How to spray paint car rims

In this guide, I will teach you guys the method to spray paint your car rims and get a shiny finish with a perfect look that will be a treat for the eyes.

In this guide, I will guide you with step-by-step methods of spray-painting car rims.

spray painting car rims

So that you people who are new in this field or just have started learning don’t create any mistakes and then mess up the rim.

Newbies should follow each step explained in this guide in order to get satisfactory results.

To change the color of your car’s wheels in order to protect them from excessive snow and winter weather, one might consider using a spray product.

However, this may not be enough to bring out the luster (shine) one is looking for when changing to a new color.


How to spray paint car rims?

Tools need to spray paint car rims

To spray paint car rims, you will need the following things:

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Masking tape or newspaper for covering tires
  • A brush to apply the paint,
  • Spray paint
  • Some strong gloves to keep your hands from getting stained

Prepare the rims for the painting process

First, clean all the grease and dirt from the rims. This can be done with soap and water, or a special cleaner like Simple Green.

If you want to learn how to paint a car with a paint gun then you can check my guide.

Use the brush and then wipe it clean with a wet rag. And remove all the dirt. Second, cover all the holes on the rim.

Mask it off with tape so that the paint doesn’t go inside the rim.

This can be tricky since the rim has a lot of holes. But the most important holes are valve stems, so be sure to tape those up.

Pay attention to the weather if you’re planning on painting your car outside.

It shouldn’t be excessively hot or humid and ideally, it’s between 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit with minimal humidity.

Be sure to keep your work area tidy when doing any paintwork or detailing to avoid dirty hands.

Fingerprints and other smudges can damage your paint job upon peeling off the tape.

Make sure to take care of any loose trash that may fall into openings such as the vents where dirt and debris could cause trouble with airflow and in turn stall your motor during operation.

Don’t know about removing old paint from rims then do not worry about it because I have a complete blog post written on that issue of yours too.

Clean the surface of rims before painting

Place two jack stands on the ground under each tire suspension. Lift up the vehicle using both stands and support the underside of each wheel from above.

Cleaning is a necessary process when you have to paint your car rims or outside or interior surface.

Slowly roll each tire out towards the street in front of your house. Wash down any dirt or mud from the outside of your wheels with a simple spray of water from a hose.

Scrub off any stubborn stains or oil spills where dirt has stuck to the surface. Rinse again with clean water.

Sand the surface of rims

Sanding the rims before painting is essential to create a clean finish. Rims should be sanded with 300-grit sandpaper to remove the finish and smooth out the surface.

Any high spots should be sanded before high-speed steel wool can be used. Be careful with the high-speed steel wool as it can leave scratches in the rims.

The last step is to buff out the rims with a clean microfiber towel.

Cover tires with newspaper or masking tape

If you are planning to paint your car rims and are worried about little scratches and/or rust on the surface of the wheels and/or tires, then use masking tape to cover the tires.

Cover both sides of the tires using masking tape.

Use yellow masking tape if both sides of the tires are black-colored rims. Use red masking tape if both sides of the tires are white-colored rims.

Prime the rims

The process is really simple. Just clean the rims thoroughly and wipe them off with a clean cloth. Then spray primer on exterior car rims.

You can use an old brush to apply the primer and then spray the primer on the rims. Make sure that you wear goggles when you spray primer on exterior car rims.

painting car rims with spray cans

Method to spray paint car rims

You need to spray the paint onto the rims. Use two or more light coats instead of one heavy coat.

Avoid over-spraying and ensure that the paint is evenly spread out. Use a paint thinner to clean off the spray cans.

Painting rims with a sprayer

You can spray paint car rims with a small, handheld paint sprayer. You don’t need a large compressor-style sprayer.

You will need high-quality spray paint, at least 2 cans for a pair of rims, some inexpensive painters’ masks, and a high-pressure hose or a pressure dropper.

Mask the tires, wheels, and surrounding areas of the car. Set out a drop cloth or tarp under the rims to catch overspray.

Close the doors of the vehicle to keep overspray out of the interior. Add a small amount of water to the paint. This will thin it and help it spray farther.

Give the paint a minute to thin out before you spray. Use the spray nozzle to create an even, light spray.

Hold the sprayer at least 10 inches away from the rim and your hand should be pointed toward the center of the rim.

Spray the back first. Spray one side of the rim. Spray the rim with the other side.

Spray the front of the rim. Repeat with the second rim. After the rims are dried up completely then put the rims back on the car and jack off the car.

Can I spray paint my rims?

Yes, you can spray-paint your rims. However, it is important to properly prepare the surface by cleaning and sanding it before applying the paint.

