How to Repair Wheels with Curb Rash and Scratches

How to Repair Wheels with Curb Rash and Scratches

hey guys chrisfix here and today I’m going to show you how to repair scratches and curb rush as well as paint your wheels to fully restore your wheels I recently purchased this Jaguar x-type and I don’t know about you but I don’t think these wheels look good on this car and not only do I not like the wheels but my dad doesn’t like to look at the wheels either and I got this car for him so I picked up a set of 10 spoke Jaguar wheels from my local junkyard and if you take a look they’re really inexpensive because there’s all chips there’s curb rash there’s a bunch of scratches and just they’re all messed up but that’s okay because I’m going to show you how to restore them in previous videos I showed you how to sand down scratches from aluminum wheels and paint steel wheels I asked you guys to send me before-and-after pictures on my Facebook and Instagram if you filed the video and painted your wheels and check out these submissions it’s amazing what a little bit of sandpaper and paint could do now in this video we’re going to be restoring these wheels using a new method since we have a lot of deep scratches like this one trying to send this away is going to create a divot in this flat surface and you’re going to be able to see it Plus these wheels have a lot of bad curb rash all over most of the rim so sanding this down isn’t even an option so instead what we’re going to do is use this bondo metal reinforced filler to fill the scratches deep gouges and curb rash and just to show you what it will look like these damaged wheels will go from this to this and the car is going to go from looking like this to this and the best part is you could do this at home inexpensively with basic tools this is pretty much everything you need we have some sandpaper soapy water we have the body filler and then we have spray paint and that’s all it takes and I’m going to list these products in the description so you can easily find what you need to restore your wheels to brand-new condition and the entire process is very simple with four easy steps first we’re going to clean the wheels with soapy water second we’re going to use filler to fill any deep scratches or curb rash third we’re going to sand the entire wheel smooth and fourth we’re going to paint the wheel so let’s begin for step 1 the first thing we want to do is remove the wheel weights and just pop it off with a flathead screwdriver and we want to remove the tire stem so grab your Clippers and flip the wheel around so you can cut the stem from the inside of the wheel and once it’s cut stand on the wheel and pull it out with the pliers now that the wheel weight entire stem are removed we could decrease the wheel and all I’m using is some soapy water and a the soapy water is dish soap and warm water because warm water dissolves dirt better than cold water and if you can’t get the wheel clean with just a towel you could use a piece of scotch brite or an abrasive end of a sponge to help get the wheel clean and make sure you clean the whole wheel even if you’re not painting behind the spokes because if you’re handling the wheel and you touch grease somewhere and then spread it around it could mess up your body filler or paint work later on besides using soapy water brick clean also works well for removing that tough grease all right so this is getting nice and clean and take your time with this because prep for body filler and paint is the most important part since the filler and paint won’t stick to a dirty surface now dry the wheels and let’s move on to step two for step two we’re going to be using our metal reinforced filler to fill in any scratches any curb rash any deep gouges in our wheel but before we use our metal reinforce filler we’re going to have to sand down the surface of the wheel but before we even do that get your safety glasses on for eye protection and get a dust mask on because we’re going to be sanding everything down you don’t want to breathe that in now we’re going to be using 80 grit sandpaper and then 320 grit sandpaper we are jumping a little bit from 80 to 320 but I’ll show you why so when you’re talking about sanding grits on sandpaper the higher the number the more fine the sandpaper is so the less aggressive it is so 80 grit is going to be really aggressive you’re going to remove a lot of material with this and create deep scratches the 320 grit is less aggressive and it’s going to create smaller scratches now we’re starting with 80 grit because we want something that the filler could grab onto and really adhere to plus we want to clean out all the scratches and all the grooves and all the curb rash and smooth them down just a little bit so let’s go get started on that only use the 80 grit sandpaper on the damaged areas that you’re going to fill with body filler and stand that area down to bare metal on the rim there’s some dark spots on the curb rash and that’s dirt you want to clean using your sandpaper but if you have one of these rotary tools with the wire wheel on it that makes cleaning the curb rash out a lot easier and a lot faster now I just wanted to show you that the rotary tool will save you some time but not everybody has one so I’ll be using sandpaper now finish sanding down any areas that are going to get filled with body filler and make sure you get down to bare metal and when the curb brush and scratches aren’t deep you can just send them away like and now this is nice and smooth and doesn’t need any body filler all right so after you sand down all the damage there’s going to be a lot of dust so use a leaf blower or compressed air to blow the dust away now we’re almost ready to use our metal reinforced filler next step before the filler is to wipe the whole wheel down using rubbing alcohol you want to get this as clean as possible once you’re able to wipe down the wheel with a clean towel and not pick up any dirt just like