Protecting against future wheel damage / Fixing wheel damage

Estimated reading time: 4 min

A decent chunk of owners in the UK apply a protective plastic surround to their wheels to help them avoid nasty kerb damage on their wheels, however, another large chunk of owners say they don’t look good &/or don’t actually protect the wheels that much. So in otherwords there isn’t a simple answer on whether they’re good for you or not.

Some people like them, some people hate them.

The best way to save money on fixing damaged wheels is to avoid damage in the first place, these tips might help:

  • Reverse into parallel parking bays instead of going nose in, others say to always reverse into a parking space.
  • Adjust your mirror so it drops when you reverse (it remembers this setting)
  • Give yourself extra room
  • Remember the car is extremely wide compared to most other cars on the road
  • Slow down and or wait when negotiating a narrow road. Patience is a virtue. If you don’t think you will make a gap, it’s likely you won’t.
  • Avoid multi story car parks if you have 21″ wheels
  • Always book as a High/Large vehicle on Eurotunnel trips etc.
  • Learn that the near side wheels (left side in the UK) are extremely hard to gauge their location when turning a tight corner

What about fixing kerb damaged wheels?

Most local companies will do a decent job at repairing a wheel for roughly £30-£50 per wheel. We’ve heard several good reports on Revive UK and their services.

Insurance for Alloy Wheels?

Alloy Wheel cover via ALA* is a good option, you should be able to get 3 years of cover for around £150, this allows for up to 3 repairs a year and they typically offload the repair to revive. Discount codes for Ala are available on https://teslaownersgroup.co.uk/supporter-discounts or https://www.facebook.com/groups/teslaownersuk/permalink/1971162669797264/

Consider Alloygators or RimProTecs

Alloygators or RimProTec (Alloy Wheel Protection)

Alloygator – Around £60 DIY or £110 installed (you have to have a suitable 3 ton jack + the ability to deflate and inflate all 4 tyres + a rubber mallet. On 21″ wheels, you must check your fitting is secure every few hundred miles or every time you wash the car, a few people have had theirs come loose and damage paintwork. After around 5000 miles mine needed to be hammed back in, I actually left them until 7000+ and they were fine.

“Had mine on for 18 months (21” wheels) and they did the job very well – I have a rubber mallet which I used to push them back in as they do work their way out – especially when you are driving “enthusiastically”. I suspect the review didn’t bother to look at them after clipping them a few times as that’s all it needs to detach them” – Tesla Owner from this discussion

“I had alloygators on my last S for a year and 14k miles no problem. I fitted myself because I am competent in these jobs.They are now fitted on my new S with 21s. Thing is with the argument about getting wheels refurbed is this
… I have already curbed one wheel with Alloygator parking and I just sanded the gator and its fine. if this had been a alloy it would have marked badly. I can live with a slightly marked gator that only i can see because i know that next time they have a 25 percent off sale i will get another set if 4 for less than 50 quid . I couldnt live with any damage on an alloy i would have to have it renovated. same cost maybe but sanding taked 5 minutes I wouldnt have time to sort out a refurb.” – Tesla Owner from this discussion

Up close of the new Alloygators on the Tesla Arachnid wheels

The new Alloygator for 2017, now rounded.

RimPro-Tec – Easier to apply than AlloyGators but not as resistant to scraps. The forums are equally unsure which is better but the advantage of Rim Pro Tecs is the inner part is replaceable if it is damaged. They’re cheaper and do not interfere with the tyre.  Go for whichever you prefer the look of. They both come in a selection of colours.

“I use RimProTec which I installed myself (they are designed for self-install) and they have saved my wheels a few times and don’t look like they are about to come off.”  – Tesla Owner from this discussion

The problems with alloy wheel protection (rarely happens but it does happen):

  • If poorly fitted or you’re heavy footed they can work themselves loose
  • A loose one is OK if you check them every week or so but if it completely detaches from the wheel it can cause lots of paint damage
  • If you’re not extremely careful small stones/dirt can do between the alloygator and the wheel, over time this will cause damage to the wheel.

An alloygator that has detached from a Model X wheel

Paint damage after one came loose

After removal of a set of Alloygators this owner had stone marks from where grit had got between the plastic alloygator and the wheel.

Any other options?

  • If you get your vehicle ceramic coated you can get them to apply specialist extra hard wheel and brake caliper ceramic coatings

Replacement wheels for Tesla?

  • Tesla prices seem to vary dramatically but a refurbished/new wheel for around £120-£265 (19″), £145-£255 for a tyre but no TPMS sensor (£40-£43), so around £305-£563. Although other reports on the Tesla group has seem them as low as £100 all-in.
  • eBay often have Tesla wheels being sold on from owners that have changed their minds etc
  • Check UK forums like TeslaMotorsClubSpeakEV or Tesla Owners Club FB
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