What Do Wheel Spacers Do and Are They Safe? – Cargister

what do wheel spacers do

Do you feel like your car needs a little something extra? Have you been looking for a way to give your vehicle that added edge it needs? Look no further than wheel spacers! In this blog post, we’ll discuss why adding wheel spacers to your car can make all the difference and give your ride that extra boost it’s been missing. So buckle up and let’s get started!

Introduction to Wheel Spacers

Wheel spacers change the distance between the wheel and the brake assembly, allowing you to get the perfect offset for your car or truck. They can also be used to widen the track width on various vehicles. This will give your vehicle improved handling and stability while cornering, as well as a more aggressive look.

Wheel spacers are made from either aluminum or steel and come in different sizes and configurations depending on your needs. Before buying wheel spacers, it is important to understand:

  • How they work
  • What type is best for your needs
  • How to install them properly

By understanding these details you can make an educated decision when purchasing wheel spacers for your vehicle.

History of Wheel Spacers

Wheel spacers form an integral part of many types of automobile wheel systems and they have been used in some fashion since the early days of horse-drawn carriages. Originally, wheel spacers were simple rings made from cast iron with interlocking teeth to fit over the wheel hub. As cars evolved and wheel designs became more complex, so did the need for wheel spacers. Today, most wheel spacers are computer designed for optimal performance; although many classic cars still use traditional-style wheel spacers.

Wheel spacers play a key role in providing stability for the car and making sure the tires have an even contact patch with the road. Wheel sizes vary on modern cars, with plus sizing becoming increasingly popular as tire technology improves and production costs decrease. Wheel spacers help ensure an even load distribution between axle locations by allowing connected wheels to sit at equal distances from each other while also ensuring that tire treads remain in contact with road surfaces during hard turns or bumps. In addition to providing support for tires, wheel spacers also offer a wider range of possible widths; this is useful when combining wheels of different diameters or allowing wider tires on certain vehicles.

Today’s automotive industry continues to use various types of wheel spacer hardware and specialized adapters to fit nearly any type of car, truck or SUV and provide drivers with smoother rides than traditional suspension systems could achieve alone.

Benefits of Installing Wheel Spacers

Installing wheel spacers offers a number of benefits to car owners, including better handling and improved traction. Wheel spacers can help improve the balance of your vehicle, as well as its exhaust flow and clearance between components such as tires, suspension systems and brakes.

Wheel spacers are usually made of aluminum or steel and they go between the wheel hub and the wheel itself. This moves the wheels out from their original position, allowing them to fit wider tires or adding more space for bigger brake calipers. As a result, the spacer adds more traction to the tire and gives better control over it. Additionally, the wider stance improves stability which is especially beneficial in high-speed cornering or during emergency maneuvers.

In addition to improving handling characteristics, installing wheel spacers also:

  • Increases vehicle stability both at low speeds and when cornering at higher speeds.
  • Allows increased clearance for larger brakes so you can get more stopping power from your vehicle; this is especially helpful if you off-road frequently with your car.
  • Suppose you’re looking to add ground clearance while changing wheels or adding lifted suspension. In that case, a wheel spacer will give you additional space without modifying the axle or making any other major changes to your vehicle’s setup.

How to Install Wheel Spacers

Wheel spacers are a great way to widen the tracking of your vehicle’s wheels, giving it a more aggressive stance and improving its performance. If you’re looking for improved handling, enhanced grip, and better traction, then installing a set of wheel spacers is something to consider.

When installing wheel spacers, there are several factors to consider. It’s important to always use the correct center bore size for your vehicle, as well as ensure that the weight capacity of your chosen spacer is sufficient for your specific application. Additionally, you must make sure you have the right drive lug nuts or bolts that match the stud size and thread pitch necessary to install the wheel spacer properly.

For optimal reliability and performance, it’s also important that you torque all fasteners with a calibrated torque wrench at their specified level. This can help prevent catastrophic damage due to an improperly tightened lug nut or bolt.

Finally, it is advised that you check all bolts and nuts before each use in order to guarantee proper tightness and maximum longevity of both the wheel spacer and vehicle parts such as suspension components connected with them or their installation point.

Types of Wheel Spacers

Wheel spacers are designed to be attached to the wheel hub of your vehicle and allow you to mount larger wheels and tires. Wheel spacers can also provide an improved appearance by allowing you to “push out” the wheels without having to get new suspension components or expensive machine work.

Depending on your vehicle, there are two main types of wheel spacers – hub-centric and lug-centric.

  • Hub-centric wheel spacers are machined specifically for your vehicle’s bolt pattern, hub size and center bore, so they’ll provide a much better fit than the generic lug-centric ones. They can be custom-made by a machine shop using CNC or CAD software systems. The hub centric wheel spacer ensures that the center hole in the wheel adapter is precisely aligned with the axle hub center making it much easier to mount and reduce vibrations caused by gaps between components.
  • Lug-centric wheel spacers have a standard small diameter center hole that fits your card studs but not necessarily your axle shafts. This more generic type of spacer is widely available, inexpensive and works well for many applications, although it may cause additional stress on lugs due to uneven load distribution. Some bolt patterns require several types of easy adapters be used for them to align properly with the mounting points on your vehicle’s hubs.

Common Issues with Wheel Spacers

Wheel spacers are designed to correct wheel-related issues and increase performance. They can also improve the overall look of a vehicle’s wheels by providing additional clearance or increasing wheel width. However, certain common issues occur with wheel spacer installation and usage.

First, wheel spacers should always be installed properly; incorrect installation may cause wheel-related problems such as ball joint failure, or lack of proper control arm travel. Improper spacing between the wheel and hub face can also occur if wheel spacers are incorrectly installed. Additional clearance may need to be obtained from the brake system in order for the wheel spacer to fit properly. Additionally, using the wrong type of spacer for your wheels can cause poor handling due to excessive offset created by incompatible wheel backspacing and diameter combination, as well as poor steering geometry due to lack of clearance between the tire bead lip and control arm when turning hard corners.

In general, it is best practice to have a professional install your wheel spacers with quality fasteners that are appropriate for your application in order to avoid any potential issues related to improper usage or installation.

Maintenance of Wheel Spacers

Proper maintenance of your wheel spacers is important to ensure safe and trouble-free driving. Wheel spacers are a precision-tooled part that requires regular checks and frequent tightening to keep them in the best condition. We recommend that you inspect your wheel spacer nuts and bolts every few months or so, as they can become loose over time due to the vibration of the vehicle. Additionally, consider using locking nuts on those spacer bolts for extra security.

It is also important to check for any damage or wear and tear on the wheel spacer itself such as cracks, dents or rust developments. Carefully check all rubber parts on your wheel spacers like any rubber bushings and make sure that they still provide adequate protection from vibration, noise and harshness (NVH). If necessary, replace any worn out rubber parts with new ones so they can serve their purpose again. Lastly, if applicable to your spacers, be sure to check the anodizing of them which prevents corrosion as well as giving a very good aesthetic finish.


Wheel spacers are a great way to modify your vehicle’s wheelbase and track, widen the stance for more stability, and give your ride a more aggressive look. They can also increase clearance for bigger tires in certain applications.

When you choose wheel spacers, look for a brand with good reviews that offers quality components that meet or exceed OEM standards to ensure long-term performance and durability. Be sure to check your vehicle’s exact specifications before making any decisions or purchases to make sure you get the best fit possible.

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