Whether you are replacing an old set or looking to personalize with custom wheels, there are a variety of steps to go over before you purchase your aftermarket wheels.

Aluminum Alloy
This is the most common custom wheel sold in the aftermarket. Heat dissipates quicker with aluminum. It is also lighter than steel resulting in faster steering and greater suspension reaction allowing you to use larger or lower profile tires for superior performance. Since aluminum alloy is more formable it offers the maximum variety of styling, sizes and finishes.
All are two piece (outer/rim and center) pressed together and welded. The center piece is most commonly steel, but can also be cast or forged aluminum. Steel wheels remain a strong part of the custom wheel market because backspacing/offsets can be varied, lower price and expanded color choices. They are also popular replacement wheels in winter months, especially in severe climate areas.

The cosmetic finish of a wheel not only makes a big difference in how your wheel of choice looks, but also in how often you will need to regularly care and clean them in order to maintain their factory appearance. Special cleaning and protection products are necessary on certain wheel finishes. Pep Boys offers a wide selection of wheel care products you will need whether the wheels you're interested in have a painted, polished, machined, or chrome finish.



Machined Face

The bolt pattern or bolt circle, is the diameter of an imaginary circle drawn through the center of each lug hole. The wheel bolt pattern must correctly match your vehicles bolt pattern or the wheels will simply not fit on your vehicle. Learn how to find your vehicles bolt pattern in order to know that those dream wheels you are searching for will even bolt on in the first place.

The Offset/ET is the measurement difference between the wheel mounting surface/pad and the center line of the wheel. Positive offset means that the mounting surface is moved towards the outside of the wheel or street side. A Negative offset is the opposite, towards the inner or axle side. Zero offset means that the mounting surface is aligned with the center line of the wheel.

Width or Mounting Width
Width is the measured horizontal distance from the inside of the Outer Rim Flange to the inside of the Inner Rim Flange.

Wheel Diameter
Diameter is the measured vertical distance of the wheel from inside the Outer Rim Flange to inside the Outer Rim Flange.

Wheel Center Bore
Bore hole or drill hole in the wheel center that allows the application vehicles mounting area center hub to fit through the wheel.

Bolt Pattern or Bolt Circle
Measure the diameter of a bolt pattern/bolt circle with a bolt pattern/bolt circle gauge when possible. Knowing how to measure bolt patterns is very important. Here is a simple but accurate way to measure and estimate the bolt pattern when a gauge tool is not available. 1) Use a ruler, or tape measure (one that shows 32nd's of an inch is best). 2) For a 4, 6, or 8-bolt wheel, you simply measure from the center of one hole to the center of the lug hole directly opposite it. With 5, or 7-bolt wheels, it is a bit more difficult. Going clockwise, start with the lug hole at the top of the pattern and call this number one. Measure from the center of hole number one, skip number two, and measure to the back of hole number three.

Back Space
This is the measurement from the back of the wheel mounting surface/pad to the outside of the inter rim flange or back side of the wheel. A simple way is to place the wheel face down a top of a soft protective surface, using a straightedge laid across the back side or axle side of the wheel inter rim flange, measure just outside of a lug hole from the wheel mounting pad up-to the bottom of the straight edge. This is the back space or backspacing.

Passenger Car and Truck wheels and rims hold the tires together and it is their rotation that moves your vehicle, so this makes the tire and wheel combination a vital part of every vehicle on the road. Due to their importance in the functionality and your personal style choice, a wide variety of wheels and tires are sold by Pep Boys today. Custom wheels or "Rims" come in many materials, sizes, and prices to suit vehicle specifications, driving conditions, and personal preferences of you the user.