When to change tires; and what brand

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novemberrain
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When to change tires; and what brand

Post by novemberrain » Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:56 pm

Curious

1. When do you guys change tires ? I know that tire tread depth is 8/32 mm for a brand new tire and 2/32 mm for a completely bald tire. The tire shops try to scare you into buying new tires even at 5/32 mm. I myself have been buying as soon as they dip below 3/32 mm. I bought a electronic tread depth gauge to accurately measure.

2. What brand ? I myself buy mid priced brands like Cooper / Falken. I don't buy high priced ones like bridgestone / michelin. I don't buy the entry level brands either : Sentry etc.
Last edited by novemberrain on Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Morgan Dollar 1921
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Morgan Dollar 1921 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:24 pm

It is October 17th, here in Ohio, I have seen snow at the Pumpkin Show, (google it, it started today) IF you won't see snow or heavy rain, go ahead and drive to the 3/32 level, IF you may see snow, soon, I would recommend, pulling them at 4/32.

I try to save money also, I detail my gas mileage on Fuelly, keep my tires rotated, balanced, alignment correct and yes, I check tire pressures monthly, and I did it weekly before TPS's became standard equipment.

IF you are down to 5/32 or lower, the tires are more prone to picking up a road hazard item, nail, screw, piece of wire, etc. The damage to a tire with less tread on it, makes it more prone to total failure on the road, unless you have run-flats.

I don't like to change them on the edge of the interstate, it is a safety concern.

Michelin makes the truest tires, their molds and build process turns out smooth rolling and long live tires.

I used to promote Cooper CS4 a really smooth riding tire with decent all season tread.

The other issue is HOW LONG will you keep the car post tire replacement, it is sorta false economy to buy a long life tire that will last 80K for a car that has 70K on it already, if you are gonna get new paint fever in 20K miles.

I have sold a lot of tires in my time, and I have seen some good value quality, and high priced quality and pure JUNK, (Mohawk in 1987) sometimes it is a matter of getting the right tire for the model of car you own. 1997 - 2004 Park Ave & Michelin Symmetry, for a smooth ride, the chassis seemed to echo any tire road force variances (Goodyear Conquest, standard factory built OEM tire). Second example some of the smaller Chrysler front wheel drive's in the late 80's would
not allow the Goodyear Vector to wear properly even with recommended rotation intervals. This issue was compounded by tire pressure deviations.

I drove a demo for a long time so I have no bought tires in many years the last set I purchased was Michelin.

Late here that is all I will add at this time. Shop, and good luck.

Jags4186
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Jags4186 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:30 pm

novemberrain wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:56 pm
Curious

1. When do you guys change tires ? I know that tire tread depth is 8/32 mm for a brand new tire and 2/32 mm for a completely bald tire. The tire shops try to scare you into buying new tires even at 5/32 mm. I myself have been buying as soon as they dip below 3/32 mm. I bought a tread depth gauge to accurately measure.

2. What brand ? I myself buy mid priced brands like Cooper / Falken. I don't buy high priced ones like bridgestone / michelin. I don't buy the entry level brands either : Sentry etc.
We’ve been buying Kumho Solas tires and have been happy with them. They have 60k mile warranties and after stacking various discounts I’ve been able to get 4 tires installed for under $400. I buy from tirerack.com, have shipped to a local Firestone Auto and have them installed there. OEM tires for even inexpensive cars are nearly 2x the cost of these tires so I don’t worry about whether or not these are “as good”. Every OEM tire I’ve had always needs replacing around 30-40k miles. It’s a racket by the manufacters—put soft tires on new cars so they feel good when you test drive and then watch them need replacing way too soon.

