How to Paint the Wheels on your Car

How to Paint the Wheels on your Car


Hey guys Chrisfix here and today. I’m going to show you how to paint your wheels in this video I’m going to be painting these steel wheels to make them look Amazing and to transform the look of this car because personally I don’t like the look of hubcaps Especially these hubcaps and under those hubcaps these steelies are all rusty and look horrible 🙁 So we’re going to go from these ugly rusted wheels to this which looks amazing and really transforms the look of the car The process I’m about to show you will work for any wheel you want to paint whether aluminum alloy chrome or steel And I’m going to be using common tools So you could do this at home if you have aluminum wheels that are polished and shiny [I] have a video on Scratches and curb rash on those and then polish them up in clear coat them I’ll leave a link to that video in the description, but if you want to paint your wheels then this video is for you So let’s begin Now there are five simple steps to spray paint your wheels the first step is to clean the rim with Soapy water to remove any grease Brake dust or Road grime the second step is to smooth down any [rust] scratches or curb rash with a metal wire brush Sandpaper or a flap wheel Step three is to wipe [down] the rim with alcohol to clean the surface for paint step four is to paint the wheel with primer and Step five is to paint the wheel with any color you want This will take you about two hours total to do all four wheels so let’s get started The first [step] is to take the wheels off your car and Clean them with soapy water you want to remove any brake dust and grease [that] might be on the wheels It doesn’t have to be perfect because the next step we’re going to sand down the wheel which will remove most of the brake dust anyway so just make sure you get all the grease off now with the wheel clean the next step varies based on the condition of your Wheel now what we want to do is we want to make this wheel as smooth as possible Any little rough spots scratches curb rash or any other damage will show up through the paint so you have to smooth those down? So if you have any deep scratches that Gouge into the metal get one of these 120 grit flat disks and smooth it out just like I showed you in the aluminum wheel repair video And you could do the same thing with 400 grit sandpaper [it] Just takes a little bit longer since these wheels are steel wheels and we’re dealing with all this rust Not really scratches are couches or curb brush. I’m going to use a metal wire brush on my angle grinder now This is a fine metal wire brush compared to a thicker metal wire brush And we only need fine because this rust [isn’t] [bad] at all And the good thing is both of these could be bought for [less] than 20 bucks [now] if you don’t have a dremel or an angle grinder you can use old fashioned sandpaper to sand down the wheel just like in the aluminum wheel repair video you go from 400 to 600 to 800 to a thousand grit to smooth down this whole surface You’ll get the same results with the sandpaper as you will with anything else it just takes a lot longer Which is why I’ll be using the angle grinder and remember if your wheels are steel just like this which you could tell because the magnet sticks to them it takes a lot more pressure and a lot more time the Sand scratches smooth in steel because steel is harder compared to aluminum aluminum will sand a lot faster now [let’s] get started removing this rust now at this point. We want to use I lung and hearing protection We don’t want this dust to get in our lungs or our eyes and the little metal pieces on the wire brush tend to shoot out if it hits a rough patch So you don’t want that in your eye? Now we’re going to start by sanding the whole wheel down the goal here is to get the surface Completely smooth and rust free focus on removing that surface rust Make sure you get into all the difficult spots like the center of the wheel here While you do this pay attention to the Tire stem So you don’t damage it and make [sure] you don’t forget about the edge of the Rim But be careful with the tire because you want to do your best to not hit the tire with the wire wheel Finally get over by the wheel weight now you might want to take the wheel weight off when you paint the rims That’s up to you I’m not going to because you’re going to have to balance the wheels afterwards these are brand new Tires And I’m not getting [them] balanced again So I’m keeping the weight on I could always touch up the paint if the wheel weight ever has to get removed Make sure you get in every crack and crevice you want to make sure you remove all the rust and any Imperfections because that’ll show right through the paint you can see this spot looks clean and free of rust but upon closer inspection it still Has some roughness to it this roughness will show right through the paint just like this, so make [sure] you get it completely smooth Now look at that difference make sure you do that for the entire Wheel even if your wheel is in great shape with no rust or scratches [sand] the whole surface down with 600 Grit so the paint has something that grab onto this will make the paint last a lot longer And resist chipping and peeling now. I told you to wear eye protection and check this out This is why these little pieces of metal from the wire wheel come flying off and imagine if this went and hit your eye So be [smart] and be safe because that’s very important all right this looks great It’s completely smooth with no rust or deep scratches [a] little bit of black left over is the original Powder coating and it’s not coming Off that easily so [you] can spray right over it without any problems now on to step [three] the first thing I like to do is I like to hit the wheel with some compressed air or if you don’t have an air compressor a leaf Blower would work well and just blow all [that] dust that you created from sanding off the wheel If you don’t have some type of pressurized air, then just wipe the wheel off with the towel now [for] step three We’re using rubbing alcohol pour the alcohol onto a paper towel preferably a paper towel That’s low lint and just make sure you rub down the whole wheel to get it clean Every surface should be touched by the alcohol and paper towel we use alcohol because alcohol is a good solvent plus It’s very volatile So it evaporates and dries quickly you want to clean the wheel until you can wipe the wheel with a new paper towel And it’s completely clean like this once your towel is clean you are ready for step 4 spraying primer For step four find a spot away from anything you wouldn’t want to get overspray on such as your car Now the hardest part about painting is not getting any paint on your tire so I have two tricks that we’re going to use to help with that [the] first trick is tire shine gel get a bunch