Beautifying and protecting your car are not mutually exclusive tasks. You may be installing new windows mainly because they look cooler, but they'll also provide better protection for your car, which is a nice bonus.
When you put new coats of paint on your rims, you're also introducing aesthetic and functional additions to your car.
To ensure that you receive only the best benefits, you also have to seek out the best spray paint for rim.
That's the goal we want to help within this article, so please read on for more valuable information as well as some reviews of the top options currently available on the market.
Our Quick Picks
Which Spray Paints Can You Use for Rims?
The most important thing to note when you are looking for a can of spray paint to use on your cars' rims is that you can't just pick up any item from any hardware store and think that will be good enough.
Even if you used the same can of spray paint to paint wooden tables and metal chairs, you will likely need a different one for your cars' rims.
According to Menards, spray paint formulated to be used on cars offers a “smooth, durable finish.” Furthermore, that type of spray paint must also be suitable for “painting an entire surface or adding details.”
Our List of 5 Best Spray Paint for Rims 2021
1. VHT Best Wheel Paint Can
The ability to hold up well to high temperatures and frequent usage is something you absolutely need to have in the spray paint you will use for your rims. That ability is precisely what makes the Wheel Paint from VHT stand out.
If one of the reasons why you're painting your cars' rims is because you want to make it better suited for racing, then this product is going to work great for you.
It will not be damaged even when exposed to temperatures as high as 900°F. That's assuming that you applied and allowed the paint to dry properly however.
This particular rim paint also features remarkable resistance to chemicals.
Provided that you follow the steps necessary for proper paint application, the coating on your cars' rims should turn out nice and shiny.
Failing to properly prepare the surface you're painting may result in the finish turning out chalky and uneven, so you will need to be careful.
There's a lot to love about this particular can of spray paint, although its thickness could be improved. In all likelihood, you will need at least two cans of this paint to completely coat the rims of your car.
While that is a minor annoyance, you can live with it knowing that this paint will stay on your car's rims for a very long time.
- High heat resistance
- Good chemical resistance
- Very durable
- Shiny finish is easily attainable
- Paint will be applied securely overnight
- Paint is a bit thin
2. PlastiKote Spray Paint for Wheels
Durability is also the calling card of PlastiKote's Wheel Paint.
It doesn't possess the same ability to withstand high temperatures as what the VHT item above could tolerate, but that's a high bar to clear anyway. Temperature resistance is still fine for this spray paint.
What I do love most about this paint is how well it holds up against the natural wear and tear that comes with everyday usage. You will have to pull out the magnifying glass to see the scratches on this paint. As someone with a bit of a perfectionist streak, that is something I truly appreciate.
The finish produced by this can of paint looks great, but you if you're someone who loves to see that shine stand out, then you may find what it provides to be somewhat lacking.
You can remedy that minor issue by adding more layers of this paint to your car's rims, and you may end up needing to do that anyway. Just like the VHT paint mentioned earlier, this paint is also on the thinner side, and you will likely need to apply at least two layers of it to get complete coverage for your car's rims.
Thankfully, this paint dries up very quickly, so you can add those extra layers quickly.
- Highly resistant to nicks and scratches
- Remarkable durability
- Dries up in a hurry
- Finish is more than acceptable
- Ideal for cars used regularly
- You'll likely need to apply multiple layers of this paint
3. Dupli-Color Shadow Chrome Black-out Coating Kit
Achieving the finest possible finish is the goal for many when they add new layers of paint to their cars' rims, but that result can prove elusive. To help make sure that you get the exact type of finish you want, the folks at Dupli-Color have created their own specialized coating kit.
You will first have to apply the base coat which covers the rims in a layer of translucent black paint. The base coating is actually pretty durable. It provides ample resistance to dust particles and it won't scratch easily even with daily use.
The clear coat is what gives the paint that irresistible shine. It's significantly shinier than the previous two products reviewed in this article, but at the same time, it's not blinding even when lights hit at that right angle.