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patrick013
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by patrick013 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:13 pm

Dunlop used to be good. Perhaps Cooper. Most of the others
just consumer grade. But they all have premium grade if so
desired.
age in bonds, buy-and-hold, 10 year business cycle

dachshunddad
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by dachshunddad » Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:19 pm

I personally wouldn't push it on tires. I trade them out probably close to 5/32. Below that your traction/stopping is reduced in rain. Not worth the little extra wear in my opinion. I've used discount tire. They have a yokohama model that is only for them. Have had 3 sets and is very good (close to michelin) and great value. Good luck

radiowave
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by radiowave » Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:26 pm

I've been happy with my Bridgestones, an all weather 3 season tire and a set of Blizzaks for winter. Just put the Blizzaks on this morning which is a little early but we had our first snow this past weekend. I expect to get about 4 years total for the Bridgestones swapping them out twice a year. Luckily the local tire dealer I bought the Blizzaks from give me a free tire swap for the life of the tire.
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ClevrChico
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by ClevrChico » Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:37 pm

1) I replace when near or at wear bars.

2) Michelin normally. (Unless the car is close to retirement, and then Wal-Mart Douglas tires are good enough.)

heyyou
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by heyyou » Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:48 pm

My cars are small and light which helps with longer tire wear. Michelins seem hold air longer than other brands. If you check your tire air on a regular schedule, perhaps that attribute is not worth the extra cost, but it suits me.

J295
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by J295 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:06 pm

When the tires get in the 4/32nd range I start to watch for the Michelin specials at Sam’s ( or Costco). Safety and reliability are more important to me than saving a few dollars on this type of item

novemberrain
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by novemberrain » Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:39 am

Thanks all.

A few of you commented on the reliability of tires as they wear. I am all for being safe. But practically speaking, do you know of anyone you know who had a mishap with tires being too work out ? I have driven 350,000 miles among my cars and only once has a tire blown out when I was driving. And that too was not an instant blowout. It took like 20 minutes before I even realized something was wrong. The car was still stable and driving ok. Did anyone here get in any danger (or know someone who did) ?

denovo
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by denovo » Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:42 am

3/32.
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Daryl
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Daryl » Thu Oct 18, 2018 3:52 am

2/32nds. At that point the car fails to pass my annual state safety inspection. The brand varies based on the estimated useful life of the car. I'm always looking for a good value, which means that I'm willing to pay a couple extra dollars for a better product, but I typically avoid the top echelon. Like another poster mentioned, it doesn't make sense to buy 80K tires for a car that I'm only going to keep another 2 years.

mortfree
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by mortfree » Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:27 am

4/32 to 5/32 range I try to hold off until November (before snow) or time it with a rebate.

Goodyear ComforTred (spelling?) for accord.

Put Michelin on my wife’s SUV in September based on the criteria mentioned above (and we were sold a CPO with one tire that didn’t match the others).

Retired2013
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Retired2013 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 5:29 am

I'm going to the tire shop today. Tires were ordered the other day and are in and ready to be mounted, balanced and alignment.

Wife's 1998 van only gets 2k - 3k per year use. Tire were put on 11 yrs-ago. Still have some tread life left but due to age of tires, tires are chopped and snow coming, it's time to get new, Goodyear, 50k tires.

Has anybody bought tires at the dealers?

I received the GM magazine the other day and in the back was a coupon for match pricing and $200 off select set of 4 tires if you use a GM credit card at the dealers to purchase the tires.

At the tire shop that I've used for 40 yrs, the tires are $72 each and out the door $100 each. The tire shop will do free tire rotations for life of the tires. I was temped to go to the dealers and price match and then use my GM credit card to get the $200 rebate but decided against it.

www.mycertifiedservicerebates.com/home

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munemaker
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by munemaker » Thu Oct 18, 2018 6:20 am

novemberrain wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:56 pm
Curious

1. When do you guys change tires ? I know that tire tread depth is 8/32 mm for a brand new tire and 2/32 mm for a completely bald tire. The tire shops try to scare you into buying new tires even at 5/32 mm. I myself have been buying as soon as they dip below 3/32 mm. I bought a electronic tread depth gauge to accurately measure.

2. What brand ? I myself buy mid priced brands like Cooper / Falken. I don't buy high priced ones like bridgestone / michelin. I don't buy the entry level brands either : Sentry etc.
Minor point, but 2/32 is not completely bald. Completely bald is 0/32. 2/32 is the legal limit (in PA and probably most states) for a tire to pass the state vehicle inspection.

