Your Opinion on Purchasing Used Tires?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by HappyDude20, Feb 3, 2010.

  1. HappyDude20 macrumors 68020

    HappyDude20

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #1
    My 2 front wheels are about 5 years old. The one of the front right (passenger) loses air frequently, to the point where I gotta keep adding air every 2 weeks, losing anywhere from 5-15 PSI in between.

    The 2 back wheels are new from Costco, which cost about $260 I believe. I can purchase another pair for the same price, and have the guarantee stuff, etc etc...but as a starving college student it ain't that easy.

    Simply put, i'm considering getting two used tires. I've heard both good and bad things and figured i'd ask here for some more 1-on-1 answers, rather than reading up an article on the matter.
     
  2. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    Location:
    London
    #2
    The two things I would never skimp on with a car are tyres and brakes (tyres, not wheels). Your tyres are your only contact point with the road. Do you really trust second-hand tyres with your life (and others). And that's before you take into account that buying second-hand ones is likely to be a false economy as they will already have a good portion of their usable tread used.
     
  3. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    #3
    $260 a pair? What are you driving, and what's it shod with? For a "starving college student" I'd suggest looking at Discount Tires, or even Sears Auto for something a little more in your price range while still be appropriate for the car. You could also try tirerack.com which will ship to the shop of your choice for installation. Unless you've got something in an odd size or a specific requirement in tires, you should've been able to get four new tires, mounted, for $260. With change to buy yourself lunch while the work was being done.

    Used, OTOH, is never a wise bet. If we're talking retread, that's a slightly different story, but plain old used is just not something that I'd ever feel comfortable with.
     
  4. Sdashiki macrumors 68040

    Sdashiki

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2005
    Location:
    Behind the lens
    #4
    RE-TREAD does not equal USED.

    Make sure you know the difference if you are buying either.
     
  5. acurafan macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2008
    #5
    uh no. i don't skimp on tires and brakes b/c i value my life.

    i would also buy the same brand and tread pattern! basically, spend another $260 on the same tires for the front of the vehicle.
     
  6. IntheNet macrumors regular

    IntheNet

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2009
    #6
    Question: Would you buy a pair of used shoes? How about used socks? If you would, and have no problems doing so, then perhaps used tires make sense for you.

    Tires are critical for vehicles; tire footprint, tread depth, and air pressure of tires all affect how the car performs. At low and at high speed, tires determine automobile control and safety; if you decide to skimp on tires and put your trust, and the security of passengers, on a pair of tires someone else decided to abandon, then you're really risking a lot in my opinion. The cost of tires is not significant today; shopping around for new tire bargains is popular and very often one can find real deals on new tires. I recommend that you do not buy tires from the dealer who sold you the car; tire dealers and warehousers rotate their tire inventory faster and better tire deals can be had from them. Moreover, today's tires last a great deal longer than tires a decade ago and with proper rotation every 20,000 miles and proper inflation tires can last far longer than manufacturers warranty.

    However, if you don't care about car performance, buy used tires. And pick up a pair of used shoes and socks too...

    Shop around... you can do far better and obtain great "new" tires for less than $100... whitewall lettering, fancy name, and other cosmetic tire enhancements are less important than tread depth, overall tire construction, and proper inflation...
     
  7. xlii macrumors 68000

    xlii

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2006
    Location:
    Millis, Massachusetts
    #7
    Don't skimp on tires. Get an inexpensive pair (different than cheap) from Sears. Beware of used tires where all they do is cut new grooves in the tire to make the tread legal. Thin as heck and dangerous as he!!.
     
  8. Hayduke60 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2009
    #8
    If the two tires that are losing air, have good tread on them, then you don't need new tires. Take your car to a tire shop and have them repaired. If you just need something black and round to get you from point a to point b, used tires are a viable choice. You need to know what you are looking at though. There are people that take perfectly good tires off their cars because someone laid the hand of fear on them. Sometimes a tire shop will have 4 good used, matching tires on their rack. The salesman sold a customer the new hotness, when the customers old, black and round still had half tread.

    And there are many people in todays economy that buy used shoes. There's nothing wrong with that. Pride does a poor job of keeping your feet warm.
     
  9. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    #9
    I never said it did, and I made that distinction.


    If they are safely repairable. The OP said they're 5 years old, so I'm thinking more of a breakdown in the composition, some dry rot, or similar slow failure, so that would most definitely not be repairable. If the sidewalls are showing any cracking, then it's time to replace.

    There can be some decent used tires out there, but unless one knows what they're looking at (or really trusts their dealer), I'd recommend not bothering with them.
     
  10. mscriv macrumors 601

    mscriv

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2008
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas
    #10
    I've bought used tires before and it was a good experience. Now, I trust my tire shop (Discount Tire) and have been doing business with them for years. As someone pointed out above people change tires for all sorts of reasons. They had one blow out and they bought four new ones for some strange reason or they wanted a fancy racing tire on their brand new vehicle, etc. etc.. Just get all the important information, ask them to show you the tread condition and the actual measurement of wear. Research the tires online and see what typical tread life is and if there are any common reported flaws or problems. Buying tires is like buying anything else, used is sometimes a great option, but you've got to know what you are doing and be an educated consumer.
     
  11. HappyDude20 thread starter macrumors 68020

    HappyDude20

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #11
    The tread on those 2 front tires are really bad. I've driven about 50,000 miles on them, with about my 2 back new tires having about 6,000 miles on them. If I get used tires or different tires overall from the back tires then the tires would be different. I may just go ahead and search around for the same brand/size/type of the 2 back tires I have now....but for lesser price. We'll see, i plan on making a decision soon.
     
  12. kellen macrumors 68020

    kellen

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #12
    What kind of car do you have OP? Some SUV's will develop problems if you put uneven tread tires on them, just an FYI.

    You could always just get the leak fixed. If you live in the West, take it to Les Schwab, they have always done it for cheap (usually free) and when I couldn't afford a new tire because I was in college they gave me a used one from the back. Excellent service.
     
  13. HappyDude20 thread starter macrumors 68020

    HappyDude20

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #13
    Well, I've taken it to numerous tire shops, each telling me the most likely area where the air is escaping is from the side of the tire. It really is noticeable as it has riffs and wrinkles all over the side there. The tire also states its like 5-6 years old and though it may be a selling pitch, the tire shops tell me by law they are not allowed to so a simple patch up on the side for tires that old. This particular tire shop I went to has the same brand/size of tires I have on the back of my car (nissan altima 2004) for about $15 less than the cost of those same tires I purchase 6 months ago that are now on the back of the car. I'm just thinking about biting the bullet and going back to Costco to get the remaining 2 front tires in the same size/brand...seeing as they have guarantees and protective plans already included should anything happen to any one of these tires.
     
  14. Jordan6 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 21, 2006
    #14
    I've Purchased plenty of used tires. Just make sure you inspect them really good.
     
  15. Synchromesh macrumors 6502a

    Synchromesh

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Location:
    SF
    #15
    One word: Craigslist. I've purchase entire sets of rims with decent tires more than once there and they were excellent deals. A friend of mine practically never buys new preferring getting them slightly used along with rims. He often pays basically for the rims themselves with tires being free or dirt cheap in good condition. He has several sets of rims already. Just make sure to inspect them well before purchase and don't skimp out on balancing.
     
  16. leomac08 macrumors 68020

    leomac08

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2009
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #16
    My parents 2004 Toyota Highlander still had it's old tires from 2004, except the front...which my parents bought from costco but they bought some used "komo" tires yesterday.... cost them $80 bucks per tire. :p the car hauls a** at a good 230HP.
     

Share This Page