Believed to be the greatest invention of human civilization, the wheel has build nations with its vital role in influencing the growth of industries and flourishing of many cultures. In the automotive arena, wheels are not merely requirements for a vehicle but must-haves to enhance performance, looks and safety for the passengers.
There are many considerations to be accounted for when it comes to wheels such as dimensions, type and material catering to different needs of a vehicle owner. Basically, there are two types of wheels namely: stamped sheet metal and machine casting wheels. Cast alloy wheels like the aluminum wheels are lighter, firmer and costlier than stamped sheet metal wheels. Most common wheels on the streets today are the massed-produced and cheaper steel wheels for their various functions. But when it comes to handling abilities, alloy wheels have the edge as they minimize the vehicle's unsprung weight. They also have the ability to withstand heat from brake pads.
Today, wheels have become sophisticated with so much investment allotted for them. Custom after-market wheels, or rims, have become a status symbols for urban dwellers. The rims have become very much customized that they so have so many specifications. With its signature "sparkling" look, Some chrome rims include "spinners, " or bearing-mounted, free spinning discs which keep on rotating via inertia after the vehicle is stopped.
Most often, custom rims are either larger or smaller than the stock wheel mounted in the vehicle. Diameters of these rims range from 18" to up 30" depending on the type of the vehicle. Sparkling chrome rims represent the lifestyle and comfort of a vehicle owner for all to see.
Wheel Buyer's Guide
- Your car has four to five wheels, all of which are replaceable.
- There are two main materials used to manufacture wheels, these are steel and alloys.
- Steel wheels are more solid, and thus, are heavier. They are also cheaper alternatives to aluminum wheels. The latter, on the other hand, are lighter and more expensive wheels not made for utilitarian uses.
- Wheels can either be forged or cast while being made up of one component to three. This would determine the flexibility and durability of the wheels.
- If you feel like you purchased the wrong set of wheels, and would like to get more out of them before they’re due for a replacement, wheel accessories, such as a chrome wrap or a paint job will help allow you to fall in love with them again.
- Find the perfect fit for your car at CarParts.com, with the dedicated search filters for your car’s model year and make.
Your car most likely has five wheels, two at the front, two at the back, and one spare located either on the tailgate as well as underneath or inside the trunk. These are the most important parts of your car, as having them will determine if your car will move or not. It is important to know the types of wheels that you may encounter in case you chance upon the need to purchase aftermarket wheels.
Types of wheels according to the material used
In this part, the point of discussion would be the material used in making the wheel itself, and why it’s important to choose one over the other. There are pros and cons to every decision, however, there are correct choices to certain decisive moments.
Steel wheels - Steel is the most basic material used in crafting a wheel, as it’s the cheapest. Aside from these characteristics, steel is the heaviest material used in making a wheel. This is why steel wheels are not used in race cars, as they would definitely add a hefty amount of weight to the car, thus effectively slowing it down. What you may want these for are your budget cars or utility vehicles, which you don’t want to spend too much on, as these can take a beating.
Alloy is a type of solid compound of two or more elements. This is done to harden the material, to reduce its weight, and to decrease the cost of production. In alloys the most widely used primary element is Aluminum. This is due to it being lightweight and reliable. Mixing this with other elements would improve its overall quality and reliability, make it more affordable, and increase its longevity. These are better installed on cars that you may use from time to time, expecting performance and speed.
While many people look for this material in order to show off and add some pizzazz to their vehicles, chrome wheels aren’t solid chrome. Nothing is really ever solid chrome. It’s because chromium as an element isn’t necessarily as useful as it seems when it’s solidified. What happens is your wheel, regardless if it’s made out of steel or an aluminum alloy, is then covered with chrome.
You would only want to use these on sunny or cloudy days to maximize their effect, but if you’re going to be using them on either a rainy day or a snow day, it would be advisable to replace them with wheels of a different finish just to prevent damage.
Types of wheels according to how they’re made
Aside from material, there are differences in how wheels are made, and this affects their overall flexibility and reliability. Just like the differences in material, wheels made differently have pros and cons of their own.
Forged wheels are typically made from aluminum by forging. This process makes the wheel extremely lightweight and sturdy, making forged wheels the ideal choice when it comes to your car. The con, though, is that these are really costly, making it more painful for your pockets.
Casting is a process wherein the metal is heated to its liquid form and then poured onto a cast in the shape of the desired outcome, which n this case, is a wheel. This is the more affordable option, however, these are generally more rigid and heavy, making this type a much less durable choice.