of Tire shine gel on the applicator and spread it on [the] outside of your tire being careful not to touch the [rim] at all if you get anything on the wheel or Even on the outside of the rim make sure you clean it off [with] alcohol right away Because the paint won’t stick and that’s the whole purpose of using tire gel if you get any overspray You’re just going to wipe it off because the overspray is going to stick to the gel and the [gel] Provides a protective coating and to make sure you don’t get the tire shine on the rim here Don’t go, so close leave a little gap that’s where trick number two comes in Handy using index cards and All you’re going to do is stick the notecards between the Rim and the tire All the way around so as we spray we’re going to have to go all [the] way across the wheel so the Index cards will protect the tire from overspray And if you happen to get some overspray on the tire the tire shine will make it real easy to remove that Overspray and the paint won’t stick to the tire one more thing to protect the valve stem [I] like to use the tip of a finger from an old glove and just cut it off then it slides right over the valve Stem just like that all right. We are ready to spray primer we use primer first because it bonds well to the metal and fills in small surface blemishes like Scratches it also gives the colored paint a really good surface to bond to now a helpful trick I learned for spray paint if the air temperature is less than 80 degrees Fahrenheit [put] your can of paint in warm water make sure the water is between 90 and 100 degrees Fahrenheit Which is basically the temperature of the hot water coming out of your sink doing this will give you a better spray pattern and less Orange peel and this cans nice and warm, so let’s go paint now. We’re ready to spray our primer make sure you read the instructions on the back of the paint can to determine what temperature range your good paint in how far to Hold the can from the wheels and how long you have between coats Make sure you paint in low humidity and with little to no wind when painting never start or stop spraying with a nozzle pointing directly At the wheel [you] [always] want to start from the outside Go across and end on the outside this will help your paint job Look a lot better for your first coat get a light even coat and don’t worry about complete coverage I start spraying with the can further away from the wheel And then I move in closer until I find the sweet spot where the paint gets evenly applied to the wheel Just like that So now our first light coat looks awesome Now remember to put the can back in the warm water while we wait two to three minutes between coats Three minutes later let’s do our second coat on a second coat We want to make sure that we cover all the wheel with primer and make sure you spray at different angles to get complete coverage You don’t want to see any bare metal at the end of this coat and one thing I like to do is go around the whole outside of the rim to make sure you get coverage between the notecard and the Rim And now you just have to wait another two minutes And we could spray the final coat [of] primer all right [onto] the final coat of primer Now is a good time to put your colored spray paint in the warm water and let it heat up with this last coat I’m going to slow down the motion of my arm a little bit which will make this last coat just slightly thicker and this will Help with the orange peel you don’t want it too thick though because then you’ll get paint that runs and that won’t be good So just finish up this last coat So there’s an even and full coverage And it’s that simple all three coats of primer are on and if you’re curious I used about one-third of the can so you can easily do two to three wheels with one can and that’s doing three coats each And to get a close-up. You can see how good this came out The finish looks nice and smooth and now we have about ten minutes for the primer to be ready for our black goop One thing I want to [mention] when you take the spray paint out of the water make sure you wipe it down good So none of the water drips onto the wheel as you’re painting now with the color you’re going to do the exact same process We just did with the primer spray a light even first coat and don’t worry about covering up all the gray make sure you stop And start spraying with the nozzle pointed away from the [surface]. You’re painting just like that After our first coat we wait three minutes and let it dry three minutes later. We [could] hit it with a second coat Make sure you cover up all the gray primer with this coat and spray it different Angles along the wheel Now we’re done with the second coat, so let’s give it three minutes and start our third coat all Right we’re on our final coat for the final coat. I’m slowing down my arms Just a little bit so that we can get a slightly thicker coat. Just like we did for our third coat of primer [and] Again, I’ll spray the rim at different Angles to get complete coverage And we are done if you want you could put a layer of clear coat on here for a glossy finish [but] this black paint I use has a glossy finish without clear coat, so it saves us a step by the way I highly recommend this paint. [I’ll] leave a link in the description to where you can get it I used it to undercoat my truck and I use it for painting all my suspension parts It’s Durable, and it’s just so [easy] to spray to make it Look good Now the last thing you want to do is you want to remember to pull the cards off so they don’t get stuck or peel? The paint when the paint dries and don’t forget [about] the glove tip covering the valve stem now this looks amazing It has [a] great deep shine to it the paint is smooth And I’m really happy with [it] Now all we have to do is let it dry for two hours and we could put it on the car It’s going to be a long two hours check this out [this] looks so much better than before and to make it [even] better [I] have this small chrome center. Cap which is going to complete the look check out the before and the after Look at that difference Now you can see at the bottom here and also the side here. We have some overspray All you have to do get that overspray off is using abrasive sponge Because we use that tire shine it comes right off The paint job for these wheels came out awesome [and] now you know how to paint your wheels so it comes out looking great Hopefully the video is helpful And if you try this on your own wheels take a before and after pic and send it to me or tag me in it On Instagram Facebook and Twitter [I] definitely want to see your painted wheels and maybe I’ll even feature it in a future video

100 thoughts on “How to Paint the Wheels on your Car

  1. Quick question, if doing this in the summer and the temperature outside is around 82 degrees Fahrenheit, would I still let the cans sit in warm water before starting?

