Kwik Fit | Thursday 31st July 2014 11:00am
Locking wheel nuts are a cost effective way of protecting your alloy wheels from theft. A standard wheel nut or lug nut can be removed with minimum effort using an ordinary lug wrench which means your wheels could easily be stolen. But by simply replacing one lug nut per wheel with a locking wheel nut, a special key is required in order to remove that last nut, stopping a thief in their tracks.
Locking wheel nuts originally became popular amongst car enthusiasts who were worried about the theft of their expensive custom alloy wheels. With many paying over £1,000 for their custom rims, itís no wonder the inexpensive locking wheel nut became a popular deterrent. Nowadays most car manufacturers fit locking wheel nuts as standard to vehicles as they roll off the production line.
How do locking wheel nuts work?
Working on a very simple principle, each set of locking nuts has a patterned indent and a key which matches this pattern. Only when the key is inserted can the nut be turned and removed. There are literally hundreds of unique key combinations and although wheel nut keys are freely available to buy, a potential thief would have to carry around a huge selection of wheel nut keys to ensure they have the right tool for the job!
Itís for this same reason that itís important that you know where your locking wheel nut key is kept as, without it, itís very hard to remove your wheels should you require a tyre change. We recommend that you keep your locking wheel nut key inside your vehicle somewhere, either in the glove box or hidden away out of sight, just so long as you know where to find it. If you need to pull over due to a puncture, youíre going to need that locking wheel nut key in order to remove the tyre and put the spare on. Similarly, if your tyres are worn and in need replacing, your garage will need the locking wheel nut key in order to fit new tyres to your vehicle.
Locking wheel nut key replacements can be purchased from your vehicle manufacturer for around £30 but they usually have to be ordered in which could slow down your vehicle repair. So make sure you keep your locking wheel nut key safe Ė you never know when you might need it. If you need new tyres, brake pads and discs or you are due a service, make sure you locking wheel nut key is in the car the wheels will need to be removed to carry out these services.
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