Informational Guide

How To Get A Stripped Lug Nut Off A Tire

In this guide, we show you how to get a stripped lug nut off a tire safely and easily.

When you are changing a tire, you don’t want to deal with a stripped lug nut on a tire. If you need to know how to get a stripped lug nut off a tire, we have your answers.  

This guide covers how to remove a stripped lug nut on a tire and looks at the ways to avoid a stripped tire lug nut. 


The lug nuts are metal. When exposed to debris, dirt, and water, it's possible for rust and corrosion to form. This corrosion causes the threads of the lug nut to change shape, thereby making it difficult to remove.

Using a Larger Socket To Remove Nut 

When you take off the lug nut, you must use the right size socket. Otherwise, you might experience slippage as you use the tool. This slippage can further cause the lug nut to become stuck, making it harder to remove later.

Use Of Wrong Torque Numbers 

All lug nuts must be tightened to a specific torque. If the wrong amount of torque is applied, the lug nut can become stuck. This is one reason it’s so important to visit a reputable tire shop when getting service.

How To Get A Stripped Lug Nut Off A Tire (4 Easy Methods)

Socket & Hammer Method 

Do you know how to get a tire off with stripped lug nuts? You can do it with these tools. 

Here are the steps showing how to get a stripped lug nut off your tire. 

  1. 1
    Park the vehicle on a flat, level area. Apply the parking brake for additional safety. 
  2. 2
    Apply the penetrating oil and let it soak. You may need a good amount to get around the rust. You can also break away some of the rust with a hammer.  
  3. 3
    Use the nut extractor socket. It must be the right size. Use your hammer to bang the socket head on the nut until it’s tight.  
  4. 4
    Attach your breaker bar to the socket. You can also slide the iron pipe over the handle to the breaker bar.  
  5. 5
    Gently put some force on the handle, trying to move it in a counter-clockwise direction.  
  6. 6
    Remove the stripped nut.  
how to get a stripped pug nut off a tire

Blowtorch Method 

To learn how to get a stripped lug nut off a tire, you can also use a blowtorch. This method is a little easier, but it requires you to have the following supplies.  

  • Blowtorch 
  • Pliers or a wheel spanner to wiggle out a lug nut that’s hot 

Once you have your tools in hand, you follow these steps when learning how to remove a stripped lug nut from a tire. 

  1. 1
    Heat the nut up slowly. 
  2. 2
    Let it cool off completely. 
  3. 3
    Repeat these first two steps several times until the nut breaks loose. 

As you expand the nut, it also increases the wheel stud size. As the nut cools off and contracts, there's more room to get it out. However, please don't use any oil on the lug nuts, or you could cause a fire when you heat it up.  

Chisel, Screwdriver & Hammer 

How do you get stripped lug nuts off a tire? Consider using these supplies to remove a stripped lug nut from a tire. 

  1. 1
    Chisel with a sharp point 
  2. 2
    Penetrating oil 
  3. 3
    Flathead screwdriver 
  4. 4

Follow these steps if you want to know how to remove a stripped lug nut off a tire. 

  1. 1
    Apply the penetrating oil to the nut. Let it sit for a few minutes before you try to remove the rust and gunk. 
  2. 2
    Use the chisel to push the screwdriver into the nut until a notch is made. 
  3. 3
    Wedge the screwdriver into the notch.  
  4. 4
    With your hammer, tap on the screwdriver, moving it in a counter-clockwise direction.  
  5. 5
    Do this until the nut comes loose.  

Grinder Pipe Wrench 

Learning how to remove a stripped tire lug nut doesn’t require a lot of tools. Gather these supplies.  

Here are the steps if you want to know how to get a stripped lug nut off your tire. 

  1. 1
    Apply the penetrating oil to the nut.  
  2. 2
    With your grinder, make edges on the nut so that the wrench can grab on. Ensure there are edges on both sides of the nut.  
  3. 3
    Grab the nut with your wrench on both sides and turn it until it becomes loose.  
removing a lug nut from a tire

How To Avoid Stripped Lug Nuts (Prevention Tips)

If you don’t want to figure out how to get stripped lug nuts off a tire, you need to prevent it from happening in the first place. Here are a few tips to follow.  

  • It’s possible to have a tire shop strip a lug nut if you don’t visit a reputable location. Avoid learning how to remove a stripped lug nut from a tire by choosing a quality repair shop. 
  • Don’t over-torque the lug nut. Find the appropriate torque specs in your service manual. 
  • Keep the lug nuts clean at all times. Don't allow dirt and water to build up on the threads, or rust can occur.  
stripped lug nuts on a tire rim

People Also Ask (FAQs)

Can I use a breaker bar to remove lug nuts? 

You can learn how to remove a stripped lug nut from a tire with the help of a breaker bar. However, it might work easier if you have some penetrating oil to put on the stuck nut for a few minutes before.  

What torque wrench do I need for lug nuts?  

The longer the handle is and the bigger the drive, the more torque the wrench delivers. In general, a ½” drive with an 18” handle should be enough for most lug nuts, as well as suspension bushings and cylinder heads. Check out our complete guide to the best inch pound torque wrenches for mechanics.

What is a lug nut splitter? 

If you have a lug nut stripped on a tire, the nut splitter might be beneficial. This compact hand tool splits nuts measuring 5/16” to 7/8”. These shouldn’t be used in conjunction with power tools.  

How do you remove a lug nut that keeps spinning? 

Just like when you are learning how to remove a stripped tire lug nut, you want to use some penetrating oil. Spray it past the nut to lubricate the seats. With your impact gun in reverse, spin the nut until you heat up the stud and make it expand. From here, you might be able to get a quick grip on the nut to remove it.  

Can I use WD40 to loosen lug nuts? 

WD-40 is commonly used by people trying to get stripped lug nuts off a tire. When left to sit on the nut, it can help remove corrosion and rust, making it easier to remove a stripped tire lug nut. 


Now you know how to take a stripped lug nut off a tire. With our methods, you should be able to remove that tough tire-stripped lug nut with ease. In the future, use our prevention tips to avoid another headache.