As McCormack said, “there is nothing to reinvent in a wheel, just attach it to a new wagon.” We really can’t do much about wheels ourselves. But, what we can do is to renovate them, beautify them with the modern taste.
This integral part of your vehicle can ruin the entire appeal of your automobile. No matter how good is the body paint, a dull wheel always catches the eye. So, we need to make the wheels as good looking as possible.
To do that we will need the best spray paint for rims. But these chemicals have a lot to offer.
Without proper knowledge, we can easily take one which doesn’t match our taste. So, here is all the detail you need to know about wheel paints with the current market-leading brands.
Benefits of Wheel Paint
There is a lot you get from wheel paints. Though it has a lot of jobs like protecting your wheels and preventing dust and dirt from settling, its primary goal is to make your wheels look as good as possible.
You will also find many types of paints on the market. Not all of them are for the same use. You can use one as a binder and another as a gloss. Some paints don’t even have pigment in it. They are used to give effects on your wheel rim.
5 Best Spray Paint For Rims
It is tough to make a good deal on these products if you don’t have much experience. So, if you don’t know the art of the deal, then take one of the products below.
1. VHT SP183 (11 oz.)- The Best Black Wheel Paint
Your wheel rims go through a lot in the road. Maintaining a good finish for a long time becomes a big issue. Especially for the people who love their automotive and take extra care of the rims because they know it is the place where people look to be amazed. For those people, VHT is a perfect match.
It is a clear coat type paint. Its primary job is not to paint your wheels rater keeping the paint intact for a long time. It has specialized chemicals which bind the paint to the rim. This also features UV inhibitors that prevent damage against UV rays accompanied by oxidization protection.
This paint uses a synthetic acrylic binder which is the most common and effective in the current market. However, don’t be skimpy on the coating. Have at least three layers of coating on your wheel rim. The eleven-ounce spray bottle has a shelf life of 24 months or two years. Hopefully, you won’t need that long.
Painting with it is also very easy. You can easily DIY this job. After your first coat, it will dry in just 20 minutes. You can easily handle the wheel after three hours and remove the tape after seven days. Yes, the tape removal time is a bit long, but it gives the best result.
It is combustible, so be careful with that. The flash point is -20F degrees. It is not that you are gonna reach that temperature but better to know than to not. The bottle can also withstand a heat up to 900 degrees. It also is reluctant to cracks, flakes and peeling making it safer. This has a conical nozzle for your comfort.
2. Rust-Oleum 248928- The Best Wheel Spray Paint
Some products are marketed too much, and some just focus on their performance. We found Rust-Oleum to have an outstanding marketing department. But we never thought that the performance would be this good. This is one of the best products that we have ever tried in our research.
Rust-Oleum packs eleven ounces of matt black paint in it which is the ideal measurement in the current market. It restores the original look of a wheel which is far cheaper than buying a new wheel. This also increases the beauty of your hub caps. They didn’t even leave this tiny detail.
This product works best with aluminum and steel. It is also good for plastic hub caps. Steel and aluminum are susceptible. You need to do a lot for these materials. Like; the paint has to be rust and corrosion protective. Otherwise, the paint will wear out soon.
The paint is completely weather resistant. Drive you tires on salt water or micro grains of dust. This will also prevent scratches from a certain amount of load. If you be a little careful, the paint will last for a very long time.
This gives an elegant flat finish. A single bottle can cover up to eight square feet to give the exact measurements. Once you paint the first coat, it will take 10 minutes before you can touch it which is very impressive. If you clean the paint job with a mineral spirit, it will provide you the professional look at home.
It has a dry time of half an hour. So four tires will take about two hours. Remember to apply when the temperature is from 50F° to 90F°. You can also use it for wood.
3. Sherwin Williams 70049- The Best Paint for Rims
Sherwin has always supplied us with the best products in the market, and this paint is no different. You can buy this without giving it a second thought. It is best if you want a glossy finish. When you go online and search for its review comments, you know how reliable this product is.
