Locking wheel nuts are an important part of the security of your vehicle. They are obviously there to prevent the theft of your alloy wheels, which are expensive enough in their own right, but also the tyres too, which on larger vehicles and SUVs can be as much as the cost of the wheel.
How wheel locking nuts add to the security of your car
The most convincing reason to get extra security for your wheels and alloys is theft prevention. A number of thefts occur simply for the tyres as the market for cheaper “part worn” tyres has increased dramatically due to the consumer demand for bigger cross-over vehicles that have bigger wheels and ultimately, more expensive tyres. Therefore it is important that you have a locking or security wheel nut/bolt on your vehicle.
Remember to ask for the locking key
Firstly, it is very important to ensure that the locking wheel nut removal tool is with the car when buying it second-hand. You also need to ensure it is supplied on new cars too – ask your salesman where it is and in both cases ensure that it fits ALL the wheel nuts as it should!
Where is the locking wheel nut key located?
Depending on the make and model of your vehicle, it is likely that the locking wheel nut key is located in the glove box or where the spare wheel or tyre kit is stored. If you can’t find it in these places, refer to your vehicle owner’s handbook which will specify details about the locking wheel nut key.
Remember to keep the lock removal tool safe (but not too safe)
This sounds obvious, but is often overlooked – know where your locking wheel nut tool is and that it can be accessed easily when required. There is nothing worse than an inconvenient puncture, but that is made even worse if you can’t find the locking wheel nut tool!
It is also a very good idea to make sure it’s easily available to the technicians when taking your car for any repair or service. Not only does its unknown whereabouts hold up the mechanics but also means they have to go searching around your car, from glovebox to boot in order to find it.
Are wheel locking nuts necessary?
While they may not always be necessary they do keep your wheels from being stolen. They are a simple, effective way to secure your wheels to your car, especially considering the cost to replace expensive alloys if stolen!
Can I remove a locking wheel nut?
In order to remove a wheel locking nut, you’ll need the wheel locking key. This attachment is specifically designed for your vehicle (like a unique key and lock) and will enable you to remove the nut and reattach it with ease. If you don’t have the key then the best thing to do is ask a professional mechanic to get them removed for you.
How can I get a replacement locking wheel nut key or tool?
If you have lost your locking wheel nut key, you will need to contact the dealership or manufacturer of your car. They will be able to provide you with a new key or lock depending on the availability of the key code. You’ll need the ‘key code’ to purchase the key which is found in the vehicle handbook.
What to do when the wheel lock removal tool is lost or worn?
All is not lost! Well, it is, but it isn’t the end of the world! The important thing is to act now and not leave it “until you need it” as that time may be the most inconvenient one.
Some locking wheel nuts can be removed easily using specially-made removal tools and most garages and mechanics have them. However, these only work on certain types and if that is the case then there will be considerable work required to get them off. In some cases, there may also be damage caused to the wheel, no matter how careful they are in getting them off.
So, if you have lost your wheel nut tool, you need to get a new one as soon as possible. If the wheel nuts are the standard ones from the manufacturer, the first place to try is a dealership. If that yields no luck, then get in contact with us and we will source a mechanic to get them removed for you and supply a replacement set with a new key.
Wheels, alloys, and tyres are not the only car parts thieves have an eagle eye on. If you want to know more about how to prevent the theft of car parts, read our article on how to prevent catalytic converter theft.