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Old 12-27-2018, 11:35 AM   #1
MikeNW
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1997 SL
Default Tire Time coming- DIY?

1997 SL
196,000 miles
Tires are 175-70 R14 as you know. And this size is becoming scarce.

I mount and balance my own motorcycle tires. The hardest part is breaking the old bead.

Does anyone mount their own car tires? I would buy a decent tire from Tire Rack for example, mount, then take to tire store to spin balance.

Or is this just not possible.

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Old 12-27-2018, 11:37 AM   #2
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

And will 185/65R14 fit on steelies, without scraping anything?

...
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Old 12-27-2018, 12:12 PM   #3
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1995 SL1
Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeNW View Post
And will 185/65R14 fit on steelies, without scraping anything?
Yep it fits. I've had the stockers, 185/70R14 and now the 185/65R14s.

I've just had the shops do them, but some tires can be done DIY. It mostly comes down to the proper tools and methods. I've know a few guys that did a lot of off road stuff that could swap just about anything in a garage with basic tools.

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Old 12-27-2018, 03:51 PM   #4
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

Just to be stubborn, I dismounted tires to replace old rims for new ones for the exercise and to be a little more knowledgeable. No tire tools, just long screwdrivers of prybar size. Aluminum rims, making it a delicate operation to avoid scratching them. Some well placed cardboard shims between prybars and rims. Zero experience with a few YouTube videos for hints. If I can do it with incorrect tools, anyone can. Bead braking was the most difficult until I came up with a home made bead breaker. Leverage using 2x4, chain and 3x3x6 piece of wood to break the bead. I won't bore anyone with how long I struggled (the laughter would bring peace to the world). Did I mention I was stubborn and determined to do it? Even buying Harbor Freight tire spoons didn't make it any easier. Only because they're basically great for steel rims. Not for aluminum. Did I mention I'm stubborn? I learned and practiced replacing old rims with new ones. I can say this is not for the faint of heart on aluminum rims. Drove to a small shop and had them balanced.

Google every YouTube video so you have the basics understood. If steel rims, it's easier with a set of tire spoons or red necking it with long screwdrivers. There's one video of a diyer dismounting a car tire in about five minutes or less, remounting in the same time frame. If you have aluminum rims, let the tire shop do 'em. Shops should have the better tire equipment to handle aluminum rims to prevent scratching clear coating or paint that protects against oxidation when bare aluminium is exposed to weathering.

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Old 01-06-2019, 11:53 AM   #5
Cavell
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

quite easy to put a bare rim on car and use the car weight to force down the rim onto old tire to break bead. up/down about 100 times and you are done.only a fool would try that with a scissor jack. got to have a nice hyd jack i just broke down an 2009 tire on some rims i got. talk bout stiff sidewalls

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Old 02-20-2019, 02:01 AM   #6
dssl1
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

I've changed dozens of motorcycle tires by hand. Changed 5 (full size spare) tires on the saturn by hand and decided I'll never do that again. MUCH harder to do than MC tires. The reason I did it was the tires were $29ea and mounting was $16ea. Sure I saved $80, but then took it to Costco for a 5 tire rotation, balance and nitrogen fill for $25. Saved $55 in the end. Worth it? Not by my book.

185/65R14 is factory tire size for my 01 SL1

I broke the bead same way I do motorcycle tires. Put wheel/tire on a doormat, then put a short piece of 2x4 on the bead as a ramp, then drive the car/truck up it until it pops. Then step on it to break it the rest of the way. Used 2 motion pro tire irons and a big screwdriver to pry off and on.

Last edited by dssl1; 02-20-2019 at 02:16 AM..

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Old 03-29-2019, 12:54 PM   #7
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

I think in some workshops if you can change the wheels, if they could not with the machine they have and the mechanic wants, they can do it by hand. This last option is not available in many workshops, especially in the chains of workshops that are in a hurry and do not do it.

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Old 04-08-2019, 12:51 PM   #8
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Post Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

Discount Tire has raised their installation price from $16 to $20 per tire, and I'm considering mounting my own tires again. Looks like I'll save ~$90 after Costco balancing. I forgot to include tire disposal fee in my last savings calculation. You can save the tire disposal fee because you are allowed to dispose of old tires in a dumpster ONLY if you cut the sidewalls off the tread.
http://www.kdheks.gov/waste/policies/BWM_2011-P2.pdf

With a sharp razor knife blade this isn't really all that hard.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5X0IGufgYdQ

Just flatten the old tread, fold it in half and shove them in shopping bags. Sidewalls stack up neatly and fly right in the dumpster with a discus-style throwing motion. Dont think you're doing the environment any favors paying a retailer to dispose of your tires. They wont be recycled as the supply far exceeds the demand and capacity to be recycled. Cutting them up is actually the most environmentally sound thing to do.

