How to Remove the Spare Tire on a Nissan Frontierby Leonardo R. Grabkowski
A flat tire often comes at the worst possible time, possibly leaving you stranded on the side of the road. What complicates things further is not being able to figure out how to release the spare tire. On the Nissan Frontier, the spare tire is visible underneath the truck's bed, but there is no visible mechanism for releasing it. Fortunately, removing the spare tire is fairly simple; Nissan uses a retainer cable to secure it.
Turn your engine off. Set your parking brake for safety.
Obtain your Frontier's spare tire tool kit (jack rod and lug wrench); you'll need this kit to release the spare from its mount. The jack is also stored in the same location, but it is not required to remove the spare tire. If your Frontier is an extended cab model, this kit is stored in the console between the rear seats. Turn the large knob to "Unlock" to remove the cover and retrieve your kit. If your Frontier is a crew cab model (full four doors), pull the rear seat straps to fold the rear seat down. The kit is mounted behind it.
Fit the end of the jack rod into the side of the wheel lug wrench; this will form a "T" handle, which you can use to retrieve the spare tire.
Insert the tip of the jack rod into the spare tire release port located in the center of your tailgate, between the gate and the rear bumper. Use the handle to turn the jack rod counterclockwise.
Continue to turn the jack rod to lower the spare tire. You will see it gradually begin to approach the ground. Do not stop turning the jack rod until the tire hits the ground, and the cable holding it has a bit of slack in it.
Reach underneath to access the spare tire. Position the retainer at a vertical angle to slide it through the spare tire wheel's center hole. Turn the jack rod clockwise to raise the spare tire cable completely; do not stop until the port locks and the jack rod will no longer turn (otherwise, it's not "locked" and could fall down while you are driving).