How to Plasti Dip Rims: A Step-by-Step Guide for Durable Wheel Coating

Changing the appearance of your car can be both a fun project and a way to protect its components. Plasti dipping your rims does just that; it provides your wheels with a protective coating that is both durable and removable. We’ve found plasti dip to be a great way to give your car a new look without the permanence or cost of a paint job.

It’s like a vinyl wrap for your rims, but it comes in a can. With a few hours of work, your wheels can have a fresh, customized look.

Spraying plasti dip onto rims with even strokes

Taking the DIY approach to applying plasti dip on your wheels can be rewarding. Not only does the process protect your wheels from elements such as salt, grime, and small debris, but it also means that you have full control over the thickness and evenness of the coat. Most importantly, it’s not a permanent change; if you decide that you want to go back to the original look of your wheels or try a new color, plasti dip peels off, leaving the original surface undamaged.

Before we start, remember that the key to a successful plasti dip application lies in the preparation.

Wheels must be thoroughly cleaned to remove any dirt, grease, or wax.

The cleaner the wheel’s surface, the better the plasti dip will adhere, ensuring a smoother finish and a longer-lasting coat.

Protecting the area around your wheels is also crucial—it prevents the spray from getting on unwanted surfaces.

Commonly, something as simple as a few decks of cards or masking tape can shield your tires effectively during application.

Preparing Your Vehicle for Coating Application

Before applying Plasti Dip to your car’s rims, it’s vital to thoroughly prepare the surfaces. Proper preparation ensures the coating adheres smoothly and lasts longer. We’ll guide you through cleaning the surfaces and taping off areas, along with sanding for better adhesion.

Cleaning Surfaces and Taping Off Areas

Firstly, cleaning your rims is crucial.

We’ll start with removing any debris, dust, or grease that could hinder the dip’s adhesion.

Use a high-quality cleaner to spray each rim, and then wipe them down with a clean rag or paper towels.

Follow this by thoroughly drying the rims to prevent any moisture from being trapped under the coating.

Once the rims are clean, protect the areas you don’t want painted.

Use masking tape to cover the tire and any part of the rim that won’t receive Plasti Dip.

To ensure cleanliness, place newspapers or cardboard behind the rim to catch any overspray.

Sanding for Better Adhesion

Sanding the rims can significantly improve coating adherence.

Lightly sand the surface of the rims using fine-grit sandpaper.

This step isn’t about removing material but rather creating a slightly rougher surface for better grip.

Sand evenly and gently, paying extra attention to any glossy or smooth areas that might resist adhesion.

Once done, use a clean rag to remove all sanding dust, leaving a perfect surface ready for the dip application.

Applying Protective Coatings on Car Wheels

When it comes to protecting our car wheels, we need a durable solution that resists dust, grime, and the elements. A popular DIY choice is Plasti Dip, a rubberized coating that can safeguard our rims with a glossy or matte finish.

Choosing the Right Product for Your Needs

Finding the ideal product is crucial. We have options like Plasti Dip, Dupli-Color, Rustoleum, or Autoflex. They offer varying levels of durability, finish, and color choices. Rubber coatings from these brands provide a flexible, protective barrier that can be peeled off without damage to the original surface.

Steps for Effective Spray Application

Preparing the rims: It’s vital to clean the rims thoroughly to remove any dust or brake debris.

Proper protection against overspray by covering brake components and surrounding areas using masking tape and paper is also essential.

  • Shaking the can: Ensure the spray can is well-shaken to mix the contents evenly for a consistent application.
  • Spray technique: Hold the can around 6 inches away from the surface and apply with a smooth back and forth motion. Apply thin coats rather than a single thick coat to avoid drips.
  • Number of coats: Multiple coats (usually 4-5) will ensure even coverage and thickness for optimal protection.

Drying and Curing Process

To achieve the best result, we need to allow the coating to dry and cure properly.

The drying time can vary based on temperature and humidity. A rough estimate is 30 minutes for touch dry, and a full cure generally takes around 24 hours. The full curing process is crucial for the durability of the coating and to attain that desired level of shine or gloss.

During this time, we must avoid touching the rims or exposing them to dust and moisture to prevent imperfections in the finish.

Maintaining and Repairing Coated Surfaces

Caring for plasti dipped rims is essential to ensure longevity and maintain their sleek appearance. Regular maintenance prevents the buildup of harmful materials, addressing any peeling or scratches early on is key, and a periodic refresh of the dip can keep your rims looking vibrant.

Regular Cleaning to Prevent Buildup

We recommend cleaning your plasti dipped rims routinely to prevent debris and brake dust accumulation.

Use a gentle cleaning solution and a soft brush or cloth to carefully clean the surface.

Avoid harsh chemicals or rough brushes that can damage the coating.

Addressing Peeling and Scratches

If you notice peeling or scratches on the dipped surface, it’s crucial to act promptly.

For minor scratches, a small touch-up with plasti dip spray paint can often conceal the damage. Peeling can be halted by applying a new layer of plasti dip over the affected area.

Address damage as soon as it’s spotted to protect the integrity of the coating.

Reapplication and Color Refreshing

Over time, exposure to elements can fade the plasti dip on your rims.

Refreshing the color of your rims not only revitalizes their appearance but also reinforces the protective layer. A new application of plasti dip or a clear coat can restore their original look or give you the chance to try a new color.

When reapplying, make sure the surfaces are clean and the previous plasti dip layer is still uniform and intact to ensure the best adherence and finish.

Additional Modifications and Enhancements

After mastering the basics of applying Plasti Dip to rims, one can further personalize their vehicle with a variety of enhancements. We explore how to customize with colors and textures, as well as how to carry the Plasti Dip theme onto other car exterior parts.

Customizing with Plasti Dip Colors and Textures

Plasti Dip Colors:

  • Variety of colors: Gone are the days of settling for bland rims. We can now choose from a wide spectrum of Plasti Dip colors, from matte black for a sleek appearance to vibrant hues that truly pop.
  • Textures and finishes: Moreover, Plasti Dip offers different textures, including a glossy finish that can mimic the appearance of paint, or a satin finish for a more subdued look.
Inexpensive and reversible, these options allow for greater customization without the commitment or cost of a full wrap. It’s ideal for testing a new color or simply updating the look of your wheels seasonally.

Expanding to Other Car Exterior Parts

Beyond Rims:

  • Emblems and Grilles: Beyond wheels, Plasti Dip can be applied to car emblems and grilles to maintain a cohesive design language across your vehicle.
  • Mirrors and Trims: You’re not limited to small parts either—mirror housings and even roof panels can be Plasti Dipped to achieve a custom look.

Extending the Plasti Dip application to the hood or bumpers can yield a dramatic effect. It’s also popular for accenting or fully covering brake calipers, offering both a change of appearance and additional protection against brake dust.

Crafting a unique appearance for one’s car does not have to be prohibitively expensive or permanent. Plasti Dip presents an avenue where creativity can be unleashed with minimal risk, all the while keeping the original paint underneath unharmed, ready for the day you decide to peel the layers back.

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