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My 350 Lexus 2008 has (told to me) a pitted wheel and so the tire will not hold air. The cost of replacement is 800.00. Is there any other way this can be fixed? The wheel is the passenger side front wheel. Where would I talk my car to get another opinion?

Another tire shop could take a look. Not that unusual to have a pitted alloy wheel. You might call a local junkyard/‘auto recycler’, these are pretty common, a used stock ES350 wheel is about $200 near me.

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Did they show you the leak?
The problem of porosity in alloy wheels was pretty much eliminated years ago. Better alloys, better casting techniques, and a thick polymer coating are standard practice now, and I know that Toyota/Lexus uses the coating on all its wheels. I’d want to see the leak before spending a whole lot of money on a replacement wheel.

If you’re do verify the wheel as the problem, you can likely find an exact replacement over the internet for a fraction of the cost they quoted you. But remember to include the costs of mounting and balancing when comparing prices.

Good advice! If no used wheel could be found (doubtful), I would go to plain steel wheels for all 4 wheels with fancy plastic covers that sell for $40 a set!.

Where I live, everyone uses winter tires from October to April 1, and they all get the plain steel wheels with their winter tires.

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When I had to replace a dinged rim, I found a new exact replacement on the internet for about 1/3 what the dealer was quoting. It’s definitely worth looking.

I did a search and it looks like you can purchase 4 really nice wheels for a lot less than the 1 wheel price the OP was quoted. If one is porous enough to leak can the others be far behind.

Salt exposure in the winter can cause this problem. My wheels are fifteen years older and I had them sanded with a wire wheel to stop the leak. There are also specialized shops that re-finish these wheels to look like new for a couple of hundred or so apiece. Thing is once this is done you never want to drive them in road salt again or the same degradation will show up in just a few years of exposure. I’m going with snow tires this year on beater rims and having my salt etched wheels re-done for summer use only.

If someone had used a “fix-a-flat” product at some time in the past, that could be the root cause of your problem. Check with a tire store to see if there is anyone in your area that repairs wheels. You may just need to have it resealed.

I had a tire leak caused by some rust pitting on the bead area a while ago. I removed the tire, sanded the rusted spot, applied a thin coat of silicone rtv sealant to the sanded area, remounted the tire, and no leaks since. I can’t say this is a recommended procedure or whether it would work in your case. But it worked for me.

Call around to your local major tire retailers, and ask if they have methods to seal cast wheels.

My son works at such an establishment, and there are methods to do just that.


My wheels are chrome and after pulling the two that were leaking air, I could see all the pitting and corrosion. We pulled the other two and they were doing the same thing even thought they were not leaking YET. To remove the chrome corrosion and seal cast the wheels was about 175.00 and then I suppose I would have to pay someone to mount them again. (I am 77 years old and can not do that myself anymore) so I figured at least 200.00 per wheel. We found some rather good looking wheels (not chrome) that were on sale for 100.00 free mounting and balancing and rotating the tires, so I decided hat was probably the best way to go. They may not look as nice as my Chrome wheels but they will not corrode and leak. I also took my old Chrome wheels and maybe someone will purchase them from me and can do the work of grinding and sealing them for their car, or for sale. I noticed that the tire place seemed to really want those wheels? Maybe someone that can do the work would like to purchase them. Hope I did the right thing. Bonnie

Sounds good to me. I always value functionality over looks anyway.

I am hoping that someone who values looks over functionality will buy my 4 beautiful wheels and refurbish them for their car. I want dependability but someone who can remove the corrosion and sand down the rims will have beautiful 800.00 each rims. Thanks for the help. Bonnie

Chromed alloy wheels can be troublesome this way, and are more difficult to fix. Don’t expect big (or small,really) $$ for them in their current condition.

something is better than nothing and for someone who wants 800.00 each chrome wheels for their car, it might be worth a few bucks. Apparently the car did not come with those wheels and they were an expensive add on. I would not have had them added to my car, but there are those that like them. I am more a trouble- free person. Thanks for the input. Bonnie