Looking to give your car a makeover with brand new tires and rims?

You might buy the fanciest ones on earth, but if the rim bolt patterns don’t match those of your car, then you’ll have wasted your cash.

To prevent that from happening, we have composed this guide to show you how to go about measuring rim bolt pattern.

Bolt pattern or rather the bolt circle is the diameter of a virtual circle created by the centers of the wheel lugs.

It’s important to learn about wheel lugs holes to understand about bolt patterns.

This short video will help you to know more about bolt pattern.

What Are Wheel Lugs?

The wheel lugs holes are the more than two holes that surround the most significant hub. They are found at the middle of the wheel, attached to the rim of the vehicle mechanically.

Lug bolts and nuts are the tools that connect the lug holes to the wheels. The lug holes on wheels may seem tiny, but they do a lot of task by ensuring that rims are firmly attached to the car.

The lug holes are organized circularly. The circular patterns are called a bolt pattern and assist in determining which rim fit perfectly on your car. It would help if you remembered that your vehicle would only accept the wheel with similar bolt pattern with original equipment rim.

There are multiple kinds of lug holes seat that manufacturers design to work with previous lug hole. Ball-seat lugs fit a wheel that has same corresponding round lung seats. Corn-seat lugs work with the wheel that has tapered lug seats.

Shank lug, torque retention, and mag lugs are flat and work better with a rim that has flat seats. Using lugs that do not correspond with the rim can damage the lug holes and can make the wheel detach from a car. Follow the proper instruction and utilize right lugs.

After understanding best bolt pattern and lug holes, there are ways on how to measure bolt patterns. Most times, there is fitment guide that you enter make, year and model of the car in online website. The results will show the perfect wheel that fit your vehicle. However, there is a period in which you require to measure rim bolt pattern.

Rim professional classify types of bolt pattern using a two number system. The first number shows the number of bolt holes presence in the wheels. The second shows the diameter of the virtual circle you make; for instance, a 5-100mm circle means that the rim has five bolt holes and each on them is equally spaced in a 100mm circle. Typically, the large trailer has many bolts arranged in a big bolt circle. Small cars have fewer bolts arranged in a small circle. This website writes an in-depth article about this topic.

Measuring The Bolt Pattern

Bolt pattern can be 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9 lug holes depending on the size of the vehicle. Bolt patterns are usually measured in inches and millimeters. The tools that you require while measuring bolt patterns are a tape measure, bolt pattern gauge, and a lug wrench or torq.

Method 1

This method is determining the distance of the bolt hole and adjacent lug holes. When you use this method, you will be able to determine the size of the bolt pattern. For examples, if the bolt pattern is 5 inches and 4.5 millimeters then it means the distance is 2 inches and 5/8 millimeters, a bolt pattern which is 5 on 5 then the length is 3 inches and so forth

This method is straightforward if you have a bolt pattern gauge. For you to set it, you must first learn the relationship between lug pattern and distance that you are trying to measure. This method is purely approximation unless you use a chart to get an accurate measurement. Bolt pattern gauge is not sold widely. Check in from your car dealer before you review the information.

Method 2

The bolt and lugs circle method

If you settle for the method, then you have to know the odd and even numbers of the lug.

The odd lug holes are 3, 5, 7 and so forth while even numbers are 4, 6, 8. When the number of lugs is even, you have to measure from the middle of the lug. It should be half from the bolt circle and opposite to the other two lugs. Finding actual measurement of odd lug can be challenging because it is difficult to observe directly opposite number. This method is where approximation comes into play.

For even number lugs, it is effortless. You measure center to center lugs which are opposite to each other. You can use a tape measure if there are no alternatives. The studs and rotor are regulated, so ensure that you use a tape measure that has both inches and millimeters to make your work easier.

Other Essential Things To Know

When working out on the bolt pattern measurement, there are crucial factors that you should consider to get accurate measurements. First, be aware of the wheel backspacing to ensure that you do rim clearance correctly. Have a wheel adapter. It will assist to get proper rim spacing.

Second, read the tire sidewall instructions. This guideline will make you understand the markings that are common. Third, ensure that you know the proper rim bolt nut for your car. Learn to use tire calculator size comparison because it will assist you to solve problems related to rim diameter, circumference, size, width, speed, ratio and many more.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How Can You Measure Wheel Offset?

Taking the straight edge, lay it in a diagonal manner across the wheel. Mark the length between the straight edge and inboard flange of the rim to find its measurement using a tape measure. This process is called backspacing. Ensure that the wheel offsets are close to the original wheel to eliminate wheel bearing fatigue or steering challenges.

How Do You Measure And Calculate PCD Stud Pattern?

The PCD of a rim with an even number of holes is easy. You measure from the middle of one any hole and directly across other holes. Measure distance from the inside of one lug hole to the outside of the next hole to calculate PCD of a five stud hole. Take the measurement and multiply by 1.7012. For a three stud, follow the same procedure and multiply by 1.154.

What Are Dual Bolt Patterns?

Dual bolt pattern rims have two sets of holes that designers drill into the vehicle. For instance, a wheel of a 4-lug car will have eight holes. Dual bolt pattern uses center caps, hubcap or plus to cover the unused lug holes.

In conclusion, it is vital to be aware of your car`s specifications. This knowledge will assist you to get the real measurements.

The lug holes range from 3 to 10. Know the correct lugs that match your car will help you calculate bolt pattern using the method that you find easy.