Understanding Offset and Backspacing When Buying Wheels

Understanding Offset and Backspacing When Buying Wheels

Upgrading your vehicle’s wheels can completely change the look and feel of your vehicle. It is also an investment and we understand how hard you work for your money. Our experts at R&T Sales Ltd. want you to have the best experience possible. That includes purchasing the correct size wheels for your vehicle to match the look you want while ensuring safety and performance is not compromised.  Let's dive into what offset and backspacing are, why they matter, and how they affect your vehicle. We have included offset comparison charts for popular trucks by their make, model, and year!

Vehicle Offset Comparison Charts

We’ve compiled the different offset measurements for trucks and large SUV's. Broken down by make, model, and year! 


What is Wheel Offset?

Offset refers to the distance between the wheel's mounting surface and the centerline of the wheel. It’s measured in millimeters and can be positive, negative, or zero. Here's what each type means:
  • Positive Offset: The mounting surface is closer to the front of the wheel, towards the street side. This is common in front-wheel-drive cars and newer vehicles. Positive offset wheels tend to have a flush or tucked-in appearance.
  • Negative Offset: The mounting surface is closer to the back of the wheel, towards the brake side. This is typical in trucks, SUVs, and older vehicles. Negative offset wheels give a more aggressive, wider stance.
  • Zero Offset: The mounting surface is exactly in line with the centerline of the wheel. This provides a balanced look and is often used in various performance and off-road vehicles.

What is Backspacing?

Backspacing is the distance from the mounting surface to the back edge of the wheel. It's measured in inches and directly impacts how the wheel sits relative to the suspension components and the wheel well.

More backspacing means the wheel sits further inside the wheel well. This can be beneficial for vehicles with wider tires, preventing them from sticking out too far.

Less backspacing results in the wheel sitting further out, giving the vehicle a broader stance. However, it may cause the tires to rub against the fenders or suspension if not properly measured.

4 Reasons Why Offset and Backspacing Matter

  1. Proper Fitment: Ensures that the wheels and tires do not rub against the fenders, suspension components, or brakes.
  2. Handling and Performance: Correct offset and backspacing can improve your vehicle’s handling by maintaining the proper geometry of the suspension.
  3. Aesthetic Appeal: The right measurements can give your vehicle the desired look, whether you want a flush fitment or a more aggressive stance.
  4. Safety: Incorrect offset or backspacing can cause undue stress on suspension components, potentially leading to premature wear or failure.

How to Measure Offset and Backspacing

You can find your current offset by looking at your vehicle’s wheels. It is typically stamped into the back of your vehicle's OEM or factory wheels, next to the letters ET. If you cannot find it stamped, feel free to reach out to us at R&T Sales to assist!
If you’re the technical type and want to measure yourself, here is a step by step process:
1. Offset:
    • Determine the width of the wheel.
    • Measure the distance from the mounting surface to the centerline of the wheel.
    • A positive value means positive offset, and a negative value indicates negative offset.
    2. Backspacing:
    • Lay the wheel face down.
    • Place a straight edge across the wheel’s back lip.
    • Measure the distance from the mounting surface to the straight edge.

    Final Thoughts

    Understanding offset and backspacing is essential for any wheel purchase. By getting these measurements right, you’ll ensure that your new wheels not only look great but also perform optimally and safely. If you’re unsure about the best fit for your vehicle, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at R&T Sales Limited. With our text service, you get answers from our experts, directly to your fingertips. Text us today 306-361-4412. 
    Elevate your ride with confidence, knowing you’ve made the right choice. Happy driving!
    Back to blog