By the time you're finished working with this kit, you will have a new coat of paint on your car's rims that looks as though it was professionally applied.
Of course, getting the paint from the can to the rims is not an easy process.
The nozzles installed on the spray cans feature a tendency to malfunction. If you're not paying close attention, you can easily end up applying an uneven layer of paint.
As long as you're careful when using this kit, you should be able to end up with some beautiful results.
- Adds great shine to the rims
- No need to get a primer
- Paint is durable
- Scratch resistance is good
- Dries up fast
- Nozzle has a tendency to spray uneven amounts of paint
4. Plasti Dip Kit: Best Rim Paint
The last two items that we're going to discuss in this article are products from Plasti Dip. That part is important to note because these last two items are also not what you would call as the conventional types of spray paint.
Let's start with the Luxury Black Sapphire spray paint from Plasti Dip.
The Luxury Black Sapphire oversells just how good this item will look on your car's rims. The finish is adequate and for the most part, you shouldn't have any real issue with it.
If you like the paint on your rims to really stand out and be shiny, then you're not going to be completely happy with what this product will provide.
Once applied, Plasti Dip keeps your rims protected from a wide variety of chemicals as well as those usual nicks and scratches. It's also nice and stretchy, so you don't have to worry about it suddenly breaking.
Should you decide that the Plasti Dip variant you chose is not delivering the look you want, you will be able to peel it off without leaving any unsightly residue behind.
If you do decide that Plasti Dip's look is working for you, then you can just leave it on your rims. As long as you maintain it properly, it should last for about six months on your car.
- Can be peeled off easily
- Offers good scratch resistance
- Resistant to various chemicals
- Plasti Dip is very flexible
- Can be used even without sanding rims first
- Lacks the standout shine featured by spray paints
5. Plasti Dip Rim Kit: Black
We'll finish up with the Black Plastic Dip Rim Kit.
As you may have already guessed, this product shares plenty of things in common with the Plasti Dip offering discussed previously. That means that all the positive features observed in the previous product can be seen in this one as well.
The durability is good, and the coating is particularly resistant to chemicals and scratches. It remains very flexible, so shattering is not something you will have to be concerned about.
The process of applying this product is similarly hassle-free. If you don't have the time available to sand your tires, then just wipe them down and quickly apply this. The end result should still turn out quite well.
Unfortunately, it's not just the positive features that have been retained as the same issues that plagued the Luxury Black Sapphire Plasti Dip Rim Kit have also returned.
To be more specific, the issue about the finish lacking shine has reared its ugly head once again.
It's even more pronounced this time around because the default color provided by this Plasti Dip Kit is significantly duller.
A shiny finish is not essential for car rims, but if you are looking for that, then this is probably not the product you should get.
- Minimal preparation needed for this item
- Highly resistant to scratches
- Will not be easily damaged by chemicals
- Very flexible
- Can be peeled off if you want a different coating
- Finish looks a bit dull
Factors to Consider When Shopping The Best Wheel Paint
That durable quality is something you always need to look for in any type of paint you are getting, whether it's something you are going to use for furniture or some kind of external application.
When looking for spray paint to be used on rims however, durability is something you absolutely have to prioritize.
Remember what kind of conditions your car's rims are exposed to on a daily basis. The new paint you applied has to be durable enough to withstand any scratches caused by debris on the road as well as any potential chemical damages dealt by other odd things strewn about on the streets.
If the durability of the paint you use is anything less than ideal, then you're just wasting money. By going with a less expensive and also less durable type of paint, you're just upping the chances that you'll have to apply new coats weeks later.
It will be better for you to invest in a good product right away and benefit from how long it will keep your car's rims protected.
2. High Heat Resistance
You can think of high heat resistance as another aspect of the paint's durability, but it's worth singling it out because of a few reasons.
There's no real way to completely avoid the debris that can scratch your car or the other elements that can damage it.
Ordinarily, you can also prevent the rims of your cars from getting too hot by simply ensuring that the brakes are working well and that you are employing the proper braking technique. Then again, you may be subjecting the rims of your car to excessive amounts of heat if you like to go out racing.
