What is a car locking wheel nut key and why is it important?
Locking wheel nuts have become increasingly popular over time for UK drivers to prevent wheel theft. Before the introduction of locking wheel nuts, a standard wheel nut could be removed extremely easily which was an issue. If you have an older vehicle, then your car may still be equipped with a standard locking wheel nut. To prevent theft and increase your safety, we would recommend changing at least one of these per wheel with locking wheel nuts. A locking wheel nut key is needed to remove the wheel. If a wheel is equipped with locking wheel nuts, this will act as a deterrent for thieves.
What does a locking wheel nut key look like?
Locking wheel nut keys all look similar however they are not "one size fits all". They consist of one end which is shaped like a cylinder and the other end is the shape of a hexagon.
Please see the image above to see what a locking wheel nut key looks like.
Image source: Wikipedia
Can you change tyres without a locking wheel nut key?
A locking wheel nut key is needed if you are looking to get your tyres changed and would need to be provided to the National Tyres and Autocare branch staff. This is only relevant if your wheels have locking wheel nuts. Without the locking wheel nut key, you will be unable to have your tyres changed. Every locking wheel nut has a specific indent, which along with the locking wheel nut key, is specific to your vehicle. For example, a locking wheel nut key for a Renault vehicle will not fit a BMW. This means that if you were looking to remove your wheel, alloy rims or get your tyres changed, then you will need your locking wheel nut removed by the correct locking wheel nut key.
What to do if you lose your locking wheel nut key?
If you are in the unfortunate position where you have lost your locking wheel nut key, then a replacement can be ordered. However, due to the complex nature of locking wheel nut keys being specific to particular locking wheel nuts, this could take a long period of time for the new locking wheel nut key to arrive. It is extremely important that you keep your locking wheel nut key safe and kept in your car at all times.
If you ever suffer a serious tyre puncture, you may need a roadside tyre change. Without the locking wheel nut key, this would not be possible. It is important to note, that to prevent the need for a roadside tyre repair, then run-flat tyres allow drivers to continue driving for a short period of time, giving the driver the opportunity to drive safely to their local National Tyres and Autocare branch. To find out more about runflat tyres please click on the related article below.
Related: What are Run Flat tyres?
If your wheel has locking wheel nuts and you are booked in for a set of new tyres, a service or even a brake check, it is vitally important that you provide the branch staff with the locking wheel nut in order to complete the work needed.
If you have any questions about locking wheel nuts, then please drop us a message on our social media platforms, on our Facebook or Twitter. You can also send us a message using our live chat feature and one of our highly trained and technically competent staff will be able to help.
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