Best Lug Nuts: Deez Nuts

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy

Top 8 Best Lug Nuts

Your car’s lug nuts are a lot like your car’s insurance policy – doing its job in silence, not thought of until needed, and cursed upon failure. They are also, like your author, routinely ignored. There is a buying demographic for aftermarket lug nuts, however, a group that mostly includes people trying to spruce up a used car or hapless DIYers who stepped on the hubcap during a tire change and sent the OEM lugs flying into oblivion.

The latter rarely happens anymore, of course, thanks to the democratization of cheap alloy wheels. Still, it’s worth taking a look at these things and noting their existence. For simplicity, we selected a cadre of lug nuts that fit a particular type of car, namely a ten-year-old Honda Civic we feel is representative of a beater that might need a bit of TLC.

Table of Contents

1. Editor's Choice: Wheel Accessories Dual Coating Chrome Closed-End Lug Nuts

Also, by selecting a single make and model, we can present an apples-to-apples comparison on pricing. Perhaps unsurprisingly, costs ebb and flow with threading patterns and overall size. These lugs are all of the M12x1.50 variety though their length varies a bit.

If all you're looking for is a set of bog-standard lug nuts with a quartet left over for spares, this is a good option. Costing well under 20 bucks, these closed-end acorn-style fasteners is said to be double nickel-plated to outlast 48 hours of salt spray (so, two days in your author's hometown). Pushing aside the snark, nearly 500 customers have given these things an average 4.6 of 5 stars.

Pros

  • Great feedback from customers, affordable

Cons

  • Some reports of the acorn cap coming off

Bottom Line

  • Don't overtighten them

2. SIZZER Black Finish Wheel Lug Nuts

It's also worth noting that some lug nuts, like these, have a seat while others sit flush. In other words, check your application before hitting the 'buy now' button especially if you've treated your car to a set of aftermarket wheels. The latter sometimes require special nuts.

This option is black in color for those of us who like a car that's been dipped in a pot of inky black paint. The seller says this product's heat-treated steel is subsequently triple chrome coated for exceptional appearance and corrosion resistance. The promise that these lugs are shipped in a foam tray, meaning they don't knock together during transport, is appealing.

Pros

  • Looks great, attractive and useful packaging

Cons

  • Hand tool installation only

Bottom Line

  • Top-notch 5-star rating but only a small sample size

3. McGard Cone-Seat Wheel Installation Kit

A 'wheel installation kit' - how fancy. Beyond the marketing chaff, we find a package that includes 16 standard lug nuts to fit our fictional beater car, 4 wheel locks, a key for said wheel locks, and a storage pouch for that key. The 'installation kit' wording might be a bit over the top but there's no denying this box contains all the hardware that you need to install 4 wheels and tires.

Well, except for the tire iron, of course. McGard is probably one of the most recognized brand names on this list, thanks to a network of car dealers who grotesquely overcharge for a set of these things in the business office. If your vehicle came with wheel locks right off the showroom floor, chances are there's a McGard package floating somewhere around its interior.

Pros

  • Excellent brand, includes all the gear

Cons

  • Visions of a claustrophobic business office beckon

Bottom Line

  • Very high ratings from real-world customers on Amazon

4. Gorilla Automotive Open End Wheel Locks

Okay; now we've broached the subject of wheel locks, it is prudent to mention that if an underworld criminal really wants the wheels on your car, they're likely to take them no matter how many locks are on each wheel. These things are an excellent deterrent, however.

This package only includes a quartet of locks and not a full set of lugs, it must be noted. They are also of the open end design, which can ruin an aesthetic of you care about that type of stuff. If you have these things and are parked next to a car that doesn't, thieves will likely choose the path of least resistance

Pros

  • Tough to argue against extra security for your car

Cons

  • Not totally foolproof

Bottom Line

  • Cheap insurance for just fifteen bucks

5. White Knight Black Chrome Acorn Lug Nut

In a fit of up-is-down and left-is-right, these lug nuts are black chrome but sold by a company with 'white' in its name. Plain silver variants are also available, of course. Even though these are said to fit our fictional Honda, it comes in a pack of 20.

Like others on this list, these are bulge acorn style with a conical seat, all of which sounds like instructions to a squirrel storing away food for the winter but actually refers to the product's shape and size. It does specify these are for 'aftermarket wheels only'.

Pros

  • Decently priced

Cons

  • Complaints on incorrect sizing

Bottom Line

  • Check fitment before buying

6. MOSTPLUS Spiked Lug Nuts

Did I just link to what is possibly the most annoying set of lug nuts on the planet? As Sarah Palin used to say - yewbetcha. Available in a variety of colors, these Mad Max fasteners will surely offend those wheel-ogling Methodists that live down your street.

Reviews are middling, as a lot of people seem to think the lug nuts themselves are of high quality but the paint is not. Since color and maximum annoyance are the whole point of buying these things, that's kinda disappointing.

Pros

  • Guaranteed to annoy the neighbors

Cons

  • Don't install with an air gun

Bottom Line

  • Cast metal coloring would be great

7. Gorilla Automotive Acorn Black Lug Kit

Yes, nitpickers, we've already covered a kit from Gorilla and a couple of dark chrome options on this list. However, this option is worth a mention for its apparent robustness; customers report that the color remains on these things even when hit with an impact wrench.

Contrast that with several other lug nut options that will twist off or get damaged if anything other than hand tools are used. A key is included here thanks to the lug's unique exterior design, which kinda sorta makes all 20 of these things wheel locks (we, know - not really).

