Everything You Need to Know About Changing a Tyre

Knowing how to change a tyre is an essential skill for every driver. It not only prepares you to confidently handle roadside emergencies but also ensures that you’re not left stranded on the side of the road, waiting for help.

Mastering this skill can significantly reduce the downtime and costs associated with calling for roadside assistance services.

Know Your Vehicle

Before tackling a tyre change, familiarise yourself with your vehicle’s specific needs, which can be found in your owner’s manual. Key details to note include:

  • Recommended Jack Lifting Points: Identify safe spots for lifting your vehicle to prevent damage and ensure safety.
  • Suitable Jack Type: Learn which jack is compatible with your car to support it properly during a lift.
  • Correct Tyre Pressure: Check the manual for ideal tyre pressure levels to ensure optimal performance and safety.

Understanding these points can ensure a smoother and safer tyre-changing process.

Always Be Prepared for a Car Tyre Change

Being prepared for tyre troubles means you’re never caught off guard. Before disaster strikes, it’s important to equip your vehicle with:

  • A Spare Tyre: Regularly inspect its condition and ensure it’s properly inflated.
  • A Sturdy Jack: Verify it can support your vehicle’s weight.
  • Wheel Brace or Lug Wrench: Essential for loosening and tightening the nuts.
  • Wheel Chocks or Wood Pieces: Use these to prevent your vehicle from rolling.
  • Reflective Warning Signs: Keep these handy for night tyre changes to alert oncoming traffic.
  • Waterproof Mat/Cardboard: This provides comfort when changing tyres on wet surfaces.
  • Flashlight: Just in case you need to change your tyre in a poorly lit area at night.

Flat Tyre Safety

Safety should always be your top priority, both for you and everyone else on the road. In the event of a flat tyre:

  • Find a Safe Spot: Slow down gradually and steer your vehicle to a level area, a safe distance from traffic.
  • Alert Others: Turn on your hazard lights to alert passing drivers.
  • Secure the Vehicle: Apply the parking brake and place wheel chocks under the tyres opposite to the flat to prevent rolling.
  • Assess the Situation: If you’re on a busy freeway or feel unsafe changing the tyre yourself, don’t hesitate to call for roadside assistance.

These steps ensure that you prioritise safety above all when dealing with a tyre change.

You Have a Flat Tyre – What Should You Do?

  1. Loosen the Wheel Nuts: Start by loosening the wheel nuts a turn or two with the wheel brace or lug wrench, but don’t remove them completely yet.
  2. Lift the Vehicle: Use the jack to lift your car. Place it under the car’s recommended lifting point and raise the vehicle until the flat tyre is about five centimetres off the ground. Remember, never place any part of your body under the vehicle while it is lifted.
  3. Remove the Flat Tyre: Now fully remove the loosened wheel nuts and carefully take off the flat tyre. Lay it flat on the ground to avoid it rolling away.
  4. Lower the Vehicle and Secure the Nuts: Gently lower the car back to the ground. Once the vehicle is fully lowered, use the brace to tighten the wheel nuts firmly, again following a criss-cross pattern.

Once the Tyre Change is Complete

After successfully changing your tyre, follow these important steps:

  • Check the Pressure: Especially if you’ve installed a space-saver (temporary) spare, verify its pressure immediately. Remember, these tyres have specific speed and distance limitations.
  • Pack Away: Return the flat tyre and all tools used during the change back to their respective places in your vehicle.
  • Regularly Check the Changed Tyre: After driving for about 10 to 20 kilometres, find a safe place to stop and recheck the wheel nuts’ tightness.
  • Repair The Damaged Tyre: It’s important to get professional help with a repair or replacement for the flat tyre so that it’s available next time you need it.

Highfields Mechanical for Wheels and Tyres – Toowoomba Experts

Changing a tyre might initially appear intimidating, but it becomes simple with the appropriate tools and know-how. Should you encounter any issues or suspect your wheel has suffered damage, Highfields Mechanical is ready to support all your automotive needs. Whether it’s a simple tyre change or a more thorough wheel alignment service, our team is here to help.

For expert advice, professional repairs, or to schedule a service, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Contact our friendly team at (07) 4646 1780 or complete our contact form today.

Your Complete Car Maintenance Checklist

Over time, cars undergo wear and tear that requires regular checks and maintenance to ensure safe handling and longevity. Basic car maintenance helps identify issues before they become more serious problems which could leave you stuck on the side of the road.

Car owners should follow these easy car maintenance tips alongside their annual general car service:

Engine Oil Check

Engine oil lubricates moving parts, reducing damage caused from heat and friction. It is important to check your engine oil regularly to ensure you aren’t running low. Engine oil will degrade over time, even if the vehicle is left stationary. It is recommended to change your oil every 6 months or 10,000 kilometres to prevent damage to the engine.

