Can Bent Rims Be Repaired?
Bending a rim is quite easy. All it takes is driving up against a curb or a running over a hard object. A rim that has been damaged should be checked out by a specialist as soon as possible because it can be quite dangerous to drive around with. Wheels can be quite expensive to purchase and replace, especially if new. Luckily for most, a bent rim can easily be repaired and straightened.
Although it seems bent wheels and rims can be easily repaired at home, it is always recommended to take your wheels to a reputable wheel shop. They have mechanics and auto body specialists that are trained explicitly in wheel repairs. They will provide a high-quality repair and professional service.
Preparing for Wheel Repair
Depending on your situation and circumstances, you could do one of a few things. If the tire is very slightly bent and you have a reputable wheel shop nearby, then you could drive to the tire shop. Make sure to drive under the speed limit and avoid driving aggressively. Not following these instructions could lead to further wheel damage. If the tire is flat or you had a blowout, then we highly recommend taking the wheel off the car and bringing it to your professional of choice. Although this may not be the easiest option if you don't have access to an extra vehicle. If your car has a spare tire, you could replace the bent wheel and tire with the spare tire. You could then take the bent rim and tire to a reputable wheel shop at your earliest convenience.
Don't try to remove the tire from the wheel itself. Tires fit securely to the wheels and can be hard and dangerous to remove. This should only be done by a professional at a trusted wheel/tire shop. It is quite easy to induce further damage to the rim and cause damage to the tire if you attempt to take off the tire yourself.
How Bent Rims Are Repaired
To repair a bent rim, a wheel shop will clean and prep the wheel. The bent rim will then be heated until the metal is softened. An industrial hydraulic press is used to straighten the center and exterior; this removes any bends in the rim's lip.
If the wheel needs more work done, additional metal can be spot welded onto the rim. A lathe is then used to straighten out the rim further and to remove any unneeded material. Depending on the amount of work required, a wheel shop may also apply a clear coat or powder-coating on the finished product.
Don't forget to read our previous article on the dangers of driving with a bent rim.