this we’re ready to apply our body filler now we’re coming to the part where we’re going to mix our metal reinforced filler so with this filler there is also a hardener here and you have to get a correct ratio I’m going to show you how to do that right now it’s really easy now before we open up our can of filler you want to get something that you’re going to mix the filler on you can’t mix it on something porous like cardboard so I’m going to actually wrap this piece of cardboard with some parchment paper and you don’t want to use something porous because we have to add this hardener which is a liquid and if you get any of that hardener into the porous cardboard then you’re going to have an incorrect ratio and it’s not going to harden right so use something like glass metal plastic anything non-porous and before you begin doing anything make sure you read the instructions and you have everything ready when we pour the bondo out a 3-inch diameter circle that’s half an inch thick we’ll take 35 drops of hardener now we can open it up and the lids going to come in handy because our lid is three inches in diameter which is what the directions said to use for measuring the correct ratio of filler to hardener and you really don’t need too much of this stuff you can see this is about half the lid and a half inch high so since we use half of the three inch diameter lid we don’t need all 35 drops we need half of that so we’re going to use 18 drops and once you add the hardener you have about five minutes to work with the bondo until it gets rock solid 16 17 18 okay so now we need to mix the hardener thoroughly and there’s a method where you need the hardener into the bondo so you don’t introduce air into the mixture so you’re going to take your squeegee and roll it over collect the bondo and smooth it out collect it and smooth it out and quickly repeat this process for about 20 seconds to make sure you distribute the hardener completely and I know mixing filler and hardener could be intimidating but this is simple the bondo is very forgiving and although you want to strive for accuracy if the ratio is a little bit off it’ll still harden and you’ll still get great results so definitely don’t be intimidated this we don’t have a lot of time to work with so let’s go get this on the wheel we’ll fix that damaged area right there first and what you want to do is you want to use a lot of pressure and force that bondo into the damage this squeezes out any air and gets the filler deep into the damage then you could build up the filler I’m actually going to be using my fingers to shape it and smooth it out and make sure you build it up because you could always send it down later on and just try to build the bondo in the shape of the rim just like that and again for this car brush I’m going to force the bondo into the damage and then build it up following the shape of the rim and would you look at that for any flat areas you could use the squeegee but don’t make a mess which is exactly what I’m doing try to keep the bondo only in the damaged area or it’s going to take more work to remove it later and that’s all there is to it it’s like playing with play-doh or sculpting pottery you almost feel like an artist doing this but I guess bodywork is a form of art work so perfect step 2 of using the metal reinforced body filler to fill all the little scratches on the surface here is done so the next step is going to be sanding this down but we have to let this dry for about 20 minutes before we start sanding so it’s been about 20 minutes and this is completely dry now we want to grab our 80 grit and I actually have it on a sanding block so it’s nice and flat because we’re going to be doing these flat surfaces here this is where we had that deep groove and all you do is sand it down until it’s even with the rest of the wheel when you run your finger over the area there should be no lip and it should feel smooth like this good now I’m going around sanding any spots that use the filler and I’m making it even with the rest of the wheel alright so all our surfaces here are nice and smooth they’re all feathered in you can see where that gouge was that’s nice and smooth I can’t even feel it with my finger now all we have to do is work on standing the rim and then we’re ready for paint now with the rim we’re not going to be using a sanding block because it’s a curved surface so we’re just going to be using a piece of sandpaper that we’re going to bend around the rim and just glide that sandpaper over the entire rim and don’t focus on one spot when you’re almost done feel around for any bumps and when you feel one sand it down until it’s smooth now this is turning out amazing you can see the rim here with all the spots filled in by the bondo that gray right there used to be little indentations all curb rash but now it’s nice and smooth I can’t even feel it with my finger if I close my eyes and try to feel that it feels smooth which is perfect our indentation over here you can see it because it’s filled by the bondo again close my eyes I can’t even feel it perfect so that was with our 80 grit now we’re going to go jump to 320 grit and then we’re going to spray it with primer so we’re almost done with step 3 so now we want to sand down the whole wheel with our 320 grit we just want to get rid of any of those 80 grit scratches and just make the wheel a lot smoother than it is right now now you don’t have to get the surface perfectly smooth with this 320 grit we’re just trying to cut down any of the really deep scratches from the 80 grit the reason why we don’t have to get a perfect is because our primer is a primer filler so it’s going to fill those 80 grit scratches for the most part so just focus on getting out the deeper ones and then we’re ready to paint okay we’re done with the 320 grit now we want to wipe the wheel down and make sure you clean the wheel thoroughly before we move to the last step where we paint there’s something called