The Best Time to Buy Tires

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Tires. Photo © Erin Huffstetler

To get the best deal on your next set of tires, try to buy in ...

October or April

The Reason:

Tires go on sale in October to encourage consumers to buy new tires before winter, and again in April when the weather gets warm enough for people to start thinking about road trips and joy rides.

When to Replace Your Tires

Tires need to be replaced before the tread gets below 2/32," (do it sooner to maintain proper breaking and handling) or when they have expired.

Tires have a code stamped on the side that you can use to determine their age. Here's how to read it. Don't wait to replace unsafe tires just because you want to catch a sale. Safety is more important than saving a few bucks.

If you aren't going to be able to time your purchase with the October or April sales, you may want to take advantage of one of these tire rebates. They're available year round.

Other Ways to Get a Deal on Tires

  • Consider buying your tires online. You'll have a bigger selection to choose from, and may be able to take advantage of a closeout deal. Of course, this means you'll have to have a way to get the tires to a local tire shop for mounting. That's not a big deal if you have a truck or minivan, but it could prove problematic if you own a small sports car.
  • Save your receipt and warranty paperwork. If your tires have a defect or wear out prematurely, the manufacturer will pro-rate your next set. But, you'll have to have the paperwork required to file a complaint. Some tire companies offer additional coverage with your purchase. Discount Tire will repair flats and rotate your tires for free, if you buy a set from them. While that won't save you on the initial cost of tires, it can help you avoid additional costs later.
  • Buy used tires. Used tires are cheaper, but there's usually a reason for that. Buy a set of used tires, and in a short time you'll probably discover that someone got rid of them because they're out of round, create a lot of road noise or have some other defect. While it's illegal to sell expired tires, that doesn't mean it doesn't happen. So, if you decide to go this route, check the dates and check for recalls!
  • Take Care of Your Tires. Keep your tires aired up and rotated, so they don't wear out before they should, and be on the lookout for uneven wear. It could be an indication of an alignment issue that you need to fix.

Also Check Out: More Ways to Save Money on Tires