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post #16 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-19-2011, 04:24 AM
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Tire Tips

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Originally Posted by ksa8907 View Post
i've spent countless hours on tirerack searching for a good tire that won't break the bank, best thing i've found is the Yokohama Avid TRZ. between surveys and tirerack's testing they have the best performance and mileage for the money.

*wet traction is a huge deal for me, nothing sucks worse than sliding around in the rain.
I can also agree on the Avid TRZ as a very good compromise between price and quality for normal driving. They were tested a while back by Consumer Reports, and their only down side was poor braking performance on ice if that is a concern for you. This is much different than snow traction, which was rated good. There is also a performance version of the Avid.

You might also look at the Cooper Tires. They had a touring tire that was my second choice (can't remember the model). They are also usually a good value, and I think they are the only major line still made in the USA.

A Hankook brand tire (Mileage Plus II H725 - may be a different similar model now) was also rated high by Consumer Reports (and may cost a little less), but a problem is that there seem to be far fewer shops that can give warranty service on Hankook tires. These tires also had poor ice braking as the only downside.

A few other considerations:

1. I recommend using an independent tire shop and ordering through them rather than ordering on-line and getting someone to mount and balance. I found a shop who's prices where only a little higher than getting them on-line. You can ask for recommendations for tire shops at good parts stores like Carquest and NAPA or ask your mechanic. Check the shop's Better Business Bureau rating at your state's on-line BBB site. You can also look at the recommended installers list at Tirerack and the other on-line dealers, since those shops obviously know what the on-line prices are and may be most competitive.

The big advantage to ordering through the shop rather than on-line is that not only are you supporting a local business more, but you will be getting the warranty card through them. If you have any problems, they are going to be much more enthusiastic about helping you if you bought through them. If you have any vibration problems it could be a bad tire (needing warranty replacement), a bad wheel, or the mount/balance job. It is also a good idea to go to a shop that also does alignment and suspension work. You can have an alignment done at the same time and have your suspension checked.

2. I don't like the tire chain stores. In my area most of them have much less-experienced mechanics. Most people on this site probably know to to stay away from Wal-Mart for tires. I went to them a long time ago when I didn't know any better. First they somehow left the cut-off base of an old valve stem inside the new tire and it was rattling around in there - very weird. Second, I found out that many of the supposedly brand-name tires they carry are not the manufacturers' regular line tires; they are specially made for Wal-Mart. So you can only get warranty service through Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart doesn't tell you this unless you ask. Some of the managers don't even know. Also, you can't get a copy of the warranty from the manufacturer, you only get what Wal-Mart will give you. Uniroyal told me this in writing. The brands that do this with Wal-Mart include big names like Goodyear, Uniroyal, General Tire, Bridgestone, and Michelin. I don't buy these tire brands because I think this is a deceptive practice. Beware that other big department stores that have tire service centers may do the same thing as Wal-Mart.

3. Make sure to ask the shop to fill out the warranty card with your contact information. I prefer to mail it myself to make sure it gets sent. This is also necessary for any recalls. Be sure to hold on to your receipt. It is good to make a photocopy for your records and keep the original in the glove compartment in case you are traveling and need to get warranty repairs/replacement at another shop that handles the tire brand. Ask for a copy of the warranty. It may be available on-line for download or by writing/e-mailing the company, so the shop may not have a hard copies like most used to.

4. If you are going to bring in bare rims, make sure they are in good shape and wash them off. If you are mounting tires on bare steel rims, remove any surface rust from the sealing area with rust remover, a stiff brush and sandpaper, and then finish as smooth as you can with wet or dry automotive sandpaper. This is necessary because rust around the sealing area at the rim can causes a slow leak. If the rust is thick, after you remove it and sand, there may be visible pits or gouges where the tire seals. If so, you won't get good sealing, and your tires will leak. Time for a new rim in this case. After rust removal and sanding, repaint the bare areas with one of the specialty wheel paints for steel (Dupli-Color, Plasti-Kote, VHT and others.) This paint supposedly resists degradation by brake dust, cleaners, etc. Most of the auto parts stores have this paint.

If you are bringing in the car, and there is any rust on the sealing area of the steel rims, ask the shop if they can remove the rust and repaint the wheels - at least where the rust was removed. If they can't paint or you want to do this yourself, you could obviously put on a full-size spare tire and have the shop demount/replace the tires one at a time over a few weeks, while you clean and paint each bare individual rim.

Last edited by pt500; 11-22-2011 at 03:44 AM. Reason: clarify
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post #17 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-19-2011, 09:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pt500 View Post
A few other considerations:

1. I recommend using an independent tire shop and ordering through them rather than ordering on-line and getting someone to mount and balance. I found a shop who's prices where only a little higher than getting them on-line. You can ask for recommendations for tire shops at good parts stores like Carquest and NAPA or ask your mechanic. Check the shop's Better Business Bureau rating at your state's on-line BBB site. You can also look at the recommended installers list at Tirerack and the other on-line dealers, since those shops obviously know what the on-line prices are and may be most competitive.

