The Subaru Outback is a staple in many families in North America, but it’s driven by enthusiasts as well. It’s one of the few crossovers that come with a standard symmetrical all-wheel-drive system, which helps with traction in bad weather or for off-road driving. Some also like the rugged appearance of the Outback.
What if you can add some spice to that rugged appearance? The Subaru Outback comes with nice stock wheels, but you can improve the looks of the wheels only by pushing them outwards. The Outback will appear sportier and with a much better stance, gaining in ruggedness and muscularity. To achieve that, you need wheel spacers.
What are other benefits of the wheel spacers?
Other than being the most inexpensive way to add drama to the looks of your Outback, wheel spacers have some other benefits, and they are also very important when installing aftermarket wheels. For example, if you want to put bigger wheels on your Outback so that it appears even more aggressive, you must install wheel spacers as well. If you don’t do that, the tires might touch the inside of the wheel wells or the suspension components.
You may also want to install bigger brakes on your Outback. That’s great, but most aftermarket brake systems won’t fit the inside of the stock wheels of the Subaru Outback. The solution? Wheel Spacers. They push the wheel outward and make more space for bigger brakes to be installed inside.
But, these are not the only benefits of installing wheel spacers. With these parts, your Outback will have a wider stance, or in other words, it will be much more stable on the road, gaining in agility and better road feel. The Outback is a tall vehicle and installing bigger wheels can have a positive effect on the driving experience on the road. If you’re mostly driving off-road, you can combine them with a leveling kit in order to keep the suspension geometry intact.
What kind of wheel spacers to buy for the Subaru Outback?
First of all, don’t cheap-out on wheel spacers. They may seem simple, but there’s a lot of difference in quality between brands. Higher price almost always means that you get a higher quality material. You certainly wouldn’t want your wheel falling off the Outback while driving.
The second recommendation is to install hubcentric wheel spacers. This is a no-brainer really – hubcentric spacers fit the hub much better and lock in place tightly. They also take the full load of the vehicle on themselves, while normal wheel spacers put the whole weight on the bolts. Normal spacers can also introduce a lot of vibrations when driving. Do yourself a favor and install hubcentric wheel spacers.
The last, also very important thing to do is to choose the right thickness of wheel spacers for the Subaru Outback. We suggest you not to go overboard, as very thick wheel spacers can have a negative impact on the suspension of the Outback, but also the performance of the vehicle. You may also measure the distance between the tire and the body of the vehicle to see how much you can go before they touch themselves.
How to install wheel spacers on Subaru Outback?
Installing wheel spacers is as easy as changing a tire. You just need to equip yourself with the proper tools for changing the tires, a jack and jack stands for better safety. Then, just follow these simple steps:
- Work on one end of the vehicle at a time
- Unscrew the lug nuts slightly while the vehicle is on the ground. Use the parking brake so the vehicle doesn’t move
- Jack up the vehicle on the end you’ve started working on
- Completely remove the lug nuts and then the wheels
- Place the spacer directly on the hub and make sure they’re flush
- Tighten the spacer using the provided nuts in a star pattern. Make sure the studs don’t protrude the spacer
- Put the wheels back on and fasten the lug nuts
- Refasten the lug nuts after driving around 100 miles