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Deteriorating Rim!


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I washed the 08 a few days ago and noticed that the chrome is peeling off of my rims. I took a picture from the front of the rim but it looks worse from behind. What is going on?!?!?!

http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k517/jgray1978/rim_zpsab613d5b.jpg

Caddy_Grill.jpg2008 DTS
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There are four things I can think of. Firstly, the people that mounted tires on those rims a few years ago may have been rough enough on the wheels to leave indented trails on the chrome, which, with the tiniest cracks that would also be installed with the tires and balancing weights, begin to corrode with the Michigan salt winters. Secondly, there are people who take painted aluminum wheels and chrome plate them because the difference in cost makes them a profit, and even dealers can end up with these wheels. Premium wheels are installed at the dealer in some cases. The dealer may not even know that some of his inventory is not factory plated. If the chrome continues down the rim into the bead (which can cause seepage leaks in old wheels), that is proof that it is not a OEM plating job. Third, there could have been a tiny bubble under the chrome back in a corner of the wheel which eventually got some contamination and began to corrode; not likely on OEM chrome plating but not at all difficult to believe for an aftermarket plating job. Fourthly, aluminum wheels often have some porosity that, if not repaired before plating, can allow contamination under part of the plating; again something not seen in OEM plating but not hard to believe in aftermarket plating. This can happen even if the leak is so small as to be unnoticeable if used on a car.

It could be some combination of the four, or I may have left out something.

I may be wrong but I don't think an OEM chrome plate will have *any* chrome on the rear of the wheel. Since you do say that there is chrome plating on the back of the wheel, it does seem like it is an aftermarket plating job. You might look on your other wheels to see if they all have plating on the back. We have people here who can chime in and say whether or not OEM plated wheels have chrome on the back or not. The worst flaking in your picture is back in a corner, and could have started in a bubble under the chrome. And, the photo shows a streak of loose chrome that may have been begun by a tool digging a groove in the chrome there during tire mounting.

I just browsed a bit in the 2006 FSM for your car and found that repair of porosity in aluminum (not plated) wheels involves applying a 3 mm (0.12 in) thick layer of adhesive/sealant, GM US P/N 12378478 (Canada P/N 88900041) or equivalent. I suspect that all OEM wheels have this on the inside. It's possible that this coating was damaged when you had your tires mounted.

The best way to find out for sure is to find a local expert on such things and have it looked at in person.

You can probably minimize the progression of the problem by pressure-washing the wheels and keeping them clean, in particular washing them down after snows in which the streets are salted. In Oklahoma they won't see the kind of salt that you see in Michigan.

There is a guy in Florida that buys up old dealer stocks and sells new and used wheels for Cadillacs and other cars with premium wheels. His store is here:

http://www.OEMWheelsDirect.com

Since you are looking to replace an OEM wheel, you probably will need to contact him directly and personally to ask about your wheel. You have a great picture of a wheel on your car on Photobucket that will help him identify the right wheel.

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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There are two OEM chrome wheels for the 2006 DTS:

PA2: Wheel 17 X 7, Aluminum, Chrome
P31: Wheel 18 X 7.5, Aluminum, Chrome

As best I can determine from your Photobucket photo of the wheel and tire, you have a 17-inch wheel, which would be RPO PA2. I don't know the part number. Your wheel identification (probably the part number) is cast into the wheel on the inboard side.

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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I don't think that it is chrome plating on the back of the wheels..But whatever it is it is flaking off. Maybe next weekend I'll pull a wheel and get some pics from the backside.

Caddy_Grill.jpg2008 DTS
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2008...GM is making 2014s right now....6 year old car. Kinda early for the chrome to be coming off but Michigan salt will do that.

I think most of the OEM chrome wheels come out of China, India, or Mexico. When you take the wheel off I bet you'll see 'Made in China' on the back.

Pic shows 'india' and 'GM' logo.

post-2-0-73626900-1390250583_thumb.jpg

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Perhaps that is why they are going to polished wheels in some newer cars.

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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I have the chrome wheels on my '96, and there is no peeling at all, and they look like new. the inside where brake dust would collect is some kind of silver paint, and the rest of the wheel is chrome. I recall these wheels were somewhere around a $1,200 option. Maybe it was too costly to continue this proven, but expensive chroming process, and a more efficient or more environmental friendly process was developed that unfortunately over time peeled. it looks like the '08 doesn't have that paint protection on the inside where brake dust would accumulate.

I remember back in the '80,s many cars would have their paint finishes and clear coat oxidize & wash off of the hood roof & trunk. the cars looked like skunks driving down the road.

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My 1997 ETC never had a problem with the chrome on the wheels either, but it was a California car that moved to the Philly area only in late 2000, and has been garaged here.

Wheel design has changed dramatically since my 1997 model, which has strong but not light wheels. My 2011 CTS-V has wheels that have more, smaller, lighter "spokes" to achieve the needed strength with less (unsprung!) weight. I believe that the alloy has changed, too, to allow a stronger, lighter wheel. It's possible that the structure and the metallurgy just aren't compatible with the hard chroming process that they used in the 1990's.

I was looking in the 2006 FSM for wheels in my post above. In the 2008 FSM, we have

PA2: Wheel - 17 X 7, Aluminum, Chrome
P31: Wheel - 18 X 7.5, Aluminum, Chrome
TBD: Wheel - 17 X 7, Aluminum, Chrome
TBD: Wheel - 17 X 7, Aluminum, Chrome Clad

The first two are the same as for the 2006 model year. Unless we have three entries in the 2008 FSM for RPO PA2, there are three suppliers for chrome wheels. Possibly, two of them, the ones with the RPO option numbers listed as TBD, are dealer-installed options. Note that the PA2 wheel in photos from the web has one groove on each spoke, while the Photobucket close-up in the first post by Jeff Gray shows two grooves in each spoke, a design that I don't see in a quick search for Cadillac wheels, so it is probably one of the last two options.

I think that, for those of us with chromed wheels, the word to the wise here is to wash off your wheels after driving in salt slush or other corrosive environments. In addition, when you change tires, check the inside of the wheels for a protective clearcoat of about 3 mm thickness of adhesive/sealant, GM US P/N 12378478 (Canada P/N 88900041) or equivalent, and apply one if you don't see it, or if it is scratched or damaged.

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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Here is a better pic of one of the wheels. This pic was taken probably a year and a half ago.

http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k517/jgray1978/20120630_171518.jpg

Caddy_Grill.jpg2008 DTS
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Found another picture from google and it looks like the same rim. I don't think that these were some aftermarket rims.

http://images.thecarconnection.com/lrg/2011-cadillac-dts-4-door-sedan-base-wheel-cap_100326708_l.jpg

Caddy_Grill.jpg2008 DTS
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I couldn't match the two-groove spokes with a 2006 wheel, so it must be one of the two TBD RPO listings for 2008. Perhaps most or all of the 2008 wheels are distinct from the 2006 wheels. The FSM say to look for the part number on the inside of the casting.

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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