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Good story,
Heard this thunking while I drove. Assumed it was a U joint, turned out to be a LOOSE wheel. I have locking wheel nuts. Looked for the key to the locking nuts and it is gone. Fortunately I was able to remove the locking lug nut on the loose wheel with needle nose pliers. Called McCard (makes locking nuts) told me to email a straight on shot of locking nut and they could match it up and send me a new key. Reply was we did not make that one. ARRRRGH! Looked at a tool to remove the remaining 3 locking nuts, but ALAS would not fit in the wheel recess. Ended up having a custom key made by Gustav tool and die works, cost me $100.00. But it worked, all locking nuts off the jeep. So when you buy locking lug nuts, you can order extra keys from the manufacturer, DO IT! Now for the question, my wheel was loose because of a broken stud ( I have not been off road yet) Are there stronger studs I can buy, while I replace my brakes? Also, if going off road with heavier and larger tires (bigger than stock) shouldn't you upgrade the wheel studs?
Thanks in Advance to all that reply
Patrick
 

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A couple of points. You did not state year and whether you bought it new. Doesn't sound likely for while my dealer puts locking lug nuts on before delivery, the key is always in the glove box and the paperwork to register the key is with the manual and all the paperwork.

The primary cause of broken studs is over tightening them at the tire store. The spec calls for 90 pounds of torque (with a torque wrench). But too many of the stores have the impact wrench set as high as it will go which is over twice the recommended torque.

This is why many serious Jeepers rotate their own tires and torque the nuts with a torque wrench, not an air gun.
 

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The primary cause of broken studs is over tightening them at the tire store. The spec calls for 90 pounds of torque (with a torque wrench). But too many of the stores have the impact wrench set as high as it will go which is over twice the recommended torque.

This is why many serious Jeepers rotate their own tires and torque the nuts with a torque wrench, not an air gun.
^^^This! The only tire shop who ever touches my lugs is America's Tire, and that's only because they have a window where I can watch what they're doing. I have always seen them use a torque wrench. But I typically do my own rotations. They just install and rebalance occasionally.

Now, the dealer is another story (and that makes no sense at all)! I've had two different Jeep dealers reinstall the wheels with an impact, one of whom actually broke the spline socket in the process. That would be the spline socket which specifically states "DO NOT USE IMPACT WRENCH." Duh.

It's interesting that this thread comes up now. I just had a stud break last week, but it was not an OEM stud. It was whatever came pressed into my Ten Factory rear axle shafts. But I am convinced from the pattern of the break that it was from over-torqueing (which I don't do).

I had some trouble locating the same wheel stud to replace it. In fact, I couldn't at all. It turns out it was not the same dimensions as the OEM. Same thread size/pitch, and O.A.L., but much shorter shoulder. I bought the shafts from River City Offroad in Austin, TX, so I got in touch with Marcus just to see if I could get a PN for the right stud. Next thing I know, I get an email from him saying he's sending me a whole new set of studs, GRATAS! Great service over there!

In the meantime, as it turns out, the front and rear studs are different, and although the rear stud didn't match the ones in the Ten Factory shafts, the front OEM stud is really close to the same. I think the shoulder is about 1/8" longer on the OEM, but the wheel chamfers and brake rotor more than compensate for that difference so all is good. EXCEPT . . . the same stud I can get at O'Reilly for $1.99 is FIVE BUCKS from the dealer. That's right, $5. For ONE. I made no bones about telling them the ONLY reason I was buying it from them was because I had an out of town trip scheduled the next day and didn't have time to wait on O'Reilly to order it in. (Naturally, it was out of stock at the time.) So heads up to the OP -- don't go to the dealer unless you want to throw away time and a half what it ought to cost!

"locking" lug nuts . . . only slow down the owner/shop.
How so? I can see that with the common spline nuts, but on the locks like the McGards they have multiple key patterns and as the OP experienced, they're pretty difficult to defeat. I have personal experience with the McGard locks (years ago) and can tell you they're hardened so that even ViseGrips won't get enough bite to turn them. Not being confrontational, just wondering what's on your mind.
 

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You don't need stronger studs, you need smarter tire busters. Those studs got stretched. When you replace them, look closely and you'll probably see them necked down near the end of the lug nut engagement.