glazing and spot putty which is probably overkill for a wheel but I want to show you quickly what it does it’s like a skim coat all you have to do is apply a thin layer over any minor imperfections that you see and then 30 minutes later sand it down with 320 grit until smooth and you can see how the putty fills the small scratches and imperfections now you can hit the wheel with some air and wipe down the wheel one last time with alcohol and now we’re ready for our last step step 4 where we’re going to paint the wheel we’ll be using this gray primer filler which we’ll be filling any small imperfections and it also Prime’s the surface of the wheel for our silver paint after the primer we’ll use a color base coat after the color base coat we’ll use a clear coat now I’m going to be painting both the face of the wheel as well as the back of the wheel but I’m not going to show you painting the back of the wheel because it’s the same process so let’s start with this primer now for the first coat you want a light coat so don’t worry about covering the full wheel make sure you start spraying away from the wheel and then move across the wheel and then stop spraying away from the wheel this will give you a better paint finish and that’s coat one now give it a few minutes and now we get sprayed coat to coat to could be thicker and cover more of the wiill and make sure you’re moving around the wheel and spraying at different angles to get complete coverage now we can let this dry for a few minutes and we’re on the coat three our last coat with this coat we want complete coverage so make sure you don’t leave any bare metal also make sure to move around the wheel again to get at different angles and this is looking great now we have to wait for this to dry for about an hour before we sand it down as you wait for it to dry go work on the other wheels now about an hour later actually waited an hour and a half the primer is completely dried and we’re going to sand it with 600 grit sandpaper we’re not going to wet sand normally when you’re at 600 grit you want to wet sand it but I don’t want to get any water on here and you want to make sure that this is completely dry when you paint it so we’re going to do a light stand of 600 grit remember if your sandpaper gets caked up just flick it with your finger and what you want to do is you want to just get the whole surface smooth and send it down with that 600 grit which will make it ready for paint good now what you want to do is you just want to feel around and feel for any areas that are still a little rough anything that you might have missed and you also want to look for anything that has indents scratches because anything that you could visually see right now is going to show up in paint and this is looking great the reason why you use your 600 grit to sand down the primer is because the primer leaves like a rough texture on the surface because it builds up into those scratches and you just want to get that smooth so that you don’t see that in your paint work but this is looking good now get your lint-free towel and some of that alcohol you’re using before and we’re going to wipe down this wheel before paint now we’re going to be doing our color coat I’m using a Ford silver metallic which is going to match our factory color pretty closely if you want a silver wheel this is a really nice color has a little bit of a metallic flake to it and whenever you’re using a metallic paint make sure you shake it out real good with metallic paint runs show up really easily so you want to do light coats and do multiple coats don’t worry about complete coverage light coats is going to give you the best result when you’re spraying the flat surfaces are easy to get to but make sure you focus some of the spray into the tight areas between the spokes also don’t forget about doing the rim so about five minutes later we’ll spray on our third coat and that’s going to be our final coat because this is looking great check this out after three layers of base coat the silver metallic this wheel is looking amazing I am so excited to put this on the Jaguar but we can’t do that just yet we have to let this dry for about 30 minutes and then we’re going to use some clear coat and steel this base coat in so it lasts a good long time and it’s clear coat time so we’re using a special clear coat specifically made for wheels for the first layer you just want a light coat don’t make it thick and this clear coat is resistant to the acidity of the brake dust as well as chip resistant for all the rocks and stuff that might kick up and heat resistant again make sure you walk around the wheel and cover the entire wheel with clear coat and then the third layer is going to be your thickest layer you don’t want the drip you don’t want to run but you want it thicker so there’s less orange peel and it looks good and we are done that was our final coat and we’ll let it dry for at least an hour alright I am excited check this out our wheel is all done it’s been an hour it’s nice and dry now if I were you I’d wait a day or two before you take this to a tire shop just so you can let that paint really harden and cure but with the power of editing look at that and something I also got at the junkyard it’s one of these Jaguar center caps and that just gets popped right in just like that now this wheel looks official check that out now let’s go put it on this car I’m pumped to see this so here’s our before and check out this transformation holy smokes these stock wheels look so much better on this Jaguar and the best part is I fixed them I restored them myself to like-new condition and you could do the same and that’s just a feeling you can’t beat and that’s how you restore your wheels using metal reinforced filler hopefully this video is helpful and if you’re not subscribed consider subscribing as always related videos and all the products I used in this video are linked in the description so you could easily find them

