Best Spray Paint for Aluminum Wheels
Posted on January 27 2022
Discoloration, fading, and scratches make your aluminum wheels look bad. As well, protective coatings that have been damaged expose the wheels to the elements, especially salt, which leaves them susceptible to corrosion damage. Wheel replacement can be expensive, which makes spray painting aluminum wheels to restore their appearance and seal them from the elements an economical option. But what is the best spray paint for aluminum wheels?
Paint for Aluminum Wheels
Any metal paint that can handle high temperature and is weather resistant and durable might work. However, choosing the right paint color and sheen is a major consideration so that the appearance matches that of the wheels when new. As well, the paint needs to be resistant to damage from brake dust. The best spray paint for aluminum wheels is that which has been specifically designed for use on aluminum wheels and is formulated for best performance and appearance for this application.
How to Paint Aluminum Wheels
- Wheel removal – First, remove the wheels from the vehicle. This will make the job much easier. As well it avoids the wheel paint overspray from getting on the vehicle’s paint.
- Cleaning – Use of wheel cleaning solution is recommended as it’s formulated to remove grease, grime, and brake dust. The wheels should be scrubbed with a brush to ensure all contaminants are removed from the wheel. It’s important to thoroughly remove all contaminants from the wheel surface to be painted, including the nooks and crannies, so primer paint will properly bond with the aluminum.
- Sanding – Primer paint doesn’t usually stick to aluminum well, so to prepare the wheels for best adhesion of the primer they should be sanded with 220-grit sandpaper. Be sure to sand the wheels where primer will be applied including the nooks and crannies. For wheels that have deep scratches first sand the wheels with 80 grit sandpaper.
- Masking - Mask the tires from overspray as well as any areas of the wheels which aren’t to be painted. Masking tape and sheets of paper can be used as shown by the photo.
- Primer - Prime the wheels for paint by applying three light coats of self-etching spray primer, allowing each coat to dry before the next is applied. After the last coat of primer has dried lightly sand with 600-grit sandpaper. Then wipe down with a cleaner that won’t leave a residue, such as rubbing alcohol. ColorBond Prep Cleaner can also be used.
- Painting – Again, use the best spray paint for aluminum wheels; a product designed for this purpose. Follow the instructions on the can. Typically, 2-3 coats of wheel paint are required.
- Clear Coat – While not always necessary, some people like to apply a top coat of clear coat. If this is done it’s recommended to use a quality automotive grade clear coat.
ColorBond Pro Tech Argent Wheel Paint
ColorBond Pro Tech Argent Wheel Paint an attractive and economical option for painting aluminum wheels. Pro Tech applies quickly and easily, and the color and 50 – 60% gloss sheen provide the appearance to match most aluminum wheels. The superior durability of this acrylic enamel will keep wheels looking great for a long time. The appearance and durability of Pro Tech Argent Wheel Paint makes it an excellent option when choosing the best spray paint for aluminum wheels. Of note, ColorBond Adhesion Promoter can be used in place of an etching primer.
Wheels refinished with ColorBond Pro Tech Argent Wheel Paint
MARS Automotive Reconditioning Center restored aluminum wheels with ColorBond Pro Tech Argent Wheel Paint. Here is what they had to say:
"These wheels took approximately 1 can of Colorbond Argent Silver #1438 wheel paint. After light sanding on the worst scratches and a bit of grinding with a Dremel tool to smooth out "curb rash," I cleaned with Prep, masked with sheets of paper and gave three light coats of paint. The paint is great and just right for filling the lesser defects and rash marks. The cost from local wheel repair shops is $100-150. With Colorbond, I was able to do these at half of that. After the first few, I have the process to the point that I can do a set in 1-1.5 hours!"
See more on Mar’s professional use of ColorBond products here.
If you are looking for the best spray paint for aluminum wheels check out ColorBond Pro Tech Argent Wheel Paint. You’ll be very happy with the results.