How to Paint Rim Inserts


Painting a car's rim inserts is done in much the same manner as repainting the rims themselves. The inserts are often easier, however, because unlike the rims, the inserts can be easily removed for the painting process. There are a variety of aerosol can paints made for car rims, and they can come in many different finishes. Decide what color works for you and change the look of your rims in a few quick steps.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Rim cleaner
  • Sandpaper
  • Clean cloths
  • Drop cloth
  • Aerosol can of spray paint
  • Remove the rim inserts by prying them off with the screwdriver. Clean the insert with the rim cleaner and the clean cloths thoroughly.

  • Sand the old finish off the rim inserts to give them a surface suitable for the new paint to stick to. Use finer grits of sandpaper and take care not to heavily gouge or scratch the surface as you sand in a smooth, circular motion with slight pressure. Wipe the dust and residue from the inserts when they are prepared properly and set them on the drop cloth in a well ventilated area.

  • Shake the aerosol can vigorously and spray onto the surface according to the manufacturers instructions. Start with the can from 8-12 inches away from the surface and give them all a light coat with a smooth, steady motion. Allow this coat to dry completely before proceeding. Lightly sand off any runs or drips as necessary to ensure an even finish.

  • Apply more coats as necessary the same as you did in step 3, taking care not to put too much paint on the surface at any one time.

Tips & Warnings

  • Spraying on the paint too thickly can cause the finish to come out uneven or even splotchy looking.
  • Stop and shake the can as necessary to make sure the paint is sprayed easily.
  • Wear safety equipment such as goggles, gloves and a respirator when spraying the rims.

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  • Photo Credit Hub caps of different cars image by TekinT from
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