Taking Care of Your Truck Wheels and Tires

Truck wheels and tires can be a major vehicle investment. In fact, some tires and wheels can be expensive and it’s important to take proper care of them, if you want to get the most wear, and keep them looking good. Here are some helpful tips for taking care of your truck tires and rims.

Tire Rotation

In the past, rotating truck wheels and tires was quite simple, because most tires were pretty much universal. In other words, they could be run on either side of the vehicle. However, this is not the case today. Here are four important factors which affect rotation:

  • Directional or non directional tires – some tires are designed to turn in one direction only, while it doesn’t matter with others. This will have an effect on how your rotate them.
  • Drive system – you must take into consideration if the truck is front or rear wheel drive and if it has four wheel drive or not. All wheel drive is another consideration.
  • Spare tire – if you have a doughnut type spare, it cannot be used for rotation. However, in some cases, full size spares may be part of the rotation process.
  • Staggered truck wheels and tires – some trucks may have wider tires in the back, and this will affect the rotation pattern.
    As you can see, there are many different patterns which can be used for rotation. It’s best to check with an automotive professional before rotating tires.

Cleaning Your Truck Wheels and Tires

You’ll want to keep your rims and tires clean and looking good. However, simply driving through the car wash is not usually enough, especially if you are running high performance wheels. Plus, you need to make sure you do not scratch or damage your wheels while cleaning.

Clean Tires First

Some people make the mistake of cleaning the wheels first, and then have to go back and re-clean, after cleaning the tires. Do the tires first.

Soft Bristle Brushes

Make sure to use soft brushes, especially if you are cleaning aluminium alloy wheels. Take your time while cleaning.


You can start with mild soap and water and if necessary, use cleaning products designed for your wheel types.

Brake Dust Removal

Many modern truck wheels and tires are large and this makes them prone to brake dust. As brake pads wear, the material gradually comes off and often attaches itself to wheels. If wheels are not cleaned regularly, brake dust can become corrosive. Use a special wheel brush and soak with cleaner. Rub softly until the dust is gone.

It’s OK to use a pressure washer on tires (especially when covered in mud) but it’s best to rinse wheels manually or with a garden hose, and dry them with a soft cloth. Micorfiber cloths are a good choice.


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