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The Diary of the Phantom Tire Buyer #71:

Posted on

A Web Log about expensive services from A Phantom Tire Buyer with a Secret Identity

Dear Diary,

I’m often mystified by people who take their cars and trucks back to the dealers for service.  Why?  Why do they pay those dealership service prices?  I decided to stand inconspicuously outside the service entrance the local Ford dealer to find out why.

“Excuse me sir!”

‘Yeah?”

“May I ask you a few questions?”

“Sure.  I’m waiting for service, so I got a LOT of time.”

“Sir, are you aware of the fact that Tire Discounters can perform all your scheduled factory maintenance at a fraction of what the dealer charges?”

“Yeah?  Weeelll, I dunno, these guys work for the people who made my truck.”

“Yes, but Tire Discounters brings all the same expertise to the job.  The ASE Certified technicians at Tire Discounters follow the same MAP guidelines as this dealership and most all reputable shops.”

“Yeah?”

“Indeed!  And they it all for much less.”  

“Heck I go there all the time for tires.  They’re right down the street from where I live.  Good people.  Like ‘em.”

“So, may I ask what you’re here for?”

“My 75,000 mile check-up.  Figured I’d bring it here.”  

“But, but sir!”

“Yeah?”

Tire Discounters does all that and more!  That’s what I’m trying to tell you!”

Just then, one of the salespeople came out.  

“Is this man with the cape and glasses bothering you sir?”

“Not as much as you are.  Get me my truck back.  I’m goin’ somewhere else.”

“But sir, we’re the DEALER!”

“I know.  And I’ve seen your bills.  Now fetch me back my truck.”

The speed rating of a tire is based on U.S. Government standards for reaching and sustaining a specified speed. Typically, a tire with a higher speed rating results in better handling. Speed ratings apply only to the tire itself, and not to a particular vehicle. Putting a tire rated for a certain speed on a vehicle does not mean that the vehicle can be safely operated at the tire's rated speed.

The load range on a tire helps determine its ability to contain air pressure and its overall strength. Ranges are expressed using a number and the higher the number, the stronger the tire. These measurements are primarily for light trucks and SUV’s.

Tread depth is the distance between the top of the tread rubber to the bottom of the tire's deepest grooves.  In the United States, tread depth is measured in 32nds of an inch.

A tire’s maximum load is the maximum amount of weight the tire is designed to hold. The tire’s load carrying capacity is directly related to the tire’s size and amount of inflation pressure that is actually used. Each load range has a assigned air pressure identified in pounds per square inch (psi) at which the tire's maximum load is rated.

The total width of the tire, including any raised features on the sidewall. 

This is how many layers of rubber and other materials are in the tire.  

The measurement, in inches, from rim flange to the other rim flange. 

The maximum width of a wheel that a tire can be put onto. 

The minimum width of a wheel that a tire can be put onto.  

A tire's section width (also called "cross section width") is the measurement of the tire's width from its inner sidewall to its outer sidewall (excluding any protective ribs, decorations or raised letters) at the widest point. 

What makes up a tire; each ply, the sidewall, the tread, and bead.  

This number will tell you how well the tire will disperse heat buildup. 

This is how much weight a tire is rated to hold.

A tire’s maximum inflation pressure (PSI) is the highest "cold" inflation pressure that the tire is designed to contain. When measuring a tire’s max PSI, it is important the tire is "cold," because warmer temperatures can cause the tire pressure to temporarily increase resulting with inaccurate readings. This measurement should only be used when called for on the vehicle’s tire placard or in the vehicle’s owners manual.

The mileage warranty of a tire indicates the number of miles that a tire is estimated to last. If a tire fails to last for the number of miles indicated by the warranty, the customer will be given credit from the tire manufacturer toward a new tire based on how many miles short of the estimate the tire fell. Some restrictions apply. 

TD will repair flat tires as long as it can be done safely in accordance with Tire Industry Association (TIA) Guidelines.  Excludes: Under 40 series, run-flats, mud tires, trailer tires, off-road vehicles, and any tire over six (6) years old.  Other exclusions may apply.  See store for details.  


National accounts and local fleet not included.

Free Alignment with 4-Tire Purchase

National accounts not included.  Other exclusions may apply.

Our Nationwide Worry Free Guarantee offers FREE unlimited Tire Repairs for the entire life of your tires. If your tire can't be fixed and is over 3/32" tread, no worries, we will give you a replacement tire at any time, up to 3 years. We'll even help get your tire changed by including reimbursement for Roadside Assistance (up to $75) for the first 12 months at no additional cost. Effective: August 24, 2017. For complete details, see our warranty at any Tire Discounters location.

Components of the Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) sensor wears over time.

A TPMS Service Kit is suggested each time a tire/wheel is serviced. If left unchanged, over time, these components of the TPMS may corrode, leak or fail.

Tire/wheel service is defined as when tire is removed from the wheel.

The represents the smallest and widest size wheels that are recommended by the tire manufacturer for the tire to be mounted on. 

 

 

Mounting & Balancing  $76

Lifetime Rotation and Balancing $600*

Lifetime Tire Pressure Adjustments $16

Rubber Valve Stems $8

Tire Repair**  $100

TOTAL = $800


*Estimate based on 4-tire purchase of 60,000-mile tires. 

**Excludes: Under 40 series, run-flats, mud tires, trailer tires, off-road vehicles, and any tire over six (6) years old.  Other exclusions may apply.

Mounting & Balancing  $76

Lifetime Tire Pressure Adjustments $16

Rubber Valve Stems $8

Lifetime Rotation $240

Total = $340

*Estimate based on 4-tire purchase of 60,000 mile tires.