Wheels that are made through casting are usually made in one piece. This is due to the fact that casting is an extremely simple process one needs not complicate. Casting multiple parts to achieve the same goal is inefficient, and thus, what happens is only one cast is made for the whole wheel.
Forged wheels generally have multiple parts. This process adds both malleability and flexibility to the wheel. Aside from this, having wheels with multiple parts also increase your wheel’s repairability. Instead of having to look for a replacement right away, having multiple components to a single part makes it easier to address problems and to customize.
In the end, the choice is yours. The only thing you need to remember is that your choices are simple, it’s either you purchase durable and affordable wheels or choose the more flexible, stylish, and expensive ones.
Wheels can be accessorized too. If you feel like you spend too much or too little on your wheels and would like to add more detail to your wheel, it is possible. There’s no need to stick to the same design that you purchased over a year or more ago.
Just as mentioned a while ago, chrome wheels are merely wheels with a chrome finish. This is what you apply to your wheels in order to achieve that shiny and noticeable look.
If you're trying to make your wheels look cool, this is the accessory for you. Applying these is easy and simple enough. Some use clip-ons, while others are built for multi-part wheels. The former is usually easier to attach and detach while offering less durability that the ones built for multi-part wheels.
If colored wheels are your thing, there are paint jobs available for them. Purchasing these not only offer an aesthetic refreshment to your car, but they also provide your wheels with extra durability in battling the elements.
These are more functional accessories to be used in specific circumstances. You can install snow chains in order for your wheels to gain more traction on slippery terrain such as snow, hence the name.
Finding the right fit
When purchasing replacement wheels, you have to find the right fit. Some cars have bigger wheel wells, while others have smaller ones. This characteristic lowers the amount of customizability that one may attain with wheels, however, if you really want to make your wheels bigger, body customization may be the answer, although, that would have to be in a different article altogether.
In purchasing wheels either for replacement or for upgrade purposes, it’s impeccable that you match the size of the wheel you’re eyeing to the actual size of your vehicle. It’s a good thing that CarParts.com has search filters that you can edit in order to find the wheel narrow fit to your wants and needs.
Alloy Wheels: The Pros & Cons
Let your sleek ride turn heads on- and off-roads with a good-looking, performance alloy wheel.
Sure, you got a head-turning auto packed with everything you need to endure long driving expeditions. But are you sure you’re not missing on something like… um, have you ever considered replacing its wheels with better ones? Well, your car is sure to look flawless with a complete alloy wheel set and slim tires. Aside from the gorgeous shiny looks, alloy wheels also guarantee optimum durability and higher carrying capacity. They, too, prevent brake failures as they efficiently conduct heat prevalent in the brakes. This is best especially if you use your car in racing and other demanding situations.
An alloy wheel is made from highly reliable metals like aluminum alloy and magnesium alloy. It has lighter weight and higher heat conductivity, and is more practical since it also improves vehicle style. With a set of alloy wheels, there’s no need for wheel covers to hide ugly wheel details. While alloy wheels are priced higher than steel wheels, repairing them when damaged costs less. The repair is a little difficult though, especially if the wheels are bent or a bit crumpled due to their ductility, but they can still be refurbished to appear like brand-new.
The only setback of owning alloy wheels is the wheels’ susceptibility to galvanic corrosion, a common condition that happens when the wheels are often immersed in electrolytes like salt or acid. Cleaning them every after your drive prevents this problem, though. So consider getting a set of alloy wheels and get those old wheels discarded.
Important Facts You Need to Know About Wheel
Low-quality wheels affect vehicle safety and ride performance. So make sure your vehicle's wheels are top-notch to make sure you are safe while driving.
As we know, going from one place to another is now easier with modern automobiles. Trips that used to take days and even weeks now only take hours or minutes. And, of course, you know what's probably one of the most important parts of a car, don't you? That's right, the wheel-every piece of it. There are two kinds of wheels in your vehicle: the car wheels and the steering wheel.
No car is complete without the wheels, because as we know, they're like our legs-they allow the car to move. They're also the most easily noticeable parts of the car. That's why many car owners choose to replace this part to give their ride a new look. Bigger car wheels give a more dynamic, edgy, and imposing look, thus they often get second glances from other drivers and passersby as well. Others, though, prefer smaller car wheels with pimped-up hubs. But you know what's more interesting? It's the fact that your car wheels are controlled by another wheel: the steering wheel. This wheel is used for maneuvering the wheels. Since these parts are interconnected, they must be maintained in their excellent shape at all times to ensure an efficient performance.