As for locking lug nuts, many if not most can have a socket pounded on. For the guys who earn a living or maybe just some spending money by stealing them, they're useless. Hell, might be better off without them since I know a few people who had their whole car stolen just to have the stereo and rims taken off then ditched.
 

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You arent going to stretch a lug. It would take a ridiculous amount of force to overtorque.

It's more likely they were undertorqued or the studs were not seated properly.
 

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You arent going to stretch a lug. It would take a ridiculous amount of force to overtorque.

It's more likely they were undertorqued or the studs were not seated properly.
....and if you have aftermarket wheels that aren't hubcentric,this would quicken and compound the loosening affect of the wheel nut(s) .
 

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You arent going to stretch a lug. It would take a ridiculous amount of force to overtorque.

It's more likely they were undertorqued or the studs were not seated properly.
Agree
 

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My thought on locking lug nuts has always been that they're a waste of money because they barely slow down a real thief, this was agreed upon with my local tire shop. I noticed that my key was missing when I needed to do a tire rotation, so I called the tire shop and they said no problem they can remove them easily. The tire rotation was free because I had bought the tires through them and they didn't charge a dime for removing the locking lug nuts.
 

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It's my humble opinion that most broken studs are caused by the owners that don't have, or don't believe in a torque wrench. Just grabs the 1/2 drive breaker bar and gunts it down. It doesn't take a whole lot to get 140-170 foot pounds of torque. Give it a try, grunt one down, then slowly ratchet up a torque wrench until you can move it, you'll be surprised, and have one stressed out stud.
 

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Good point about aftermarket wheels. A lot of aluminum wheels will have to be retorqued several times before they "take a seat".
 

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You arent going to stretch a lug. It would take a ridiculous amount of force to overtorque.
I've sent a lot of people break studs at the (road race) track. Obviously not in Jeeps. The pattern seems to be they tighten the lug nuts 'so they won't come off' and then the hub expansion from the brake rotor heat stretches the stud to yield.
Many people don't have 'mechanical sympathy'. For others it is natural. eg when tightening a bolt by hand you can feel the force vs angle, and when the force starts to flatten out for a given angle change you remove the bolt and throw it away, since you've got close to yield.
I've also seen crimes against humanity committed using impact wrenches on Jeeps (mainly in videos).
One factor that is often overlooked is that the top of the brake disk needs to be wire brushed clean of any rust. Otherwise the rust layer will fret off and the clamping force might go down enough to introduce reverse bending fatigue to the stud.
 

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You arent going to stretch a lug. It would take a ridiculous amount of force to overtorque.

It's more likely they were undertorqued or the studs were not seated properly.
Actually it takes very little force to overtorque them. 1 Ft-Lb over spec + tolerance is overtorqued. But I suspect you meant that it would take a ridiculous amount of force to pull them in two, which might be true if we were talking about a piece of mild steel in static loading.

But these aren't mild steel, they're hardened. And they aren't static loaded; your lug studs will see dynamic loading in both shear and tensile, as well as shock loading, all of which can dramatically increase the actual force on the stud, even if only momentarily. Even the hammering of an impact wrench shocks the steel, and over time can crystalize the metal and create stress fractures you'll never see until they fail.

I'll leave the actual force calculations to someone who has studied Calculus, Dynamics, and Mechanics of Materials more recently than me (or who has access to an FEA program), but even on its face the very fact that there is a torque spec -- and a comparatively low one at that -- suggests that there is an inherent danger to overtightening the lug nuts.

Will overtorqueing them one time cause them to break? Probably not, at least not immediately, but over time and repeated overtorqueing, the effects are cumulative, adding up to failure at some point. It's not a rubber band; it doesn't just snap back. To suggest that it is virtually impossible to overtorque a lug stud is just irresponsible; we're talking about peoples' lives here. And that's why there is a factory recommended torque spec.
 

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This is a pet peeve of mine. Watching others "just tighten it down" or bolt 'er up "'till she's tight"....and impact wrenches to tighten anything to its final "tightening"...(should be torqued)......or if you or someone says "how tight should she be"...and the answer..."till she's tight"...this is NONSENSE!!!!

The above is completely ridiculous!!! Every fastener and fastening situation has a torque spec. period,and I,am a big stickler for tightening things down to an engineer figured out Torque Spec.....do this if you want good service life,and prevent premature failures.... after all, this is what this thread topic is all about.
 

