If you’ve ever bought wheels or accessories for your bike, you know how expensive they can be. Those who bike long distances or on rougher terrains are more likely to reach deeper into their pockets to purchase quality parts that will last for many miles.
That’s why we’ve rounded up the nine best road bike wheels under $500. This way you can save money and get back to what matters; biking.
Superteam Carbon Fiber Road Bike Wheel Set
First on our list are the Superteam Carbon Fiber Road Bike Wheel set – 700C. Available in the standard 700c size, these wheels will fit most road bikes.
A top selling point for these wheels are the included brake pads. If you’ve biked long distances you’re your bike has seen some wear and tear, this is the set for you. Get more bang for your buck with this combination and get back on the road.
If you’re looking for more support on long rides, the carbon fiber make of these wheels is designed to easily handle downhill curves and keep you in control. Not to mention the slick tread design is aerodynamic in nature and will improve your overall speed.
- Includes brake pads
- 100% Carbon Fiber
- Slick tread design for aerodynamic road handling
Aeromax Alloy Wheelset
High quality hand-made craftsmanship at a low price is hard to come by, but this set of wheels is right on the money. This Aeromax Alloy Wheelset is made to handle terrain that’s bumpier than average roads, such as older cobble stone streets.
Each spoke is tension tested and each wheel is stress tested three times. This way you can be sure that your wheels can withstand changes in terrain or environment. We recommend these wheels for commuting, training or racing.
If you’re new to installing wheels or tires on your bike, this will be a good choice for you. This set of wheels comes with rim strips so installation is hassle-free.
- Can handle bumpier terrain
- Use to commute, train or race
- Includes tape for easy rim install
Queen Bike Carbon Fiber Road Bike Wheels
If you want the versatility to switch wheels between bike frames or derailleur systems, the Queen Bike Carbon Fiber Road Bike Wheelset will serve you well.
Some of the best road wheelset under 500 is only available with one derailleur system. However, this set is available in with two popular models, Shimano 8-11 speeds and Campagnolo 10/11 speeds.
Made from carbon fiber and able to withstand up to 120 KG (264 lbs), these wheels for clincher-style tires will provide you with more control on downhill routes. The icing on the cake for this set of wheels is that brake pads and quick release skewers are included in your purchase.
- Pairs with Shimano or Campagnolo derailleurs
- Carbon fiber build
- Brake pads and skewers included
Sunrise Bike Carbon Road Wheel Set
If you’re looking for new wheels to improve your top speed, you’ll love the Sunrise Bike Carbon Road Wheels. Although these wheels are made from carbon fiber, which tends to be heavier than other materials, they cap out at a weight of 1630 grams (3.5 lbs) each. With a slick tire tread, you’ll be able to glide while going downhill and prevent rolling resistance.
Along with included brake pads, this set also comes with quick release skewers, so you can easily detach the wheels for maintenance. Not to mention, the manufacturer offers customizable logos on this set, which makes it’s easy to add a little flair to your ride.
- Quick release skewers
- Brake pads included
- Customizable logo
ICAN 700c Lightweight Road Bike Wheel set
This next set of wheels will not only help increase your speed, but are meant for sprinting and climbing. If you anticipate using your road bike to race or in a hilly area, we recommend the ICAN 100c Lightweight Road Bike Wheel set.
These wheels weigh less on average than other models (1420g / 3.13lbs) and are complete with aerospace grade carbon fiber rims. The durable steel cartridge bearings made by ICAN will provide a smooth roll that’s both efficient and quiet.
This online purchase will come with a skewer, two brake pads, rim tape for easy tire install and a two-year warranty for any issues you may come across. In our opinion, these are the best road bike wheels for the money.
- Best for climbing and sprinting
- Aerospace grade carbon fiber rims
- 2-year warranty
Vuelta Zerolite 700c Pro Road Bike Wheel Set
If you’re looking to convert your hybrid bike to a road bike, you need to check out these Vuelta Zerolite 700c Road Bike Wheels.
These wheels are made for bikes with rim brakes, so they’re ideal for customizing your hybrid ride. While the stainless steels spokes on these wheels won’t allow for as much support as carbon fiber or aluminum, you can always customize them to your liking as well.
The double-walled rims of these wheels will provide you with more support than other models. Plus, you’ll easily improve your top speed because these wheels are made of aluminum alloy with a weight of 867g (1.9 lbs) each. Super light!
Not to mention aluminum wheels are notorious for providing great stopping power in wet weather conditions. Keep reading for more info on this.
- Aluminum alloy
- Double walled rims
- Made for rim brakes
Superteam 50mm Racing-Road Wheelset
The Superteam 50mm Racing-Road Wheelset is similar to the other Superteam brand wheels we reviewed with a few differences.