I said it wasn't worth DIYing in my last post, but as with anything, the first time doing something is always the hardest. I'm sure it'll be at least slightly easier this time, having done it before. You also have to weigh the value of your time. Saving $90 is worth 2-3 hours work to some people, but not to others.

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Old 04-10-2019, 08:29 PM   #9
sc2 saturn
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Signmaster View Post
Yep it fits. I've had the stockers, 185/70R14 and now the 185/65R14s.

I've just had the shops do them, but some tires can be done DIY. It mostly comes down to the proper tools and methods. I've know a few guys that did a lot of off road stuff that could swap just about anything in a garage with basic tools.
they will work but increase your speed by 1.5 kmh or mph

if you want to match your speed best to get a 205-60-14 which is almost exactly your tire size

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Old 04-11-2019, 02:23 PM   #10
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

I got a cheap manual tire changer from Harbor Freight for under $50. I got it for my little utility trailer which has steel rims. But then I decided to try it on some cars and it works pretty good. Steel wheels are never an issue, but it will damage aluminum. I used a 5th wheel lube plate (which is just a Teflon disc). I cut 2 round sections to put under and over the rim where it mounts to keep it from scratching. On the bar itself, I cut pieces and used a propane torch to heat it up and wrap it around. Works pretty good. The ones are the bar are starting the wear out, but I have plenty of that disc left over to make more.

For balancing, I got a cheap bubble balancer and either reuse weights or use stick on weights. It takes a little patience to get them balanced, but it works great for a daily driver. For any kind of performance car, I'd stick with a machine balance. I just did my second set of tires on my Fiat myself, the first set went 70K miles with no abnormal wear or vibrations. I also recently did my Saturn Vue. All in all, I've done about 20 tires on it so far and it's more than paid for itself.

Before I got it, I used to change the tire pressure sensors every tire change too, on my Fiat they last about 100K miles, so changing tires at ~70K meant they probably wouldn't last another 70K. But now, I can just break 1 bead, change the sensor and fill it back up without rebalancing, so I change them as they fail now because it doesn't take long. Saved me a little money there.

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Old 05-02-2019, 04:31 AM   #11
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sc2 saturn View Post
they will work but increase your speed by 1.5 kmh or mph

if you want to match your speed best to get a 205-60-14 which is almost exactly your tire size
I'll confirm that on my SL1 with 185/65R14's, my speedo says 45mph when speed trap signs tell me I'm doing 42mph.

This makes me wonder about my mpg... am I really getting 34mpg average over a tank? or is my odo off by as much as my speedo is off? If 42actual/45reported = .9333, then 34mpg X .9333= 31.7mpg actual. So I'm thinking if I upgrade to 15" rims with 185/60R15 tires, it should put my speedo and odo closer to actual speed and distance, and even if my mpg drops to 31 or 32, it would be the same, effectively.

Also means 200k on the odo is actually only 186k travelled...

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Old 05-02-2019, 09:31 AM   #12
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

If I'm not mistaken, tire circumference affects speedometer and odometer accuracy. For comparison purposes, the mile markers on highways may be the best way to determine speedo and odometer accuracy. With several miles of flat road, hold a steady speed from the initial mile marker to the next one. When passing the second mile marker the odometer should count up exactly one mile, the distance traveled from one mile marker to the next. Odometer measuring relies on the factory supplied tires. If the aspect ratio or sidewall height of a different tire isn't the same as the factory tire then odometer accuracy changes. This changes speedometer accuracy. When stock tires are used, a car should be accurate in speed and odometer readings when using mile markers since this has been accepted as a good calibration method to check speedometer and odometer. The odometer should count correctly one mile between mile markers. Repeat as many times to determine accuracy.

Once tire aspect ratios deviate from factory dimensions, tire circumference changes slightly. This change affects both readings by 5-10%.

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Old 05-04-2019, 11:17 AM   #13
MikeNW
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

My Suzuki 2-wheels speedometer is 10% fast! Which is common for Japanese 2-wheels.
GPS is a godsend. Better than mental math all day long

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Old 11-13-2019, 04:37 AM   #14
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Default Re: Tire Time coming- DIY?

Google every YouTube video so you have the basics understood.

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