Tag: Tire Balancing

Costco Tires

We really like the service we get at Costco and also the prices we get as well. Yesterday I took my car into Costco to have the tires balanced, rotated and checked for tire pressure. What a great decision I made to purchase my cars tires from Costco.

Not only did they have the best price at the time of very close to it, they also provide free tire rotation , free tire balancing and free tire checks for as long as I own the tires. When you factor this into the price comparison, this was the best deal. Oh, and I forgot one other thing. My tires are filled with nitrogen at no extra cost and I have to say that the tires have never needed air to be added. The tire pressure as been perfect for the last 6 months and over 10 thousand miles. This is why we spend money at Costco.

New Costco Tires for Your Car

If you need new tires for your car, this is a strong recommendation to visit Costco tires and check out the deals they have. They do have tire sales from time to time, so it is worth checking each time you go to the store for other things as long as you are not in a hurry.

Our last post talked about Costco Tire Rotation. You can read this post to find out how we actually ended up with Costco and purchased the tires from them. However this post is all about Costco Tires and the service level we get from them. One of the reasons we purchased the tires for our car from Costco, we liked the idea that you can go to any Costco tire store to have the tires rotated, balanced and checked.  In fact you can go to other countries such as Canada and still receive the same service!

Costco tires is by far the best place to purchase tires from based on price as well as service levels especially for someone who travels a lot and may need their tires rotated while they are en-route.  While some people never bother to have their tires rotated,  the fact of the matter is that your tires will wear more evenly if you do and Costco Tires makes it easy to maintain this schedule recommended by all tire manufacturers and car manufacturers.

Shop While Costco Balances Your Tires

By the way we just pulled in to the Costco tire entrance and they took our car right away. It was late on a Sunday afternoon, so it was not busy and there was virtually no wait time. We shopped in Costco while we waited and they called us to let us know that the tires were ready!

Well this will be a short post, but we wanted to make sure that Costco Tires is really a good place to shop for tires. If you have found Costco tires to be a great place too, let us know and of course if you have had a bad experience let us know that as well. your comments will be welcome as long as they are on subject and helpful to our readers.


Costco Tire Rotation

Just returned from Costco, where we had our tires checked and rotated. What a great service these guys provide. More on that in a bit. Approximately 6 months ago I went through a laborious task of trying to decide where I was going to buy a new set of tires for my car. I say laborious because I checked on web sites and over the phone for prices and service conditions. This took a bit of time to do and then I went to the two places that offered the best price for the tires and the best advertised service. My short list was America’s Tire, Walmart and Costco, all in Palm Springs, California.

  • Tire rotation was one of the items on my list, in addition to :
  • Price of the tires
  • Tire Warranty in terms of miles
  • Service level and knowledge of tires
  • Service after purchase
    • Tire rotation
    • Tire balancing
    • Tire pressure
    • Tire check up

All three locations that I mentioned above met all of the requirements and prices were pretty close, but you get a much different feel about the place you are making your purchase from when you visit the location.

My first visit was Walmart and although they actually had the best price, I was very disappointed with the service I received. Once you decide on the tires you are going to purchase, it is a simple thing to compare price, and service levels. However for the Walmart people I spoke to, this was difficult. They had a hard time getting a price for me and then when I asked them about tire rotation etc I drew a blank look. I really did not get a warm feeling about making a $600 purchase from some one who did not know what they were talking about. Crossed them off the list.

It came down to America’s tire and Costco. There were really was nothing wrong with America’s tire other than the national and international coverage they provided. They were really only in the US and their stores were in various locations. Since we travel a great deal we had to rule them out although we really liked this store, their service level and the technicians knowledge.

Costco Tire Rotation and More

It came down to Costco who had a very good price on the tires and also offered after service for free Costco tire rotation, free Costco tire balancing and free tire checks of air pressure and condition of the tires. So enough of the background on why we chose Costco to purchase our tires.

Yesterday we took the car into Costco in Palm Springs. There was no wait time. It was late  on a Sunday afternoon and they were not that busy.  All we had to do is to show our original receipt. They took the keys and made arrangements for the tire rotation to be done. Within half an hour the tire rotation was completed while we shopped in the Costco store.  After making our purchases, we found our waiting at the entrance to the tire shop for us to pick up.

My tires are filled with nitrogen and they topped this up as well so all in all this was a really good deal. In Canada, I would pay at least $100 for the same service, however I can take the car to a Costco in Canada and receive the same service.

