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 to know the basics of car maintenance, especially for beginners. When the car has been used for more than a thousand mileage, it is unavoidable that trash, dirt and other unnecessary particles get inside the tires, especially during off-road trips. Therefore, it is important to answer the question, “How to break the bead on a tire?” Yes, this is just an easy task for automotive mechanics in service centers but it comes with a corresponding cost. However, if you want to save or your budget is tight, then it’s time for you to learn the basics on how to break the bead on a tire.

Below are 4 easy steps for you to follow, including the tools that you will be needing to perform this essential care for your tires.

4 Steps to Breaking the Bead on a Tire

There are many instructional materials in breaking the bead on a tire, like how to break the bead on a bike tire, how to breakthe tire bead of a motorcycle, but in this article, we will be focusing on a car’s tire. There might also be a lot of ways to do this such as break tire bead with hammer, break tire bead with c clamp, but for this one, we will use the tools easily found in the garage. This is helpful especially for those just starting to learn the basics of car maintenance in order to save cost, as well as those who wanted to do the maintenance themselves in the comfort of their garage.

Step 1: Prepare what needs to be prepared

Some car enthusiasts have this so-called, “Bead-breaker hammer” solely just for the purpose of breaking the bead easily, but yes, this may cost a lot more as a ratio on how frequently you’ll be breaking the beads in your tires. Since our aim is to save cost, the tools that you will be needing for this activity are just found right in your garage. Aside from the tools that needs to be prepared, you also need to prepare yourself for some fun DIY automotive basics! The tools are listed below:

  • Standard Jack
  • Ratchet Tie-Down Strap
  • Valve Core Remover Tool

Step 2: Get The Tire’s Air Pressure Out

Using the Valve Core Remover Tool, remove the valve core to get the tire’s air pressure out. This should be done first and foremost before breaking the bead. This confirms easier breaking of the bead. Wait until all the air pressure is gone and you can check this by pressing the tire’s surface using your hands.

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

This process is the most important step in breaking the bead on a tire. Carefully follow the instructions not to miss out the important details.

Place the standard jack on the floor and use the saddle part of the jack to technically remove the bead. Lift up the jack saddle a little bit, just to have an idea on the positioning in relation to the tire. Next is to put the ratchet tie-down straps on the left and right side axle of the jack. After which, lift the tire and place it on top of the jack’s saddle. The idea here is to place the saddle just right enough between the rim and the tire, but make sure that it does not touch the top of the rim but only the rubber/tire.

The technique of this is to look underneath to see its placement.

If it’s a bit hard for you, use your hands to feel where the saddle is positioned at. The goal here is to let the saddle push the rim. If you are already confident of the placement of the saddle against the rim and the tire, then the next one to do is to tie the wheel using the ratchet tie-down straps. Let the tie-down strap and the ratchet pass thru the different holes of your wheel. When letting the other end of your tie-down strap to reach to the ratchet, make sure to 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 everything is settled, lift up the jack slowly. If the bead of the tire has already been broken, you may hear a “small pop” sound, and yes! It’s a success! Check underneath to finally call it done on that side.

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

After doing the first 3 steps, we might think our task is already done. But no, not yet. We need to repeat the process for the other side of the tire. However, this will just be an easy process to do because we are already familiar with the instructions.

Just a reminder, every tire has a different status when it comes to how glued the rim is to the tire. Some may come off pretty easy but some may also be hard. Nevertheless, all we need is just the patience to get this thing done right.


This might be harder than you think; but, if you will just follow the steps above with patience and determination, then everything will fall into place. Remember that you are doing this for your car and for yourself to learn as well. Educating yourself on how to break the bead on a tire is very important to take good care of your wheels. Service centers are readily available but then again, this will cost you every time you wanted it removed.

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

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