The US is a country built on automobiles. Cars are a rite of passage. However, increasingly car maintenance and repair is being left to professionals, including simple tasks the owner can do.
Car expert Shadetree Automotive advise that if there were one skill that a driver should know, it should be replacing tires. There are other automotive skills that are easy to learn, but tire replacement has become a forgotten skill.
In the old days, the first advice to car drivers was to inspect the car before driving. That includes the tires, the radiator water level, the oil dipstick, and the gas. Nowadays, practically nobody engages in this cursory inspection of the vehicle before driving off.
Drivers have taken driving by faith that if anything goes wrong, they can call for a tow truck and a mechanic. The truth is that most common problems can be detected before using the car. And most potential problems can be fixed without a deep knowledge of how a car works.
The Easiest Maintenance Skills
An indicator of how low the level of automotive IQ is, a lot of people nowadays no longer know how to replace a flat tire. It is easy to do, and it only requires a little muscle. The spare tire is in the trunk, and it is relatively easy to lift and bring to the flat tire.
The car also has a car jack and a lug nut ratchet. The car jack is a simple tool to raise the car. The ratchet is a multi-tool used to remove the tire nuts.
The procedure is simple: raise the car with the jack, remove the lug nuts, remove the flat tire, replace with the spare tire, replace the lug nuts, and tighten accordingly. Replace the flat tire into the spare tire wheel well, and return the tools in their place.
Replacing spare tires is not a hard thing to do, but even grown men nowadays don’t know how to replace a flat. This is one of the easiest things to repair, and it is a skill that every driver should know.