The big advantage to ordering through the shop rather than on-line is that not only are you supporting a local business more, but you will be getting the warranty card through them. If you have any problems, they are going to be much more enthusiastic about helping you if you bought through them. If you have any vibration problems it could be a bad tire (needing warranty replacement), a bad wheel, or the mount/balance job. It is also a good idea to go to a shop that also does alignment and suspension work. You can have an alignment done at the same time and have your suspension checked.
I have never seen an independent tire shop... I've seen independent garages (still attached to a major label like Cenex, Tesoro, etc), and some of them sell tires, but they don't stock much. All other tire shops I've seen are like a GoodYear dealer that is part of a chain. Then there is Sears, Walmart, K-mart, etc...

Which type of shop are you referring to when you say "Independent"?
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post #18 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-19-2011, 02:08 PM
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Tire Shops

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Originally Posted by cdmccul View Post
I have never seen an independent tire shop... I've seen independent garages (still attached to a major label like Cenex, Tesoro, etc), and some of them sell tires, but they don't stock much. All other tire shops I've seen are like a GoodYear dealer that is part of a chain. Then there is Sears, Walmart, K-mart, etc...

Which type of shop are you referring to when you say "Independent"?
Every city I've ever lived in over about 50K people in the midwest USA has had independent tire shops with names like "Smith Tire and Auto," "Jones Tire and Alignment," or "Bob's Tire and Wheel" (listed in the yellow pages under "Tire Dealers"). Most of them also do alignments, and some do other suspension work.

When I say "independent" I mean any small or regional auto repair business. Most are part of one of the auto business associations like ASA, Tech-Net, etc., and they buy auto parts wholesale from Carquest, NAPA, etc. Independent tire & alignment shops also have accounts with regional wholesale tire distributors and can usually order any size or model tire you want from brands like Yokohama, Toyo, Michelin, Goodrich, Bridgestone, and Cooper within a week. Some regular auto repair shops can also order and install tires, though they may only be able to get a few brands wholesale.

The national chains such as Walmart, Sears, Big-O Tires, etc. probably buy directly from manufacturers. That is why they have their own in-store brands as well as the weird deal that Wal-Mart does with the "Wal-Mart only" brand name tires from companies like Goodyear and Uniroyal.

Perhaps there are some areas of the USA where independent tire shops are extinct for some reason, like so many small hardware stores and lumber yards got killed by Home Depot and Lowe's.

Last edited by pt500; 11-19-2011 at 02:16 PM. Reason: clarify
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post #19 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-19-2011, 11:00 PM
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Quote:
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Running who knows what on the front, but Firestone FR380 in the rear... Time to replace the fronts now, and I don't know if I want to buy more FR380s, or if I want to buy four new shoes all the way around and go with some upgrade... I think my local options will dictate what I do...
the FR380, has been Discountiued,, step up to the FR710,, wish they still made the FR440,, thats all I would run on my old Trep,
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post #20 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-19-2011, 11:01 PM
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I take Consumer Reports with a grain of salt,
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post #21 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-19-2011, 11:05 PM
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for my 300M,, I run Bridgestones,, RE960's, but ,, being I work for them,, im kinda Bias
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post #22 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-20-2011, 12:32 AM
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for my 300M,, I run Bridgestones,, RE960's, but ,, being I work for them,, im kinda Bias
Tom, I'd have expected you to be more of a Radial man, myself.
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post #23 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-21-2011, 12:05 AM
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Consumer Reports Tire Reviews

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Originally Posted by DrDodge View Post
I take Consumer Reports with a grain of salt,
Yes, I know what you mean about a lot of their testing. I don't think their tire testing is too bad though. It seems fairly consistent with the qualitative on-line customer reviews, e.g. the Yokohamas and Hancooks as good values.

Last edited by pt500; 11-25-2011 at 11:48 AM. Reason: Remove off topic comments
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post #24 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-12-2011, 10:10 PM
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EDIT: I was considering the 225/60/16 Firestone Winterforce for $90 each at tirerack for winter:
At $90 a tire I wonder how they perform compared to the $150 Nokian Hakkapeliitta.

Last edited by primetime; 12-12-2011 at 10:29 PM.
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post #25 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-12-2011, 10:25 PM
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Linky no worky for me... gave me a bunch of ebay ads.
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post #26 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-13-2011, 09:05 AM
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I had good luck with goodyear tripletracks a few years ago, and the current ones on the limited are Michelin hydroedges.

The tripletracks were on the front of the car and I am pretty sure I got 60K out of them.
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post #27 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-13-2011, 01:23 PM
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Anyone ever use www.tirebuyer.com? They have a 10% off sale right now.
They got the 225/60/16 General Altimax Arctic's for $360 shipped after the code. $80 cheaper than tirerack.
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post #28 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-16-2011, 10:12 AM
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I find the longest lasting for treadwear seem to be Michelin brand. They seem to hold up the best and get more miles out of them
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post #29 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-17-2011, 09:05 AM
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These chrome clads are my favorite wheels.

Will they fit my caravan?
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post #30 of 43 (permalink) Old 08-11-2012, 07:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DjGreggieP View Post
Anyone running Yokohamas?? Im looking at a set of 255/45r18 Yokohama Avid Envigors for my new rims when I get them.. Any thoughts??
I have Avid TRZ's on our 300M and they are ABSOLUTELY the best tire that I have put on that car! Yes, I bought them from Discount Tire Direct too (third set of tires that I have bought from them... awesome service). When the Continentals on our new Intrepid are worn out I will be adding Yoko's to that one too.
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