Chrysler Full-Size Trucks 1997-2000 Repair Guide

Wheels

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION




CAUTION
Always refer to the owner's manual for model-specific information pertaining to your wheels and tires and vehicle jacking instructions. The safety issues involved call for attention to manufacturer-supplied information.

  1. Park the vehicle on a level surface.
  2.  
  3. Remove the jack, tire iron and, if necessary, the spare tire from their storage compartments.
  4.  
  5. Check the owner's manual for model-specific information, and then place the jack in the proper position.
  6.  
  7. If equipped with lug nut trim caps, remove them by either unscrewing or pulling them off the lug nuts, as appropriate. Consult the owner's manual, if necessary.
  8.  
  9. If equipped with a wheel cover or hub cap, insert the tapered end of the tire iron in the groove and pry off the cover.
  10.  



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Fig. Before jacking the vehicle, block the diagonally opposite wheel with one or, preferably, two chocks



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Fig. Removing the spare tire-1997 Ram shown



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Fig. Break the lug nuts loose when the tire is on the ground. But get it OFF the ground when tightening



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Fig. Tighten lug nuts evenly and in a cross pattern-6-stud model shown



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Fig. Tightening patterns for 5-stud and 8-stud wheels

  1. Apply the parking brake, place the transmission in PARK for automatics or Reverse for manuals. Block the diagonally opposite wheel with a wheel chock or two.
  2.  


NOTE
Wheel chocks may be purchased at your local auto parts store, or a block of wood cut into wedges may be used. If possible, keep one or two of the chocks in your tire storage compartment, in case any of the tires has to be removed on the side of the road.

  1. With the tires on the ground, use the tire iron/wrench to break the lug nuts loose.
  2.  


NOTE
If a nut is stuck, NEVER use heat to loosen it or damage to the wheel and bearings may occur. If the nuts are seized, one or two heavy hammer blows directly on the end of the nut usually loosens the rust. Be careful, as continued pounding will likely damage the brake drum or rotor. A longer breaker bar or lever usually solves all problems like this.

  1. Using the jack, raise the vehicle until the tire is clear of the ground. Support the vehicle safely using jackstands, if possible.
  2.  
  3. Matchmark the wheel relative to the hub so that it can reinstalled in the original position to maintain balance factor if the same assembly is to reinstalled.
  4.  
  5. Remove the lug nuts, then remove the tire and wheel assembly.
  6.  

To install:

  1. Make sure the wheel and hub mating surfaces, as well as the wheel lug studs, are clean and free of all foreign material. Always remove rust from the wheel mounting surface and the brake rotor or drum. Failure to do so may cause the lug nuts to loosen in service.
  2.  
  3. NEVER use oil or grease on the studs.
  4.  
  5. Install the tire and wheel assembly in its original location and hand-tighten the lug nuts with the wheel(s) OFF THE GROUND.
  6.  
  7. With the wheel(s) OFF THE GROUND, tighten all the lug nuts, in a crisscross pattern, until they are as close to the proper torque as possible.
  8.  
  9. Lower the wheel until contact with the ground will keep it from turning. Complete the tightening sequence. Refer to the specifications chart for proper torque.
  10.  

SPECIAL NOTES



  1. Lug nuts must be tightened properly to ensure efficient braking. Over-tightening (excessive torque) in the wrong pattern can cause distortion of the rotor or drums. Air wrenches are NOT recommended for tightening lug nuts. Always use a torque wrench.
  2.  
  3. Models equipped with chrome-plated wheels must NOT use chrome-plated lug nuts. The factory-supplied lug nuts used with chrome-plated wheels are NOT chrome-plated on purpose. Use only these lug nuts. Do NOT replace these items with chrome-plated lug nuts.
  4.  
  5. All 8800 GVW 4x4 vehicles have a factory-installed spacer behind the right front wheel.
  6.  
  7. Some models use a two-piece lug nut with a flat face. Do NOT substitute different types. Place two drops of oil (NOT MORE!) on the nut/washer interface before tightening
  8.  
  9. All aluminum and some steel wheels have lug nuts with an enlarged nose. This is necessary to prevent loosening.
  10.  
  11. Dual rear wheels use a special, heavy-duty lug nut wrench. Always use this wrench when removing or installing the wheels.
  12.  
  13. With dual rear wheels, be sure both wheels are off the ground when tightening the lug nuts. This will ensure correct wheel centering and maximum wheel clamping.
  14.  
  15. With dual rear wheels, repeat the torquing sequence twice to ensure accuracy and prevent lug nut loosening. Check tightness at 100 miles and again at 500 miles.
  16.  



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Fig. Some models use two-piece lug nuts like this



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Fig. Oil two-piece lug nuts before installing



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Fig. Aluminum lug nut wrenches can help minimize scratching on custom lug nuts.


WARNING
Do NOT over-tighten the lug nuts, as this may cause the wheel studs to stretch or the brake disc (rotor) to warp.

  1. If so equipped, install the wheel cover or hub cap. Make sure the valve stem protrudes through the proper opening before tapping the wheel cover into position.
  2.  
  3. If equipped, install the lug nut trim caps by pushing them or screwing them on, as applicable.
  4.  
  5. Remove the jack from under the vehicle, and place the jack and tire iron/wrench in their storage compartments. Remove the wheel chock(s).
  6.  
  7. If you have removed a flat or damaged tire, place it in the storage compartment of the vehicle and take it to your local repair station to have it fixed or replaced as soon as possible.
  8.  

INSPECTION



Inspect the tires for lacerations, puncture marks, nails and other sharp objects. Repair or replace as necessary. Also check the tires for tread wear and air pressure.

Check the wheel assemblies for dents, cracks, rust and metal fatigue. Repair or replace as necessary.

 
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