Performing a tire price comparison is the best way to make sure that you get good value for your money. Comparing prices may not be exciting, but if your perform a thorough comparison, chances are good that you’ll purchase good quality products that won’t have to be replaced for a long time. Tires that last are a great deal because every time you drive your vehicle, the tire tread gets a little more worn. The better quality models will give you more miles in addition to a smoother ride and better performance.
What Are You Driving On Now?
Start the comparison process by looking at what kind of tire you’re using. Take a piece of paper and a pen outside to your car and write down the size code that is located on side of the wheel. What you’ll find is a code that uses letters and numbers. The code looks something like P175/65R13. The “P” refers to a model that is suitable for passenger vehicles. The number following the “P” indicates tire width. The next number is the aspect ratio while the “R” tells you that the tire is a radial model. The final number indicates diameter. It’s important to write down the entire code accurately to ensure that you will be searching for a properly sized product.
Make Contact with Many Retailers
It makes sense to call various retailers in town rather than driving from one to the other. Include chain retailers like Sears, Walmart and Costco on your list. Specialty retailers like Pep Boys can also be contacted. Finally, search the phone book to find any independent retailers in your area.
Be prepared to take notes. You’ll need to provide each customer service person with the right specifications. The service representative will likely be able to quote several prices from different brands in the correct size. Some retailers sell products from major, recognizable brand name manufacturers along with models that come from lesser-known companies that charge seriously discounted prices. As you call the various stores, take notes about which stores have particular brands and the prices you are quoted. The notes will be very important for performing your comparison. Without them, it’s impossible to remember all of the data you are gathering.
Ask About Special Pricing
While you’ve got the customer service representative on the phone, ask about any sales or special pricing the retailer has going on. Many stores will run specials like buy three get one deals or provide a percentage discount. The person on the phone should be eager to share any special pricing with you, so you shouldn’t have to ask. Nonetheless, a prompt may not hurt when you are trying to get a really accurate comparison.
Perform an Online Search
Now that you’ve established what local retailers can do for you, it’s time to see whether or not the virtual world can offer a better deal. Go straight to the source at websites for brand names like Bridgestone and Goodyear. It may also be helpful to consider independent websites that carry many brands like Tirerack.
Proceed with caution when searching online. Make certain to search for correctly sized tires and look closely at online prices, comparing them to the prices you were quoted by local stores for the same tire. Sometimes websites can beat the price over brick and mortar retailers. However, you need to read all of the fine print before concluding that an online purchase is the way to go. Shipping and handling charges for heavy orders can be hefty. Additionally, some of the quotes you received from local stores may have included installation. It’s almost certain that no website is going to offer to install your new tires for you.
If a website offers lower prices on the tires you want with free shipping, and you had planned to install the tires yourself anyway, then shopping online may definitely be the way to go.
Choose the Right Model
Size is just the first consideration when it comes to getting the right product. The type of tire is also important. It will also affect the price you are likely to pay. Ultra performance models typically carry a higher price tag, but they may be worthwhile if you drive a speedy little sports car. On the other hand, there’s probably no reason for a soccer mom to put high performance tires on her minivan. She might do just as well with a lower priced all season touring tire.
Similarly, people who drive trucks and SUVs should seek tires that are designed specifically for these types of vehicles. A reliable all season truck tire should work for most people who only use their truck around town and on the highway. However, drivers who take their vehicle off-road might find better value in a more expensive all terrain model.
Some drivers require specialty tire models depending upon the climate and terrain in which they drive. Drivers who contend with plenty of ice and snow might look for winter or studded versions that have rougher treads and are suited to driving in adverse weather conditions. These styles can be quite expensive, but they are not required for all cars. Only people living in select regions where the cold weather gets particularly rough need to be concerned with these considerations.
Reaching a Decision
By now, you should have a good idea which tire is right for your car. Look for items like mileage guarantees to help you make your final choice. Keep in mind that a model with a 50,000 mile guarantee is going to cost more than one with a 40,000 mile guarantee. Another component that affects price is the number of steel belts. Two belts cost more than one, but such a model also offers better quality.
Many drivers are using a simple equation to figure out the cost per mile of the models they are considering. Divide the price into the number of guaranteed miles to learn how much that model will cost you per mile. This can be an excellent way to objectively determine how much that tire really costs.
Performing a tire price comparison is a great way to make sure you get great value for your money on a new set of tires for your car, truck or SUV.