23rd April 07:03
Removing Tires from car
My $0.02 on this,
A wheel stud is cheap and only a few minutes work to replace if
you have the hub off - and if your in the rust belt your well advised
to pull the hub anyway and regrease the bearings if the stud is rusted
enough to seize and snap off during disassembly.
Your best off in the Rust Belt to buy a vehicle with steel wheels with
ie: wheel covers, anyway, as the salt will destroy aluminum wheels
and make them look like hell unless you spend an inordinate amount
of time washing your car. Pull the wheel cover, put a couple drops
of motor oil on the exposed wheel stud threads, then use an impact to
spin off the nuts. If a nut seizes and the stud snaps, the stud threads
were too corroded to have safe holding power left in them anyway
and your better off replacing it. In any case, impacts usually don't
snap them off compared to the shadetree mechanic's 'impact substititue'
ie: the breaker bar with a 6 foot length of pipe on it.
Rarely have I seen a nut seize on a stud due only to rust. Much more
often it is excessive galling -plus- rust that does it, in short the threads
were already damaged and the rust just finished them off.
anti-seize compound is not a rust preventative.
One of the problems I think with rust belt is the prevalence of
"capped" wheel nuts that are used with aluminum wheels purely
for looks. If the stud on a capped nut corrodes, it's impossible to
get penetrating oil into the threads, the nut is likely going to seize
and snap off.
I don't know what goes on there these days, but 30 years ago
I clearly recall everyone running around 6 months out of the year
in Pittsburg (one of the worst for salting the roads) in snow tires
on steel wheels that most of the time lacked a hubcap, and
there was no epidemic of seized-on-the-car wheels going on
then, and nobody used never-seize on anything.
If your rotating the tires regularly and you have nuts, you won't
have a problem. If the wheels have been on for a number of years
then use PB Blaster or other penetrating oil on the studs.
When reassembling, wire brush the threads then wipe them off
with mineral spirits and retorque.
Never-sleaze introduces an unwanted variable. Yes, many thousands of
people use it without the studs loosening. But losing a wheel from a car
at highway speed is virtually certain death. Your safer having all 4 of
your tires shot out from under your car than loosing a wheel. And all
it takes is to be that 1 in 1000 person who DOES lose a wheel. You
can be pretty certain that the people who did lose a wheel as a result
of using anti-seize on the lugs aren't going to be around to tell people
it was a dumb idea.