Check Car Tyre Pressure

Your tyres play a critical role in the safe handling of your car, acting as the only point of contact between your vehicle and the road. Driving with the incorrect air pressure can affect handling, fuel efficiency and tyre longevity.
Check the label inside your driver side door or your vehicle’s owner manual if you are unsure of your car’s ideal tyre pressure. Service stations typically have tyre pressure gauges that are free to use. It is recommended that you perform a tyre pressure check every three months or before and after a long trip.

Replace Windshield Wipers

Windshield wipers are essential for protecting you during poor weather conditions by maintaining visibility. With time, wiper blades may deteriorate, causing them to tear, crack or even split.
Damaged wipers can affect your ability to see hazards on the road in poor weather and can also scratch your windshield. Observe your wiper blades regularly for signs of damage and replace as soon as it is needed.

Check Your Car Fluids

Coolant and brake fluid are the most common fluids that require topping up. You should check your car’s coolant levels every few months or before a long trip. As part of your regular scheduled service, your brake fluid will be checked. If you notice your engine temperature gauge rising, pull over where it is safe to do so and check your coolant levels once your engine has cooled down.
Your owner’s manual has helpful information regarding the types of fluid and recommended maintenance period specific to your vehicle.

Replace Air Filters

Over time, contaminants can build in the filter and reduce the quantity of air flow into your engine. This can lead to issues with your car’s performance, may decrease the cabin’s air quality and increase your fuel consumption. Air filters also trap debris and dust, preventing them from entering the cabin. Your vehicle’s owner’s manual can provide helpful instructions on how and when to replace air filters.

Schedule a Professional Car Service

Following the above maintenance tips can help protect your vehicle, but does not substitute the first-hand experience of a professional mechanic. It is recommended to schedule a general car service every six months or 10,000 kilometres driven.

The experts here at Highfields Mechanical are committed to serving you and your car’s needs with transparency and passion. Contact our friendly team at (07) 4646 1780 or complete our contact form today.

How Often Should I Get My Tyres Checked?

Tyres are rarely the first thing to come to mind when most people think of a car’s safety features. However, tyres are actually one of the most important parts of a vehicle’s safety because they connect your car to the road.

Like most components of your car, tyres are prone to wear and tear over time. It’s a good idea to check your tyres regularly to ensure your car is in the best possible condition. This will help you identify any minor damage before it becomes a more costly issue down the line. 

While there is no one-fits-all solution for maintaining tyres, there are a few simple things you can personally do to increase their lifespan. For the best advice and tyre repair services, speak to a licensed mechanic such as the team at Highfields Mechanical.

What You Need To Know About Tyre Pressure

Tyre pressure impacts everything from your car’s fuel economy and its ability to brake in an emergency situation to the speed at which your tyres suffer from wear and tear. While tyres can generally hold air quite well, they are not completely airtight, meaning your tyres can be at risk of underinflation as air is released over time. This not only eats up more fuel, but can cause your tyre to fail while the car is in motion. The risk is especially high when adding weight to the vehicle, such as when the car is full of passengers.

The good news is that checking and maintaining your tyre pressure can be a simple task. In fact, some experts recommend vehicle owners conduct quick checks on their own tyres as often as once every two weeks. This involves setting your tyre pressures to the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendation. You can generally find this information on the tyre placard inside your door jamb, glove box, or in the vehicle manual.

When checking tyre pressure, it’s also a good idea to complete a visual inspection on the tread and sidewalls of the tyre. This involves checking for foreign objects such as screws and nails, bald spots, irregular wear, or any other kind of damage which would require a tyre puncture repair.

If you’d prefer to leave the tyre pressure checks to a professional, you can bring your vehicle to your local mechanic to conduct a tyre service. At Highfields Mechanical, our expert technicians will not only check your tyre pressure but can ensure all of your tyres are in the best possible condition for you to safely drive away.

When Should I Get A Tyre Replacement?

Industry standards suggest replacing passenger tyres approximately every six years, with a maximum of ten years. However, the timing of your tyre replacement also depends on how the tyres have been used and what type of weather they are usually driven in.

One of the most obvious indicators of needing a tyre replacement is if your tyre tread is approaching the legal 1.5mm limit. Check the wear indicator bars on your tyre tread, and if they are invisible in some places, this indicates you should replace your tyres.

To increase the lifespan of your tyres, avoid hitting kerbs when parking your car. It is important to note that front tyres on a four-wheel drive vehicle can wear at a rate of almost double that of the rear tyres, so it’s best to consult your vehicle manual or speak to a licensed mechanic for advice about your own car’s make and model.

Choose Highfields Mechanical For Your Next Tyre Replacement

At Highfields Mechanical, our experienced team specialises in all things tyres. We are equipped with the latest wheel balancing and alignment technology, and can work quickly and accurately to ensure any repairs comply with your vehicle manufacturer’s requirements.

Whether you need a tyre replacement, tyre pressure checks, or tyre fitting services, Highfields Mechanical has access to leading tyre brands and expert advice to keep you driving safely.

Give us a call today on (07) 4646 1780 or fill out our online contact form and we will be in touch.

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