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Old 04-01-2009, 16:47   #1 (permalink)
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Remove 2009 chrome plastic wheel covers?

We just got a 2009 V6 XLT. It came from the factory with the optional 17" "Chrome Clad Wheels". I noticed they are just plastic over what looks like a real alloy wheel. They are a little too bright for our tastes, so i would like to remove them.
-has anyone done this and how?
-is the wheel underneath a nice looking alloy wheel like the stock 16" one?
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Old 04-02-2009, 06:16   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Remove 2009 chrome plastic wheel covers?

rudsaki, we also just purchased a 2009 Escape. Our's is a Limited also with the chrome clad wheels. I didn't realize the covers we're just plastic until I brought the car home. I've never been a fan of much chrome, but they're beginning to grow on me. I bough some Mother's chrome polish and shined them up, and they look pretty good. I'm sure most people wouldn't know they were plastic covers.

So I haven't decided if they look cheezy or not. I can't imagine they're going to hold up over the long haul, so maybe when I replace the tires someday I'll also replace the wheels.

I also asked my dealer salesman if he knew if the wheels underneath were a standard aluminum rim, and of course, he didn't know.
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Old 04-02-2009, 09:05   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Remove 2009 chrome plastic wheel covers?

we tried to get the dealer to put them on another car and deduct the amount, but they wouldn't do it. I also did not know they were plastic until my neighbor, who details cars, pointed it out to me. If i could get them off and it it looks good underneath, I could save them for the day I sell the car, then it would have brand new looking wheels.

I also had to sign a document saying I know I can't put snow chains on these wheels, but no explanation is given, including the manual. We had about 6" of snow a couple of weeks ago and I was able to drive it up a hill with no slippage at all. This was the same hill our minivan got stuck on and kinda accelerated the whole purchase decision.Plus the California sales and vehicle fees going up.
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Old 04-02-2009, 12:45   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Remove 2009 chrome plastic wheel covers?

Had I known they were plastic before I bought the car I would have asked my dealer to exchange them, just as you did. I probably would have had the same results.

I never thought about chains, but here in the South it's not a concern, luckily. But I'm guessing stone damage alone will take it's toll on them.

Post again if you manage to take one off and let me know what's underneath. It doesn't look like they're just covers being held on by the lug nuts. Maybe they're pressed on at the factory and won't come off without breaking it first.
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Old 04-02-2009, 18:44   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Remove 2009 chrome plastic wheel covers?

After doing some research on removing the "chrome clad" I have discovered they are installed on the rim with an industrial epoxy and are not able to be removed without breaking the plastic and/or damaging the rim.
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Old 04-03-2009, 06:32   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Remove 2009 chrome plastic wheel covers?

Thanks Cooker. So I guess I have to start thinking about living with the wheels or taking them off now while they're in good condition and selling them.
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Old 04-04-2009, 06:45   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Remove 2009 chrome plastic wheel covers?

I was at the Ford dealer yesterday and I asked them if there was a way to exchange my wheels with aluminum allow wheels at some added cost. The sales team leader said there was no 17" aluminum alloy wheel available to upgrade to. He said they would gladly take my 17" wheels in exchange for standard aluminum alloy 16" wheels. Of course I'm not doing that.

My salesman showed me that even on some of Ford's more expensive vehicles with prices approaching $40K, the upgraded wheel is the plastic chrome clade wheel. So they were trying to convince me chrome clad wheel is a good wheel and not cheap, etc.

So for now I guess I'll keep the wheels.
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Old 04-10-2009, 23:10   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Remove 2009 chrome plastic wheel covers?

I have the Satin clad 17 inch wheels on my 08 Mariner and they are metal not plastic they look like stainless and are none magnetic but they are made of metal.
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