How To Make Slot Car Tires Sticky

Yes, we know that once you pick the hobby of making slot car tracks and racing with them, there is no going back. Also, we know that slot car racers are never satisfied with their car collection. Even we are always on the hunt for better cars.

That said, even if the track has the right amount of glue on it, some slot cars tend to slide around and lose control at high speed. Imagine that happening when you are leading on the final lap!

That is why we learned how to make slot car tires sticky. And trust us, although many slot car racers will make the process sound complicated, it actually is not! Do not believe us? See it for yourself!

How To Make Slot Car Tires Sticky

Benefits of Making Your Slot Car Tires Sticky

Let’s face it! Slot cars are pretty small in size. For that reason, they do not exert a high amount of weight on the tracks. And grip, in this case, will play a crucial role in making your car get the proper control and balance. In fact, using foreign substances on the tires is pretty standard among slot racers.

Why do they do it? To make the tires sticky! In a general sense, the higher level of stickiness, the better the tries will grip onto the track. As a result, the cars will be less prone to sliding and flying right off the way when they achieve a considerably high amount of speed.

How To Make Slot Car Tires Sticky?

So, now that you know what sticky tires actually bring to the table for the slot cars let us go through the process. Here are the methods that you would need to follow:


According to our tests, we found water-displacing sprays such as WD-40 work the best when it comes to making the slot car tires sticky. And considering that WD-40 is highly accessible, you will not even need to go through any hassles in terms of acquiring one for the project.

That said, all you need to do is spray WD-40 on the tires. You can also use a brush to make the liquid spread around correctly. Let the liquid sit for at least a couple of hours or overnight for best results. Do note that the results will not be long-lasting. So, we would recommend carrying this process out after two to four races.

Silicone Spray

Spraying the tires with silicone spray will offer you two benefits. First, you will make your tires soft. Secondly, the silicone will make the tires sticky. Both are beneficial and will amp up your slot cars’ balance and control levels. 

Like WD-40, spray the silicone on the tires. However, do not leave them in the open air. 

Instead, get yourself a pot of hot water and dip the tires in it. Leave them in the water for a while. Once the water is at room temperature, take the tires out and dry them off.


One of the easiest ways to make the tires sticky is to use pure bleach. Pour the bleach into a spray bottle and spray it on the tires. Ensure that the tires are all entirely covered. Easy, right? 

But there is a caveat! Bleach will cause the tires to wear out faster. And the stickiness result that you will get will not be long-lasting either.

Paint Thinner, Transmission Fluid, and Acetone

If you are want to opt for a much more advanced process, try using a mixture of transmission fluid, acetone, and paint thinner. However, ensure that you have your goggles and rubber gloves ready. Take equal parts of the three liquids and mix them up in a bowl or container.

After that, apply the mixture on the tires with a brush and leave them on for around 30 minutes. That will do the trick and make your tires much softer and stickier at the same time.

Win Every Slot Car Races!

See, it is pretty easy to learn how to make slot car tires sticky! And once you follow a specific process correctly, you will surely increase your chances of winning in every slot car race. If you have time, you should check out our detailed take on how to make tires stick out for giving your vehicle a stylish look. I’m sure you’ll find the informative guide helpful.