Steps to take when painting your wheels.

Step 1: Pick a Method

The common choices are spray paint, rubberized paint like Plasti Dip or Eastwood’s ElastiWrap, or powder coating. This guide will work for spray paint or rubberized paint

Step 2: Remove Your Wheels

True, they could stay on the car, but you’ll have an easier time and better results if you take them off. Don’t have a spare set to roll around on? Set your car on jack stands, or paint one wheel at a time and leave the spare tire in its place.

Step 3: Clean Your Workspace

Dust and dirt don’t belong near painting projects, so blow off your workbench and mop your floor.

Step 4: Clean Your Wheels

Clean them well. Really, really well. We used Simple Green and a few scrub brushes, but if you’re going to be painting your wheels instead of using ElastiWrap, we’d suggest using a Scotch-Brite pad instead to rough up the old finish.

Step 5: Clean Your Wheels Again

Seriously, it will take two or more passes with degreaser to remove all of the crud and brake dust, and this is the most important step. Make sure you clean the backsides and the crevices, too, as dust left there will ruin the finish.

Step 6: Dry Your Wheels and Tires

We recommend an air blower. Don’t have one? Use a leaf blower, but try to clean the dirt and grass clippings out of it first.

Step 7: Mask Your Wheels

This is easier than it looks: Just use 2-inch-long pieces of tape, and make sure to slip them up under the lip of the wheel. An old credit card can help with this process. Once you’ve outlined the wheel, tape a plastic bag or some newspaper around the outside of the tire.

Step 8: Clean Your Wheels One More Time

This time, though, use a wax and grease remover. Using rubberized paint? We’d suggest using Eastwood’s Surface Prep & Cleaner, which makes ElastiWrap easier to remove if you get tired of it.

Step 9: Paint Your Wheels

Like most painting projects, this step takes the least amount of time. Make sure you use smooth, fluid motions, and try to start and stop the stream of paint before and after the can is over the wheel. We used six thin coats of Eastwood ElastiWrap to paint our wheels.