You can tell when to replace your tires by using a penny as a tire tread depth gage:
Image

Murgatroyd
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Murgatroyd » Thu Oct 18, 2018 6:28 am

Spend some time on tire rack.com. Tires perform differently based on the car. You can search tires that fit your car and read consumer reviews for your exact situation. I’ve done this a number of times with great results. There have been times where I really liked a tires performance on one of our cars but it was not recommended on the other. My experience is to not get locked into a certain brand.

Good luck.

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samsoes
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by samsoes » Thu Oct 18, 2018 6:40 am

novemberrain wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:56 pm
Curious

1. When do you guys change tires ? I know that tire tread depth is 8/32 mm for a brand new tire and 2/32 mm for a completely bald tire. The tire shops try to scare you into buying new tires even at 5/32 mm. I myself have been buying as soon as they dip below 3/32 mm. I bought a electronic tread depth gauge to accurately measure.

2. What brand ? I myself buy mid priced brands like Cooper / Falken. I don't buy high priced ones like bridgestone / michelin. I don't buy the entry level brands either : Sentry etc.
Please note that tire tread depth is measured in 32nds of an inch, not millimeter.
"Happiness Is Not My Companion" - Gen. Gouverneur K. Warren. | (Avatar is the statue of Gen. Warren atop Little Round Top @ Gettysburg National Military Park.)

onourway
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by onourway » Thu Oct 18, 2018 7:00 am

novemberrain wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:39 am
Thanks all.

A few of you commented on the reliability of tires as they wear. I am all for being safe. But practically speaking, do you know of anyone you know who had a mishap with tires being too work out ? I have driven 350,000 miles among my cars and only once has a tire blown out when I was driving. And that too was not an instant blowout. It took like 20 minutes before I even realized something was wrong. The car was still stable and driving ok. Did anyone here get in any danger (or know someone who did) ?
Running tires to the point of blowing out is only one mode of failure, and tire design is good enough these days that it doesn't generally happen unless you are really negligent (running tires way past their useful life, and even then probably running with significantly bad alignment or way under pressure at high speed).

The important considerations are the weather conditions you drive in. If you drive in the snow, under 4/32" is asking for trouble. In drier climates or through summer weather, you can push that further. The benefits of higher-end tires (Michelins, etc.) are that the tires tend to run true (less vibration, easier to balance, won't tend to pull one direction or the other) and their good models will not only have good tread life, they will continue to have excellent grip even as their tread wears down. Many cheaper tires use rubber compounds where you may still have tread left, but the compound has hardened such that braking and handling are significantly compromised.

IMO cheap tires is one of the worst ways to attempt to save money on a vehicle.

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jabberwockOG
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by jabberwockOG » Thu Oct 18, 2018 7:07 am

There is nothing more critical to driving safely and avoiding accidents than having high quality tires properly inflated and in good shape. I replace tires at wear bar indicator or a little before depending on the season. Absolutely will not drive icy or snow weather with tires that are worn to near wear bar indicator.

There are many places to try and save money and minimize the cost of car ownership, but tires is a very bad place to do that.

I have been using Michelin on our cars for 40 years. They typically last very well and are smooth and very quiet. Waiting for periodic rebate programs on Michelin tires at Costco provides safe, high quality tires at a reasonable cost.

Lately been using Michelin Premiers on one of the cars. Most tires perform well when brand new, but the wet conditions braking performance when the tire is worn on the Premier tire is significantly better than any other similar tire.

topcatin
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by topcatin » Thu Oct 18, 2018 7:44 am

I bought once a walmart tyre from walmart (GoodYear) for my Corolla years back and got a "woosh woosh woosh" sound as I went 50mph+. I went to my mechanic thinking something was wrong...guess what ? It was the tires. I changed it to Michelin and it was like night and day. It was quieter and smoother drive. Never looked back and always went with Michelin. Now if your tires are of a different brand and need to replace 2 tires, then I would match the other 2 tires and go with that. Bridgestone are great tires as well.

