How to Match a Rim to a Car

1.

Pick up your measuring tape and confirm the width of the rim by measuring across the center from one side of the rim to the other; record that measurement in inches.

2.

Find out the diameter of the rim by placing your measuring tape on the groove where the tire bead situates. Wrap the tape measure around the outer tire rim and subtract one-inch from the measurement you record to get the accurate measurement. Record this measurement in inches.

3.

Look at the side of your tire and your will find a series of numbers and letters. These numbers and letters refer to your tire measurements. For example, P205/40R14 indicates a passenger car with a tire section width of 205, a section height of 40 and a rim diameter of 14 inches.

4.

Match your rims to your car according to the measurements taken. All rims approved to fit your tire measurements and line up with the rim measurements on your car will work, as long as the rims are approved for the size and weight of you car. Check your vehicle owners manual before purchasing a set of rims to learn the size and weight. Always check with the retailer or seller of the rims regarding the size and weight approved for the rims as well.

Tips and Warnings

  • You can add rims that are one or two inches (but no more) to your car and they will still fit your tires and match to your car, without compromising safety. While subjective, many people feel slightly over-sized rims give the vehicle a better appearance.
  • If you are unsure how to change a car rim, consult a professional. Improperly removing and attaching a rim can cause damage to your wheel hub.
  • To match your rim to your car, you will need to take into account two different measures for precision. You will need to measure the diameter of your factory rims, as well as the width, so that your rims will match with your tires properly. In addition to taking measurements of your rims, you will need to take three different tire measurements to ensure a proper match. Those measurements are the section width of the tire, section height and the tire rim diameter.