Don't neglect your vehicle's wheels. Because without them, you car is as good as a pile of junk. So once damaged, replace them immediately.
Wheel: Just the Facts
Sure, alloy wheels are hot these days. These wheels are lighter and look more attractive than the other wheels in the market. But the steel wheel is slowly making their comeback to the top of the list. Resilient to damage, steel wheels don't crack or bend easily in the event of accidents. Wheels made from dual-phase steel are generally thinner and more lightweight, allowing for speed gains for your vehicle. Steel wheels have been in production for many, many years, so you can trust that these wheels really deliver benefits. And who says these wheels aren't stylish? Nowadays, the replacement parts market is replete with styled steel wheels that can definitely give your vehicle a unique appearance. Check out our catalogs at CarParts.com and you'll see what we mean. CarParts.com is your best web-based source of premium steel wheels to replace your vehicle's stock.
• Features high resilience to damage
• Comes in many sportier, attractive finishes, and designs
• Can give your vehicle a unique stylistic edge
Wheel: What Every Car Owner Should Know
If you keep wishing your car were as glamorous as other cars you come across, then you've come to the right place. We can help you give your car a classy look. If there's one quick but effective modification that adds points to your vehicle's appearance, a custom wheel set has to be it.You can choose to equip your car from magnesium, alloy, or steel wheels. All these wheel types come with attractive finishes that can definitely catch attention on the road. More importantly, though, these wheels are also made to deliver top-notch performance.Magnesium wheels offer higher heat resistance and are usually lighter than other wheels. A wheel set made from alloy can dissipate brake heat more efficiently, preventing brake failure for a longer period.Steel wheels are popular for their durability; these wheels often require little maintenance. Whatever set you choose, you're sure to enjoy a lot of benefits. So browse our catalog at CarParts.com. Pick the wheel set you think suits your vehicle best, and we'll take care of getting it to you.
• Made of lightweight and durable materials
• Different sizes, widths and finishes to choose from
• Can change your car's appearance and improve your car's performance
Boost Your Vehicle with the Best Wheel and Tire Package
Wheels and tires are often taken for granted and overlooked on a per day basis, but these parts actually demand more attention and maintenance than most of the other parts on your vehicle. Even though you have an excellent engine and well-maintained exterior, driving your car to your destination would be impossible if not for your wheels and tires. Unfortunately, the set on your vehicle doesn't last too long and will normally demand for a replacement. This is where the useful tips in finding the best wheel and tire package for your needs and preferences come in.
Know the reason you're buying a new package
Other than to replace the old and damaged wheels and tires on your car or truck, changing them and buying new ones are caused by certain factors.
- To assemble a vehicle: A new set of wheels and tires is essential when assembling your own vehicle, of course. If this is the main purpose, you have several options available on the market today. You can opt for the new, aftermarket products or go for the used wheel and tire package sold by fellow DIY car enthusiasts.
- To maintain vehicle condition: Even if either the wheels or tires aren't fully damaged, replacing the entire set is encouraged. Only replacing one tire or wheel and keeping the rest the same will affect your vehicle's performance in the long run. Therefore, changing all wheels and tires at the same time—even if only one is worn out—is the smarter move.
- To upgrade overall look: Other than performance, the aesthetics of your vehicle is a major factor to most car and truck owners. The finish and quality of the wheel and tires do add to the visual appeal of the vehicle.
Know the right size for your vehicle
Wheels and tires come in different sizes. This is the reason installing a smaller-sized wheel as compared to the original one will result in a poor fit. This will also take a toll on the driving performance and could lead to road accidents due to difficulty in driving.
Know for what purpose the wheels and tires are
Different types and finish, which serve distinct functions, are available today. Gone are the days when a universal kind of wheels and tires can be used for all terrain and purpose.
- Daily street drive: Alloy wheels are preferred if you intend to drive around the city only. They boost your vehicle's look and provide sturdy support for everyday use. They also weigh less than the other kinds and are known for giving better brake clearance. Alloy wheels, however, need proper maintenance to avoid damaging the finish due to certain weather and driving conditions.
- Winter climate: If you live in an area where winter happens regularly, using steel wheels is advised. Not only do they cost less as compared to alloy wheels, they also fulfill the fundamental needs of beginners and experienced drivers.
- Off-road terrain: Wheels and tires for off-road terrains are different from the regular street tires in terms of construction and materials. The set for uneven terrains and harsh conditions should support heavier load and have stiffer sidewalls to get the job done. Meanwhile, the tread patterns have wider space in between to give enough traction when driving in mud and snow.