How to Size Wheel Rims

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If your car has a damaged rim, you need to replace it. Buying a new rim is costly, but junkyards are often the sources for cheaper used parts. The choice comes down to money and how much you would be willing to spend. You have to sure the rim you buy is the exact same size as the one you are replacing. Buying one new is simple: just give your current rim size to the sales person. If you opt for the junkyard route, however, you can find the size of a rim by looking at its size stamps.

  • Determine the number of parts that comprise the rim. If a rim has two parts, you will have to look in two different places for the size stamps. If the rim has three parts, then you will have to look in three places.

  • Examine the rim and look for the dimensions stamped on the metal, which include numbers with the letter "X" between them. For example: 20 X 7.0.

  • Look at the rim's side ring, if the rim features one. There should be a number stamped on the side ring, preceded by the size of the rim. For example: 20 x 7.0 -- 7.5.

  • Look at the lock ring. This third part of the rim should have the previous two sizes printed on it, as well. There will be a third number listed, which is the lock ring's size. For example: 20 x 7.0 -- 7.5 -- 8.0.

  • Compare these dimensions to the rim sizes for your car and make sure they are an exact match.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you do not have the experience or the proper tools to mount a tire to a rim, it is best to leave that to a professional mechanic.
  • You can find a rim size by looking at the tire size on the tire's sidewall, such as P205/60R15. The "R15" is a rim diameter size, which is more useful for finding the hubcap's correct size, but not in finding the exact size of a replacement rim.

References

  • Photo Credit sports car rim image by Lario Tus from Fotolia.com
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