We are really satisfied with our decision to buy cars from Costco! If you have had a similar experience, let us and our readers know by leaving a comment. This is a really great deal and really great service.


Tire Balancing and Why

Most people will have their new tires balanced when they are installed on the car. Some stores will charge for this service , while others will include the cost of balancing the tire in the price of the tire. Whenever you purchase tires make sure you are comparing apples to apples  i.e. the cost of the tire and balancing so that you have a true comparison.  Many people then forget about their tires and never have their tires re-balanced again, even though there may be abnormal wear on the tires or if there is vibration coming from the tires.  Your tires should be rotated every 12,000 km’s and the balance checked at the same time. We will take about this aspect a little bit later.

Tire Balancing – How Are Tires Balanced

Your mechanic will use a tire balancing machine to find out were the heavy spots are and then attach weights to the rim to counter these heavy spots.  Weight can be attached to the inside of the rim as well as the outside of the rim. Proper weights applied to the right locations will eliminate vertical bouncing (static balance) and side-to-side wobble (dynamic balance).  If you notice that a weight has fallen off due to hitting a curb or just to age, have your tires balanced immediately to avoid any unnecessary wear to your cars tires and alignment.

Why Balance Your Tires At All?

During the manufacturing process, the manufacturers will attempt to make your tires and your rims as round as possible and distribute the weight as evenly as possible across the tires circumference.  However there are always slight imperfections that make the tire heavier on one side or another. You may not notice this at low speeds, however at higher speeds it can be noticed as a slight vibration. Badly balanced tires will cause your cars tires to vibrate badly and you will actually feel the vibration in the steering wheel or perhaps in the car in general.

Have your tires balanced after an accident. Also they should be checked each time you rotate the tires. Slight unbalancing may occur during wear and tear causing vibration to begin in the tires which is passed along to the front end of your cars system and also to the drive train. Far more damage can occur other than just warn out tires.

Tire Balancing – When Should You Have Your Tires Balanced

Tires need to be balanced when they are first installed to correct for slight imperfections in terms of the weight that is spread around the tire and the rim. The tire is always balanced only after it is installed on the rim and fully inflated.  Tires should also be rebalanced or at least checked when you rotate your tires ( see post on Tire Rotation ) . If you hit the curb badly  or a large object on the road, you may also need to have your tires check again for proper tire balance. You should also have them checked any time you notice vibration from your tires. If you do not have your tires balanced, not only do you have to endure the vibrations, your tires will wear out prematurely and you could wear out parts on your cars drive train and steering system.

If you have comments about balancing tires please feel free to leave them. All constructive and helpful comments about tires will be approved along with a link to your web site if you provide it. We are looking to add information that our readers will find helpful.

 


Is Your Vehicle Ready for Summer Vacation

Is Your Vehicle Ready for Summer VacationSummer is just around the corner. Many people are planning their summer driving trips to the cottage, to theme parks , to camping sites and visits to the family. The summer time is harder on tires than other time of the year. This is due to the higher temperatures and often heavier loads due to more people and luggage in their cars. Is Your Vehicle Ready for summer vacation travel?

Is Your Vehicle Ready – Check Your Car Before Travel

Before you go on any trip with your car and also on a weekly basis, have your car fully checked out to avoid any nasty surprises. Tires are the most important element of your car. check for proper tire pressure and that the tire lug nuts are on tight. Also check that there is sufficient tread on the tires to be safe in all kinds of conditions. However we also recommend that you check

  • All Fluid levels including
    • Power steering,
    • Engine oil,
    • Transmission oil and
    • Brake fluid levels
    • Antifreeze in the radiator
  • Check the windshield cleaner
  • Check your tires inflation levels
  • Have your cars alignment checked
  • Check your tires balance

Follow your cars instructions for checking all of these items in a safe manner or take your car to an auto mechanic or your dealer for a complete checkup.

Tire Pressure

Have your mechanic check your tires next time you go in for an oil change. If one is not due, it is easy to check the tire pressure yourself with a tire pressure gauge. Top up the air pressure to the vehicle specs if you find that the tires have low tire pressure.

If your car has a tire pressure monitor on it, don’t rely on this for optimum tire pressure. The alarm in your dash will turn on if your tire is losing air and drops several pounds of pressure. If your tire is down 2 or 3 pounds it will not show up on the dash of your car.

Recently some of the newer cars are more accurate and will even tell you when the cars tires are over inflated which can be just as dangerous as an under inflated tire. Both situations can decrease stability and cause the tire to over heat which may cause it to blow out. At high speeds a serious accident can easily take place.

