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ALLOY WHEELS VS STEEL WHEELS

Some time back, sport rims were exclusive to high end sports cars. That has now changed. They are now a universal feature for every ordinary car around. Sport rims add a sporty and over the edge look to a vehicle because of their unique designs. On the other hand, there are conventional wheels. These are sometimes fitted with wheel caps to uplift their image. These sometimes fall off if not well fastened.

Choosing the right wheel for your vehicle is extremely important because of the ramifications involved. There are two types of wheels to choose from: Alloy wheels and Steel wheels. Note that each type of wheel has its own pros and cons. Below are some of the advantages and disadvantages of both:

Advantages of Alloy Wheels

Sporty Look



Alloy wheels are made of an alloy of aluminum, magnesium or sometimes both. If you are looking for wheels with cosmetic appearance, then go for alloy wheels. Alloy wheels are more appealing to the eye than steel wheels and are even alleged to perform better than steel wheels.

There is a huge variety of alloy wheels to pick from as they easily cast into many unique designs. Alloy wheels have more customization options available and more advanced styling for finishes than their steel counterparts.

Better Performance

Alloy wheels are much lighter than steel wheels. This means that they have the potential to operate at a higher performance in most conditions. In addition, Alloy wheels decrease unsprung weight and therefore transmit less inertia to the springs. This allows the suspension to flow with the terrain more easily, thereby offering better grip. In addition, handling, steering and corner negotiation is greatly improved.

Alloy Rim

Fuel Economy

Alloy wheels offer better fuel economy. This is because of the lighter frame of the alloy wheels which puts less strain on the suspension of your vehicle. This also allows for faster acceleration.

Better heat conduction/dissipation and braking

Since they are able to dissipate heat better than steel wheels, they provide better braking performance and decrease the risk of brake failure.

Less corrosion and rust



Since alloy wheels are usually made of aluminum alloy, they are less likely to corrode and rust.

Disadvantages of Aluminum Wheels

Less Durable

The main disadvantage of alloy wheels is that they are less durable. When impacted by the road, alloy wheels tend to bend and even crack more easily than their much tougher counterparts. However, worry not for there is a fast fix for this.

Steel wheels are significantly stronger than alloy wheels and are able to take much more impact on rough terrain before bending or even cracking as compared to alloy wheels. This is why you should think very carefully before having alloy wheels fitted to your car, especially in countries with very bad roads.




Expensive

The manufacturing process of alloy wheels is more complex as compared to the conventional steel wheels. This means that alloy wheels cost a lot more than their steel counterparts.

They are also prone to cosmetic damage.

Steel Rim

More attractive to thieves

Due to their beauty and higher cost as compared to the traditional steel wheels, alloy wheels tend to be more attractive to thieves. Therefore, if your car is fitted with alloy wheels, make sure you take precautionary measures like getting locking nuts and fitting your car with alarm system just in case.

Lastly,

If you are looking for cheaper and more durable wheels, go for steel wheels. Just ensure that you maintain the layer of paint on your wheel so that they don’t rust. They are also easier to repair in case of a bent. However, the extra “unsprang weight” created from steel wheels can lower your vehicle’s center of gravity hence decreasing your vehicle’s agility and ability to accelerate. This can also put a strain on the suspension and other components of your vehicle. All said and done, choose your wheels depending on the weather, road conditions and vehicle type.




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By Editor Car Xperts Reloaded

Car Xperts Reloaded is run by highly experienced auto-engineers and auto-bloggers with many years of motor industry workings and passionate about all things related to cars and automotive. Our goal is to provide readers with useful and interesting information, so that they can make informed decisions when purchasing or maintaining their cars. We are open to suggestions and feedback, and excited to be part of the automotive blogging community!

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