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Lug Nuts or Lug Bolts?

ECF

New member
11
16
3
I currently drive a 2013 BMW 328i. One of the frustrating things about the car is that the tires are held on with bolts that thread into the wheel hub. On previous vehicles the hubs had studs that the tires would pilot on too before final torquing the nut. I normally would not notice this as an issue, but I've had two different shops cross thread two different bolts during tire rotation (likely because they had trouble starting a bolt during initial alignment with the hub) so I had to get the threads in the wheel hub chased. Not that this can't happen with using studs and nuts instead but figured it would be less of a concern since it's easier to get a tire mounted and finger tighten the fastener this way. When I zoom in on pictures of the G70 it looks like the wheels have lug nuts, but could someone confirm this for me?
 

pmckechnie

Registered Member
SUSTAINING MEMBER
306
64
28
Matthews, NC
Genesis Model Type
Genesis G80
I have never owned a BMW and probably never will, but the system you describe for the wheel bolts is the same thing used on my 84 500SEL Mercedes. It is great. But it seems you didn't mention it or it didn't have the alignment pen you screw into the wheel hub and then slide the wheel over the pin and everything is aligned. Then you put other lug bolts in and then remove the alignment pen and put in the last lug bolt. I have had the MB for about 15 years and over 100k miles (just slightly used) and never had a problem with the wheel bolts. It now is an official antique with over 300,000 miles, and still runs and drives as good as the Genesis. A little more noise, less power, and drives different, but not bad.
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Truck Norris

Registered Member
243
192
43
Genesis Model Type
Genesis G70
Wasn't that crazy! I'd be fighting that for sure.

I think older 2000 model VW have bolts as well. Not sure about newer. Your pretty much pickled if you put an impact gun on the bolt and try to start threading that way. Should start by hand.
 

Rodney Dangerfield

Registered Member
60
11
8
Texas panhandle
Genesis Model Type
1G Genesis Sedan (2009-2014)
Holy Lord, how in the hell did they come to that asinine conclusion?? If you take the wheel off for a service you're being paid for you should return everything to the configuration it was in prior to starting the work. Have the judges on the appeals court been taking too many disco biscuits or something??
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ECF

New member
11
16
3
I have never owned a BMW and probably never will, but the system you describe for the wheel bolts is the same thing used on my 84 500SEL Mercedes. It is great. But it seems you didn't mention it or it didn't have the alignment pen you screw into the wheel hub and then slide the wheel over the pin and everything is aligned. Then you put other lug bolts in and then remove the alignment pen and put in the last lug bolt. I have had the MB for about 15 years and over 100k miles (just slightly used) and never had a problem with the wheel bolts. It now is an official antique with over 300,000 miles, and still runs and drives as good as the Genesis. A little more noise, less power, and drives different, but not bad.
I should've clarified more, the threads in my wheel hubs were damaged at a nation-wide Tire Installation service provider. It was only my guess that the damage was caused by initial alignment of the wheel on the hub, but agreed that having a guide would certainly eliminate that issue (if used correctly) and given the volume at those shops I'm guessing they have the proper tools. It could've also been a case where a tech had the wheel aligned correctly and then started the bolt at an angle.

While there is nothing inherently wrong with using bolts for the wheel fastener, I could see how someone would have a little more trouble changing a spare tire on the side of a busy road since there's an extra step to take with the alignment pin versus locating the spare over the studs. (My BMW has run flats and doesn't come with a jack, or alignment pin for that matter, so I've never had to try)

I'm glad your MB has treated you well and continues to drive great. Hope you have many more worry free miles from both your vehicles.
 

Truck Norris

Registered Member
243
192
43
Genesis Model Type
Genesis G70
I should've clarified more, the threads in my wheel hubs were damaged at a nation-wide Tire Installation service provider.
This doesn't mean that a high school student didn't take your bolt (could have been the second, third bolt, etc.), take the impact and try and save himself some time and just went at it with 150lb/ft of torque before starting the threads. I would say studs are more common, bolts less so.

Another way of putting this would be if they backed out the bolts to change the tires ok (which they did) then they are completely responsible for damaging the bolt/thread upon re installation and cross-threading. I hope you didn't pay much (if any) out of pocket due to this.
 

ECF

New member
11
16
3
All the repair work was free, it was more a time hassle than anything else. In their defense, I've had my tires rotated probably around 12 times (driven well over 80K+ miles), with 5 bolts per wheel, that's 240 bolt changes with 2 mistakes which gives me a rework rate of 0.83%. Not a big deal in the big scheme of things but annoying, hence the question about nuts and bolts
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