As you open your vehicle boot, you realize there are no tools to remove your punctured tire from the rim. “What a terrible trip, today!” is likely to be your immediate reaction.
Having a flat or punctured tire may not be a frustrating experience. Not having all the necessary tools to remove the tire from the rim is nauseating.
The experience becomes even worse and more worrisome if there’s no auto technician insight.
You’ll need tools when you want to remove and replace the tire the same way when you want to change brake pads and rotors.
Stay connected with me. I’ll walk you through all the tools you need to have in your car to successfully remove a tire from the rim. You will learn the usefulness of these tools when you want to remove your tire.
In addition, you’ll also gain insight into the two methods (manual and tire-changing machine) to remove a tire from the rim. There are other details in-between these you’ll find interesting.
What Tools To Remove Tire From Rim?
The tools needed to remove a tire from the rim are essential components of the auto kits. Some of these are the main tools and without them, you’ll be stranded; some others are added and they only provide extra support.
Sometimes, the degree of deflation or puncture in the tire will tell which method or how many tools to use.
Some of the most essential tools include:
- A spare tire
- A Lug wrench
- A pinch/pry bar
- Wheel locks and key
- A screwdriver (flat head)
- A valve core remover
Let’s take a few minutes to examine the various tools and what their respective functions are.
The jack is the tool you need to lift the car from the ground level to a certain height. You cannot remove a tire from the rim without raising your car. It suffices to say that the jack is the most important of the tools you need to remove a tire from the rim.
The jack comes in a wide variety of sizes types and by different manufacturers. Basically, we have two types of car jacks – mechanical jacks and hydraulic jacks.
They are further sub-divided into hydraulic bottle jacks, hydraulic floor jacks, scissors jacks, high-lift jacks, and bumper jacks. But they mostly use hydraulic fluid to raise the car.
A Spare Tire
The reason why you will decide to remove a tire from the rim is one of two things. Either you may have found a new brand tire or the existing tires are bad and need replacement.
Whatever is the case, you need a spare tire to replace the regular one. As the name suggests, a spare tire is an additional tire put in the car as a replacement for a punctured tire. They are emergency tires that help you to safety when your tires go bad.
Whereas the full-size spare tire may be difficult to store; it guarantees safety, thanks to its same size and weight as the regular tire. In addition, a full-size spare tire maybe a little bit harder to fix to the hub when the vehicle is at ground level.
Choosing a spare tire depends on your budget, rim size, storage space, and how soon you want to check and replace the tire.
On the other hand, you cannot drive your car for too long on a donut. You can only drive the tire for 80 to 100 kilometers. It has a driving speed limit of 80 km/h or 50mph. However, it is small in size and requires little space to store.
A Lug Wrench
The lug wrench is another tool you’ll need to take off the tire from the rim. When you look into the lug holes in the rim, you’ll see some lug nuts that help to hold the rim to the wheel hub.
The lug nuts are screwed to the wheel studs to hold the rim and tire. To tighten and untighten the lug nuts, you’ll then need the lug wrench.
As you plan to fit the spare tire to the car, you will need to unscrew the lug nuts to get off the old rim and the flat tire. You cannot remove the flat tire from the wheel hub. Loosen the lug nuts with the lug wrench and take out the wheel rim.
The lug wrench has many sockets that match the size of the lug nuts held on to the wheel studs. It contains a long handle that helps to helps you to exert more force when unscrewing the lug nuts.
A Pinch Bar
Generally, the pinch bar also called the pry bar or crowbar is the tool suitable for pulling two items apart. When it comes to removing the tire rim from the car, the pry bar helps to remove the hub cap.
In addition, when dirt or rust makes the rim get stuck to the wheel hub, you’ll need the pry bar to pry the rim off the wheel hub.
The pinch bar is designed with flattened ends. These serve as levers with the incredible mechanical advantage that provides you with the freedom to exert significant force when pulling the objects apart.
A Wheel Locks And Key
The wheel locks are special lug nut sockets and a key that you can fasten to your car rim to prevent thieves from stealing the rim from the wheel. The tool comes with four lug nuts and a key.
The locks’ system comes with a special design and pattern that make it impossible for any other key to install or uninstall the locks.
What it implies is that once the key is missing, lost, or misplaced, you’ll need a professional technician to unlock the keyed rim.
You should use only one wheel lock on a wheel. Don’t go outside the torque spec when installing any of the lug nuts. With the key that comes with the kit, you can set up the lug nuts or get them off the rim.
To do this, you’ll need to insert the key into the sizeable socket of the lug wrench. For safety, you can tape the socket to the side of the car jack. You can also store it inside the glove box.
A Flat-Head Screwdriver
Another essential tool to remove a tire from the rim is a flat-head screwdriver. Regardless of the method, you’re using, you’ll need the screwdriver to pry the tire over the edges of the two sides of the rim.
A Valve Core Remover
Before you can remove the tire from the rim, you’ll need to let the little air left in the tire out. The valve and the air cap that keeps the compressed air house a valve core. It’s a small rubber.
Sometimes, it comes as a metallic device. You’ll need the valve core removal tool to loosen the cap and deflate the tire.
How To Remove Tire From Rim
The good news is that removing a flat or punctured tire from the rim is simple and easy. Generally, there are two manual methods to detach the wheel from the tire.
You can either go with the by-hand method or use a manual tire changer. Each method requires different tools. However, there are essential tools that both methods will largely need.
Either way, the tire removal is overly straightforward. However, you’ve got to toque things down to spec. Otherwise, you may end up being penny-wise but pound foolish. Here is the step-by-step process of getting tires off the rim.
Method 1: Manual Removal By Hand
Step 1: Raise The Car (Optional)
Start by lifting the car using your jack. This step is not mandatory if the tire is a spare one or is not on the car.
