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How to Buy Tires

How to Buy Tires

Buying tires isn’t everyone’s favourite activity, but it has to be done. And if you know what you’re looking for, it can even be kind of fun.


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Buying tires isn’t everyone’s favourite activity, but it has to be done. And if you know what you’re looking for, it can even be kind of fun. To put you at ease during your tire shopping experience, we’ve put together this quick guide. From when to buy new tires to how to choose the right ones for your vehicle, keep reading for an unofficial guide on how to buy tires.

When to Buy

“Do I really need new tires?” This is a question that many drivers ask themselves, but if you’re asking yourself this question, there’s probably a reason why. Thankfully, there are a few quick tests you can perform to find out the answer to this question. The first is the quarter test and it will reveal if your tires are in fact past their prime and should be replaced. Place a quarter with the caribou facing down into one of your tire grooves. If after doing this, you can still see the tip of the caribou’s nose, it means the tread depth is no longer adequate and may not make it through the next season. Translation? You don’t have enough tread on your tires to continue driving safely. A second indicator of whether it’s time to change your tires is the number of years you’ve had them. Tires are only considered safe for a specific number of years. This number is printed on the sidewall of the tire. While the expiration date isn’t a hard and fast rule, if your tires are over five years old, you should be checking them regularly, and once they’re 10 years old, they likely need to be replaced.

Choose the Right Type of Tire

Now comes the hard part. Once you’ve determined it’s time to invest in a new set of tires, it’s your job to decide what tires you want to buy. This will largely depend on where you live, your driving habits, your expectations for tread life and fuel efficiency, and the surfaces you drive on. Before diving into a never-ending internet spiral, consider first whether you like your current tires. If you were happy with their performance, tread life, and cost, then maybe it’s as simple as buying a new set of these tires or at least purchasing a set of tires from the same brand. If you aren’t happy with your current tires or are looking for a change, then it’s time to do some research. First, you’ll have to decide on the type of tire you want (all-season, all-weather, summer, winter, etc…). Next, consult your owner’s manual to confirm the size of tire your particular vehicle requires. Now it’s time to see what’s out there. Compare prices, brands, tread warranties, or more simply put, spend some time shopping around (more on how to do that below).

Where to Buy Tires

Nowadays, there are plenty of different places to buy tires. There are pros and cons to each, which we’ll run through below, but at the end of the day, the decision is entirely yours. One popular place to purchase tires is member-only warehouse clubs (think Costco or Sam’s Club). These warehouse retailers typically have good deals on tires, but their selection is often extremely limited, and wait times can be lengthy.

Another place to buy tires is local tire shops. Most cities and towns have at least one tire shop, whether it’s locally owned or part of a national chain. These shops offer a personalized level of service you won’t find at a big box store like Costco, and they tend to have a wider selection of tires available. That said, the price point is usually higher so if the price is a concern, this may not be the way to go.

Car dealerships also sell tires and can be an extremely convenient way of purchasing tires for your vehicle. For example, you can walk into a dealership, purchase a car, have new tires installed, and get an oil change all in one visit. The downside is that if you buy tires from a car dealership you’ll likely be limited to the original tires that came with your vehicle, so if you’re looking to test out a new brand or type of tire, you might be out of luck.

One final way to shop for tires is online. Shopping for tires online is even more convenient than car dealerships and can save consumers both time and money. Plus, with online shopping you have the added benefit of being able to order the exact tires you want because you’ll be able to find almost every brand and type of tire on the market. The only con with online tire shopping is that sometimes shipping times can be long and it can be a hassle to return the tires if you decide you don’t want them. However, if you do a bit of research into the online tire retailers out there, you’ll find that some like Tire Warehouse offer hassle-free returns and delivery times of just 2 to 4 days.

Purchase New Tires from Tire Warehouse Today

Shopping for tires has never been easier thanks to Tire Warehouse. Tire Warehouse is the #1 online tire provider in Canada and has been serving Canadians for over four decades. We are proud to offer an extensive inventory of tires, including all-season, all-weather, winter, summer, performance, light truck, and more. We also carry the world’s leading tire brands, such as Michelin, Bridgestone, Toyo, Firestone, GT Radial, and Radar. Even better, we offer all shoppers a flat shipping rate of just $5 per tire and all tires arrive in approximately 2 to 4 days from the shipping date. To make your shopping experience even more seamless, tires can be delivered to the address of your choice, whether that’s your home address or the address of your tire installer (eliminating the hassle of you dragging your tires over to the nearest auto body shop). In fact, for a truly hassle-free experience, we invite customers to take advantage of our mobile installation service where an automotive professional will install and balance your new tires right there on the spot. So what are you waiting for? Contact Tire Warehouse today to speak to a tire expert and learn more about our offerings.

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