Car Wheels/Rims: What You Need to Know

BMW wheel

BMW wheel Regardless of how or where you drive, car rims can go through a large amount of various stresses on a daily basis. That’s why it’s up to you to ensure you know what you’re doing when it comes to your wheels.

Throughout your time on the road, you’ll see examples of damaged and unsightly rims everywhere you look. Therefore, here is a list of things you should look out for the next time you want to replace or upgrade your wheels.

What To Consider Before You Look at Your Options?

Whether you’re an off roader, urban driver, someone looking to enhance the look of their vehicle or a combination of all, it’s important to look for wheels that will suit your individual needs.

Certain trusted brands offer a wide selection of different wheel types, styles and sizes, so it pays to do your research before you make a decision.

Here are some factors you must consider:

Pitch Circle Diameter & Centre Bore

First and foremost, you should consider your vehicle’s pitch circle diameter (PCD). The PCD is the number and pattern of the studs on your vehicle, which must match the rims you are fitting.

Similarly, the centre bore is the hole in the middle of the wheel and must match the size of the car rims you select.

Size / Diameter

Standard car rims are typically between 19 and 20 inches in diameter. However, larger rims can offer a unique look and are more practical for certain types of driving. You will need to consider the size of the wheel arch, the size of tyres you are matching them with and your driving style.


The width of the wheel will dictate the size of tyres that will fit onto the vehicle. In other words, wider tyres require wider rims. Wider wheels will also increase your grip and ability to brake.

Wheel Offset

The wheel offset is measured in millimetres and defines how far the wheel will stick out from the mounting face. For example, a negative offset refers to wheels that are inside the width of the mounting face.

Wheels with a large positive offset can provide a uniquely desirable look, however they can catch on the fender and/or brake calipers if not fitted correctly.

What Design & Finish will Suit my Car & Tyres?

If you’re replacing your car rims you’re probably looking for a fresh new look that enhances the overall look of your car. Consider the style and colour of your vehicle and what type, size and finish of car rims will create the look you are trying to achieve.

Popular Brands of Car Wheels

Once you determine your requirements, you can start to consider which brands will be more suitable than others. 

Shopping for wheels can be scary, with a plethora of options available everywhere you look. So what can you do to sift through these options and find a wheel that truly suits your needs, without putting you unnecessarily out of pocket?

Here is just a small selection of some of the finest brands that are available to purchase within Australia:

American Racing Wheels

Established in 1956, American Racing Wheels have forged a strong reputation as a manufacturer of high quality modern and vintage racing wheels.


Simmons is an Australian manufacturer of high end 3-piece rims. Their custom program allows you to maximize your wheel fitment without the restrictions associated with 1-piece wheels.


An American manufacturer of custom, luxury wheels typically for high end brands including BMW, Mercedes Benz, Lexus, Porsche, Land Rover and more.

SSW (Stamford Sports Wheels)

Established in the 1930’s, SSW manufacture high performance alloy wheels and tyres which are distributed across the globe.

What’s to Consider When Looking for a Car Rim Shop

Here are some factors you should research and ask potential suppliers when looking for your next set of wheels:

Online Reputation

Before you speak with any suppliers, make sure you check their reputation on Google and Facebook. Try to focus on wheel shops with no fewer than 100 reviews and an average rating of at least 4 out of 5 stars.


Focus on suppliers with a minimum of 10 years experience. Experience does not always convert to great customer service, however it should reduce the risk of receiving poor products, service or workmanship.

Free Expert Advice

Give them a call before you make a decision – A reputable company will take the time to understand your requirements and offer free expert advice specific to your needs.

Interest Free Finance

Majority of reputable companies now offer Interest Free Finance through third party suppliers such as AfterPay or ZipPay. If you require financial assistance this is an important consideration.

Fitment Guarantee

This is a guarantee that your new package will suit your car with no issues whatsoever. Where an issue does arise, they should rectify the issue or provide a full refund.

Wheel Balance & Alignment

Almost every wheel and tyre shop will include a balance and alignment with your new package, however it can’t hurt to check this off before you proceed.

How to Look After Your Car Rims

Let’s also take a look at what you can do to make sure your new car rims last as long as possible.

We aren’t able to wash our wheels every day, it’s merely a fact. However, it is important to keep your mag wheels clean, as excess dirt and grime can lead to them deteriorating quickly.

You should aim to clean your car once a fortnight. To minimise brake dust getting onto a freshly washed car, you should clean your alloys first. Avoid cleaning mag wheels when they’re still warm from driving – allow them to cool.

If you really want a deep clean that will make your rims look shiny for longer, consider removing them from the car. Though not necessary, this would ensure that you reach all of those hard to reach spots, and your wheels can look as good as the day you bought them.

To remove brake dust, a pressure washer is probably your best bet. Blast the corners of each alloy, making sure you reach everywhere.

Purnell Tyres

Purnell Tyres are a car rim / tyre shop located in Queensland, Australia. We offer a wide range of car wheels and tyres to buy online or from our shop in Waterford. We specialise in American racing wheels, old school wheels and muscle car wheels for automotive enthusiasts.

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