Additionally, it is best to use a high-temperature-resistant paint specifically designed for use on wheels. It is also important to follow all safety precautions when using spray paint.

Can you spray paint rims while on car?

It is not recommended to spray paint your rims while they are still on the car.

The best practice would be to remove the rims from the car, and clean and prepare them properly before applying the paint.

This will allow for more even coverage and a better finish. Additionally, it would be difficult to cover areas that are not easily accessible while the rims are still on the car.

What is the proper way to paint rims?

The proper way to paint rims is as follows:

  1. Prepare the rims: Remove the rims from the car, and clean them thoroughly to remove any dirt, grime, or brake dust. Sand the rims with fine-grit sandpaper to create a smooth surface for the paint to adhere to.
  2. Apply a primer: Use a high-temperature-resistant primer specifically designed for use on wheels. Apply the primer in thin, even coats and allow it to dry completely before applying the next coat.
  3. Apply the paint: Use a high-temperature-resistant paint specifically designed for use on wheels. Apply the paint in thin, even coats, making sure to cover all surfaces of the rim. Allow the paint to dry completely between coats.
  4. Clear Coat: Apply a clear coat to protect the paint from chipping and fading. Allow the clear coat to dry completely before handling the rims.
  5. Reinstall the rims: Once the paint is completely dry and cured, you can reinstall the rims back on the car.

It’s also important to note that it’s better to do this in a well-ventilated area and to use a mask to avoid breathing in fumes.

Do you have to sand rims before painting?

It is recommended to sand the rims before painting in order to ensure proper adhesion of the paint and to achieve a smooth finish.

Sanding the rims will also remove any dirt, grime, or rust that may be present on the surface.

A good practice is to start with coarse grit sandpaper (such as 80 grit) to remove any loose or flaky paint and rust, then progress to the finer grit (such as 120 grit) for a smooth finish.

After sanding, it is important to clean the rims thoroughly to remove any dust or debris before painting.


FAQ’s of How to spray paint car rims

This question does not actually have a correct answer. Not all rims are the same. Some rims will last for more than a year, but some rims will only last for a few months. Some rims will become cracked and dry within the first few weeks, while some won’t show even a single crack or the sign of any wear at two years. It all depends on how well you take care of them. People with the right skills can create the perfect finish on alloy rims and even paint the rims on a car. The technology is complex, but the end results are worth the work. Rims are best painted with a professional air compressor and an air spray gun. There are certain steps you’ll need to take to ensure that your rims don’t chip, peel or crack. Rinse your rims with water. This will remove any dirt, bugs and other impurities. Thoroughly dry the rims with a clean lint-free cloth. Mask off any areas that you do not want to get paint on. Spray a light coat of primer over the rims. Wait for the primer to dry. Spray a light coat of silver to get the best results.

Yes, you can paint your rims without taking them off from the car. The most important thing is to mask off the rest of the wheel and make sure there is no overspray or paint in those areas. To get an even coat of paint, you need to use a high quality spray gun. If you don’t have one, an alternative is to use an airbrush. With either of these methods, you also need to thin your paint. There are thinners available for that purpose. A third option is to use a brush to apply the paint. If you use a brush, make sure that you have lots of time to apply the paint evenly.

The lifespan of a powder coating depends on how the rims are maintained. The lifespan increases if you maintain them properly. In general, powder coating lasts for about two years, but if you maintain them correctly, it can last for about three years.

Powder coating wheels is a type of paint used to paint wheels of a vehicle. It is a form of electrostatic application which uses a powder base instead of a liquid or cream paint. Dry powder paint is used to coat the wheel which is then baked to form a hard, high gloss finish. Powder coating wheels is becoming popular due to its durability and cost-effectiveness. So does it weaken the wheel? No, not at all! If done properly, it can actually increase the life of the wheel. The coating is harder than the original coating and is applied in thin layers to reduce weight and add strength to the wheel. To be safe, make sure you work with a professional because improper powder coating wheels can damage the wheel.


Summary of How to spray paint car rims

Here it is my fellows! The complete step-by-step guide explained totally from my own experience of a painting career.

Which I have been doing for years and gained a lot of experience which should be considered while following this guide.

If you find anything confusing you in this post any step or anything just let me know in the comments sections and I will clear out your query at first sight.

Till then take care of your car and its rims and take good care of yourself also.

Matthew Edward

Matthew Edward is a professional painter who loves to paint and wants to share useful tips and tricks which he had learned in many years of experience in painting. He also used many products that can be used for painting he has tried and tested each and every product to give an unbias opinion about it in his review. This blog is very useful for those newbies who want to learn painting without making mistakes.

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