Queenston Tire highly recommends you replace the locking lug nuts on your vehicle with regular lug nuts. You have one on each wheel and need a specific patterned key to remove them. Most look like the ones pictured at the bottom of the page.
These locking lug nuts are meant to deter thieves from stealing your rims. If a thief really wants your wheels, they can purchase the tools at most auto retailers to remove them just like our shop purchases different types of removers to help our customers that have a missing or broken key. The small benefits do not outweigh the risks in our opinion.
We recommend replacing them due to the following reasons:
1. Keys get lost. You may get your brakes, tires or other parts inspected or serviced where the wheels may need to be removed and the shop forgets to replace the locking key back in your vehicle.
2. Keys will break or get damaged and it happens a lot. Due to the thin pattern of the key, many keys will eventually break or the pattern will strip rendering them useless to remove your wheels.
If any of the above happen and you have a flat tire, you will need to be towed to a garage to have the wheels removed since you will not be able to remove the flat tire to install your spare tire. Imagine being out of town late at night, getting a flat and not being able to install your spare tire. It will be an expensive tow charge if you aren’t too far out of town or you may even have to stay overnight at a hotel if you are too far out of town until you can get your vehicle towed to a garage the next business day.
Imaging a thief trying to remove one of your wheels has removed 2 or 3 of your lug nuts and does not have the tools to remove the locking lug nut. The thief will not be courteous and replace the lug nuts he has already removed and tighten them up for you. As you drive, the stress of only having 2 or 3 lug nuts holding your wheel will eventually snap the studs holding your wheel and it will fly off your vehicle and possibly cause danger to yourself and others.
We have had this happen to 3 of our customers and thankfully no one was injured in these incidents. Luckily, they were not driving on the highway at the time.
It’s your choice whether you want to keep your locking lug nuts on your vehicle but we feel the need to warn you of the pitfalls and dangers of having them.
If you want your locking nuts replaced, please ask us. You may already have a set of regular nuts in the vehicle when you purchased it. We carry a few common lug nuts (most cost $2.00 each and a few cost up to $5 each). If we don’t carry your lug nuts, you may have to go to the dealership and purchase 4 of them.
Most common type of locking lug nuts
Some imports use these types of locking lug nuts
Broken locking key. You will not be able to take your wheels off your vehicle.