Tire Alignment

If your car is out of alignment, you will notice uneven wear on your cars tires. This is dangerous and can lead to the car pulling on one direction or the other and your tires wearing out much more quickly. Have your alignment checked before you go on any further trips.

Tire Balance

Unbalanced tires or tires that have lost their balancing weights, will vibrate at various speeds. You can feel this vibration in the steering wheel. The tires will also wear unevenly making the situation even worse. In fact if you wait too ling, you will not be able to balance the tires properly and will need to  purchase new tires to fix the problem.

Preventive maintenance that we have discussed above will ensure that your car runs well, gets great gas mileage and that your family should have a successful trip. Why avoid or delay when failure of one of your tires could cause an accident and ruin your trip. For more about tire safety, click here.

 

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Check Tire Pressure Regularly

Check Tire Pressure RegularlyHow often do you check your car’s tire pressure? Maybe you have a tire pressure monitor in your car that alerts you to low tire pressure with an alarm on your dashboard? Even with one of these devices, which are excellent, they will not operate if your tires are only slightly below the optimum tire pressure for your car. They will operate if you have a sudden slow leak caused by a nail or a leak that gradually loses air over a period of several days. New tire pressure monitors provide specific information about each tire like the one shown in this picture. You can easily see which tire is low! Not everyone has this type in their car.

Check Tire Pressure Regularly Once Per Week

Your car’s tires should always have just the right amount of pressure for optimum performance and gas mileage as well as safety. This may not seem to be a big deal, however, remember that your tires are very  import when it comes to your car’s overall performance. Low pressure tires can cause poor gas mileage, poor handling and premature tire wear. We recommend that you check your cars tire pressure at least once a week.

According to automobile experts, your car’s tires should have the right amount of pressure to protect you and your car from damage caused by accidents due to poor control. As long as you are driving in a straight line, you will probably be ok, however if you need to swerve for some reason to avoid an accident, your tires are not going to perform at an optimum level and you risk a possible accident.

If you do have under inflated or over inflated  tires, you would be experiencing much too many rattles and shakes as you drive your way through various types of roads. Over inflated tires can be just as dangerous. In both cases the tire can overheat and a blow out at high-speed can occur.  Also, tires that are not inflated properly give you a more bumpy ride. They also tend to wear down quickly compared to tires that are inflated just right.

Gas Mileage Efficiency Suffers

Another fact about tires is that when they are over inflated or under inflated, they actually cause your car to use more fuel. Compared to having a car with tires inflated just right, your car might use 10 to 20% more gasoline. Most people love to brag about the gas mileage they get with their cars especially now with gasoline rising in price almost every day. Had to do when you have tires that are not inflated properly.

Check Your Tires Pressure

Always  check the your tires’ pressure when your tires have already cooled down since the hot air inside the tires expands increasing the pressure. Keep in mind that tires get more inflated when warm for the air inside expands. Remove the cap from the valve on the tire that you are checking. Caps keep dirt and corrosive salts out away from the valve of the tire which can cause the valve to leak.

Press a tire gauge hard on to the valve and take a look at the given reading. You will know if you have inserted the gauge properly if you hear the sound of escaping air. Check the pressure twice to make sure that your reading is accurate.

If the tire needs more pressure, add air and recheck the pressure to make sure you have not overfilled the tire. If your car has had just too much pressure, then release the air. You can find the recommended air pressure of your tires by checking your car owner’s manual.

For more details about tire maintenance and care, click here.

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Tire Performance

the right tires for your carGood tires will perform well in all kinds of conditions, snow , rain, hot pavement, gravel roads and sandy beaches. In fact, your tires actually give you much more comfort than many people realize. Good tires that are properly inflated and balanced along with the suspension system absorb  the bumps and potholes on the road providing you with a smooth ride at slow as well as high speeds. The tire performance is optimized when you they are balanced and inflated to the correct tire pressure.

With this in mind, it is important that you do take good care of your tires. In fact, you would not want to be driving a car that has worn out tires on it since it would be unsafe in many different situations, rain, snow and ice to name three.

Bald tires do not provide sufficient traction in these conditions and they are also more prone to blowouts. Aside from this, your chances of meeting a flat tire or having one of your tires blow up increase as the tread is worn down. Taking care of tires is important and relatively easy.

