You’re at the side of a deserted highway, and also you require to adjust a tire. The course, girlfriend don’t have a speak wrench in your trunk. So exactly how to acquire lug nuts simply as tight without one?

Okay, that can sound favor the intro come a B grade scary movie, yet it could an extremely well it is in a actual scenario.

You are watching: How to tighten lug nuts without torque wrench

I don’t understand anyone that carries a torque wrench approximately in the trunk, however I do know several who carry tire irons. In fact, that can be since one ~ above a time, when auto manufacturers noted full-size spares, lock often consisted of a tire iron.

Contents show
1Below, ns will detail how to usage that and also another tool.
1.1Changing a Tire with a Crossbar tire Iron
1.2Step 1. Removed lug nuts.
1.3Step 2. Instead of a tire.
1.4Changing a Tire through an Extendable Breaker Bar
1.5Step 1. Remove the tire.
1.6Step 2. Replacing a tire.
2Do girlfriend Really need A torque Wrench?

Below, ns will detail how to usage that and another tool.

There room a pair of tools you have the right to use to acquire lug nuts just as tight together a speak wrench. With a crossbar tires iron, select the appropriate size socket and tighten by hand if you have actually the arm strength. If not, you should stand top top the ideal side that the tire iron come turn and also tighten the lug nut clockwise.

I have to note the your tire iron doesn’t need to be a crossbar—4-way—type. The single-socket form will job-related for this method as well. As lengthy as the socket fits the lug nuts.

Having a crossbar tire iron in the tribe can obtain you back on the roadway faster

Changing a Tire with a Crossbar tire Iron

Let’s i think the nuts space on very tight.

Step 1. Remove lug nuts.

Choose the best socket size and fit it over the lug nut.Take the tire iron in both hands and also turn that counterclockwise. If you nothing have sufficient strength in her arms to ease the lug nuts, was standing on the left side of the tires iron and use her body weight. Be cautious here. You don’t desire to fall!If you space a lightweight—literally—you may need to carry out a bit much more force, so lightly bounce her weight ~ above the bar.Remove the lug nuts.Jack increase the car.

Step 2. Instead of a tire.

Put your spare tires on the car.With your fingers, tighten the lug nuts together tightly together you can.Lower the car earlier to the ground.Again using the tire iron, tighten every nut in order. Use both hands and only tighten each a little at a time. Nothing tighten one as much as girlfriend can and also move to the next.

Use some usual sense in action 4. If you can bench press your body weight, tightening in the way outlined over is likely sufficient. If you can not crack the seal top top a mason jar, you should use her body weight.

If you in the second category, step ago on the bar, however this time top top the right side, therefore you’re tightening the nuts clockwise. Repeat this action until the nut feels tight.

This will gain you top top your means until you acquire a brand-new tire set up properly.

Changing a Tire through an Extendable Breaker Bar

I mentioned over that there space a few tools you have the right to use come tighten lug nuts if friend don’t have actually a speak wrench.

One is the tire iron mentioned over and the other is an extendable breaker bar. Breaker bars are capable of producing enough speak to resolve even the most stubborn lug nuts.

A breaker bar is a lengthy steel bar through a head that has a socket journey attached to it. The head generally rotates increase to around 240 degrees, which method you can acquire the bar in the best feasible position to produce enough leverage to address a chop lug nut.

If you have actually a breaker bar the extends come 18 inches in the trunk, friend have every little thing you require to readjust a tire . . . Assuming you have a spare, of course.

Step 1. Removed the tire.

1. Prolong the bar come the limit feasible without it hitting the ground. This provides greater force and also torque.

2. To the right the socket end the lug nuts and remove them.

3. Jack up the car.

Step 2. Instead of a tire.

1. Contract the breaker bar earlier to that shortest length.

2. Tighten the lug nuts as difficult as you can.

The advantage of shortening the bar is that it will prevent you indigenous overtightening the nuts due to the fact that you now have less force and torque.

Do friend Really need A talk Wrench?

The brief answer is no, they’re no absolutely necessary.

The longer answer is that if you can, you should. I m sorry is why i recommended above that if you readjust a tires without one, the will acquire you top top your means again, however it’s tho a great idea to have the nuts checked and also properly retightened.

Here’s the thing. Modern cars are very an accurate in their manufacturing. If you’re still sporting a 1980 Ford Pinto, girlfriend go best ahead and tighten your wheels without a talk wrench.

But if you driving a late version car, every little thing is computerized and also precisely calibrated.

Here’s what Car and Driver claims can occur if a talk wrench isn’t used. Note I claimed can, no will.

Overtightened lug nuts can cause your rotors to warpThey can strip threadsWheel studs can snap offIf you nothing tighten castle enough, they can loss off . . . Which way your wheel can fall turn off too.

Check your owner’s manual. Opportunities are that will provide you the precise torque specification for your vehicle.


So you’ve learned how to gain your lug nuts off without a torque wrench and how to obtain them tight again. And that it’s tho a great idea to obtain a agree or someone with a talk wrench to look at them later.

Can you over-tighten your lug nuts through hand? sure you can. If the not just your vehicle that’s jacked up. If you have actually the necessary muscle, you can tighten the nuts much more than the specifications call for.

The the opposite is true together well. If girlfriend can’t open a jar lid through yourself, it most likely goes without saying you’ll never acquire the lug nuts tight enough to keep your wheel on.

And if you have actually a lug nut that’s tight and daunting to remove, including your body weight to a tires iron or utilizing the herbal torque that you’ll discover with an extendable breaker bar will carry out the task for you.

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