Most Young Drivers in the UK Can’t Change a Car Wheel With a Defective Tyre!

Two motorists lent down changing a car tyre on a sunny day.
Licenced under CC 2.0

In the UK there is a certain stigma about the young being impractical and too pampered compared to their elders. This attitude is of course a result of later generations directly circulating these views without reservation!

Here at Intelligent Car Leasing we never like to take anything at face value and so we decided to put such views to the test via a survey of 1000 18-25 year olds. In the motoring world the task of being able to change a car wheel with a defective tyre is something that the more practical of us can usually do. However it’s not so technical that you need a huge deal of mechanical knowledge to undertake correctly.

The Survey

In a survey of one thousand 18-24 year olds, funnily enough those who are least likely to lease a vehicle we posed the simple question “Do You Know How to Change a Car Tyre?”. The results were as follows:

Results of Survey Showing Most Young UK Drivers Can't Change a Car Tyre

The responses show that the majority of them do not in fact know how to change a car tyre with 54.5% of all participants revealing they didn’t know how to complete the task.

We asked a separate small sample of ten 18-24 year olds why this might be the case and the following insights were given:

  • Breakdown cover is included with many insurance policies now and therefore it’s easier to know you can call them up in such incidences rather than learn how to make the change.
  • Changing a wheel or tyre isn’t part of the driving test and they’ve never had a flat so there’s been no need to learn how to do it.
  • More cars now have run-flat tyres which will keep the car driving in the event of a flat for a certain distance which eliminates the need to learn how to change a wheel.

Demographic Breakdown

The responses we got to this survey were obviously split between male and female respondents from the 18-24 year old UK population. This means that we can drill down a little further into the responses to see the difference between what male and female participants told us in relation to their ability to change a wheel.

Male respondents said that they were more capable of changing a car tyre


Females in the 18-24 year old age bracket claim they are not as adept at changing car tyres

Young males are clearly more confident in their ability to replace a wheel with a punctured tyre with 57.1% of respondents claiming that they are able to do so. This is not the case when looking at the responses from female participant with only 34.0% answering yes.

It’s possible that this split in responses is due to the fact that there are more young male driving licence holders than there are females [1]. Therefore they’re more likely to have learned these skills as a result. However it could also be that young males are more likely to be embarrassed by not being able to change a tyre and were more inclined to answer yes than no.

Statistical Significance of the Results

When asking the question we made it as straight forward and plain as possible so as not to create a leading or weighted question that prompted a certain response. The Yes/No answers were also displayed in a random order each time so this had no impact on the overall results either way.

On the survey platform we used the question was answered slightly more by verified male than female participants but the results were still deemed to be statistically sound with the responses collected being close enough to overall demographics of the UK populus to have confidence in their validity.


Clearly we can see that in more than half of cases if an 18-24 year old was to find themselves in a situation that required a wheel with a burst tyre to be replaced they’d need assistance. This is in some ways surprising as anecdotally more older drivers have this ability and the skill either hasn’t been passed on or learned by younger people yet.

We kindly ask that you attribute when referencing the findings of this survey in any way.

This entry was posted in Reports & Research on by Marc Murphy