  2. Wow! Someone on YouTube who knows how to spray paint. Well done.
    Goodrich Touring TAs are great tires.

  3. My dad bought some steelies for his new car cuz the last owner just used one set of rims for winter and summer tires…He sanded them and painted them black with some primer first and nice layer of clearcoar at last…The rims and tires really stand out when together after he painted them

  4. lmfao he painted the wheel weight…. ok so everyone out there wanting to do this…REMOVE the damn wheel weight prior to painting lol.

  5. My mum recently had her hubcaps stolen and the steel rims were really bad looking so this vid was really helpful!!!

  6. ok so i followed your guide, but i skipped almost all the bits before using paint – used my hand and brushed off dust – also i didnt mask off the area, i just sprayed, paint on rubber has come of in powerwashing – the rest looks great – it was old steel hubs, but i needed to watch this to actually bother to buy a spraycan.. so thanks 🙂 you inspire me

  7. Says to cover the valve stem with a piece of glove. Decides to prime the wheel with the valve stem exposed. 😀

  8. But what happen if my wheels are paint already, I must remove the paint first even if it is the same color I want to paint?

  9. مسوي يفهم زبدت الكلام وزبدت الفيديو صنفر الجنط وحط معجون اساس وخله ينشف ورشه بعدين اللون اللي تبي وخلاصنا مدري ١٢دقيقه على وش 😁

  10. I had a 1980 Toyota pickup with scratched rims. No matter, I decided to fix it up anyway back in 1994. Besides, the dings on the rim were positioned to where a flap sander could take them down to where it would disappear with Bondo topper. So I got rid of the tires and simply took one wheel to work each day to the shipyard where I worked and sand blasted them for free. I even did the spare because the spare tire was rusty and had a flat used tire, which I'm glad I spotted. So the rims now being clean, I used 3 coats of Rustoleum Primer and 3 coats of Rustoleum Glossy Deep Blue and let them dry for a week in a 75° zero humidity room. I was so impressed with this color that I had some Automotive paint matched to that color and had my cousin spray my truck that color along with the 2-tone color a few shades lighter than stock ugly bone white. Then I had some custom polished aluminum trim custom installed that accented the truck to perfection. Everyone at the shop and my friends were impressed. Next, I would find some polished stainless beauty rings and center hubs, which were not cheap BTW, to complete the look. I took pics and sent it in to a few auto magazines but they each told me unless I plan on beefing up that toad of an engine, they won't run it. However, the Toyota's were not built to be raced or to pull that much weight. They were meant to be a "small" truck for under 1/2 ton purposes, and they worked fine for that purpose. No real need to ramp up the ponies…

  11. This is the best tutorial video I've veer seen in my entire life. I hope I make you proud when I attempt this later on.

  12. I did mine. Not quite as well, but they're 10-10-10 – 10s at 10 feet away and at 10 mph. Good enough for winter wheels. Thanks for the motivation.

  13. My go whenever I look for how to do something to my car I find my way to this channel and scotty's channel, im happy these channels exist

  14. I have to say … that's the best video I've ever seen or anyting on YouTube. LOL..
    You are so very detailed..
    A mf plus…😂

  15. Tire crayon to mark where the wheel weight goes to reinstall after job is done. Although there's something to be said for the fact that by removing the rust, you essentially change the weight of the wheel; potentially enough to throw the balance off anyway. Not to mention hitting the weight with the wire wheel could remove chunks from the weight as well. There's no super right way to do it but I'd take the time to remove the weight and paint the entire wheel. If at all possible, wait to have the wheel balanced until after the paint process.

  16. More like 6 hours for the whole job. This was helpful. But I found it's better to use duct tape. I found is was difficult to get the index cards to stick

  17. I’ve had this video saved for about a year now and I finally painted my rims black and followed the steps and it’s turned out great!!

  18. Chris, I rewatch your old videos all the time.. they're so darn satisfying you watch. Happy to see you so successful after all these years. Thank you for helping me and I'm sure, hundreds of thousands of people.

  19. If he did a poll about if people came here to learn how to do this so they could actually paint there tires it'd be like 97 to 3 %

  20. Do you keep an extra paint can in the warm water while using the first can? Also, for those of us who have to work outside, does it make a difference whether it's a sunny or overcast day? Great video!!

  21. The idea of the glove tip is genius! I'm going to try this one my steel Silverado rims. I'm going to try rose gold paint for a unique look.

  22. Do you have a video on how to remove chipped paint due to sun damage or rust. I need to remove some chipped paint on my car so I can wrap certain parts of my car smoothly.

  23. 8:15 he forgot to put on the glove finger tip when spraying – 8:26 he had realized his mistake and it was there now on the valve stem

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