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blog large image - How to change a tyre - quick guide

How to change a tyre - quick guide

Table of Contents

  1. Safety first
  2. What equipment will you need?
  3. How to change a tyre
    1. Find a safe place to pull over
    2. Loosen the wheel nuts
    3. Raise the car with the jack
    4. Remove the flat tyre
    5. Position the spare tyre
    6. Lower the car and tighten the bolts
    7. Check the spare tyre pressure
  4. How to prevent a flat tyre

 

Getting a flat tyre is never a great experience, but don't let it get you down. It's actually pretty easy to deal with. Once you know how to change a tyre, you'll be able to get your spare tyre on and be on your way in no time. 

Here's our guide on how to change a flat tyre on your Mazda vehicle.


Safety first

If you get a flat tyre, it's important to put your safety first. Only change a flat tyre if you're in a safe spot with the right tools on you. If you're on the side of a busy street, or don't have a spare tyre or a jack with you, you'll need to call for roadside assistance.

To ensure you, your passengers and other road users stay safe while you're changing your tyre, follow these safety tips:

  • Never change a tyre with your back to traffic

  • Never go underneath a car that's being held up by a jack

  • Only use your jack on a hard, flat surface


What equipment will you need?

Most modern cars come with a spare tyre and the equipment you need to change a flat tyre. Your owner's manual may also contain specific information on how to change a flat tyre properly on your vehicle.

To change a flat tyre, you will need:

  • a jack

  • a wheel brace or lug wrench

  • a spare tyre

Other helpful equipment includes:

  • chocks to prevent the car from rolling

  • a portable pressure gauge to check the pressure of your spare tyre

  • a torch if you are changing the tyre at night

  • a reflective jacket and warning triangles

What equipment will you need 


How to change a tyre

Follow these simple steps on how to change a flat tyre:


1. Find a safe place to pull over

If you suspect you have a flat tyre, pull over when it's safe to do so, preferably on hard, level ground. If possible, park away from the road so there's plenty of distance between yourself and passing vehicles. Put your hazard lights on.

Secure your car by putting it in park, or first gear, with the handbrake on. Ask any passengers to get out of the car and ensure they're safely away from the road.

If possible, place a wheel chock or wheel wedges behind and in front of the wheel on the opposite side of the car to your flat tyre. A block of wood or a brick will do the trick.


2. Loosen the wheel nuts

Remove the spare tyre from your car, along with the jack, wheel brace and car manual. Tyre changing equipment will usually be stored with the spare tyre.

If there is a hubcap or wheel nut covers on the wheel, remove these first.

Then, use the wheel brace to loosen the wheel nuts. To avoid injury, it's best to keep your arm and back straight while applying force in an anticlockwise direction. If you are finding it hard to loosen the wheel nuts with your arms, try applying pressure with your foot and body weight instead.

Loosen each wheel nut but don't completely remove them yet.


3. Raise the car with the jack

Position the jack according to your owner's manual. The jack is usually placed on the underside of your car, near the flat tyre. Typically, there will be some jacking grooves on the underside of your car showing you where the jack it meant to go. It's important to place the jack in the correct spot as the jacking points are strong enough to hold up your car.

Once you have the jack in place, slowly turn it clockwise to take some of the weight off your flat tyre. Keep on turning the jack until your wheel is around 5-10cm off the ground.

Raise the car with the jack 


4. Remove the flat tyre

Remove each wheel nut fully, and put them in a safe place for later. Then carefully remove the flat tyre. Place it under the car for extra support in case the jack gives way.


5. Position the spare tyre

Position the spare tyre so that the bolt holes in the middle of the tyre line up with the wheel studs on the car. Lift the wheel on and push into position.

Screw the wheel nuts on. You can use your hands first and then use the wrench gently. Don't fully tighten the wheel nuts while the car is raised– wait until you lower the jack.


6. Lower the car and tighten the bolts

Remove the flat tyre from under the car. Slowly lower the car by turning your jack anticlockwise. Keep winding until the weight of the car is supported by the spare tyre. Remove the jack.

Now tighten the wheel bolts firmly using the wheel brace. Check that the wheel is secure and not loose. Replace the hubcap if it fits, otherwise stow it in your car safely, along with your jack and wrench. Store the flat tyre in your car where the spare tyre used to be.

You now know how to change a tyre!


7. Check the spare tyre pressure

Before you drive far on your spare tyre, pull into a service station and check the pressure. Follow the guidelines in your car manual and inflate the tyre to the correct pressure.

Keep in mind, a full size spare tyre can be driven on like a normal tyre, but a temporary spare shouldn't be driven on more than is necessary. If you're using a temporary spare, drive your car home or directly to a tyre mechanic to get your tyre repaired or replaced. If you're driving on a full spare, be sure to get the flat tyre repaired or buy a new tyre so that you're prepared for any flat tyres in the future.

Check the spare tyre pressure 



How to prevent a flat tyre

Flat tyres can come about due to many reasons. You might not be able to avoid flat tyres completely, but there are some things you can do to protect your car tyres and prevent an unnecessary flat tyre.

  • Regularly check your tyre pressure (use this Mazda tyre pressure guide)

  • Avoid driving on debris and watch out for sharp objects on the road

  • Drive carefully, avoiding potholes and bumps in the road where possible

  • Service your car regularly, and ask your mechanic to inspect the tyres

  • Follow these 12 car safety tips

  • When buying a new car, choose one with excellent safety ratings like the award-winning Mazda 3

Finding yourself with a flat tyre can be a nuisance. But when you know how to change a tyre you'll be able to handle the situation with confidence. Whatever the reason for a flat tyre, be sure to find a safe location before attempting a tyre change. If you're unsure or need help, read your car manual or call roadside assistance.