Wheel spacers are components that move your wheels and tires outward from the hub assembly. Whether your preferred travel on paved road or off-road, upgrading your vehicle’s wheels does much more than just make you stand out. Many enthusiasts who are looking to upsize the rims to fit larger tires turn out using wheel spacers. Wheel spacers allow you to mount the tires you want in combination with lift kits, and even give you a muscular and powerful stance.
As a rule of thumb, large the rim or tire needs more suspension clearance. Also, there are backspacing and offset variables to consider. Generally speaking, the lower the offset, the further out the wheel will be. This is helpful to add a lift kit and improve handling in off-road activities. Finally, choosing the correct bolt pattern is necessary to ensure the proper fit on your vehicle.
How to Measure Off-road Wheel Spacers?
The wheels are usually one of the first things people notice in your vehicle. Upgrading to aftermarket wheels not only makes your vehicle more eye-catching but also provides markedly better performance and durability in off-road adventures. Some wheels even offer better handling and fuel economy during your various on-road activities. You may already know the rim size and tire width you need, but the bolt pattern is another story. That’s because different vehicles have different bolt patterns. Even they both have five lugs, the clearance between the lugs can be different. Therefore, if you need to buy new aftermarket wheels or wheel spacers for your vehicle, you should know the bolt patterns.
The bolt pattern refers to the diameter of an imaginary circle formed by the centers of the wheel lugs. You can simply check your car’s year/make/model, then search the result on an authoritative website. Common bolt patterns are of 4, 5, or 6 lug holes. In a 5-lug wheel, measure from the back of a hole to the center of the second hole. To measure a 4 or 6 bolt wheel, you need to measure center to center of two holes directly across from each other.
Sometimes it is inevitable. You have your eye on a set of aftermarket rims that do not have the correct bolt pattern. They are just the wheels you need to enjoy better on an off-road adventure. In this case, purchasing conversion wheel spacers (also called wheel adapters) are a great way to go. Wheel adapters will allow you to install certain rims on your vehicle, even the bolt pattern doesn’t match. For instance, a 5×5″ wheel on your 5×4.5″ vehicle. The hub side is machined to a 5×4.5″ vehicle pattern, and the other side is built into a 5×5.5″ wheel pattern. The wheel adapter becomes an extension of your vehicle hub, letting you vastly expand the number of available wheel choices. You need proper thickness to make the adapters work well. Technically speaking, the minimum required thickness is about 1 inch. Of course, ticker wheel adapters can be made to account for your wheel gap and offset.