Can you use tuner lug nuts on OEM wheels? How many types of lug nuts are there, and which ones will work best with OEM wheels? We answer all this in the article below.
When you are changing the tires of your car, you will notice that there are tiny nuts and bolts that are holding the tire in place. These can be of different shapes and sizes, but they have the same purpose of keeping the wheels steady. Commonly called lug nuts, these tiny things are a very important part of the car that you should know about.
Today, let us tell you about tuner lug nuts and a few things to consider if you use OEM wheels. Read on to find out!
What Are Lug Nuts?
Lug nuts are wheel fasteners that are used to keep the wheels of your car attached to the hub. These can be of different shapes and sizes, commonly with a tapering end. Lugnuts are made from materials like titanium, chrome-plated steel, and anodized aluminum. The material of the lug nuts determines their weight and which can be used on what car models.
When you are changing the wheels of your car, you need to be careful about installing the right kind of lug nuts. If these parts are damaged in some way, it makes the process of removing or replacing the wheels very difficult.
Types of Lug Nuts
The styles, sizes, and tapering designs of lug nuts are the main criteria for the different types of lug nuts available on wheels. What kind of lug nuts you are using also depends on whether you are using the original manufacturer or aftermarket wheels. Here are the main types of lug nuts that you should know about:
Conical lug nuts
Conical-shaped or acorn lug nuts are the most common lug nuts used in car wheels. They are primarily used in European cars and are the popular lug nuts used in manufacturer wheels. These are easy to recognize from their cone-shaped lug seats.
The conical lug nuts are mainly used because of their ease of design and angle tapering feature. These nuts automatically center themselves in the lug hole when tightening down, becoming thinner once installed. It is considered one of the most durable lug nuts to be installed on wheels.
Spherical lug nuts
Another common type of lug nut used by many car models is the spherical type. They are known by many names, like the ball seat nuts or wheel nuts. The main feature of these lug nuts is their spherical seat.
The rounded design makes it appropriate for a number of different vehicles and is fairly easy to install. Most spherical nuts require a 19mm lug wrench to tighten them.
Mag seat lug nuts
Mag seat lug nuts are one of the most distinctive style nuts, with an extended thread and flat washer seat. The latter feature makes this nut easy to install in any lug hole without any intervention. The name mag is because of the component used to make these nuts, which is magnesium.
Mag seat lugs also come with an additional built-in washer. This makes installing these lug nuts more convenient than others. The washer has to be installed against the lug nut and fastened in place. It is easier to use in the normal flat seat.
Flat seat lug nuts
As the name suggests, the flat seat nuts can be recognized by their flat head. The nuts are visible as flat on the surface where they are being installed. These do not have any external washer or thread and must be installed by torquing them into the lug.
Installing these lug nuts is not very difficult and can be done with a 21mm hex wrench. These nuts are also smaller in size, coming around 0.88 inches. Whatever purpose these serve is similar to mag nuts, and either can be used.
Extended thread lug nuts
Lug nuts with extended threads are preferred for installation since they are easy to torque down and have a better grip. These lug nuts are used for specific purposes and must be chosen according to size. Many mechanics prefer extended threads because there has to be less effort given when torquing down.
However, the extended threads can also become a problem when they cannot fit properly on surfaces. Due to the lack of a washer, sometimes their fitting becomes an issue even with the right size.
Tuner-style lug nuts
The tuner-style lug nut is a type of nut with a conical seat that uses a special kind of key. This key is supposed to be used outside when trying to remove the lug nut. The common design of tuner-style nuts is a 60-degree taper style that is 0.5 inches in measurement.
The tuner-style lug nut set comes with installation equipment that includes the key, usually in a pack of five or six lug nuts. If chosen carefully, the quality of these tuner nuts can make them a good fit for a number of car models.
Small diameter Spline Drive lug nuts
American models like Chevrolet, Cadillac, and Ford are some of the cars that use the small diameter spline drive lug nuts. These are the common type of lug nuts used in aftermarket wheels. These are made from cold-forged steel and have a spline drive closed end.
The keys used in these nuts are easy to use and can be installed with a 13/16 inches or ⅞ inches hex wrench. The smaller diameter of the nuts with a conical seat and grooves makes the installation easier.
Lug bolts are very particular kinds of bolts that are a set of lug nuts with a stud attached to them. These bolts have to be of a particular size to be installed in the wheel and can be useful when you are going for a repair or restoration. These lug nuts are more common in European cars than in American or Asian manufacturers.
Left-hand threaded lug nuts
Common lug nuts are right-hand threaded, but there is one type known as left-hand threaded lug nuts. These are relatively uncommon but are available in spherical seats, which are commonly used in motorcycles rather than cars. The main difference is their turning direction and how the thread pitch of the nut is designed.
Which Lug Nuts Are Most Common On OEM Wheels?
OEM or Original Equipment Manufacturer is the term used to define all the things used in a car that was certified by the manufacturer of the car. This type of wheel is equipment that was designed for a specific car model. So stock wheels are the original wheels that are compatible with the model of your car.
OEM wheels are known to be stronger and more reliable than aftermarket wheels since they have the correct specifications from your car’s manufacturers. In the case of lug nuts, there are two specific types of stock lug nuts commonly used – conical and spherical. Other variants of lug nuts are found in aftermarket wheels that you purchase as a replacement or during a repair.
Spherical lug nuts are called ball seat lugs which has a hex-shaped head and round-shaped end. This type of lug nuts is common in European car models as OEM wheels.
Conical lug nuts are another common type used in OEM wheels. The name comes from their conical shape that has a 60-degree tapering lug. These nuts automatically taper down when it is being tightened down into the wheel. They are also called acorn lug nuts due to their shape.
Will Tuner Lug Nuts Work On OEM Wheels?
When you are thinking of installing OEM wheels are their respective lug nuts, the best idea is to stick to the specification that the manufacturer mentions. Tuner lug nuts are usually used in aftermarket wheels as a secondary option. So there is a chance that all tuner lug nuts will not work on OEM wheels.
There have been a lot of discussions on using tuner nuts on OEM wheels on Honda. While some drivers are of the opinion that the lug nuts will not make too much difference, the majority say that OEM wheels will not work with other kinds of lug nuts. All lug nuts do not have the same taper seat system, and when you tighten down the nut, it will not fit properly on the wheel.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are OEM wheels stronger than aftermarket?
OEM wheels are the trademark equipment created by manufacturers of a particular car. These wheels are made from high-quality alloy or steel, depending on what kind of car is being used. Steel wheels are often the cheaper options used in OEM wheels. Either way, these are more reliable and stronger than aftermarket cars.
Do you have to declare OEM wheels?
It is a good idea to declare OEM wheels in your car if you have them. The manufacturer’s trademark can recognize OEM wheels on the backside of the wheels. Declaring the type of wheels can help you with insurance matters because aftermarket wheels are not covered by automobile insurance.
Are OEM wheels forged or cast?
Yes, OEM wheels are cast in most aftermarket wheels. An estimated 99% of wheels are created from a cast of OEM wheels, which are made from aluminum or alloy wheels.
What is the lug nut rule?
The common lug nut rule states that – when a bicycle or motorcycle runs into a car or truck, the fault lies with the smaller vehicle. Since two-wheelers do not use lug nuts, the fault of a crash will not reside with the bigger vehicle that has more control over the wheels.
When it comes to your car, you should not be taking too many chances with anything. Be it a wheel repair or using the right lug nuts for your vehicle, making an informed decision can help you avoid long-term problems or damage to the car.
Thank you for reading!