Mako52
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Mako52 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 7:47 am

Buy once, cry once. Michelins are the only way to go. Certain models of Continental and Bridgestone are the only others I'd consider. Michelin's durability and performance make the price premium well worth it. For example, for a 2015 Toyota Camry, on Tire Rack you're looking at $85 for their cheapest tire, or $120 for a Michelin. $140 over 50,000 miles is not going to cramp your budget.

TireRack reviews and ratings are an excellent resource.

Get a good alignment (if necessary) when the tires are installed, and check air pressure, particularly when seasons change. Road hazard warranties are not a bad idea if there's a lot of construction in your area.

If you print out a Costco.com or TireRack order and take it to your local tire shop, there's a pretty good chance they'll come close to matching it.

tommy85
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by tommy85 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 7:55 am

Consumer report has a ranking of tires. I believe Michelin, Pirelli and Continental are at the top. I have bought Pirelli twice so far as they are much cheaper compared to Michelin and have been happy with them.

Broken Man 1999
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:21 am

A couple of tire changes ago Costco didn't have the Michelin tires I wanted in stock. So I went to a tire store that is part of a small local chain. They recommended BFGoodrich, but I told them I preferred Michelin. They replied that BFGoodrich is now owned by Michelin, North America. I checked, and they were telling the truth. So I tried them, and I am very happy.

I run the BFGoodrich commercial tires on my van, and they are great. Very good wear. I can't tell any difference in the ride. Our roads are so bad I imagine the Oregon Trail covered wagon ruts would be a smoother journey.

Tire companies aren't necessarily owned by who you think any longer. There has been consolidation of old brands, and some newer brands have popped up.

Broken Man 1999
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lthenderson
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by lthenderson » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:30 am

novemberrain wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:56 pm
1. When do you guys change tires ?
I normally change them in the fall after they all get below 5/32" of tread left. I do it in the fall because during the summer time, really the only danger is hydroplaning and I can slow down to prevent that from happening. However in the winter, they don't have enough traction to get going from a stop at intersections with inclines and that isn't something I can cure without getting more tread. By buying new tires in the fall, it assures me that I will have maximum tread for at least that first winter.

dsmclone
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by dsmclone » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:33 am

Just my personal opinion but I don't think tires are something to be brand loyal to. All the big boys make both good and bad models and what one person may find great another may find terrible. The car you put them on also matters. This is why you go to tirerack or a forum for your car and get opinions from people who actually have experienced the tires. Even though they both may require the same size tire, I wouldn't expect someone driving a Toyota Camry in southern california to need/want the same brand/style of tire as someone driving a BMW m235i in northern michigan.

TN_Boy
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by TN_Boy » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:39 am

novemberrain wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:56 pm
Curious

1. When do you guys change tires ? I know that tire tread depth is 8/32 mm for a brand new tire and 2/32 mm for a completely bald tire. The tire shops try to scare you into buying new tires even at 5/32 mm. I myself have been buying as soon as they dip below 3/32 mm. I bought a electronic tread depth gauge to accurately measure.

2. What brand ? I myself buy mid priced brands like Cooper / Falken. I don't buy high priced ones like bridgestone / michelin. I don't buy the entry level brands either : Sentry etc.
With that replacement strategy, you might consider not driving when it rains.

When your tires are down there anywhere near 3/32, your stopping distance in wet conditions is drastically increased. For example:

https://www.aaa.com/autorepair/articles ... -distances.

Here is a key quote from the research:
Compared to new tires, tires worn to a tread depth of 4/32” exhibit:
a. An increased stopping distance of 42 percent for the Toyota Camry and 44 percent for the Ford F-150.
When decelerating from 60 mph, worn tires are still traveling at 39 mph and 37 mph at the average stopping point of
new tires for the Toyota Camry and F-150, respectively.

b. A decreased maximum lateral acceleration on a wet road surface of 33 percent for the Toyota Camry and 28 percent for the Ford F-150.
You can find other articles reporting similar results if you search the web. Read the 2nd sentence of a. above very carefully.

