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Thread: Refinish or replace wheels?

  1. #1
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    Default Refinish or replace wheels?

    Looking for advice/real world experience. My Grand Cherokee is a daily driver, I live on a dirt road, and it certainly doesn't get pampered. I don't let it stay too disgusting but I don't wash it weekly either.
    I replaced the stock wheels with refurb'd Jeep Commander wheels (off PartsGeek) and new tires in December 2018. Last winter, I already saw them pitting and peeling, and now it's to the point that there's a not-so-slow leak in multiple wheels. I assume it's due to the same corrosion/peeling I see on the face happening in the bead. Every couple of days I have to refill them.

    Is this just a cheap/poor clearcoat process on the refurbs? Will getting the Commander wheels stripped and properly powder coated be durable? Do I really just need to get new (better) wheels again - and, are aftermarket wheels robust or will they just do the same thing? Would steel wheels hold up better?

    Example pics:
    123926728_10104369949882586_6215887160402686570_n.jpg
    124004189_10104369949927496_4218072009473935735_n.jpg

  2. #2
    Club Member mustangmike6996's Avatar
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    Initially, the refinished wheels are usually just as nice as OE (at least when I worked in the wheel/tire shop in the early 2000s (2001-2007). We used the Hollander catalogue for part numbers and often were supplied by JRE in Madison Heights with reconditioned wheels. I would see them come into the shop years later and not look anywhere close to the wheel you have pictured. My experience is well out of date at this point so the quality may have changed since then but In my opinion, nothing really beats the OE coatings.

    As for your specific issue, its possible that the wheels started peeling at the bead of the tire and worked their way to the face, or possibly started under a wheel weight. The problem is, once the aluminum is exposed to the elements, its only a matter of time before all the clearcoat peels off and the aluminum corrodes.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the info - these never had weights on them (always the tape weights) to avoid this issue - sounds like these were maybe just a really shitty refurb.

    So, I guess I have to decide...do I get these cleaned up and powdercoated, or just go for a set of aftermarket wheels (Quadratech, etc). Not sure how each option comes in at cost vs durability.

  4. #4
    Club Member Golden's Avatar
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    I’d probably just replace them.

    If you buy something from quadratec, they usually have a nice Black Friday deal.
    1999 Z28. A4. Magnaflow catback and a lid. 60k miles.

  5. #5
    Forum Member ultradriver10000's Avatar
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    Someone should be able to blast and powder coat those for ~$300-400 that should last longer then oem.

  6. #6
    Club Member capone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ultradriver10000 View Post
    Someone should be able to blast and powder coat those for ~$300-400 that should last longer then oem.
    I agree get your factory wheels powder coated. Dun-Right Q.C. Coatings does great work.

  7. #7
    Club Member 4Gas$'s Avatar
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    Cool

    Does the Grand Cherokee use the same bolt pattern as a 2014 Ram?

    I'll sell you this set of 4 as new Goodyear Wranglers 265-70-17's
    on excellent rims with center caps (no TPMS) for $485.





    # Ram Tires 1 .jpg


    # Ram Tires 2 .jpg


    # Ram Tires 3 .jpg


    # Ram Tires 4 .jpg


    # Ram Tires 8 .jpg

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4Gas$ View Post
    Does the Grand Cherokee use the same bolt pattern as a 2014 Ram?

    I'll sell you this set of 4 as new Goodyear Wranglers 265-70-17's
    on excellent rims with center caps (no TPMS) for $485.



    Thanks - I don't think they'd fit. I believe they'd interfere with the upper ball joint at that width.

    FWIW, I contacted QC and currently am planning to go that route. Their pricing on powdercoating 4 wheels was very reasonable, and frankly, cheaper than buying anything new.

    Hoping it works well, as I have 2 other vehicles with gnarly looking wheels (but they actually hold air) that I will have powdercoated as well if I am happy with these.

  9. #9
    Club Member 4Gas$'s Avatar
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    ^^^ Good to hear, please report back on how the QC coatings
    work out for you. This sounds like a nice option.

  10. #10
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    Will do - for reference, he quoted me $75/wheel for 17" wheels. I want a gunmetal color - similar to what's on the wheels currently. He told me he has several shades in that range at $75/wheel, a few others that require a clearcoat which would run $20 more.

    $75/wheel seems like a good deal to me. Discount tire will dismount and later remount & balance for $86.

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