire? Is the spare tire the right size for your vehicle? If you can’t say yes to all of those questions, without a shadow of a doubt, then obviously you are not as prepared as you thought you were.

Flat tires can occur for a number of reasons. It could be due to the car sitting for an extended period of time and the air within the tire got cold and condensed. You could have driven over an obstruction and punctured the wall of the tire, or you could have had an old fashion blowout which can result from the tires getting far too hot.

Preparing for A Flat Tire

Most people assume that everything they need to change a flat tire is situated nicely in the trunk of the car, thanks to the manufacturer. Unfortunately, all you get is a tire iron and a small car jack. These are the bare bones basics required to change a tire, yet there are more things you could add to your vehicle to make the job a lot easier, such as:

  • Coveralls – These can be bought from hardware stores and paint stores around the world. You can even get cheap, disposable paper ones and replace them as needed.
  • Wipes – Hand wipes or even baby wipes will go a long way to helping you clean up after you finish changing the tire. Cars are very dirty machines, and there is a reason why every mechanic is always covered in grease.
  • Hands-free light source – Doesn’t matter if you have a standing flash light or a cheap, little LED, battery powered lantern, you want some sort of light source to make sure you can see what you are doing, and so people can see you.
  • 2 or 3-foot piece of pipe – The nuts on your tire are tightened with a torque wrench. This means that you are going to need as much leverage as you can get to loosen them up.
  • Instructions and car manual – Even if you are an expert at changing a tire yourself, other people such as your children or spouse, might not be. This is why having the manual and detailed instructions on what to do, and where everything is, is important.
  • Gallon size storage bag – A sealable storage bag should be used to store the bolts once removed from the tire. A lot of people put them into the hubcap, but if it gets bumped or flipped, your nuts are going to go flying and you will have to hunt them down.

Changing A Flat Tire

  1. Make sure the vehicle is pulled off to the shoulder or side of the road and turn your hazard lights on. Prior to exiting the vehicle, contact someone and inform them about the situation, give them your location and let them know you will contact them once you are finished.
  2. Refer to your owner’s manual to locate a “hard point” on the underside of your vehicle. Once this part of the frame has been located, position the jack under the car and begin to lift the vehicle. Make sure that the car is up high enough to safely remove the tire, roughly 3 to 4 inches off the ground.
  3. The next step involves removing the hubcap; you can use the tire iron to help remove this. After the hubcap has been removed, begin removing the nuts from the tire and placing them inside the storage bag.
  4. Remove the tire and roll it to the opposite side or rear of the car. Grab the spare and place it into position.
  5. Place the nuts back onto the bolts of the car and hand tighten them all. After they have been hand tightened, use the tire iron to tighten them the rest of the way.
  6. Reattach the hubcap and return all of the equipment to its proper location inside of the vehicle.
  7. Contact the person you originally spoke with and let them know that you have finished and will be driving momentarily.
  8. Check for traffic before moving back into the driving lane and turn off your hazard lights.
  9. Ensure you get your tire replaced as soon as possible. Spare tires are only meant for short term use, and the longer you drive on a spare, the more damage you may do to your vehicle.

Changing a tire doesn’t have to be a scary or complicated situation. It is a skill that everyone should have and if you do not know how to change a tire, ask someone who does to show you how. You can also use this article as a reference guide to ensure that no matter what happens, you are prepared thanks to Treadhunter!