Pros

  • Robust construction, retains original color

Cons

  • Not the cheapest thing here

Bottom Line

  • Get what one pays for (again)

8. UPGR8 Steel Closed Ended Wheel Lug Nuts

Up Great? You Pee Great? Whatever the actual brand name, these lug nuts have a distinctive finish that will be recognized by anyone who's played around with the paint tool in Forza Horizon. This is a pack of 20, with a key.

Ratings are favorable - 4.4 out of 5 stars - and the seller lists a remarkably long return window. These style lugs from this manufacturer are also available in black chrome and silver chrome finishes should you be of a boring disposition with absolutely no imagination at all.

Pros

  • Unique finish, good reviews

Cons

  • Requires a special key (included)

Bottom Line

  • Go for the cool color

FAQs

What lug nuts are the best?

Although people may have varied opinions about what they consider ‘the best’ and the size that is compatible with your car might be different as well, the following few lug nut types have a decent number of positive reviews on Amazon:

Gorilla Automotive 21123BC ( Buy here!)

DPAccessories D3116-HD-2305/20 20 ( Buy here!)

YITAMOTOR Lug Nuts 12 x 1.5 Black ( Buy here!)

The lug nuts listed above might be of the size that wouldn’t fit your vehicle. However, the idea is to check the quality of the products that the brand manufactures. If the lug nuts’ set of one size from a brand is good, it is safe to assume that all the other products from that vendor would be of decent quality as well.

Is there a difference in lug nuts?

Yes, lug nuts are of different types. To be precise, there are nine types of lug nuts. Their kinds along with a brief introduction are as follows:

Conical Lug Nuts

These are the most common lug nuts that you will see. Because of the cone-shaped seats, conical lug nuts are sometimes also referred to as acorn lug nuts or tapered seat lug nuts. Generally, conical lug nuts are manufactured for aftermarket wheels.

Spherical Lug Nuts

As the name suggests, the spherical lug nuts have rounded lug seats. These are sometimes also referred to as wheel nuts or ball seat nuts and can be installed without the use of any washer or wheel lock key. A 19mm wrench is used to work on these lug nuts.

Flat Seat Lug Nuts

These lug nuts sit flat on the body upon installation and usually need a bit of professional understanding of the process. Flat seat lug nuts also need some amount of extra effort while installing and uninstalling.

Mag Seat Lug Nuts

Mag seat lug nuts have an extended thread to make their installation and uninstallation pretty convenient. Because these lug nuts come with a washer seat that is flat in nature, they sit flush against the body they are installed on.

Extended Thread Lug Nuts

The extended thread in these lug nuts is a bit different than what you get in mag seat lug nuts. As compared to others, the extended thread lug nuts offer a better grip for easy and effortless installation and uninstallation.

Small Diameter Spline Drive Lug Nuts

Although these lug nuts are mostly used in aftermarket wheels, many times they can be seen in Ford, Chevy, and Cadillac cars. Due to the spline grooves, a special key is used to install and uninstall these lug nuts.

Tuner Style Lug Nuts

Although these lug nuts also have a conical seat, they can be uninstalled using a special key that is usually shipped along with the nuts. In addition, the key can be bought separately from any spare parts store.

Left-Hand Threaded Lug Nuts

Unlike the right-hand threaded lug nuts, these are not commonly available at any random shop. The reason is, not many vehicles use these lug nuts, and they can be seen only in some bikes and classic cars. You can identify a Left-Hand Threaded lug nut if there’s ‘L’ or ‘LHT’ stamped on it. When you need these nuts, conducting an online search would be a good and time-saving approach.

Lug Bolts

These lug nuts have studs attached to them. Lug bolts are generally used if a vehicle has a flat rotor without any studs.

Does it matter what lug nuts I use?

Yes, it does. If you are using the lug nuts of accurate size and from a reputed brand, preferably from the one recommended by your vehicle’s manufacturer, you can be assured that the wheels are installed correctly and securely to ensure a safe journey.

Are steel lug nuts good?

Yes. In fact, you should prefer using steel lug nuts over those of aluminum wherever possible. Some of the reasons why steel lug nuts are considered comparatively good include:

They are durable

They are dielectric corrosion-proof

They have higher torque specs

However, a few things that you might find a bit disappointing in steel lug nuts could be:

They come only in chrome and black colors

They are heavier than the aluminum lug nuts

From time to time, TTAC will highlight automotive products we think may be of interest to our community. Plus, posts like this help to keep the lights on around here. Learn more about how this works.

(Editor’s note: This post is meant to both help you be an informed shopper for automotive products but also to pay for our ‘90s sedan shopping habits operating expenses. Some of you don’t find these posts fun, but they help pay for Junkyard Finds, Rare Rides, Rental Reviews, and whatever else. Thanks for reading.)

[Main Photo Credit: Smile Fight/Shutterstock.com. Product images provided by the manufacturer.]

Matthew Guy
Matthew Guy

Matthew buys, sells, fixes, & races cars. As a human index of auto & auction knowledge, he is fond of making money and offering loud opinions.

More by Matthew Guy

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  • Redapple2 Another bad idea from the EVIL gm Vampire.
  • Daniel J Alabama is a right to work state so I'd be interested in how this plays out. If a plant in Alabama unionized, there are many workers who's still oppose joining and can work.
  • ToolGuy This guest was pretty interesting.
  • NJRide So this is an average age of car to be junked now and of course this is a lower end (and now semi-orphaned) product. But street examples seem to still be worth 2500? So are cars getting junked only coming in because of a traumatic repair? If not it seems a lot of cars being junked that would still possibly worth more than scrap.Also Murilee I remember your Taurus article way back what is the king of the junkyard in 2024?
  • AMcA I applaud Toyota for getting away from the TRD performance name. TuRD. This is another great example of "if they'd just thought to preview the name with a 13 year old boy."
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