how to break the bead on a tire

How to Break the Bead on a Tire: 4 Easy Steps


It is essential for car owners, especially beginners, to know the basics of car maintenance. It is unavoidable that dirt and other debris get inside the tires during many off-road trips and when you reach more than a thousand mileage. That is why you need to know how to break a tire bead yourself. You will not only be saving money for a simple task that you can do in your driveway, but you will also be keeping up with the maintenance of your tires.

There are many bead breaker how-to instructional materials, like how to break a tire bead on a bike and a motorcycle, but in this article, we will focus on a car’s tire. It can be done in more ways than one to break a tire bead, such as with a hammer or a C-clamp. But for this one, we will use the tools easily found in the garage.

4 Steps to Break the Bead on a Tire

CGI Automotive will provide you with four trouble-free steps, including the tools you will need to perform this essential care for your tires.

Step 1: Prepare The Tools and Position the Tire on a Hard Surface

Before you can get started on how to break a tire bead by hand, prepare the following tools needed:
– Standard Jack
– Ratchet Tie-Down Strap
– Valve Core Remover Tool

Step 2: Remove the Valve Core

To start breaking the tire bead, remove the valve core using the remover tool to release the air pressure. To easily remove the wheel off the rim, wait until all the air pressure is gone. You can check this by pressing your hands against the tire’s surface. Make sure that the tire is lying down flat on a hard surface. Working on concrete will be more accessible; this way, the air will release from the tire evenly.

Step 3: Use The Standard Jack And The Ratchet Tie-Down Straps to Remove The Bead On The Tire

This process is an essential step in breaking a tire bead. Carefully follow the instructions to make sure you get all the necessary details.

Set the standard jack on the floor and use the saddle part to remove the bead. Lift the jack saddle, then put the ratchet tie-down straps on the jack’s left and right side axle. After which, lift the tire and place it on top of the jack’s saddle. The idea here is to position the saddle between the rim and the tire but ensure that it does not touch the top of the edge but only the rubber/tire.
The technique of this is to look underneath to see its placement.

Use your hands to feel the saddle position if it’s a bit hard. The goal here is to let the saddle push the rim. If you are already confident of the saddle placement against the edge and the tire, then the next one is to tie the wheel using the ratchet tie-down straps. Let the tie-down strap and the ratchet pass through the different holes of your wheel. When letting the other end of your tie-down strap reach the ratchet, let it pass under your jack and run it through your ratchet to lock it up or tighten it.

Tighten the tie-down strap properly on the ratchet; check underneath if the saddle is on top of the rubber tire and not the rim. After the ratchet tie-down straps settle on the tires, lift the jack slowly. You will know that the tire bead is broken when you hear a slight “pop” sound, and yes! It’s a success! Check underneath to see if all is done on that side.

Step 4: Do 1 to 3 For The Opposite Side Of The Tire

You will need to repeat the previous steps on the other side of the tire. The process will be simple for you as we are already familiar with the instructions.

Every tire has a different status regarding how glued the rim is to the tire. Some may come off quickly, but some may also be hard. Nevertheless, all we need is patience to get this thing done right.


You might find breaking the bead on a tire by yourself harder than you think, but if you follow the steps above with patience and determination, everything will fall into place. Remember that teaching yourself how to break a tire bead is essential to maintain your car. Service centers are readily available, but this will cost you whenever you want it removed.

Trust yourself and trust the process. Car enthusiasts also started by learning the basics. If you want to save cost in the long run, try the DIY (do-it-yourself) approach; you’ll be amazed at how you can do repairs that service centers usually do. In every endeavor, there are milestones to complete. Just take it easy, and you’ll get there. Job well done!

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