BMW Wheel Emblem Repair

20 03 2011

So my quick project this weekend was to fix my missing BMW emblems that disappeared seemingly all at once from my wheels. I am convinced the wheel cleaner I had been using loosened the glue and they finally fell off on the drive to work. After looking at a replacement cost of $24 per wheel cap, I did some searching on ebay for metal emblem replacements. I was surprised to see so many different sizes and materials, but encouraged that I could fix the issue for closer to $15 and about an hour of work.

I started by scraping off the old glue adhesive that reminded me of  silicon used for sealing aquariums. I opted to buy a similar glue that would remain soft and flexible once cured.

I then sanded the inner wheel cap where the new emblem would be attached. This removed any remaining glue and scratched the area in order to provide a good bonding surface.

After sanding, I rinsed the dust away with water and wiped the cap and new emblem down with rubbing alcohol to remove any oils and contaminants still on the surface.

I picked up some Devcon Weldit All Purpose Adhesive from a local Tap Plastics in San Francisco. I was looking for something that bonded plastic to aluminum and would remain flexible once cured. This fit the bill!

I spread a thin layer of adhesive on both the wheel cap and aluminum emblem and let it sit for five or so minutes. Once the adhesive was slightly tacky, I pressed the emblem into the cap and twisted the emblem to insure the glue made good contact.

Let them sit overnight to dry and my wheels look good as new. Very simple fix — it’s these types of projects that get you thinking ‘what else have I been meaning to fix?’

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