Two weeks ago, my son had a flat tire. I was only a few miles away, so when he couldn't find a jack or a lugwrench, he called me to see if I could come and help him.
So there we were, one mom, two 18-year-old boys and a 12-year-old girl. We figured out the jack and slowly lifted the car up. Then we tried to remove the lugnuts (I hope I'm calling things by their proper names.) When we did, the tire began to spin. It wasn't working.
I checked the time and discovered that it was a couple of minutes before 5:00. It was a Sunday. We loaded up in my car in search of an open tire store that could tell us what to do to keep the tire from spinning. (Don't you dare be laughing!)
We found three tire stores. All of them were closed. Two of them had employees in the stores, but they wouldn't come to the door in spite of my desperate expression. We started back to the car, knowing I'd have to call someone I knew and ask them what we were doing wrong. I didn't want to do this because of the mocking and humiliation I was opening myself up to, but it looked like we had no choice.
And then I saw it--Costco's Tire Center. The garage doors were still open, beckoning me to come inside and ask for help. I pulled up to the doors, hurried to the employee who was beginning to shut the garage doors and explained our predicament. He laughed. Not with me, but at me. And not in a jovial way, but in a "you're an idiot" way.
"You have to remove the lugnuts while the tire is on the ground. The ground keeps the tire from rotating." Okay. That made sense. So humbly, we drove back to the car, lowered it to the ground, removed the lugnuts and then raised it back up. In just a few minutes we'd changed the tire.
So this is for all of you who have never changed a tire or for those of you, like me, who have changed a tire, but it was at least two decades ago. Remove the lugnuts before lifting the car off the ground. It will save you time and embarrassment.