Flat tires never strike when you happen to be shopping for Honda Civic parts at your neighborhood dealership. They seem to prefer ambushing innocent driver’s at the most inconvenient times and when they are far from their destinations. Preparation and a few safety precautions, however, can help to minimize the hassle and get drivers safely back onto the road in little time.
Having supplies handy in the vehicle already is of great help. An emergency kit is advised anyway, and having a few things specifically for changing a flat tire will make the kit even more valuable. A pair of gloves is a good idea, with some hand cleaner also included. A flashlight will fit into an emergency kit nicely, and some flares might also be useful. Motorists are often grateful to have paper towels also included with their emergency kits. Having something in the vehicle to use as a wheel chock is good foresight, as this helps to be prepared to prevent the car from slipping out of place.
Choosing a Spot
The location chosen to change a flat tire is very important. It can make a difference not only in doing the job with relative ease, but also in maintaining the safety of everyone in the vicinity. It is best to avoid the bustle of main traffic, and be certain to stop far enough from moving vehicles. This is especially important on roadways with faster traffic. Big vehicles and those moving quickly can create powerful gusts of wind in their wake.
It is also important for the spot chosen to be as level as possible. Making judicious use of the item designated as a wheel chock can be of benefit on sloped or level ground, but choosing a place that is as even as possible is still preferable. When safely away from traffic and on a level piece of ground, engage the parking break and check that the flashers in the vehicle are on. It might also be a good time to use the flares from the emergency kit. These measures alert drivers of a disabled vehicle resting on the side of the road.
Having an existing comfort and familiarity with the vehicle in advance can save time and frustration in an emergency. Familiarity with the wheel fasteners, for example, can save time and get the motorist to work more efficiently when the vehicle is disabled and roadside. If the driver knows in advance that the hubcap is unsuitable as a holder for the lug nuts, which allows for advanced preparation for something else to use instead. Knowing the quirks and traits of the vehicle in this way will get the driver back behind the wheel in the fastest time.
Getting Back on the Road
When the spare is in place, it is important to tighten the lug nuts manually. Use of the wrench while the vehicle is suspended can cause it to fall off of the jack. Tightening with the lug wrench can be done when the vehicle is lowered. With the jack removed and supplies repacked, the driver is free to safely resume that shopping venture for Honda Civic parts.