Step 2: Removing The Air Cap
The second step is to remove the valve cap from the rim. The cap is a small metallic object or rubber. The rationale behind this is to deflate the tire and let the compressed air out of the tire.
Start by twisting the cap counterclockwise. Make sure the tire is on a level surface for an easy job. It also helps to avoid damaging the cap or the valve core inside the valve.
Step 3: Detach The Tire Bead
Now that the tire has no air left in it, it’s time for you to disengage the tire bead from the rim.
Whether it’s tubed or tubeless, your car tire is attached to the rim through the bead. The bead is simply the edge of the tire that’s fastened to the rim.
There are various ways to separate the tire bead from the rim. You can lower or lift your car from the tire. Driving your car over the tire is another alternative.
Some car technicians recommend cutting through the bead or using a bead breaker. As a rule of thumb, you must first deflate the tire before detaching the bead.
Step 4: Lubricate The Edge Of The Rim
The next thing to do after defeating the tire and detaching the tire bead is to apply lube to the edge of the rim. Dish soap, oil, or any stone- or pebble-free lubricant will do.
Apply the lubricant in generous quantity around the edge of the rim and tire. Make sure the lubricant also reaches beneath the rim. The lubricating process eases off the process of removing the rim from the tire.
Step 5: Pry The Tire Over The Boundary Line Of The Rim
After lubricating the tire edge, wheel, and beneath the rim, it’s time to use your lift your car tire over the edge of the rim. You’ll need your pry bar or screwdriver to do this. Start by exerting a force on the rubber to press it down.
This way, you can create an opening into which you can push the pry bar. After getting the pinch bar into the opening, you may now raise the tire over the edge of the rim.
While doing this, hold the pinch bar and pull out the edge of the wheel’s circumference. You’ll need to insert the flat-head screwdriver to pull the edge over.
Step 6: Repeat Steps 4 & 5 On The Other Side
Now that you have successfully detached the bead at one end of the tire, it’s time to do the same on the other side of the tire. So, set out by spinning the tire to the other side.
Then apply the same or more amount of lubricant on the edge of the tire and the wheel as well as under the rim. Insert the pry bar to create an opening. Lift the tire and use the screwdriver to pry out the tire.
Step 7: Remove The Tire
By the time you’re done with lubricating and prying out the two sides of the wheel, the tire should be completely out of the wheel and rim. It’s time to remove the tire from the rim. Your job is done!
Method 2: Manual Removal By Tire Changers
The alternative to the by-hand method is the manual tire-changing machine. It also doesn’t require you to go to a technician workshop. With this machine, you might not need to detach the tire from the wheel.
Depending on the brand, manual tire changing tools are generally affordable and readily available in online and mortar-and-brick stores.
- Tire changing machine
- Valve core remover
- ¾” thick plywood
- Rod (metal)
- 5” bolts
Here are the steps to remove your tire from the rim using a tire changer:
Step 1: Trace The Bolt Outline
Position the manual tire changer on the plywood board and with your pen, trace out the outline of the machine around the board.
The idea is to be sure of the locations of the 5-inch bolts. You can use any manufactured wood of high-grade thickness.
Step 2: Screw The Machine Onto The Board
The next step is to fasten the tire-changing machine using the nuts, bolts, and screwdriver. Bolts that are 5-inch long and ½ inches in diameter will do a great job.
Make sure you turn the wood onto the other side while placing the machine and securing it with bolts. Alternately, you can also fasten the machine to a concrete floor.
Although you’ll need to drill the surface, fastening the machine to the floor offers more stability.
Step 3: Let The Air Out Of The Tire
Once you’ve positioned and bolted the machine, it’s time to deflate the tire and let air completely out of it.
Go through the process of removing the valve cap, exposing the valve core, turning the counterclockwise valve, and deflating the tire.
Step 4: Set The Deflated Tire On The Machine
After letting the air out of the tire, you will now need to place the tire and rim on the tire changer and securely fix them in place. There’s a triangular-shaped nub at the base of the board.
Fasten the rim to this small nub and let the frontal part of the rim face upward. Let the wedge-like limb of the changing machine drop onto the rubber edge of the rim.
Step 5: Detach The Tire Bead
With a changing rod integrated into the tire changing machine, separate the tire bead from both sides of the wheel. You can also use any external metallic rod.
Start by inserting the rod into the open section of the machine’s arm and then exert some pressure on the rod. You’ll see the wedge-like arm press down to cause the wheel to become naked.
Spin the tire and repeat the process on the other side of the rim, press down the machine and you’ll see the entire tire body come out.
Step 6: Fasten The Tire In Place
Place and fasten the tire to the central hose that links the wedge-like limb to the machine. Place the large four spokes that prevent the tire from tilting when detaching the bead. Twist the cap clockwise to secure the tire.
Step 7: Apply Lubricant
Put lube on the edge of the rim on each side. Make sure the lube gets to every side, including under the rim.
Step 8: Pry The Tire From The Rim
Lift the bead over the edge of the rim but first gently thrust the sharp edge of the rod to rest between the rim and the rubber.
Slip the changing rod along the rim’s perimeter leveraging the tube. Repeat the process until the tire is free.
The next time someone asks you ‘what tools to remove a tire from the rim?’ you should answer without batting an eyelid.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re a certified technician or DIY’er, having these tools will help you achieve a big task in a short time.
You must think ahead of any dangerous situation. The good thing is that these auto instruments aren’t expensive. Even if you don’t have enough to buy them all at the same time, you can start saving a few bucks from now.
Whether you’re going on a trip or driving to a technician workshop, always save all the necessary tools in their rightful places. You never can tell; you may have to replace a tire or two.
My final point to you is that you should not compromise your safety on the road. Having a set of quality tires will guarantee your safety on the road.