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Like automobile tires, hand truck tires are filled with air. This helps them roll more smoothly over uneven surfaces and helps dissipate the heat produced by the tire’s spin.
But also like car tires, occasionally hand truck tires will deflate, become damaged, or otherwise need to be repaired or replaced.
Proper Tire Inflation
Adding air to hand truck tires is easy: The maximum PSI usually will be noted on the sidewall of the tire. Simply use a air compressor to add air to the tire nozzle, using either the pressure gauge on the compressor or your handheld tire gauge to tell you when you’ve added enough.
This can be done while the tire is still attached the hand truck and nine out of ten times this is the only repair you will need to make to most hand truck tires.
If the tire is worn, split or otherwise unusable, you will need to replace it. The biggest problem most businesses have is that they don’t usually have spare hand truck tires on hand. And why would they? It’s not something you typically have to replace very often.
The problem is that if your hand truck tire is flat and can’t simply be re-inflated, your hand truck is out of service until you can order a replacement tire. And depending where you order it from (and how much you are willing to pay in delivery charges), you may be without that hand truck for anywhere from a few days to a few weeks.
Helpful Tip: When ordering a replacement tire for your hand truck, get two. That way you won’t have to wait around for a replacement to arrive next time. And make sure you buy one that is compatible with your brand and model of hand truck.
Removing the Tire
In some instances, it’s only the inner tube that needs to be replaced. But in others, the entire tire may need to go. In either case, you are going to have to remove the tire from the hand truck in order to make the repair.
Lay the hand truck down on a flat surface with the package spade and truck handle facing down to form a triangle shape with the wheels of the hand truck off the ground.
If there’s an axle end cap, remove it. Then locate the cotter pin that holds the wheel on the axle and straighten the bent portion using a pair of needle-hose pliers. The use the same pliers to pull the cotter pin out.
Remove any flat washers from the axle and put them someplace where you won’t lose them. Then pull the entire tire assembly off the axle, leaving the interior flat washers where they are.
Replacing the Tire
Then simply repeat the same process in reverse with the new tire. Push the tire onto the axle, then the outside flat washers, then push the cotter pin into place and bend it back into position with the flat side resting against the wheel hub.
Voila! You’re back in business!