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How-To: Wheels: Proper Method for Removing Chrome Plated Lug Nuts

Question:

My Vette came with Chrome wheels and shiny Chrome lug nuts. Any tips on removing the lug nuts without chewing them up?
 
Answer:
 
Editor's Note: I feel like the most of the car care industry has wheel care all wrong. They produce a rather strong wheel acid rather than producing a wheel care system. Zymol is the exception. They have a fantastic wheel care kit. Just remember that your wheels are subject to as much abuse as your paint but in different ways so it is best to be pro-active to damage rather than reactive with chemicals. By that I mean that an ounce of protection goes a long way.

This Winter if your 'Vette is put away and you are going to methodically clean it up I suggest you take each wheel off and Detail it in your house on some newspaper in front of the TV. Without further ado Here's my Ultimate Wheel Care Guide.......

Chrome and painted lug nuts may scratch during removal and installation. Here's my guide for Safely Removing Lug Nuts:
 
Before you start make sure that you have the following:
Lug Nut Wrench
Thick Placstic Freezer Bag
Jack
Jack Stand
Car Wash Solution
Wash Bucket
Detailing Brush
100% Cotton Towel

Make sure that they are cool to the touch.

Step 1: Wash them as you normally would
Step 2: With a Detail Brush get down and clean the recesses as best as possible.
Step 3: Wrap a heavy-duty Plastic Freezer Bag over one Lug Nut. The plastic will stretch but will not tear for metal to metal contact. When using a rag for protection ---- a rag will tear and thus damage the lug nut.
Step 4: Place the Lug Wrench over the Wrapped Lug Nut. Make sure that the Lug Nut remains covered.
Step 5: Position your body in such a way to eliminate the effect of torque on your back.
Step 6: Release the Lug Nut and give two full rotations.
Step 7: Repeat Steps 4, 5, and 6 in a 'Star Pattern'. Start with a fresh section of plastic for each lug.
Step 8: Jack up your Wheels one at a time and secure a Jack Stand in the appropriate support area.
Step 9: Remove the Lug Nuts and store in a safe place.
Step 10: Remove the Wheel.

Here's my guide to Detailing your wheels:

Make sure that they are cool to the touch.

Step 1: Wash them as you normally would
Step 2: With a detail brush get down and clean the recesses as best as possible.
Step 3: Use your clay bar to clean up the surfaces.
Step 4: Use a non-abrasive paint cleanser to polish the surfaces. If you need to polish the wheels use the appropriate polishing material. Zymol's HD Cleanse, Lusso Paint Revitalizing Creme or the equivalent.
Step 5: Wax (I suggest that you apply a few coats) Your wax can be your regular car wax be that Zaino, Pinnacle, Zymol, Lusso, P21S, Mother's or Meguiar's. If you have chrome wheels DO NOT wax them as chrome needs to breathe.

For maintaining your wheels use your car wash solution diluted into a spray bottle.

DISCLAIMER:  This How-To article contains information from other Corvette owners and enthusiasts that are members of the Corvette Action Center forums. Any information used from this How-To section is used at your own risk. Although we do our best to screen and verify the information provided here, the Corvette Action Center is not responsible for any inaccuracy in this How-To section. Always consult your service manual and/or a qualified automotive service technician before conducting any type of automotive repairs or modifications on your own. For further information, please review our Legal Disclaimer.

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