car care Car Tips & Advice Road Trips

A Flat Tire Horror Story

One of the worst scenarios to be stranded with is a stubborn flat tire with no desire to budge in the middle of no where. You jacked up the car, you removed the lug nuts and hubcap, and by now you are exhausted, but just as you reach out for the tire you realize that no matter how hard you tug the tire, it won’t pop off! This is very frustrating, but don’t worry, we have your back and have provided you a few tips on handle a car horror story.

1. Prepare for the worst.

Having the essential items for a tire change in the trunk of your car is very important. You will need a spare tire, a practical and good car jack, a standard cross wrench, and a flashlight. Also from experience, a rubber mallet, a block of  2×2 wood, and having all cans of WD-40, Spray Rust Penetrant and Fix-A-Flat Tire Sealant in your trunk could be a life saver. You can never be too prepared.

2. How to remove a tire that won’t budge.

You followed every step carefully, but the tire won’t budge. If you leave in an area exposed to snow and road salt, then these elements can get into your aluminum alloy rims and into the hub where they cause corrosion. These corrosive elements tightly glue your wheel to the hub making it almost impossible to replace worn out tire. It is not only aluminum wheels that have this problem but also steel wheels.

What do you do? There’s a few ideas you can actually try, but it will take patience.

  1. The tire might stick due to rust. You could try hitting the inside half of the tire with a rubber mallet to loosen the tire, or use the spare tire to hit the outside half.
  2. After jacking off the tire remove the bolts except one. Use your foot to hit the tire while it is off the ground. Rotate the wheel and hit it again. With continuous effort, the wheel should separate from the hub and you can then comfortably remove it after unscrewing the last bolt.
  3. You’ll need a block of  2×2 wood, a can of spray rust penetrant and the rubber mallet. Jack up the car, and remove the lug nuts. Spray a generous amount of rust penetrant into each mounting hole. Let it sit for five minutes. Rotate the tire a half turn and reapply the spray. Screw one lug nut onto a stud a few turns to prevent the tire from flying off once it’s free. Place the end of the piece of wood on the outer edge of the wheel and smack the wood with the maul, just enough to create some breaking force and vibration. Rotate the tire a quarter turn and repeat the smack/rotate procedure until the wheel is free.
  4. After you have tried all the mentioned techniques mentioned above and your wheel is still stuck you may be forced to take it to a tire service station. This is better than hitting the wheel with a hammer and destroying your bolts and hub. During service, the experts will perform some wheel rotation and alignment, and your car will soon be ready to go.
  5. If you can’t get to a service station, try Fix-A-Flat. If you have a small hole in the tire — from a nail, for instance — or a slow leak around the rim, products like Fix-A-Flat can work well as temporary solutions. The can contains a liquid that’s injected into the tire, along with additional air. Depending on the tire type, they can allow you to drive cautiously on a flat tire for up to 100 miles without damaging your wheel.

We hope this helps you avoid being the star of a classic stranded on the side of the road horror story! Drive safely and be on the look out for any ghoulish monsters this Halloween!

by Leashie V. – Content Creator at Half Full Marketing.

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