Can You Powder Coat Lug Nuts? (Solved)

We are all aware of the benefits of powder coating. Most of us have powder-coated wheels, roll bars, struts, and other chassis parts. Powder coating is more durable than paint and serves you longer.

Are you considering powder coating your lug nuts? If you are interested in getting a professional opinion about powder coating lug nuts, you have come to the right place.

First, it’s okay to powder coat lug nuts. Many people have and continue to do it. A powder coat layer protects the lug nuts from damage and beautifies them, thus making your wheels look better.

When powder coating your wheels, it’s also a good idea to powder coat the lug nuts as well. That can help you blend the finishes.

However, when you powder coat lug nuts, you must be very gentle when torquing the lug nuts. Too much torque can damage the powder coat on the lug nuts.

If you have powder-coated lug nuts, you are advised to tighten the lug nuts by hand. It’s the only way you will be able to manage the amount of force exerted on the powder coat.

Also, if you could avoid swapping the wheels too often, the powder coat should hold up for pretty long.

lug nuts

What Color Should You Powder Coat Lug Nuts?

The most common color to powder coat lug nuts is black. But the color you can use depends on your preferences. To help you decide which color you should powder coat your lug nuts, consider the color of the wheels.

If your rims are black or silver, you should go with a matching color on the lug nuts. Alternatively, if it’s a show car, or you prefer shouting colors, you can go with something like red or yellow.

There are plenty of choices regarding which color of powder coat you should use on lug nuts.

Will a Wrench Remove Powder Coat?

The answer is both yes and no. One of the most significant drawbacks of powder coating lug nuts is that they are vulnerable to the effects of a torque wrench.

Lug nuts that have been professionally powder coated can survive the torque from a wrench several times. However, if the powder coating has been done poorly, the torque from the wrench will immediately strip any powder coat on the lug nuts.

When you use a tool such as an impact gun, it won’t matter how well the powder coating job was done. It will be stripped off asap.

As you powder coat your lug nuts, you need to know the risks of using a wrench or impact gun to fasten the lug nuts.

How Much Does It Cost to Powder Coat Lug Nuts?

For every piece, the average rate for powder coating a lug nut is around $2 to $5. Powder coating lug nuts is not expensive.

Therefore, if it’s something you have always wanted to do, there is absolutely no reason that should hold you back. Powder coat them and try to be as gentle as possible.

How Long Will Powder Coated Lug Nuts Last?

A powder coating finish can last for up to two decades. However, due to exposure to various elements, it breaks down much faster. Powder coat on lug nuts wears out quicker than in any other part of your car.

If you powder coat the wheels and the lug nuts at the same time, the latter will be the first to experience wear.

Due to the torque exerted by the wrench when fastening and unfastening lug nuts, the powder coat often gets scratched or damaged.

If lug nuts are powder coated and left untouched, they can last up to ten years. But since lug nuts have to be removed whenever you are rotating wheels or changing a tire, the frequency of doing this determines how long the lug nuts will last.

Powder coat can survive three to five uses of a torque wrench. If you use impact guns, the powder coat can get damaged on the first use. Please keep off the latter. At the same time, you need to adhere to your wheel torque specifications.

Powder Coat vs. Painting Lug Nuts

For a while now, powder coating has overshadowed painting because of its durability. However, painting has more pros than powder coating when it comes to lug nuts.

Undoubtedly, a powder coat creates a strong finish on a surface that is more resistant to UV and other elements such as dirt, snow, and rock chips. However, powder coat thrives on an area that isn’t exposed to extreme force.

For instance, if you powder coat a bumper, the finish can last for years no matter what it’s exposed to. Lug nuts, on the other end, it’s a different story.

Lug nuts are designed to be fastened and unfastened from time to time when you remove wheels. The removal and fitting of lug nuts make powder coating, not the best finish.

As you torque the lug nuts, the force exerted is more than what the powder coat is used to. Therefore, the powder coat will crack or get damaged.

Here’s how the painting is a much better alternative. Paint can also be damaged by the force from torquing lug nuts. But the good news is that you can paint lug nuts when they are already fastened on the wheels. You can cover the surrounding area.

When it dries, you can have a color matching the wheels. Painted lug nuts are easy and cheap to touch up with paint. Therefore, whenever the torque wrench strips some, all you have to do is apply more paint.

Painting lug nuts is much simpler, more convenient, and cheaper than fixing that powder coat. If your only goal is to enhance the finish of the lug nuts, you should consider painting instead of powder coating.

Ensure the Threads aren’t Powder Coated

Whether you are doing the powder coating yourself or you have hired an expert, you shouldn’t powder coat the threads.

The inner part of the lug nuts should not be powder coated because if you do, it would be almost impossible to get them on the studs. If you are taking the lug nuts to be powder coated by an expert, an experienced technician will be aware of this.

If it’s your first time, you are most likely going to powder coat the entire thing, making it hard for you to fasten the lug nuts. This is a safety precaution you have to take note of.

Should I Get New Lug Nuts Instead?

If the idea of powder-coating lug nuts seems like a stretch, you can always get new ones in a finish that you like. As we have seen above, powder coating comes with its fair share of drawbacks.

Painting is a viable alternative, but the best option would be to get new lug nuts in a finish that suits your preference. We have chrome, painted, and even titanium lug nuts, which are durable.

When you buy lug nuts that have been finished with a particular material, such as paint, they will be more resistant to scratching and any other problems. They will also serve you for longer.

Why are Lug Nuts Sandblasted Before Powder Coating?

When you take lug nuts for powder coating, the technician will sandblast them first. You may be wondering – is sandblasting necessary? Yes, it is. Sandblasting removes any unwanted materials from the surface of the lug nuts.

For a powder coat finish to stick, there need to be no impurities on the surface, and that’s what sandblasting does. Sandblasting also removes any finishes that were on the surface, such as paint or chrome plating.

Are Lug Nuts Worth Powder Coating?

Powder coating lug nuts is cheap. But still, before embarking on any project, you should constantly evaluate its worth. Powder-coating lug nuts only provides aesthetic benefits.

We have already seen that it won’t last long due to the effects of torque. Therefore, it’s not a durable investment. Most car owners powder coat lug nuts for fun. If you are interested in a durable finish for your lug nuts, a powder coat won’t offer you that.

How Does Powder Coat Compare to Plastic Caps for Lug Nuts?

Thanks to technological advancements, we have plastic caps for lug nuts in the market today. Plastic caps are available in a wide range of colors. You can even get plastic caps with a chrome finish to match your rims.

The thing about plastic caps is that they are a convenient and more durable option than powder coat. These caps should be popped out when you want to unfasten or fasten the bolts. When you are done, all you have to do is fit them right back.

Unlike powder coat, plastic caps are covers that go over lug nuts. You won’t damage them when unfastening the lug nuts. These plastic caps are cheap, and they are readily available. You can order them from Amazon.