I am always surprised at how many bogleheads in these tire threads think it smart to run on seriously worn tires. I replace at more like 5/32.

I generally buy better brands of tires, though be aware that most tire manufacturers sell tires with varying traction, wear resistance, etc.

TN_Boy
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by TN_Boy » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:41 am

lthenderson wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:30 am
novemberrain wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:56 pm
1. When do you guys change tires ?
I normally change them in the fall after they all get below 5/32" of tread left. I do it in the fall because during the summer time, really the only danger is hydroplaning and I can slow down to prevent that from happening. However in the winter, they don't have enough traction to get going from a stop at intersections with inclines and that isn't something I can cure without getting more tread. By buying new tires in the fall, it assures me that I will have maximum tread for at least that first winter.
This is not quite true. Your stopping distance in wet conditions is increased with worn tires even if there is not enough water to cause hydroplaning.

But you swap tires at 5/32, so you are not as ... adventurous as some of the bogleheads.

Cody
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Cody » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:43 am

Just a heads up.

Discount Tires will rotate snow tires on for free until Oct. 27. Saves around $100.

I would set up an appointment before hand to confirm this.

Best,
Cody

TN_Boy
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by TN_Boy » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:44 am

onourway wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 7:00 am
novemberrain wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:39 am
Thanks all.

A few of you commented on the reliability of tires as they wear. I am all for being safe. But practically speaking, do you know of anyone you know who had a mishap with tires being too work out ? I have driven 350,000 miles among my cars and only once has a tire blown out when I was driving. And that too was not an instant blowout. It took like 20 minutes before I even realized something was wrong. The car was still stable and driving ok. Did anyone here get in any danger (or know someone who did) ?
Running tires to the point of blowing out is only one mode of failure, and tire design is good enough these days that it doesn't generally happen unless you are really negligent (running tires way past their useful life, and even then probably running with significantly bad alignment or way under pressure at high speed).

The important considerations are the weather conditions you drive in. If you drive in the snow, under 4/32" is asking for trouble. In drier climates or through summer weather, you can push that further. The benefits of higher-end tires (Michelins, etc.) are that the tires tend to run true (less vibration, easier to balance, won't tend to pull one direction or the other) and their good models will not only have good tread life, they will continue to have excellent grip even as their tread wears down. Many cheaper tires use rubber compounds where you may still have tread left, but the compound has hardened such that braking and handling are significantly compromised.

IMO cheap tires is one of the worst ways to attempt to save money on a vehicle.
With reference to the part of your post I bolded, see my other post citing the AAA research. You can't stop fast in wet weather on worn tires. I think that is asking for trouble, but perhaps that is just me.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by FrugalInvestor » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:51 am

Morgan Dollar 1921 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:24 pm
IF you are down to 5/32 or lower, the tires are more prone to picking up a road hazard item, nail, screw, piece of wire, etc. The damage to a tire with less tread on it, makes it more prone to total failure on the road, unless you have run-flats.
In my experience your greatest chance of having a screw, nail or other sharp item pierce at tire is when they're new and the rubber compound is soft. As they age and harden the chances diminish substantially.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

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jadd806
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by jadd806 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:03 am

I change around 3/32 or 100k miles, whichever comes first. I only buy Bridgestone or Michelin since I trust them and most other brands don't even offer hybrid tires.

onourway
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by onourway » Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:07 am

TN_Boy wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:44 am

With reference to the part of your post I bolded, see my other post citing the AAA research. You can't stop fast in wet weather on worn tires. I think that is asking for trouble, but perhaps that is just me.
To me, on a quick review of that study, what stands out to me is that the Michelin Defender has the best stopping distance when new (by a significant amount - 192' vs. 229' for the Fuzion tire tested) and again, the best stopping distance when worn - again, by a significant amount - at 247' vs. 285' for the next best tire. And this is with synthetic wear - the tires were shaved meaning the tire compounds hadn't aged - which is exactly where the better rubber Michelin uses pays dividends.

bloom2708
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by bloom2708 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:18 am

10/32 or 11/32 is new.

