Removing Chrome from Wheels(cnc software Carr)

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Chrome wheels can add a touch of elegance and style to any vehicle. However, there may come a time when you want to change the look of your wheels or restore them to their original factory finish. In such cases, removing the chrome coating becomes necessary. This article will guide you through the process of safely and effectively removing chrome from your wheels.

Why Remove Chrome Coating?

There are several reasons why someone would choose to remove the chrome coating from their wheels. One common reason is to give the wheels a new appearance. Some people prefer a different finish, such as matte black or painted alloy. By removing the chrome, they can achieve the desired look for their vehicle.

Another reason to remove chrome from wheels is if the chrome coating has become damaged or deteriorated over time. Pitting, bubbling, or peeling chrome not only looks unsightly but can also affect the overall performance and longevity of the wheel.

Finally, restoring vintage or classic cars often involves stripping the chrome off the wheels to bring them back to their original condition. Removing the chrome allows enthusiasts to repaint or refinish the wheels according to the car's era or design.

The Process of Removing Chrome

Before starting the process of removing chrome from wheels, it is essential to gather all the necessary tools and supplies. These include safety equipment such as gloves, goggles, and a respirator mask to protect yourself from chemical fumes. You will also need an electric sander or sandpaper, chemicals like muriatic acid or sodium hydroxide solution (also known as caustic soda), plastic wrap or garbage bags, a pressure washer or hose, and metal primer.

Here are the steps involved in removing chrome:

1. Safety First: As mentioned earlier, wear appropriate protective gear before starting the process. Chrome removal requires working with strong chemicals, so ensure proper ventilation and take precautionary measures to safeguard yourself.

2. Prepare the Work Area: Find a well-ventilated space to perform the stripping process. It is advisable to do this outdoors or in a properly ventilated garage. Cover the area with plastic sheets or garbage bags to protect it from potentially harmful chemicals.

3. Remove the Tires: To access the entire wheel surface, remove the tires before starting the chrome removal process. This will facilitate thorough cleaning of the wheels and avoid any damage to the rubber.

4. Apply Chemical Solution: Begin by applying a chemical solution like muriatic acid or sodium hydroxide (caustic soda) to the chrome-coated surface. These chemicals are highly corrosive and can burn your skin or cause other harm if not handled carefully. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for dilution and application methods.

5. Let the Solution Sit: After applying the chemical solution, let it sit on the chrome surface for the recommended amount of time. This allows the chemicals to penetrate and loosen the chrome layer effectively. Check the product instructions for the specific duration required.

6. Scrubbing and Sanding: Once the allotted time has passed, use an electric sander or sandpaper to scrub off the loosened chrome coating. Be cautious when using an electric sander as excess pressure can damage the underlying metal. Start with a low-grit sandpaper (around 80 grit) and gradually progress to higher grits for smoother results.

7. Rinse Thoroughly: After removing the chrome coating, rinse the wheels thoroughly with water. Use a pressure washer or hose to ensure all traces of chemicals, debris, and loose chromes have been washed away from the wheel's surface.

8. Dry Completely: Allow the wheels to dry completely before proceeding further. Wet surfaces can interfere with the bonding of future coatings and primers.

9. Apply Metal Primer: Once the wheels are dry, apply a suitable metal primer to prepare them for their new finish. Priming will protect the metal underneath and ensure proper adhesion for future coatings or paints.

10. Apply Desired Finish: After the primer has dried, you can proceed to apply the desired finish on your wheels. This may involve painting them with automotive paint, powder coating, or any other chosen method. Consult professionals or follow specific instructions for the finishing technique you plan to implement.

Professional Chrome Removal

Although removing chrome from wheels can be accomplished as a DIY project, seeking professional assistance is highly recommended in certain scenarios. Professional chromers have expert knowledge and experience in handling the chemical processes involved in chrome removal. This ensures that the wheels are stripped efficiently and safely without causing any damage to the underlying metal.

Moreover, professional chrome removal services often employ specialized equipment like sandblasting machines or ultrasonic cleaning tanks to achieve superior results. These methods reduce manual labor and provide optimal outcomes when it comes to wheel restoration.


Whether you want to change the look of your wheels or restore them to their original condition, removing chrome from wheels can help achieve your desired outcome. Remember to prioritize safety by using protective gear and working in well-ventilated areas while dealing with strong chemicals. If unsure about the process, consider consulting professionals who specialize in chrome removal for the best results. With careful execution, you can transform your wheels into a captivating feature of your vehicle's aesthetics. CNC Milling CNC Machining