Should I Use Wheel Locks for Cheap Tires?

If you’ve recently had some super cheap tires installed in your car and happen to live in an area with a high crime rate, it’s a good idea to use wheel locks. Wheel locks provide extra security and make it impossible for thieves to steal your wheels. Plus, some of them come in beautiful designs, so they can  enhance your car’s aesthetics. 

In this post, we’ll explore wheel locks in greater depth. We’ll discuss the types and pricing of wheel locks, along with some common misconceptions with respect to their usage.

What Are Wheel Locks?

Wheel locks are lug nuts with extra protection. They function the same as a basic lug nut, but there’s a key to open and remove them. In this way, they protect your wheels from thieves. 

Some other names for wheel locks include:

  • Tire locks 
  • Rim locks
  • Anti-theft lug nuts

Most new cars come with a built-in wheel lock, which has become more of a standard feature in recent years. However, owners of old models can buy wheel locks from the market and get them installed in their cars. It’s important to note that wheel locks usually come in a pack of four, meaning there’s one for each wheel.

What Are the Different Types of Wheel Locks?

There are four different types of wheel locks. These include locking lug nuts, wheel clamp locks, tapered seat locks, radius seat locks, and alloy wheel locks. 

Locking Lug Nuts

Locking lug nuts are the same as those described above. They look like ordinary lug nuts but must be opened with a key. A smart thief won’t waste time trying to unlock a locking lug nut and will simply move on to the next vehicle.

Wheel Clamp Locks

A wheel clamp is a large and prominent wheel stopper. It is connected externally to the wheels and is made up of sturdy metal or plastic. 

This type of lock is not suitable for everyday use because it prevents the vehicle from moving at all. When a wheel clamp lock is on, the thief can neither detach the wheel nor move the vehicle. If you want to drive your vehicle, you’ll have to remove the wheel clamp lock entirely, which can require a bit of effort. 

Tapered Seat Locks

The locking and security mechanism of tapered seat locks is similar to locking lug nuts. However, these have a cone at an angle, which fits into the wheel of the nut.

Radius Seat Locks 

Radius seat locks use the key-locking mechanism, but are more specific because these locks use the curved area connecting the bolt and the thread. 

Alloy Wheel Locks

Alloy wheel locks are a subtype of locking lug nuts–the only difference lies in their material. Alloy wheel locks are made up of strong metal alloys, so they promise greater protection.

How Much Do Wheel Locks Cost?

Wheel locks usually cost between $20 and $120. There are wheel locks that cost more than this, depending on their type, quality, and brand. We recommend considering the following factors before buying wheel locks:

  • Vehicle model
  • Wheel type
  • Wheel size
  • Material

It’s also a good idea to check out the customer reviews before buying wheel locks. If you don’t buy from a reliable company, you may get a low-quality wheel lock that’s easy to break.

Are Wheel Locks for Cheap Tires a Good Idea?

Yes–it’s a good idea to buy wheel locks for cheap tires. This is because the overall price of a set of wheel locks is much lower than that of a set of wheels and tires, even if the tires are cheap.

With that said, we do not recommend installing high-end wheel locks for cheap tires. Looking for information on whether cheap tires are dangerous or which size wheel might be cheapest to buy tires for? We’ve got your back–take a look at our latest posts!