A lot of people think changing out your wheels in winter is enough. But what about your lug nuts?
Factory alloy wheels (i.e. Ford, Chrysler, Toyota, etc.) will come with a lug nut that typically costs $5-8 at the dealership. Those are expensive to replace if they start corroding. Moreover some factory lug nuts (particularly Toyota) are designed specifically to work with their alloy wheels and don’t fit properly with winter wheels.
Aftermarket alloy wheels usually come with chrome lug nuts that can be damaged by road salt and winter weather. Others are “tuner” lug nuts, which are slender and meant to fit in the narrow lug holes of alloy rims.
For an extra twenty bucks, you can get some open acorn lug nuts which are exactly what a steel wheel requires. Most are zinc or nickel, so they hold up very well. It’s what we suggest to our customers- keep your good lug nuts with your summer wheels and use an inexpensive lug nut. In the long run, it’s twenty dollars well spent.