You’ll be able to easily maintain your wheels with the included quick release skewers. This makes it easier for you to completely remove the wheels to clean, grease them or check for damage. If you’re passionate about making your bike 100% you, you’re in good hands. Superteam lets you customize your own logo onto the tires.
This set also comes with brake pads and a 2-year warranty! If you’re apprehensive about testing out some of the best road wheels under 500, we recommend this wheelset to start your road bike journey.
- 2-year warranty
- brake pads and skewers included
- Customizable logo
Vuelta ZeroLite Road Comp Wheelset
If you’re looking for wheels to help you train for a big race or triathlon, the Vuelta ZeroLite Road Comp wheelset is the set for you. This set is super light (1151g / 2.5 lbs) and can easily be added to or removed from your bike frame with the included quick release skewers.
You’ll be able to work on easily improving your speed and strength as these wheels have sealed bearing hubs. This means the cyclist is in control and must fully rely on themselves. This is ideal for training. Not only will these wheels help improve your speed, the CNC brake track provides precision stopping control.
- Sealed bearing hubs
- Quick release skewers
- CNC brake track
Sunrise Bike Carbon Fiber Road Wheelset – 50mm
We recommend the Sunrise Bike Carbon Fiber Road Wheelset for training as well.
While the 50mm depth of these wheels makes them a bit heavier but, if you’ll be biking on flatter roads these wheels will allow you to go faster with less effort. These are ideal if you’ll be biking long distances on flat terrain.
While the neon green wheels may be a bit jarring for some, but if you like to ride at night, you’ll be clearly visible by drivers. If you love the green, Sunrise Bikes will paint a customized logo on for you. This set comes complete with brake pads and quick release skewers for easy install and maintenance.
Deep section wheels, such as these, have recently become more popular. Keep reading for more information on how these wheels might benefit your biking style.
- 50mm depth
- Customizable logo
- Quick release skewers
Things to consider when buying wheels for your road bike:
There are many factors to consider when choosing the right wheels for your bike. Good bike wheels will allow for proper stopping power, be lightweight and will be with you for many miles.
In terms of your bike, you’ll need to consider your frame, overall wheel measurements, and desired width and depth of wheel rims. But most importantly you’ll want to know the conditions you’ll be facing on your bike and what your cycling goals are.
Before you buy neon green road bike wheels or start customizing your logo, you’ll want to make sure that your wheels will fit your bike frame and the purpose you plan to use them for. The last thing you want to do is wait weeks for your new tires to arrive only to discover that they don’t fit or are too heavy for you on the road. This is especially essential if you plan to upgrade your hybrid bike (or any bike frame not meant for the road) with road bike wheels.
Road bike wheel measurement have varied over the years between the European and American mathematical systems. Road wheels measurements tend to be shown in 700x30mm, for example. 700 refers to the outer diameter of the wheels (in millimeters), while 30 refers to the depth of the rim. Some manufactures take these measurements differently between the outer and inner rim of the wheels.
The important thing to keep in mind is that with 700 or 700c wheels, you should be able to fit most road bike tires sizes. If you’re not sure which wheels and tires will fit with your bike frame, stop into a local bike shop to have them double check.
The rim of bike tires is what will provide a surface for your brakes and what will hold your tires in place. This is where materials play an important part in your wheels’ performance.
Aluminum wheels tend to be better for braking and hold up in wet weather conditions, however they are heavier and can slow you down. Whereas carbon fiber wheels are lighter and can help your improve your speed, but are not as easy to brake with.
It’s important to understand the weather and road conditions you’ll be under when biking, so you can choose the right rim materials for your wheels and achieve your road biking goals.
Rim width and depth:
The width of your rims is what determines the amount of air you can put in your tires.
The more air volume your tires have, the more comfortable your long-distance rides will be. Not to mention the distribution of air means you’re less likely to get a flat tire on the road. Wider tires also means that your handling and cornering improves as well due to you simply having more rubber on the road.
Deep section wheels or wheels with deeper rims have recently become more popular in the cycling community. This is because they are known for their aerodynamic capabilities.
The more depth your wheels have, the faster you’ll be able to go with less effort. However, the best conditions for deep section rims are long-distance rides and flat roads.
If you plan to bike on steep roads, you’ll want something shallower as being lighter will come in handy when you’re going uphill. Deep section wheels use more materials and are inherently heavier.
Finally, before making your road bike wheel purchase, remember to keep an eye on the gear you do have and make sure it’s in good working condition. Proper road bike wheels should always be paired with the right tires, frame and fit your needs. Keep a close eye on what’s in your garage. You may be able to repair what you’re already using on the road. If not, take note of the measurements to help with research for your upgrade.
No matter where which roads you plan to take your bike onto, the important thing is to make sure that you have the proper gear to support your body and make those long-distance rides easier on your knees, seat, back, and shoulders.