Tires: how to choose them and where to buy them

When we think about maintaining our car, a few things usually jump to mind. First and foremost, the majority of people think of the importance of changing their oil. Maybe your mind goes to your air filter, or the need to rotate and eventually change your brakes. Perhaps the notion of car maintenance makes you think of changing your transmission fluid, or getting a general tune-up.

It’s easy to overlook, but one of the most fundamental components of our vehicles that receives some of the greatest wear and tear is actually quite obvious: the tires.

Without proper tires, you’re not going to get very far. It’s easy to forget about keeping up with them, as they’re not something you have to change or attend to on a frequent basis (unlike an oil change, for instance). Still, failing to properly maintain your vehicle’s tires can be disastrous.

As the tread wears away on your tires, their ability to grip the road effectively decreases. Eventually, they perform poorly in bad weather conditions. Tires that are particularly old can suffer from what’s called dry rot, where small cracks in the side of the tire make them prone to going flat spontaneously. Experiencing a blowout while driving is frightening, to say the least.

Going to an auto shop to buy tires can be overwhelming, though. What kind should you get? Where’s the best place to buy them? Check out our guide to learn more.

Where to buy tires

When it comes to tire shopping, you have a few options.

Perhaps most obvious are the discount tire chain stores that you see all around the country: Discount Tire, Tire Kingdom, and so on. These companies offer reasonably good prices, and can have tires in stock that are harder to find elsewhere, given that they specialize in vehicle tires.

Big box stores are another obvious choice: Sears, Walmart, and similar stores. Their prices are frequently the lowest you’ll find; however, they selection is sometimes narrower than the discount tire chains, since they don’t specialize in tires.

Last but not least, you can buy tires online. Believe it or not, a search query for “buy tires online” turns up an awful lot of options. Most sites allow you to both buy your tires, and find a local business that will install them.

In the end, the choice is up to you. It’s worth looking into several options and comparing prices. Keep in mind that time is money: if you’re especially busy, the best option might simple be the one that’s fastest in your particular situation.

What kind of tires should I buy?

There are a ton of different kinds of tires out there.

If you’re already satisfied with the tires that are currently on your vehicle, one easy option is to simply buy another set of the ones you already have. Of course, the price on your vehicle’s tires may have changed since the last time you bought them, in which case you could be looking at a hefty price tag.

Consider the weather in your area. Do you experience mild winters with a small amount of snow, and significant rainfall throughout the year? An all season tire might be a good option: they improve your vehicle’s handling in a variety of weather conditions. If you’re more concerned with performance and want a nice, smooth ride, touring tires are a good option. And, if you live somewhere with significant snow, you’ll actually want to buy two sets of tires: summer tires, and winter tires. You can go into the shop at the beginning of winter and have them install your winter set. Then, when the snow melts, you can swap them out for your summer tires (which actually work well from spring to fall).

Now, of course, if you have an old junk car with four flat tires, you may find that selling it to a junk car buyer is a better option than trying to buy new tires. If you’re wondering what your junk car is worth, you can give Junk Car Traders a call, or visit us online at In Massachusetts we can pay up to $12,000 for a car in good condition. We pay the most for old, beat up vehicles. And, if you sell your junk car to us, you won’t have to worry about tire shopping!


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