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  1. hey Chris thanks for all the ideas im saving up for a 05 e43 m3 and everything im going to do to it im going to watch your videos even cleaning the headlights with toothpaste 😉

  2. I’m pretty sure those aftermarket wheels are Motegi Racing wheels, judging by the logo on the center cap

  3. why did americans forget how to pronounce jaguar some where in the 50's? In the 50's they said it correctly now they sound like retards.

  4. Get them goggles and dust mask…lol…must be some you tube requirement for videos…i guess. I can see when its really necessary…but not what you are doing today!

  5. Hey Chris big question I have a dodge avenger 2009 and the wheels are abosuletly filthy and there's this white stuff I have on it idk what it is but it's white and green and won't come off the rim you have any advice

  6. Hey chris do you have a po box, if not should open one it would be awesome to have a second Channel for mail unboxing

  7. Hey man! nice vid! how many cans of each did you use for your wheels. i want to paint and restore my mazdaspeed 3 wheels. Thanks!

  8. how about taking the tire of the wheels and repair flat tire at home and how do u now the color matches exactly when u buy it thank you

  9. I never knew it was that easy. Yes it’s time consuming but rewarding. I’ll be purchasing a cheap set of rims just to have fun on.

  10. Can we go from the gray primer filler and sand it then go straight into clear coat and skip the painting, cause I don't wanna paint my wheels and idk what to use for chrome wheels ?

  11. So let me make sure I got it right…
    You use sandpaper standing on hard floor, but you spray paint on the dirt!!!

  12. It just happened 1 hour ago and you can't imagine how pissed i am right now , i bought those new rims 2 days ago only 2 days and now a curb rash 🙁 i will try to fix it and i hope its gonna work like you did in this amazing video…

  13. This is really good and well narrated! I was a bit hesitant to do this, but you are informative and explain things so clearly that I want to do this! Just wondered, when you sanded the wheel to smooth it down, did you remove any of the previous paint, or just focus on getting the wheel as smooth and consistent as possible?

  14. Forgot to mention that when painting the back of the wheels, do not paint the mounting surface that contacts the hub. Doing that will create an uneven contact between the wheels and hub, that will cause vibrations. Awesome video.

  15. Thanks for the video my girl curbed the hell out of my Range Rover rims and I can't afford to take them to a shop😀😀😀

  16. Love ChrisFix videos! He inspired me to clean my car properly!! For a car newbie, I just wish that this video included re-installing the tire stem & weight too, since it showed how to remove them.

  17. Awesome video. Also, anyone knows how many cans of primer, paint and clear would be needed to do four wheels?

  18. @ChrisFix how many spray cans did you buy for all 4 wheels? Did 1 do the job or did you get 1 of each (primer, paint, clear) for each wheel?

  19. Really great video explanations as well. Clear and concise.

    The finish looks fantastic.

    Quick question – Should it be emery cloth/paper rather than sandpaper?

    Emery cloth is a strip of dense fabric that has small metallic or synthetic particles bonded to it with glues and adhesives. It's best used to smooth metal surfaces. The small metallic particles often include bits of aluminium oxide that are set in iron oxide. It's especially helpful in eradicating rust, eliminating corrosion, polishing metal and removing paint from metal surfaces.

  20. So I got a flat and scraped the area around the lug nuts when changing it. Is it possible to do this in just that area or would I have to do the whole wheel?

  21. @chrisfix I’m gonna follow these steps on my wheels but the only question or concern I have is that mostly have curb
    Rashes around the wheel then the wheel it’s self do I use the 80 grit to strip the whole pain from the wheel or what’s up cz I basically wanna repaint them

  22. Just bought some OEM lancer 18 x 7 for my small 2wd Tacoma. $150 with light curb rash on 1 wheel. Going to paint the wheels as you described thank you so much.

  23. For 2 piece forged wheels, do you recommend disassembling the wheel and painting each piece separately? Or can this method be done as 1 piece?

  24. I found your channel maybe a week ago and I just wanted to say thank you. I've learned so much it isn't even funny. I'm a woodworker and I wanted to pass something on to you that might help you save some money as well. I use a sandpaper called Abranet by Mirka. It costs a bit more than your average pack of sand paper, but its a mesh, so it rarely clogs and cleans very easy. It has saved me hundreds since I switched. I went from using half a pack per project to using only one abranet disk per three of four projects (They come 5 disks per pack, it comes in rolls and standard rectangles too). I've had to use them on steel and aluminum before and work great. Thanks again for your hard work, it is very much appreciated.

  25. Really awesome video! Kudos. You are an excellent instructor. Very clear and concise and energetic. I’d watch you teach us how to watch paint dry.

  26. You did not mention that you need to balance your wheels again after this. Was it intentional to get more broken cars to fix? 🙂

  27. Good job but cant help thinking as powder coating is so inexpensive these days approx $40-60 a wheel its possibly easier to drop your rims off and let somebody else do all the hard work…..theres a lot of paint and a lot of clear and a lot primer filler plus bondo plus grit paper and elbow grease x 4. I bet using decent materials alone could cost around $50-80 for a set of 4 wheels. Powder coating also gets the inside rims looking just as good and the finish will last much longer. Get a quote for powder coating first unless youre on the tightest of budgets and have all the materials already lying about in the garage or shed……

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