Loosening lug nuts can be a hectic task, if you do not know the right technique to do it. The following WheelZine article will tell you how to loosen a lug nut.
All those of you who have been stranded in the middle of the road, with a flat tire, know that loosening a lug nut can be a headache. If you are not expert at loosening up lug nuts, you will never be good at changing tires. You might think that lug nuts can be loosened easily, but trust me, it is not that easy (except for the professionals).
Tips to Loosen Lug Nuts
The first thing that you should do when you are changing a tire, is loosen up the lug nut. Before you start loosening the lug nut, here are a few points to remember:
- Make sure that the vehicle is parked on a flat and hard surface.
- Do not jack up the vehicle, before you loosen the lug nuts.
Now, here is the list of things that you will need:
- Tire iron
Exposing the Lug Nut
Once you have your car parked on a flat surface, then the next step is to expose the lug nuts. Remove the hub caps. You will not have difficulty in removing the hub caps, as hub caps usually have an indenture, so just insert your fingers in the indenture, and pull out the hub cap (no need to put too much effort in pulling, the hub caps come out easily). You can see the lug nuts now. If the lug nuts have caps, remove these caps before proceeding.
The WD-40 Effect
If you try to loosen up the tires immediately after exposing them, you might find the nuts too tight, and you will require more efforts. In order to make it simpler for you, just spray WD-40 on the lug nuts. See that you spray WD-40 properly on each nut. After you are done spraying, wait for a few minutes.
Loosening the Lug Nuts
Now, take the tire iron (lug wrench), and place it firmly on a lug nut. There are 2 things that you should pay attention to over here:
- If the lug nut has right-handed threading, then you will have to turn the tire iron counterclockwise.
- If the lug nut has left-handed threads, then you will have to turn the tire iron clockwise.
Depending on the type of threading that the lug nut has, turn the tire iron. If you have a problem in turning the tire iron, use the hammer to apply pressure on the tire iron. Since you have sprayed WD-40, you will not have trouble in turning the lug nut. If you have not used WD-40, then you might have to apply more pressure. In some cases, the lug nut is stuck, so, you might also have to step on the tire iron. Eventually you will have the lug nut loosened up. Similarly, you can loosen up all the lug nuts.
Once you are done loosening the lug nut, you can proceed with the steps to fix the flat tire. The above steps will surely help you loosen up the lug nuts. If you still have trouble in loosening the lug nuts, then you can call a mechanic, or tow your car to the garage, as you cannot change a tire without loosening the lug nuts.
When you are done changing the tire, see that you fasten the lug nuts properly, and place the lug nut caps, and the hub caps appropriately. If you have some trouble in fastening the lug nuts, do not risk driving your car, as this might lead to an accident. Always make it a point to check that you have all the necessary tools in your car, before you leave for a drive. Being stranded on the road with a flat tire is bad, but being stranded with a flat tire and no tools, is worse!