Let’s hope they have good tires!
Read more: How to make your car last 200,000 miles
Looking for the best place to buy tires?
When you need new tires for your vehicle, there’s no shortage of places you could go — from warehouse clubs to online tire merchants to discount tire shops to independent retailers and more.
But where should you go for the best experience and price when it comes to purchase and installation?
Consumer Reports polled nearly 50,000 of its subscribers who bought tires in 2016. They asked about who offered the best cost, selection, sales service and free perks. (Those free perks were defined as including tire rotation, tire balancing, tire mounting, road-hazard warranties and vehicle inspections.)
Other metrics the magazine had its readers grade tire retailers on included the quality of installation, wait time for installation, cleanliness of the waiting area, checkout ease and return/exchange policies.
One note: Obviously, you won’t get installation if you buy online! So that metric wasn’t figured in for the online retailers.
These tire retailers do it best
The prices below reflect median price per tire when purchasing four tires at the same retailer. This number includes installation and balancing fees.
N/A indicates that the sample size was too small to accurately calculate a median price.
|Les Schwab Tire Centers||$187|
|Belle Tire Distributors||$168|
Visit ConsumerReports.com to see the complete list with full rankings on more than 30 retailers.
Here are the safest and best tires
Consumer Reports also recently took a look at more than 150 tire models and put them through the ringer. After driving on many of them constantly for up to 16,000 miles in rural Texas, the magazine named its top picks:
- Best All-Season Tire – Michelin Defender ($120 per tire)
- Best Performance All-Season Tire – Continental PureContact ($113)
- Best All-Season Truck Tire – Michelin LTX M/S2 ($189)
- Best All-Terrain Truck Tire – Hankook Dynapro AT-M ($130)
- Best Winter/Snow Tire – Michelin X-ice XI3 ($117)
In addition to the ones listed above, a couple of other lesser-known tires received “best buy” marks from Consumer Reports.
Those models include the Continental TrueContact ($106); the General Altimax RT43 [T] ($91); and the Pirelli P4 Four Seasons Plus ($100).