Remove rust on the wheel arch - how does it work?

The wheel arches are in almost every vehicle the places where rust preferably forms. What you have to pay attention to when renovating the wheel arches, explains this post. In addition, how to recognize rustiness, and how to remedy - and what is important besides the sheet metal renovation.

Causes of rust in the wheel arches

In the case of many vehicle models, lack of or insufficient existing cavity protection ex works is the reason why the wheel arches rust quickly. In this case, moisture can penetrate from the inside and rust the sheet from the inside. Renovations are then very time-consuming, usually the rusted-through sheets have to be replaced.

With every refurbishment, you also have to re-seal from the inside to the grate, and the cavities, if the original seal is not sufficient or high quality enough. In the rear wheel arches almost always has to be rehabilitated from the trunk side.

Sign for rust

If the rust on the inside of the wheel arches already forms bubbles in the paint, you can almost always assume that there is rust through. In this case, only the replacement of the damaged sheets helps. A rust removal helps in this case no more. Welding the wheel arches as a repair method does not produce a sufficiently good result.

After welding in the sheet metal, care must also be taken to ensure the appropriate and intact cavity seal.


If the wheel arches have not rusted through, you can possibly even rust them yourself. For this you should remove the rust on the wheel arch generously. All rust nests must be completely removed.

After that, it can be rehabilitated. Need for it

  • rust converter
  • possibly putty
  • primer
  • paint
  • Finish (hardener, etc.)

Except for the rust converter, all products should preferably be from one manufacturer. For the correct processing one needs some experience. It is important to check the repaired areas thoroughly after the winter, if new rust has formed again. In this case, you should definitely rework immediately and repair the new rust spots again.

Tips & Tricks

In many cases, it may be cheaper in case of rust through, to install new fenders in the front and cost-effectively paint.

Video Board: How to Repair Rust on Your Car Without Welding (No Special Tools Needed)