In that case, finding a type of paint that is capable of withstanding high temperatures will be worth the effort for you.
3. Quality of Finish
Folks like to retouch the paint on their rims often because they want those looking as shiny as they can possibly get. The good news is that there are certain types of paint that offer very glossy finishes.
Even if you decide to choose your rims black, they can still shine brightly if you get a type of spray paint that features a great finish.
How to Spray Paint Your Rims: A Step-By-Step Guide
Step 1: Thoroughly Clean the Wheels
With the wheels already detached from the car, proceed to give them a thorough cleaning. You don't need any special items for this part of the process – a bucket of water and soap will work just fine. Just make sure to get rid of every bit of debris that you can during the cleaning process.
As noted by WikiHow, you can also choose to use wax and grease remover to clean your car's rims, but more often than not, they will not be needed.
Step 2: Sand Your Wheels if Necessary
When using most types of spray paint, you will first have to sand down the rims to ensure that the paint is applied in even layers.
You can start this process by first using a wire brush. Once you've gotten rid of any rust that may have accumulated, you can go ahead and use 300-grit sandpaper before finishing up with 500-grit sandpaper.
Notably, if you will be using either of the Plast Dip products listed above, sanding will no longer be necessary.
Step 3: Rinse the Wheels
Splash the wheels with water to get rid of any particles that may still be hanging on. Wipe the wheels down after that and let them air dry completely.
Step 4: Prepare the Wheels for Painting
If you decided to keep the wheels on the car while painting, then you will need to keep your car protected. This post on Instructables advises you to use boxes, tape, and trash bags to shield the rest of your car away from the paint that you will be applying on the rims.
If you opted to remove the wheels from your car, then you can use tape and plastic bags to outline the surface you will be painting while simultaneously protecting the parts that will not be painted. By following these steps, you can significantly cut down on the amount of clean up you will have to do later on.
Step 5: Apply the Primer
Some paint kits already come with a type of primer included, so just go ahead and use that. In case one is not included, you can purchase that easily online or at a store.
Read the primer's instructions before you apply it to ensure that no issues will pop up later on.
Other paint kits come with a base coat that has to be applied, so make sure you use that before the paint as well.
Step 6: Spray on the Paint
Once again, the instructions on the can should serve as your guide here.
Apply the first coat of paint, and if it's not enough, wait until it dries before you spray a new one on. Repeat this process until the rims are completely covered.
Step 7: The Finishing Touches
After the paint has dried, go ahead and remove all the paint and plastic you used to prevent overspray.
If any scratches turn up on the rims, get those out by using some sandpaper. You can also apply some polish to make your newly painted rims even shinier.
Is spray painting rims a good idea?
When it comes to spray painting the rims of your car, it’s not a matter if spray painting is good for your rims but rather the type of paint you use on the rims.
What kind of paint do you use on rims?
You can’t use just any old spray paint when painting your rims. You must use a special paint that is durable for exterior surfaces. There is special paint at the auto store that is specially made for wheels. The best spray paint for rims is PlastiKote Spray Paint for Wheels.
Can I spray paint alloy wheels?
You can spray paint alloy rims, but this process is a little more detailed as alloy rims can rust. If your rums are rusted, it is best to sand them with 300 grit sandpaper prior to painting.
Can you paint your rims without taking them off?
You can paint your rims without taking them off. To do this, you can take 1-2 decks of cards and place them between the wheel and the rim to create a barrier. This will allow you to spray the rim without taking it off the wheel.
While I understand why some folks may prefer using Plasti Dip on their rims, I personally prefer something that will last longer, which is why I am going with the Wheel Paint from VHT.
I love how resistant this paint is to scratches and to other elements, and the high heat resistance is a great bonus. This spray paint doesn't feature the best finish you'll ever see, but it is more than acceptable. You can also improve it by using some polish.
For its durability and quality finish, I am going with VHT's Wheel Paint as my choice for the best spray paint for wheels.