Suspension, Brakes and Tires Discussion, Bent Rim - Repair or Replace? in Item Specific Cadillac Discussion; Gentlemen,
I have owned my 97 SLS for about a month. When my mechanic and I examined the car before ...
I have owned my 97 SLS for about a month. When my mechanic and I examined the car before buying, we noticed a bent rim on the front right. The inner edge is bent in a little bit in one place. The "flat spot" is about 3 inches long. He told me a "Wheel and Rim" guy comes around from time to time who can straighten a bent rim. I didn't think it was leaking until this morning I noticed the tire was way down. I had enough compressed air in a storage tank to re-inflate the tire to 34lbs.
I took the wheel off to look for a nail or something but didn't find one. Then I lay the wheel down and ran some water on the area of the tire near the bent place on the rim. There were bubbles, one every second or two coming from the middle of the bent place. I don't know if the leak has always been at this rate or if it's constant or what. I seem to recall checking that tire recently and it was fully inflated, but maybe I didn't. I will be checking constantly now and adding air when necessary
Now that I know it's leaking, I need to do something about it.
First, how can I tell if my wheel is steel or aluminum? I don't see three letters stamped near the valve stem. I also don't see letters in the center near the lugs. That's all I can find in the manual. They appear to be factory Cadillac wheels, 9 "spokes" and a Cadillac emblem on the "hubcap" in the center. At a first glance, they look like aluminum to me.
Second, depending on whether it's steel or aluminum, should I try to get it repaired or should I replace it? The factory manual says not to attempt repairs on an aluminum wheel. What should I expect to pay for a wheel and where should I be looking?
i dunno, but when i bent my rim,on a huge a$$ pot hole, i too hada 3-4" flat dent in the rim...i just took it to where i bought my rims, an they straightnd it out for me for $ 10
maybe u should find a rim shop, and ask them 1st
Depends on the rim. If it's a stock rim, you can hit a junkyard to replace, or a machine shop can repair if they're custom rims. I had 2 of mine fixed for either $60 a rim, or 120 a rim, I forget at this point. Those were the 18's, and aluminum.
They're aluminum alloy, either polished and clearcoated or chrome plated, depending on year/model.
For ideas, go through the 2012 catalog in www.wheelcollision.com - click on the little pictures for enlargement.
For repairs, look up the local franchise for Mobile Wheel Repair.
Your 97 will take either the 16" or 17" wheels from any 1997 - 2003 Eldorado/Seville. For the 16's, use the tire size on the driver's door sticker. For the 17's use 235/55/17. (Both tires have the same outside diameter, so no rubbing or drivetrain problems.)
Bakers Wheel Repair is a great place as well, Located in Pontiac, MI but you can also ship your wheel to them or trade it in for a refurbished one in many cases. www.bakerswheelrepair.com I just had a bent wheel for my 2008 CTS Performance fixed there.
How do these places go about repairing CAST aluminum wheels? There's no problem straightening forged aluminum wheels, but cast wheels don't like being bent more than once. (assuming they don't crack during the initial bend)
Maybe they heat up the bent area to soften it? That would help prevent cracking when the bent spot is straightened, but that spot will never be as strong as it was originally.
Whenever I've bent cast wheels, I've put safety above economy and replaced the wheels.