What Are Swollen Lug Nuts?

HomeBlog / What Are Swollen Lug ...

What Are Swollen Lug Nuts?

Has your auto repair shop ever told you that you need to replace your lug nuts because they are swollen?  If so, they are correct.  Terms like swollen lug nuts and bulging lug nuts are used to describe the situation when the lug nuts on your vehicle are unable to be removed by the typical method due to them being larger than their normal size.  

So how does this happen?  Many of the vehicle manufacturers use a two-piece lug nut design consisting of a steel lug nut covered with a decorative chrome or aluminum cap.  Moisture is able to enter between the decorative cap and the steel lug nut.  This sets the stage for corrosion to develop from the moisture and the reaction between two dissimilar metals.  As the corrosion builds up it pushes the decorative cap outward thus increasing the overall size of the lug nut.  This prevents a normal size socket wrench and the vehicle’s lug wrench from fitting over the nut to properly remove it.  It’s especially concerning because if you were to find yourself in a situation where you need to change your tire, you would not be able to do so because the lug wrench that is supplied with your vehicle will not fit the swollen lug nut.

Here is how to remove swollen lug nuts or bulging lug nuts.  It is best to have it done by a professional to eliminate the possibility of additional damage to the lug nut or the wheel.  Here at Stouch’s Auto Repair Shop, we have all the special tools that are needed to remove them properly without causing additional damage.

If you have swollen lug nuts or bulging lug nuts, give us a call.  If you don’t know the condition of your lug nuts stop by and we will inspect them for you free of charge.  You don’t want to find yourself stranded along the road unable to change a flat tire.