You might be intimidated by the powder type paint. It requires some protection while painting the wheel. But there is a reason why it is still dominates the market. It gives you military powder coat finish that everyone desires. People will not be able to tell the difference between paint and powder.
The color you are dealing with is high gloss black. So it is gonna be shiny and eye-catching. You do have to have a close look at the lint, or you might have problems with the finish later. It gives your rims a wet feel that makes it even more appealing. This is the best you can get in this configuration.
There are some benefits of using powder paint. The primary one being not requiring a solvent. In liquid color, you need a solvent for keeping the filler and binder in liquid form, but you don’t need that with powder paints. The powder forms a skin around the surface when it is applied.
It is polyurethane single stage paint. The brand also gives excellent after sale service. You will also find abundant information online about applying this correctly. All in all this product is a complete deal maker. Purchasing it should make your life a little bit easier.
4. PlastiKote 620 (12 oz.)- The Best Wheel Paint for Aluminum
This is a 12-ounce bottle of black spray. It has a semi-gloss black tone. It looks very nice in almost all kinds of wheels. You can also use them for motorcycles. It is a color that has a universal match. These are also very effective in spraying. You will need just two bottles to complete four 18 inch wheels.
PlastiKote gives quite a makeover to your wheels. The paint can turn your chrome or silver aluminum rim into a complete black matt color. And it also stays a long time. Our researchers found that a single paint job of the wheels, cars, and brakes lasts about a year without any significant problem.
Many expect it to be charcoal matte gray. But it is not. It isn’t metallic either. It is somewhere between gloss and matte. It is a bit flatter then semi-gloss. I hope I was able to make you understand the correct tone of the color. As pictures don’t always tell you the right shade, you have to feel it from the description.
You can use a primer with the color. It works nicely with this paint and stays on the rims for a long time. Another misconception that many tend to have is that it would make a layer of skin on the applied surface. This particular paint does not do that, but there are some paints in the market harboring this flaw.
This product is also very durable. Different weathers and landscapes will have no effect on your wheel. You can use it on hub caps, auto trims, and grilles. This can also be used in other vehicles. It is entirely immune to scratches and bumps.
5. Dupli-Color HWP101 (12 oz.)- The Best Wheel Paint
We all know Dupli-color. They have been with the American motor fanatics for decades now. Since the rise of suburban life and close relations with automobiles, Dupli-color has made life on wheels much more comfortable. And this wheel paint is another of their great products that will change the look of your car.
Just from the look of the spray can, you can tell that it is a metallic color. This color gives you a metallic finish. It reflects light creating a wonderful prism of glamour. This restores the original look of the wheel and the rim. You will love it after first use.
Once you are finished with the painting, you have to wait 30 minutes until you can touch the paint. But you can’t yet handle it. To do that you have to wait an additional 30 minutes which makes the handling time about one hour.
This paint is really durable. You will not see cracking or flaking. There is no possibility of peeling as it is not a layer. It adheres to the wheel with a sturdy grip. You can also call it weather resistant. This can be ridden in salty conditions. You will also not have to think much about corrosion as it is rust resistant.
It is made with an acrylic enamel formula. Apart from the virtues described above, the paint can also stand high heat. It also won’t wear out under harsh cleaning solvent and other chemicals.
Key Factors Consider Before Buying – Best Paint for Rims
Buying chemical products are always tricky. Everyone has a car, but not everyone knows about these paints. So here are the things you need to know for making a conscious purchase.
Here are some of the paint types you need to be aware of. All of them are good at what they do. Study their characteristics to choose the one that matches your needs.
This is an undercoat. You will spray it on the metal surface for better adherence to the paint. It will give your paint a grey and black shade. Without it, you will see flaking in your paint and cracks may also appear.
