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Need serious advice

Deanwall93

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Hi. So about a year ago I did a spray painting job on my mates ve ss in which I took off all 4 wheels to spray them. Yesterday arvo he was pulling out of a driveway And 3 of his wheels came off, front left hand and 2 back ones. Now he hasn't had the car serviced, tyres changed or the wheels off since and the most likely explanation (which I feel really bad about if it's right) is that I didn't tighten the lug nuts properly and this put anyone driving the car in fairly serious danger. (Luckily the car and bloke are both ok). However I am in need of some serious advice as I have my doubts about the explanation. The reasons why I think it could have possibly been something else is the fact that he did roughly 25000 ks between the time that I put them on and the time that they came off. Which if they were loose would have surely given them plenty of chances to come off earlier. The other reason i find it odd that all 3 wheels managed to come off at the same time which makes me think it's possible that they could have been messed with? Idk it's an odd situation and I really want to get to the bottom of it as I consider myself fairly competent with changing wheels and have done so successfully many times. Thanks.
 

mechanic

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Very unlikely that it was your actions that caused it.

Look at the wheels for evidence. Loose wheel studs flog around in the wheel holes until the holes are big enough for the nut to pull through and the wheel to come off. The wheel nuts rarely unthread all the way (in my experience).
If there is no/little damage to the wheel holes, it's only happened recently.

The sound of a loose wheel is something that even my mother would notice.

Even a workshop warranty (12m/20k) is invalid at this point. I'd say someone has sabotaged the car.
 
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lmoengnr

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Its more likely someone has tried to steal the wheels...
 

krusing

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Yep, agree with both posts !
Midnight motors at work,
Probably got disturbed and ran off, and didn't return.
 

Deanwall93

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Appreciate the advice guys good I'm probably more confident now that it wasn't my fault I just had a bit of a sick feeling in my gut that if it were my fault that they weren't on properly and something worse had of happened like them coming off on the highway wouldn't have been able to live with myself. Cheers
 

Trevor loves holden.

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What's the odds all falling off at the one time, like was said someone either being a a-hole or they tried to steal them.
 

gtrboyy

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If wheels fell off first day you gave car back then yeah you made a mistake BUT a year later no way.
 

07GTS

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ive seen it once on a mates car that got his wheels painted and they went loose as the paint under the wheel nuts cracked away over some driving and once the paint was flaked out they were loose (not fall off loose tho), they all got resprayed with a better paint and was ok, also i have been in a vehicle with loose wheel nuts and ill just say after a 8 hour trip of hearing what we thought was a bad bearing we fuelled up at a servo only to see 3 of the wheel studs sheared off from the vibration, so if any were loose for any time to fall off they would have been very noticeable beforehand and within the first 1000km, as mentioned id say someone tried to take them and got disturbed half way thru
 
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