Anti-seize is a product that prevents mechanical seizing and galling of bolts and nuts. In the auto industry, anti-seize has many uses.
For instance, it is used as a lubricant for certain parts. If you ask around, some car owners claim that anti-seize can also be used on the wheel hub.
If you are contemplating using anti-seize on your wheel hub, this article will dig deeper into whether it’s okay to use this product on your vehicle and whether there are any repercussions you should expect.
Is It Okay to Use Anti-seize on a Wheel Hub?
Have you ever tried to remove your rim only to find it stuck to the wheel hub? Well, anti-seize can prevent that from happening.
By applying anti-seize to the wheel hub, you can avoid scenarios where the rim sticks to it and makes it hard for you to remove it.
Please note that anti-seize wasn’t formulated to be used on the wheel hub. If you are going to use it, stick to small amounts, as this ensures the product doesn’t run off to the brakes.
Out of the many versatile products you can use on the wheel hub, anti-seize is the safest option. WD40 or grease can get runny when the temperatures increase and can affect the brake rotor.
Why Should You Use Anti-seize on the Wheel Hub?
There are a lot of conflicting opinions about whether you should or shouldn’t use anti-seize on the wheel hub. However, from the experiences of most motorists, no harm may come from spreading a little paste of anti-seize on the face of the hub.
Anti-seize on a wheel hub offers two main benefits. One, it enables the rims to come right off when you swap them. Let’s face it, many people often forget about wheel maintenance.
Therefore, some wheels may remain affixed to the hub for so long that the metals start to seize. If the owner had applied some anti-seize, they don’t have to worry about the rims sticking to the hub.
You may also consider using anti-seize on the wheel hub to prevent rust. This is a very common use of anti-seize, and it can prolong the life of your wheel hub.
Which Anti-seize Metal Should You Use on the Wheel Hub?
As you may already know, there are different types of anti-seize metals. Before using copper, aluminum, or nickel anti-seize, you must know which is most suitable.
From most user reviews, nickel and aluminum are ideal anti-seize metals to use on the wheel hub. As for copper anti-seize, there are allegations that it erodes the wheel hub. It’s best to keep off from it.
Does Any Manufacturer Recommend the Use of Anti-seize on Wheel Hubs?
As mentioned earlier, the use of anti-seize is a hack that car owners discovered due to its ability to prevent the rim from sticking to the wheel hub.
Therefore, there are no manufacturers who recommend using anti-seize on wheel hubs. However, this is something that a lot of people do regularly. The lack of manufacturer approval hasn’t hindered car owners from using anti-seize as a lubricant.
When you add the rust-inhibiting benefits, anti-seize becomes an even more ideal product for wheel hubs.
Why Do Rims and Wheel Hubs Get Stuck Together?
Even though anti-seize is beneficial, car owners need to ask themselves one important question. Why do rims and wheel hubs get stuck together?
Most of the time, this is usually due to corrosion. As much as you may use anti-seize to prevent these two parts from getting stuck, it’s a good idea to always perform regular maintenance on your wheels and the surrounding systems.
It’s the only way to diagnose issues with the wheel hub before it gets serious.
Do Wheels Come Off When You Use Anti-seize on the Hub?
Considering that the use of anti-seize on the wheel hub is a DIY hack, there is a lot of misleading information out there.
Recently, I came across a forum where some people were saying that using anti-seize can make the wheels loose, and if you are not careful, it may come off. That is 100% false.
Anti-seize helps prevent corrosion that may occur between the wheel hub and rim. It’s this corrosion that makes these two parts get stuck together. It only lubricates these two parts. It doesn’t make the system loose in any manner.
Even if you use anti-seize in the lug nuts, your wheel will be securely held in position. You don’t have to worry about it coming off as long as you correctly torqued them.
Many people use anti-seize on the hub, and there haven’t been any reported incidences of people losing wheels due to the lubrication offered by anti-seize.
How to Apply Anti-Seize on Wheel Hub?
If you have made up your mind to use anti-seize on the wheel hub, here is a quick guide on how to do it correctly.
Step 1 – Remove the wheel so that you can get easy access to the wheel hub.
Step 2 – Gently wire brush the wheel hub to remove brake dust and dirt you may have picked up on the road. The important part here is that you should be gentle. If you are too rough, you may damage the wheel hub.
Step 3 – Apply a thin layer of nickel anti-seize. Earlier, we mentioned avoiding copper anti-seize because it can accelerate corrosion. Therefore, go for nickel anti-seize.
Only dab a small layer of the anti-seize. Unlike grease or oil, anti-seize doesn’t run. A small amount can last for a significantly long time on your wheel hub.
Step 4 – Put the wheel back in and torque it according to your car’s specifications. It’s important to remember that over or under-torquing wheels aren’t recommended.
How Often Should You Use Anti-seize on the Wheel Hub?
Because anti-seize helps prevent the rim and wheel hub from seizing, it doesn’t mean you should apply it every time you remove the wheels. That will be an exaggeration. You can clean the wheel hub and dab some anti-seize on the surface whenever you are servicing your car.
Alternatively, if you live in a rust-prone area, you can do this after every six months. That should be enough to keep the wheel hub in perfect condition.
What Should You Do When Your Wheels Stick to the Hub?
If you don’t use anti-seize, there is a good chance that your wheels may decline to come off from the hub due to seizing.
When you find yourself in such a scenario, there is usually no option but to use power to get the wheel to come apart.
Some people use hammers, and others use blunt objects to pry the wheel from the hub. Irrespective of the tool you choose, be careful not to damage the wheel or axle.
If your wheels are firmly stuck to the hub, you should take them to a tire shop, and the experts there can help separate the two parts.
Such a scenario should be a lesson, and from there, going forward, you should always use anti-seize to prevent wheels from sticking to the hub.
What’s Better: Grease or Anti-Seize?
In the auto world, people have different recommendations for various things. In the case of anti-seize and the wheel hub, some claim grease can be used as a substitute. But I beg to differ.
Grease is ideal for low-pressure and low-contact applications. However, anti-seize works best for high-pressure and high-contact applications.
Therefore, it’s more suitable for use on the wheel hub. If you inquire from most expert mechanics, they recommend anti-seize, not grease.