How to Repair Alloy Wheels

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How to Repair Alloy Wheels

Alloy wheels are a common answer to the expense of chrome wheels. While alloy wheels are prone to scratches and dents, the lighter material proves to be less expensive than other options. The great thing about alloy wheels is that they are easy to repair if damaged. Common causes of damage include road hazards, curbs, and potholes. Novices can fix the damage to alloy wheels with no specialized tools and just a few supplies from the local auto shop or parts store. Whether one is fixing up a car to sell or just trying to improve its looks, alloy wheel repair is a good place to start.

Required Materials for Alloy Wheel Repair

Repairing alloy wheels requires certain materials to clean, sand, bend, and grind the metal. In addition, filler, paint, and clearcoat make the job look professional and finished.


Use in Repairs


To flatten out dings

Punch Set

To flatten small dings


To remove excess material


To remove excess material and burrs

Wire Brush

To remove dirt and debris


To shape alloy material

Epoxy Metal Filler

To fill dings

Sand Paper

To smooth the surface

Spray Primer, Base, and Clearcoat

To prime, paint, and clearcoat wheels


To flatten difficult areas

It is possible to repair alloy wheels with nothing but supplies from a local shop and a bit of knowhow. A relatively simple repair can improve the looks of your vehicle and enhance its value.

Clean and Prepare the Wheels

The first step in the repair process is to clean the wheels thoroughly and inspect for dents, dings, and scratches needing repair. Use the wire brush to remove dirt and excess debris. With a fine sandpaper, sand the surface of the wheels until smooth. Some scratches may be visible, but those that the owner cannot feel by touch do not show up in the final paint job.

Sand the Wheels

Sand and thoroughly rough-up the entire surface to be painted with sand paper. Increasingly finer sand paper reduces the depth of the scratches in the wheel surface to the point where it is no longer possible to feel them. The owner should sand all surfaces visible on the wheels when they are mounted, including the areas between the spokes of the wheel and around the interior surface.

Address the Dings

The larger dings caused by road hazards, running over curbs, or anything else that has dented and deformed the wheels are the areas that need the most work. The owner should fix the dings to contour to the natural shape of the wheel, and sometimes may need to remove material and refill the voids later in the process. Metallic resin filler is one option for filling the voids created through damage to the wheel. The material is very similar to putty and the user applies it in the same manner. One simply kneads the putty-like filler material and fills the void with it. The directions stipulate how long the material must rest before the user shapes and sands it.

Sand the Repaired Dings

The repairer matches the shape of the surrounding wheel by sanding, filing, or grinding the cured metallic filler. The idea is to make the surface appear as new. When repairing the dings with the filler material, it is necessary to make the patch a bit larger than the damaged and missing area. That way the repair reduces after sanding and grinding to match the surrounding area of the wheel. Once the user has painted the surface, it looks as good as new as long as the user properly prepped it.

Prime, Paint, and Clearcoat

The finish of the wheel is comprised of three steps. First, the user sprays the fully cleaned, sanded, repaired, and smoothed wheel with primer. Spray cans from the auto store are acceptable for this process, but an air gun and compressor yield a more professional looking job. The primer has to dry and any areas that are rough require sanding. The base coat is next and goes on in a similar manner, but it has to be as close to perfect as possible, since all that is left is the accentuating clearcoat. The user cannot apply the clearcoat they have sanded and repainted the base and let it fully dry. Clearcoat comes in a variety of styles. The two-part clearcoat is best and provides the most effective coating. Spray clearcoat is acceptable if the two-part variety is not available.

How to Buy Alloy Wheel Repair Supplies on eBay

Buying the materials and tools to repair alloy wheels on eBay is a simple way to get everything that you need. You may already have some of the required tools, so it is wise to conduct an inventory before shopping. eBay provides a search field on every page, so it is easy to enter a search for whatever you need, such as "sand paper," or " Alloy Wheel Repair Kit." If you have specific questions regarding a product, you can ask the seller directly. Once you have found everything you need, simply go to checkout and with a few clicks your materials are on their way to your door.

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