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You arent going to stretch a lug. It would take a ridiculous amount of force to overtorque.

It's more likely they were undertorqued or the studs were not seated properly.

Mind if we test it on your Jeep? :thumb:

I've sat in metallurgy class and measured lug nuts that were over torqued past the yield point. When people run them down with an impact, or even worse, add anti-sieze before running them down with the impact, it's very easy to reach the plastic deformation stage

Good picture in this thread of what you see when it's been over torqued:

https://www.clublexus.com/forums/th...-nuts-one-stud-broke-what-about-the-rest.html
 

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I use to use the best guess method of hand tightening, and I never broke a stud or lost a wheel.

Now I use an impact to remove and install wheels on all my vehicles. Picked up the Kobalt 24V from Lowes and it is fantastic for what I use it for. I also got a set of torque sticks, and they are within 2 to 4 lbs of the claimed rating. I install the lug nuts with the torque stick and then a quick check with a torque wrench. It takes me longer to drag out the jack and stands than it does to rotate the tires.
 

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Mind if we test it on your Jeep? :thumb:

I've sat in metallurgy class and measured lug nuts that were over torqued past the yield point. When people run them down with an impact, or even worse, add anti-sieze before running them down with the impact, it's very easy to reach the plastic deformation stage

Good picture in this thread of what you see when it's been over torqued:

https://www.clublexus.com/forums/th...-nuts-one-stud-broke-what-about-the-rest.html
Go for it. I dont have the same lugs and I have 32 of them so it wouldnt be a good test.

I suppose what I should have said was, it is a lot easier and more common for lugs to be undertorqued or not even torqued. Especially when other people are working on your vehicle.

Seriously, it happens all the time.
 

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Go for it. I dont have the same lugs and I have 32 of them so it wouldnt be a good test.

I suppose what I should have said was, it is a lot easier and more common for lugs to be undertorqued or not even torqued. Especially when other people are working on your vehicle.

Seriously, it happens all the time.


I have no doubt people leave them loose all the time. Both are common enough that I wouldn't argue either way. I also know that a lot of folks don't torque them properly and end up warping their rotors. I'll spin them on, but always torque them down with the torque wrench, then give it another pass to double check. Always the same pattern.
 

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You arent going to stretch a lug. It would take a ridiculous amount of force to overtorque.

It's more likely they were undertorqued or the studs were not seated properly.
:lmao:

The typical professional grade 1/2" drive air impact wrench you see shop monkeys using has between +400-600 ft pounds at max setting.
That can and will snap the studs right there.

All they have to do is pull off your lugs at max setting, forget to turn down the power after removing the lugs, reverse the turn direction and....BRRRRRRRGGGGGTTTTT!!!!! Your lugs get tightened over 4-6 TIMES their designed torque.

A 3/4" drive air impact wrench will have 200 Ft pounds at minimum setting and over 1000 foot pounds of torque on max setting.
That's more than enough to snap the frame bolts at max. Fuggetabout the dinky wheel studs even on minimum setting.
 

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I've had dealers/service centers do both too tight and too loose.

Too loose: years ago we had a minivan. As we were leaving the dealer's service area after oil and a rotation, one of the sales guys stopped us. He noticed 2 lug nuts on one wheel were missing.

Too tight: I recently got new tires for my JKU. A week later I was going to install my ProGrip brake kit. Went to remove the lugnuts and could not get a 3/4" or 19mm socket (I tried both - they are pretty much the same size) over the nuts. The nuts were slightly deformed. I pounded one on lightly and could not get the nut to budge. I tried my 1/2" drive dewalt electric impact driver to try to get the lugnut off. No luck. I called the service center and asked if an impact driver was used to install the tires. "No, sir! We use professional grade torque wrenches." The guy sounded insulted I would ask such a thing. I usually do my own rotations, I know these lugs were torqued to well over 100 ft-lbs. Since this was the first time I ever had a problem with this shop, I decided to have them install my brakes (and deal with the lugnuts). Before the install I bought some black lugnuts from Q'tec. It would be quite obvious if an impact driver is used on these nuts. When I got the vehicle back I pulled one of the lug nuts and it felt like I expected it should.
 
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