2. Base Coat
This is the second coat on your wheel after the primer. It is raw paint. You have to use it with a binder or else this will not show its full potential. This helps to shine your wheels. A clear coat on top of this will enhance the beauty even more.
3. Clear Coat
This part does not involve any color. It is used to shine the wheels. It also helps to make a protective coat on your wheel paint to prevent cracks and blemishes. This also slows the rate of oxidization and UV radiation. Most of the time these are made of polyurethane. Its primary job is to make the wheel gloss and shine.
There is also acrylic lacquer which is a little outdated but provides the best shine, but it has very low protection. It is best for restoring jobs. Many are using metal paints these days.
There are many landscapes in our country that puts a great challenge on the paint. Dusty roads can scratch the paint on a micro level that will falter and show up with time. It should also be able to go through salt water.
This paint should also have UV inhibitors that give the paint immunity from harmful sunlight. It also needs to be oxidization resistant. This feature will prevent the paint from getting blunt
Color and Tone
The most common colors you will see in the market is mirror black matte, white, and chrome. But you can always get crazy with the colors.
Timing of Application
There are some duration that you should be aware of when buying a wheel paint. Here are those with the maximum ideal duration-
- Time to touch- 15-30 minutes
- Time to handle- 1 hour
- Time to remove the tape- 12 to 24 hour
Thermal imagining shows that car wheels can easily reach up to 100°C or 200°F. The breaks can even reach 150°C or 300°F. So you have a pretty hot situation there.
The paint should be able to handle this kind of heat. It should not get blunt or lose its charm in those high temperatures. The application temperatures should be somewhere around 50°F to 100°F. Try to buy from reputed sellers and manufacturers to get reliable data about the temperature.
How to Paint Your Wheel?
Here are the five steps you need to follow;
Step 1: Clean The Wheels
Your primary goal is to scrape off all the greasy stuff from the wheel with soapy water. It does not have to be shiny clean. Just let no oily substance stay on the rims.
Step 2: Smoothen The Surface
Get a flat disk, sandpaper or a metal wire brush. You have to smoothen all the rough spots, scratches, curb rash or any other damage that is on the wheel. It will show up after the paint is done if you don’t.
Step 3: Wipe The Rim
Use rubbing alcohol to clean your wheel. Make sure that there is nothing on the wheel after you have finished this step.
Step 4: Apply Primer
You first have to secure your tire from getting any paint on it. For that use paper, tape or tire shine gel to cover your tire. Also, protect the valve stem. Then apply the primer. Apply three coats of primer. After each coat, wait for three minutes and rest 10-30 minutes after the last layer.
Step 5: Apply Color
Lastly, you need to apply the colors from different angles so that you cover all the sections of the wheel. Coat three times maintaining a resting period of three minutes between each application. You can apply gloss, mirror or other effects at this stage.
Now that you are done, here is a video that will show you practically how to do it efficiently.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What should be the resting period between each coat?
A: It should be between 3-10 minutes.
Q: How much paint I need for my wheels?
A: For four 18 inch wheels, you will need a maximum of 4 cans of 12-ounce paint. You can do the math for your wheels.
Q: How to maintain the temperature of the bottle?
A: Use warm water to maintain the required temperature. Take a glass of warm water and put the can into it when you are not using that.
Q: Why my wheels have irregularities in the paint even after scrapping?
A: After smoothening the wheel, the dust from the process builds upon the wheel. That traps air and makes those anomalies. Try to use a leaf blower or air compressor to blow those dusts away.
Q: What is the flash-point?
A: It is the minimum temperature where a liquid becomes flammable. The lower the flash point, the higher the risk of ignition.
There are a lot of things that you can figure out yourself. Dealing with paints is not one of them. You have to understand the chemical composition and what that chemical does in particular environments.
Now, you have to get a degree in chemistry just to paint your wheels. So here, we have everything you need to know about paints and applying them.
Research yourself and find your best match. And, if you don’t wanna do the hard work, just take one of the top five we have mentioned.