Changing a car tyre can be a daunting to task but it is one that every driver should ought to know. Knowing how to change a flat tyre could not only save you money as you wouldn’t have to call out a breakdown company but it would also prevent you from being stranded for any long periods of time. Imagine, if you get a flat tyre and instead of waiting for hours for the recovery service you would be able to sort it yourself and be on your way in no time without ruining too much of your day.
What you need to change your tyre:
- A spare tyre – this may sound obvious but there is a percentage of drivers that either don’t carry a spare tyre in their car or they do but they are unsure whereabouts in their car it is located.
- A car jack – this is necessary to lift the car of the ground allowing you to switch tyres
- A tyre wench – this is the tool you will need to use to remove the nuts and bolts from the wheel
- A locking wheel nut – each wheel has one nut which requires this tool to remove it
The above 2 things are vital for any tyre change but other things you may want to consider having on you would be: a towel, gloves, reflective safety gear and a torch.
Here at Canterbury Motoring World we think that changing a tyre is actually easy than most think so we have put together a step by step guide to help you through it!
First things first, find the safest place to change your tyre. This should b
e as far away from any passing traffic as possible, so the side of
the road or the hard shoulder of a motorway should be avoided. Switch of the engine of your car and put on the hazard lights ensuring that the handbrake is securely in place and for extra safety the car is either in first gear or in “park/p” if it is an automatic vehicle. You should make sure that all passengers are out of the vehicle and grab all the necessary equipment you will need throughout before getting started (including the spare wheel itself).
Now you want to begin the removal of the flat tyre!
Loosen all the regular wheel nuts using your tyre wench and then use your locking wheel nut to loosen off the final bolt. Before you remove the nuts and bolts completely you want to lift the car from the ground by placing the car jack under your car at the recommended point. Raise the jack until the wheel is totally clear of the ground but be wary that the jack could collapse so don’t place anything underneath your vehicle. Remove all the loosened wheel nuts (TOP TIP: leave the top one until last so you can use both hands to lift and remove the damaged tyre).
So, that’s it you have the damaged tyre off! But wait, that is only half the task! Now you need to put your spare tyre on…
Line up the spare tyre using the wheel nut holes and push the spare tyre forcefully onto the wheel base. Replace all the nuts back into their place and use your hand to tighten them as much as you can. Lower the car jack back down to ground level and finish of securing the wheel nuts in place using the wench. Ensure you don’t leave anything on the ground and that you have disposed of the damaged tyre appropriately.
You have done it! You can now carry on your day as planned but at your nearest convenience you will need to take your car to your local mechanic and have the pressure of the spare tyre checked over and the wheel nuts checked to make sure they are fully tightened. (Remember: if the tyre you changed your flat to is just a “temporary” or “skinny” one then you must check what speed restrictions apply and get this changed as soon as you can. As a general rule, it is advised to not go above 50mph when driving on a temporary tyre.)
Author: Rebecca McGinty
As we are now fully into the autumnal season and rapidly approaching winter, there is an increasing chance of facing foggy conditions when using UK roads. As most are already aware, driving in fog can be extremely dangerous, that is why Canterbury Motoring World have put together some useful information and advice to help us all this winter.
According to the MET Office, foggy conditions occur when tiny water droplets are suspended in the air, their website states that the official definition of fog is “a visibility of less than 1000 meters” but severe disruption to transport occurs mainly when the visibility levels fall below 50 meters.
Rules 234-236 of the Highway Code apply to how to drive in foggy conditions, they include the following:
- Watch your speed – slow down in adverse weather conditions
- Check your mirrors – use all of them as regularly as possible
- Look out for warning signs on the road – especially on the motorway there will be signs if there is a risk of fog
- Use your fog lights as required – if the road that you are driving on has street lights then you most probably don’t need to have your vehicle’s fog lights on rule 236 of the Highway Code specifically states that you “must not use front or rear fog lights unless visibility is seriously reduced as they dazzle other road users and can obscure your brake lights” – it is a legal requirement for all cars in the UK to be fitted with rear fog lights
- Keep your distance between you and the car in front of you
- Beware of other vehicles that may not be driving appropriately in foggy conditions – for example if they are not using their fog lights when needed
In addition to these highway code regulations, here at Canterbury Motoring World we also advise:
- Make sure you know how to use your fog lights as it is easy to confuse them on some vehicles with headlights or full beam setting
- Don’t rely on the automatic lights setting in your vehicle
- Don’t stop in inappropriate places, ensure you find a safe place to pull over where you are as visible as possible to other motorists and completely out of their way
- Use your other senses, for example at junctions where visibility is severely reduced then try to listen for oncoming traffic
- Use the white line painted to the right hand side of the road next to the pavement as a guide to where you are sitting in the road
Author: Rebecca McGinty
Don’t panic! You are not the first and certainly won’t be the last person to put the wrong type of fuel in your car! According to RAC statistics, on average someone puts the wrong fuel in their tank every 3 minutes in the UK – that’s roughly 150,000 motorists making the mistake every year!
So, no you don’t feel as daft knowing you aren’t alone in making this faux par…what’s the next steps you should take to resolve the issue
First things first…do not start the engine! Don’t even turn the key in the ignition if you can avoid doing so. If you are lucky enough to notice your mishap straight away, then by not starting your engine you could save yourself a great deal of money in repairs to your fuel system. Most breakdown service companies will have a special number to call where they can send someone out straight away to drain your fuel tank of the wrong fuel – you want this to be carried out as soon as possible so second step is too call the fuel assist service as soon as you can. If you happen to drive away from the fuel station before noticing you have put the wrong fuel in your car, you won’t get too far before your car comes to a halt and you’ll soon notice the mistake you have made. Make sure you try and pull up in a safe spot before calling the specialist fuel assist department of your breakdown company and they will send you some road side assistance.
How much damage you actually cause to your vehicle will be dependent on a number of factors:
- Whether you’ve put diesel into a petrol car or vice versa
- How much of the wrong fuel you’ve put in
- Whether the incorrect fuel has reached your car’s bloodstream
Petrol in Diesel Car versus Putting Diesel in Petrol Car…
You may be surprised to hear that putting petrol in a diesel car is the more common mistake to make as the diesel pump nozzle is actually physically bigger then the neck of the petrol tank on most cars, where on the other hand petrol pump nozzles rarely have difficulty fitting into the neck of a diesel tank.
To conclude, putting the wrong type of fuel in your tank isn’t the end of the world, it is just a bit of a bother and can be a costly mistake but remember these three steps and you should be back on the road in no time..
Step 1: Don’t panic
Step 2: Don’t turn your key in the ignition or turn on the car’s engine
Step 3: Call your breakdown company’s fuel assist department to get them to drain your tank as quick as possible.
Author: Rebecca McGinty