Tire Performance – Maintain Your Tires

There are four things that must be done to maintain your tires:

  • Proper inflation
  • Balance
  • Tire rotation
  • Alignment

Proper Inflation

At least once a month, you should check the tire pressure. All tires should be checked. To be sure that you have put in the right amount of pressure, check your car owner’s manual to confirm the proper pressure level. You may also find the information regarding this stamped on the side of the tire or on the information plate on the door jam. Make sure that you do not under inflate them or over inflate them. Both can cause premature tire wear.

Alignment

While driving, if you notice that your car is pulling in one direction even if you are driving on a straight road, then would be the time to have the wheels aligned. By having the car aligned, you are driving much safely and you also are lessening the pressure on the tires thus making them last longer.When the car pulls to one side or the other, the tires are also wearing on one side, which will prematurely cause them to wear out.

Balance Your Wheels

You should also have the wheels checked and balanced if you  feel continuous  vibrations while driving at certain speeds. This is cause by the wheels not being properly balanced and can cause them to wear more quickly. While they are being balanced you should also have the tires rotated on your car to take advantage of different wear patterns on each side of the car.

Tire Rotation

Check your car’s manual for proper instructions concerning when to rotate your tires and the method of rotation. This will help to ensure that your tires will last longer and wear evenly across all four tires.

Your cars tire performance can be maximized if you take care of them following these steps mentioned above. Every tire has an expected life span and mileage expectation. You will only achieve the advertised amount of mileage if you maintain your tires at the optimal level all of the time, other wise they will wear faster than they should.

If you have comments on tire performance, on maintaining your tires etc, please feel free to leave comments. Our readers will appreciate your input. For more information on tire performance, click here.

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Check Your Tires regularly

Everyone usually takes their tires  for granted. Usually, your car’s tires are ignored as long as they are working fine and do not appear to need additional air in them. Check Your Tires regularly. In fact, many people do not even check their tires on a regular basis. Even though everyone knows that a properly inflated tire will deliver maximum gas mileage as well as being safer to drive .

Most people would not even know what their condition is until they experience a flat tire or a tire blow up. Some will not even notice the lack of control Check Your Tires regularlythat you have when a tire is slightly below normal tire pressure. Many newer high end cars now have tire pressure monitoring systems as standard equipment. These are excellent warning systems when tires are low on air pressure, yet not obvious to the naked eye.

Your car’s tires are one of the most and often times ignored parts of your vehicle. They are also  one of the most vital parts of your vehicle, even compared to your car’s other vital parts such as brakes and the engine. Tires provide stability at high speed. They provide traction in snow, ice and even water covered roads. They are designed for your car’s size and weight. Your tires are designed to deal with the majority of road conditions most drivers encounter. They do all of this as long as they are properly inflated.

Check Your Tires regularly – Tire Safety

With good tires and properly inflated tires, you can control your car better. But with tires that are already worn down, you might find driving to be more dangerous and could lead you to accidents or collisions. For example bald tires in wet conditions will tend to hydroplane, which means they will float on the water and lose all traction and control. You can skid off the road very quickly in these conditions. Bald tires on ice or snow are even worse! They will slip and slide on even the slightest amount of snow or ice.

Tires may seem to be insignificant to many drivers, but the designers and engineers of tires work to the best of their capacities and capabilities to create tires that help car drivers and owners be safe on the roads. In fact, did you know that there are tires that can be actually created as per your preferences as the driver. Some factors that you can have customized are tread design, the inner cord structure, the tire profile, rubber compounds to be used, load rating, and even the tread life. With these in mind, you now know why your car’s tires are very essential.

Check your tires regularly – Tires in Good condition

Keeping your tires in good condition would help to ensure that your car wheels are delivering optimum performance. And if you need to replace your car’s tires, automobile experts suggest that you should try, as much as possible, to replace these tires with the same kind of tires that were fitted to your vehicle when it was purchased from the dealership. You can find the tire specifications in your car owner’s manual as well as on the side wall of the tire. The dealer or tire shop such as Canadian Tire in Canada or America’s tire in the US can also help you with the correct tire size for your car.

Most people will use all season tires which are fine unless you get into heavy snow conditions in which case proper snow tires are really required. Consumers will even purchase additional steel rims for the snow tires so that they are easy to change in the fall and spring. Regardless of what kind of tire you have on your car, it is a good idea to get into the habit of checking the tire pressure on a regular basis to ensure a safe smooth ride as well as optimum fuel economy.

Feel free to leave comments about check your  tires Regularly or any other subject related to tires.


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