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Old 04-12-2012, 01:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Beware loose wheel nuts

I had had a tyre replaced after ripping the sidewall on my passenger front side. They sold me a cheap replacement and also rotated the other tyres.

What didn't happen was the driver side wheels nuts were not nipped up as I found all of them loose and some barely finger tight. I had used a long handled torque wrench on the passenger side as they were so tight.

I found this problem because I was changing the pads and that's how I found out about the drivers side. The torque wrench literally fell out of my hand when I tried to apply pressure. I checked the others with my fingers and found them loose.

Scary.

That apart, the pads were easy to change. Now all I have to do is bed them in.
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Old 04-12-2012, 02:54 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Be thankful it wasn't the passenger (LH) side not tightened - because they work their way loose very quickly. (No need to ask how I found that out..... )
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Old 04-12-2012, 02:54 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murcod View Post
Be thankful it wasn't the passenger (LH) side not tightened - because they work their way loose very quickly. (No need to ask how I found that out..... )
G'day mucod,

Is that due to the rougher surface on the passenger side? Any clue as to why they were loose?
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Old 04-12-2012, 10:50 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I think it's due to the combination of the direction of the stud thread and the wheel rotation direction helping to undo the nut.
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Old 04-13-2012, 03:38 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murcod View Post
I think it's due to the combination of the direction of the stud thread and the wheel rotation direction helping to undo the nut.
Hmm, guilty but unproven hey?
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Old 04-27-2012, 09:27 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Other than a service station not torquing down your wheel nuts at all (or, insufficiently, or forbid, to much), you should be aware that *all* aluminum/alloy rims require 2 or 3 iterations of re-torquing after the wheels have been worked on:

-re-torque the wheel nuts a few days after they were worked on;
-re-check the torque yet again a few weeks later.

*the above does not apply to steel wheels, just aluminum/alloys; however, just to be on the safe side, I check my steel wheel lugs, too, (on the Silverado) at the same intervals post-service

Cheers
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Old 04-28-2012, 10:19 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dugway 52 View Post
Other than a service station not torquing down your wheel nuts at all (or, insufficiently, or forbid, to much), you should be aware that *all* aluminum/alloy rims require 2 or 3 iterations of re-torquing after the wheels have been worked on:

Cheers
G'day Dugway,

Right. I'm just surprised that they missed torquing it as they had rotated all my wheels.

When I win Lotto, I intend to visit Canada. I just bought "City of Gold" from your national film archive. It's about gold rush era Dawson city and that's the film that showed Ken Burns of The Civil War series the idea of how to pan and scan across still images.
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Old 04-29-2012, 09:34 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dugway 52 View Post
Other than a service station not torquing down your wheel nuts at all (or, insufficiently, or forbid, to much), you should be aware that *all* aluminum/alloy rims require 2 or 3 iterations of re-torquing after the wheels have been worked on:

-re-torque the wheel nuts a few days after they were worked on;
-re-check the torque yet again a few weeks later.

*the above does not apply to steel wheels, just aluminum/alloys; however, just to be on the safe side, I check my steel wheel lugs, too, (on the Silverado) at the same intervals post-service

Cheers
I've been behind the wheel for 40+ years now, and for the last 15 of those everything I own has had alloy wheels, - I've never had the need to retorque an alloy wheel - please note - never had the need, on the rare occasion when I have gone back to check, they were correctly torqued.

There was only one vehicle on which I've ever had a problem with the lugs becoming loose and that vehicle not only had steel wheels, but used lug bolts rather than lug nuts - lug bolts that screwed into threaded holes in the hubs, rather than threaded studs protruding from the hubs that you screwed a nut onto.

To make it clear - I've had vehicles with factory fitted alloys, vehicles to which I fitted after market alloys, vehicles with "lug centric" alloys and vehicles with "hub centric" alloys - none, not one, has ever given trouble with the lug nuts becoming loose and/or neededing to be retorqued.
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Old 04-29-2012, 10:27 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Hi Kev:

I'm glad you were able to actually find that 1957 classic documentary (our Canadian NFB is being gutted as I write!). I haven't heard many refer to this film in quite some time I have to admit.

I really enjoy Ken Burns' documentaries; we are able to see them on our HD TV without having to subscribe to costly cable fees (using my several element antenna to pull in FTA (free to air) digital broadcasts from across the US border) I remember either reading about (or, viewing on TV) a documentary on Ken Burns himself, describing his (Ken's "Ken Burns effect") visual style being derived from City of Gold...

Moderator:

My experiences with and my sphere of colleagues' (4x4ing) experiences with hub-centric and lug-centric aluminum/alloys:

This is a big issue entre those using *painted steel* wheels and/or aluminum/alloy wheels, where (apparently), aluminum wheels may have or develop a thin oxide film, and when the aluminum/alloy wheels are mounted to disk/drum(s), the "clamp-load" can be reduced or lost over time (either a short timeframe or longer), causing the lug nuts to come loose repeatedly. The bake painting on steel wheels don't by definition oxidize. However: In the end, its really important to make sure the back facing of the wheel and mating surface (i.e. your rotors or drums AND reiterating, the aluminum/alloy wheels themselves) are very clean of oxidation (both faces) before mating wheels to your vehicle.

Cheers, D
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Old 04-29-2012, 11:47 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Two points.

First - I've never seen (I'm not doubting that they exist, but they can't be very common) an alloy wheel that was not either painted & clear coated or powder coated - which would make oxidation of the alloy a "non-issue".

Second - one of the reasons aluminum and it's alloy are as widely used as they are, is not just the weight (or lack therof) but the manner in which they oxidize, and the protective nature of those oxides - aluminum oxidizes very rapidly, to the point where you cannot have aluminum in the open air without it immediately oxidizing and forming a protective layer preventing further oxidation - making oxidation a "non-problem".

Whatever the collective cause of your lug nuts running slack, I doubt that it is related to the oxidation of the alloy. Can you imagine the effect of oxidation of aluminum and it's alloys on the aviation industry if your theory were correct?
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