Lug nuts seem to be less seated than I expect. Is this normal?

2010 Toyota Corolla.

Was changing my winter wheels over to summer and I have never noticed this before, but the lug nuts on the front wheels don’t even tighten until they cover the end of the stud. Back ones are even with the end of the stud.

Front wheels are disc brake. Back wheels are drum.

The centre bore of the wheels also have a lot of clearance around the axle too.

None of this is true on my winter wheels.

Your summer wheels are not the correct wheels for your car. The lug nuts are OK, though.

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The wheels with excess clearance are probably not what Toyota put on the car when it was made. There may be other fit anomalies. Is that a crack, or a casting deformity, above the upper nuts?

I have a bucket of lug nuts. A steel wheel usually chews up the nut mating surface and then chews up the alum wheel. Maybe you have only steel wheels.

Not cast… stamped steel. There is rust on them.

Right. Rolled and cut and stamped?

Wrong wheels for this car. The center should fit snugly on the middle thing, with the lug nuts securing the wheel to the axle. They should not be bearing the weight of the wheel. You either need an adapter or the correct wheels. This is not safe and could cause the studs to break. They are not designed to carry that kind of weight.

I am 95% sure that they’re the original wheels.

Unless the shop switched them when I bought the snow wheels.

But I admit, it does seem very weird.

Although I’m learning that some wheels (lug centric) are designed that way:

Tech Center | Various Questions About Wheels - Onlywheels.

Still confused about why the nuts don’t seem to go on as far as I’d expect

You have 2 sets of wheels? You say summer and winter tires but it was not clear if you have 2 sets of wheels. And both sets have same centerbore gap?

Two sets of wheels. Steel wheels.

I think the rims on the winter wheels fit with less centerbore clearance. And I’m sure that the nuts tightened enough to cover the stud.

If no-one thinks the lug nut not covering the stud (and thus leaving some threads unused) is an issue, I’m totally fine to live with the centerbore issue, because that must have been like that for years with no problem

Those are NOT Toyota wheels. Toyota wheels have a 54.1 mm hub, those are 56.1 mm like you would find on a Saturn or other domestic small GM vehicle. You will probably have some vibration as you drive down the road.

I’m certain you’re right. So when the shop sold me the rims, the snow tires must have been on the factory rims, and the summer tires were put on the new rims.

So, vibrations I’m not concerned about. It’s 11 years old. Plenty vibrates. And I haven’t noticed issues driving on these wheels previously

But is there anything dangerous (particularly with the nuts)? Don’t want vibrating nuts.



Not especially. I once used some Saturn wheels on a Tercel, that is why I recognized the issue immediately. You can buy a hub centric ring that will insure the wheel is centered on the hub. You can find them on ebay and Amazon

Without the adapter, you need lug nuts that have a smooth seat on them, no rings from previous mounting on them. Best to use new with hardened faces. Finger tight all of them down, then hit the tire with a rubber mallet while finger tightening them some more. Each time you hit the tire with the mallet. you will feel the nut tighten a little more. Keep going around in a circle as you do this. The put a socket over the nuts and repeat. Finally repeat with a ratchet attached to the socket, but with light torque for the first round or two. Then torque to final with a torque wrench. This will center the wheel over the hub, but the wheel will be lug centric and not hub centric.

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I’ve always thought it’s better to tighten them in a criss-cross order, not going to the next one over.

Thanks for the rings explanation and image. I’d never seen those before but had heard of them.

I think Keith is talking specifically about getting the adapters seated correctly when installing them rather than normal tightening of the lugs

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Not on my car, at least.

For seating the lug nuts, a circle pattern is fine or you can criss cross. The wheels are not cantilevered so it doesn’t really matter. Final torque should be criss cross though.

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