3 Easy Ways to Mount a Tire

Every driver should learn how to mount a tire. It will save you the money that you’d otherwise have to fork out at a tire repair shop. You will also end up saving time. As driving the car to the mechanic and waiting for them to get free before they could tend to your tire is a laborious process.

You have three methods using which you can mount a tire. The first involves using a machine and is undoubtedly the easiest, especially if you have the machine at home. The second process, meanwhile, relies on a non-automatic tire changer.

Both these processes require the investment of capital. That’s why the average driver may shun them in favor of the third method. One that allows you to mount the new tire with nothing but a pry bar and your bare hands. It involves more effort than other methods but is achievable with a lot of effort.

Read on to know more about all three methods.

How to Mount a Tire

Follow these steps to mount a tire:

Method 1: Using a Tire Machine

Mounting a tire with the help of a machine is a quick and easy process. That’s why almost all tire repair shops and dealerships employ this method. Only a single person is needed to carry out this method with success. Here’s how:

What you’ll need?

  • Tire machine
  • Tire lubricant

Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Lubricate the tire bead

Lubricate the tire bead

Use a tire lubricant to moisten the tire’s rim edge and bead. Don’t use grease or soapy water for this purpose. The first will be extremely difficult to clean off, while the second won’t be slick enough. Both may cause the tire to de-bead during fast cornering.

Step 2: Put the tire on the rim

Put the tire on the rim

Swing the mount arm in the direction of the rim’s edge. Then place it at such an angle that the lower bead is pointing diagonally toward the mounting element. Getting the right angle is crucial for the success of the entire method. Pay extra attention.

Step 3: Rotate the turntable

Rotate the turntable

Gently press the pedal to turn the turntable. This will cause the tire’s lower bead to slowly slide onto the metal rim.  

Step 4: Mount the upper bead

Mount the upper bead

Place the tire on the rim in a diagonal way and press the pedal. Keep it pressed until the turntable’s rotation causes half of the bead to sit on the rim. Then, press the other half that hasn’t seated yet and again press the turntable.

Pro Tip: Use your knuckles to seat the tire on the rim. Make sure that the tire is fully seated before you rotate the turntable for the second time. Failure to do so may damage the bead.

Step 5: Release the arm and seat the bead

Release the arm and seat the bead

After releasing the arm and pushing it to its starting position, use the tire’s air pressure to seat the bead. The bead might not sit immediately. If that’s indeed the case, open the tire’s valve stem and put a hose onto it. Follow it up by pressing the pedal. Pop sounds will come out as the bead fits the rim’s edge.

Final Step: Release the jaws

Release the jaws

Once you have done that, re-install the valve stem core. Inflate the tire to its manufacturer’s recommended pressure using the pressure gauge on the machine.

Method 2: Using a Manual Tire Changer

Understanding how to mount a tire using a manual tire changer would be extremely easy if you are aware of the workings of this machine. Its working principle is similar to that of a tire machine, only you won’t be dealing with any pedals.

What you’ll need?

  • Manual tire changer
  • Tire lubricant

Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Lubricate the tire bead

Lubricate the tire bead

Use a tire lubricant to moisten the tire’s rim edge and bead. Don’t use grease or soapy water for this purpose. The reasons for that are already explained in the first step of the previous method.

Step 2: Put the tire on the rim

Put the tire on the rim

Once you have put the tire on the rim, keep on pushing it until the lower sidewall ends up resting on the rim. You may have to push the tire quite far to achieve this seating arrangement.

Step 3: Turn to the upper side

Turn to the upper side

Manual tire changers have a lever bar between the tire’s rim and its bead. As you lift it, you’ll see that a tiny section of the bead will start folding onto the metal edge. Continue to repeat this process (lift the rim, fold the bead over the metal edge) until the rim has the entire tire covering its surface.

Step 4: Install the valve stem core

Install the valve stem core

Only do that after you have taken the rim and the tire off the changer. Follow the installation of the valve stem core by covering the tire centerline with a ratchet strap. This is important as the strap will seat the bead after the mounting of tires.

Step 5: Apply pressure on the tire and fill it with air

Apply pressure on the tire and fill it with air

Doing this will serve two purposes. It will help the tire sit snugly on the rim and allow the beads to settle down. The sitting down of the tire on the rim will cause pops, so you may not want to keep your hands on the tire during this step.

Final Step: Remove the strap

Remove the strap

Follow it up by inflating the tire to the manufacturer’s recommended pressure. Make sure there aren’t any leaks afterward.

Method 3: Using your bare hands

Mounting a tire with your bare hands isn’t easy. You’d have to expend a lot of time and effort to see the job through. But if you cannot afford to invest in a tire mounting machine or a manual changer, this process is worth the effort.

What you’ll need?

  • Tire lubricant
  • Pry bar
  • Tire inflator

Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Lubricate the tire bead

Lubricate the tire bead

Follow the instructions given in step 1 of the previous two methods.

Step 2: Lay the rim on flat ground

Lay the rim on flat ground

Then place the tire on top of the rim. The surface should be stable, even, and flat. Place a piece of cardboard underneath the rim if the surface is concrete or blacktop.

Step 3: Press the bottom lip tire onto the rim

Press the bottom lip tire onto the rim

Stand on the tire and apply pressure with both feet to force the bottom of the tire onto the top of the rim. Lay your hand on a nearby wall for balance (if possible) or ask a friend or family member to lend a hand.

After you have seated the lower bead onto the rim, apply more lubricant to the tire. This will make it easy for the remaining rubber to slide over the metal.

Step 4: Press the upper lip of the tire onto the rim

Press the upper lip of the tire onto the rim

Divide this step into two mini-steps. In the first part, apply as much effort with your hands as possible to press the upper lip onto the rim. Once you can see that that the tire is no longer going down, use a pry bar to maneuver the lip over the remaining portion of the rim.

Keep on doing it until the tire’s lower and upper beads are past the lip of the rim.

Pro Tip: To prevent the pry bar from scratching the rim, press it into the lower side of the upper lip of the tire.

Final Step: Inflate the tire

Inflate the tire

Use a tire inflator to inflate the tire as per its manufacturer’s instructions.

Conclusion

You now have three methods at your disposal using which you can mount a tire. The first, which involves a machine, will allow you to get the job done quickly and conveniently. The second process which counts on a manual tire changer won’t require much time and effort as well. However, you’ll have to put in a lot of effort and time if you’re going to mount a tire with nothing but your bare hands.

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