Changing Tires

I got a flat tire after dropping one of my brothers off at school this week. We had just finished our morning swim and I was looking forward to crawling back into bed before my class when the car started backing an ominous banging sound. I have had a flat tire before, so was fairly certain what it was when I pulled off of the busy street we were on and into a neighborhood. I crouched on the ground staring at my deflated tire, hoping I was just really, really tired and was seeing things. I was not.

The last time I got a flat tire I was on my way to work on the interstate.  My back tire blew a giant hole but I was lucky it wasn’t bad enough to make me crash and I was able to make it to work. My dad came with one of my younger brothers and fixed it for me, which did not help me now since I couldn’t figure out how to fix my current flat.

I called my dad, because what else are you supposed to do? He said he needed a little time but should be able to come help us. In the meantime Jake and I pulled out the spare, jack and the other tools that came in my handy flat kit and set them on the ground. I watched this really helpful YouTube video: https://youtu.be/joBmbh0AGSQ

This would have been great except my car is a little older so the part where the jack is supposed to rest, was rusted and I couldn’t find it. I was not about to guess and have the car fall on top of me, but I recommend the video!

Dad arrived after a short time and I told him I wanted to learn how to do it this time. Because god forbid I am ever alone on a dark creepy high way with no cell phone reception and my tire blows! When I put it that way, he couldn’t help but see the utility of me knowing how to change the tire.

I put the car in emergency break and Dad showed me how to use my body weight to loosen the bolts, by standing on the wrench and letting gravity do the hard part. After that I was on my hands and knees in wet grass, placing the jack in the correct spot (dad showed me), and turning the crank until it was all the way off the ground. Tires are deceptively heavy. I almost lost my balance and fell on my butt because I underestimated how heavy it was going to be. I put the spare on, making sure to tighten the bolts catty-corner to each other first, otherwise you might not have as tight of a wheel as you would like.

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Once the spare was on and the tools and tire were in my trunk, I did a little victory dance. I am now less helpless and more independent now that I know how to change my own flat. I was extremely impressed by how easy it was to lift my car, and even more impressed that I was the one who lifted it!

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