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Anyone who drives a Tesla may come across every owner’s worst nightmare–CURB RASH.
Lucky for you, I have personally fixed this sight for sore eyes. And will give you a detailed guide on how to repair for much less than any rim repair facility.
Why Is This Happening?
Curbs are made out of concrete (most of the time), and Tesla rims are made of soft alloy with a thin layer of paint on the surface. When these two materials collide, the winner will always be the curb. Concrete is very abrasive, almost like 10,000 grit sandpaper, and with its strength, it will just rip through the alloy.
You can see how concrete will cause enough damage to catch anyone’s attention. Below you will find the two reasons curb rash is almost unavoidable.
It Will Always Happen If You Drive For a Long Time
Curbs are everywhere, and they have a terrible habit of jumping out of nowhere. In all my years of driving, no matter how careful I am, without fail, I always find a curb or two. It’s inevitable, but there’s no need to get upset when it does.
Hitting a curb isn’t the only way to scratch a wheel. Small rocks that kick up from the road may also catch the wheel’s face and create the same scratches. This damage will not be as severe but annoying nonetheless.
The more miles you put on your car, the more likely a damaged wheel will happen. The only natural way to avoid wheel rash is to not drive your vehicle.
Tesla’s Tire Profile
The tire’s profile greatly affects how vulnerable it will be to damage. Tire profile is the distance from the tread to the rim, also referred to as aspect ratio/sidewall.
The less rubber between the road and rim, the more prone it is to damage. This is why you will rarely see pickup trucks suffer from curb scratches.
Telsa’s are known for their performance and achieve such excellent traction and handling. Part of the reason they perform is because of the low-profile tires. The downside is that it makes the rims more prone to curb rash.
How Much To Fix Tesla Curb Rash in Store?
If you want your Tesla rim repaired by a professional, the price will range from $100 to $200. Deeper gouges require more work to fix which costing more. Depending on the damage’s seriousness, it may require welding, which is what jacks up the price.
It may be worth considering replacement rims if you have damaged more than one. The average aftermarket wheel replacement runs between $100-$150. For Teslas, it will be on the higher end of this average.
The supplies to fix it yourself will cost in total around $50. Crunch the numbers, and you may find that it could be more worth it to either replace all your rims or fix them yourself.
How to fix Curb Rash By Myself?
Prepare Tesla Curb Rash Repair Items
Nothing will be more important than having everything you need to repair a wheel. I have listed all of the essentials below.
- 200 to 600 grit sandpaper– to smooth out the damage
- Rubbing alcohol- for cleaning the surface
- Rags- wiping off over application/cleaning
- Garbage bags or Drop Cloths- to prevent overspray on the floor and tire
- Painters tape- taping off the tire
- Towel or blanket to kneel on
- Spray paint- try to match the color best as you can. Below are recommended spray paints.
- Cheap Solution-reapply after a while
These simple steps will make your banged-up wheels look good in no time.
- Prep- Gather all the supplies mentioned above.
- Sanding- Take your sandpaper and grind the paint/damage away until smooth. For deeper scratches, start with 200 grit and work your way up until soft to the touch.
- Cleaning- Now that you have the damage smoothed out. Take the rubbing alcohol and pour it onto a cloth rag. Then wipe down the area you sanded.
- Tape off the rim- Take the painter’s tape and line it between where the rubber meets the metal. For extra tire protection, I recommend taking the garbage bag, putting it over the tire and then taping it down to the sidewall.
- Painting time- Grab your spray paint and start applying. Use quick strokes 6-inches away from the surface to ensure no paint running.
- Let it dry- It will need to sit for 24 hours before being driven to avoid paint run-off onto your vehicle.
What Should You Do With Deep Rim Gouges?
Unfortunately, some damage is too severe to fix on your own. A professional will need to repair gouges deeper than a quarter of an inch.
Suppose you don’t mind the damage but want to repaint it feel free to follow the steps above. You will at least have a rim that’s the same color finish.
If you try to smooth out a deep gouge, you are diminishing the structural integrity. Doing so can lead to potential rim failure. In some cases, it might be best to replace the entire assembly.
I recommend taking it to a professional if you are uncertain about hown to perform a repair.
DIY wheel repair can be messy and take up much of your time. This may make it worth having someone fix it for you. Beware, professionals will charge you more to repair Teslas because of the brand!
If you have most of the supplies, take a shot at this self-fix solution. I promise nothing is more satisfying than looking down at your handy work and feeling a sense of pride.
Now that you know what it takes to repair scratched rims from curbs. Gather your supplies and get to fixing!