Below 4/32 you start to have hydroplaning issues in rain and traction issues.

If I find myself at 4/32 or below in the summer I usually wait until fall. 2/32 would be closing in on unsafe to drive for me.

I like Cooper or Toyo. Do you drive in winter/snow conditions? Toyo Celsius is a great tire for mixed driving.

A bargain tire that has worked out well is Milestar M932. These are US made, surprisingly quiet/smooth and very reasonable.
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bubbadog
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by bubbadog » Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:31 am

When I start to notice a drop in wet weather performance, I get new tires. (especially if going into fall/winter)

This is usually around the 4/32 of an inch tread depth which is the widely recommended tread depth of when to replace.

I check Tire Rack and pick a top performing name brand tire (Michelin, Bridgestone, etc.).

I see no point in trying to squeeze every mile out of the tires to save a few dollars.

Good tires are probably the number one safety component on your vehicle.

Save money elsewhere. :moneybag

smackboy1
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by smackboy1 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:43 am

munemaker wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 6:20 am
You can tell when to replace your tires by using a penny as a tire tread depth gage:
Image
The penny test has been superseded by the quarter test. Tires should be changed when they are below 4/32 inch (~3 mm).

https://www.aaa.com/autorepair/articles ... -new-tires

The other factor is tire age. Rubber degrades over time even if unused. The general consensus is start thinking about replacing tires regardless of tread depth at 6 years from date of manufacture.

https://www.today.com/news/aging-tires- ... na24390155
Disclaimer: nothing written here should be taken as legal advice, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.

MI_bogle
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by MI_bogle » Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:48 am

Cody wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:43 am
Just a heads up.

Discount Tires will rotate snow tires on for free until Oct. 27. Saves around $100.

I would set up an appointment before hand to confirm this.

Best,
Cody
Man, that's awful early to be putting on snow tires IMO. Still have good odds of of weather above 50 degree highs, and dry roads, in late October and into November in many if not most part of the midwest

The cynical part of me thinks they do that special early so there will be increased wear in snow tires and people will have to buy them more frequently


IN terms of $100 to get snow tires put on, that's mighty high if you already have them on their own separate rims. My local places charge 20-40 for tire rotation and that's basically the same thing, and what they charge if I ask them to put on the already-mounted snow tires

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munemaker
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by munemaker » Thu Oct 18, 2018 11:31 am

smackboy1 wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:43 am
munemaker wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 6:20 am
You can tell when to replace your tires by using a penny as a tire tread depth gage:
Image
The penny test has been superseded by the quarter test. Tires should be changed when they are below 4/32 inch (~3 mm).

https://www.aaa.com/autorepair/articles ... -new-tires
Not by everyone. Depends on who you ask.

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jharkin
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by jharkin » Thu Oct 18, 2018 12:08 pm

First off - not every tire starts off at 8/32 new. There are some Michelin passenger tires that start that low, but most are more as mentioned above (10-12 seems to be average, A/T truck tires can go up to 16/32 or more)


The 2/32 recommendation is the legal minimum I believe. Companies like tire rack recommend 4/32 as the minimum for snow driving.

Its hard to recommend one brand for everything. I *am* a big fan of Michelin but even within their lineup they have some good models and some bad. The models that come OEM on family sedans (typically the MXM4 or MXV :( ) tend to be average at best.

Generally what I do is look at sites like Tire Rack, and read reviews for tires that fit my car within the category I am shopping. Sometimes Michelin will rank #1 but not always.. BFGoodrich tends to dominate A/T and M/T tires for example, and if you want the best to the best snow tire than you want Nokians. If you have sport scar or sport sedan and look at high perfomance summer tires than there are lots of tires that give Michelin a run for their money like Goodyear Eagle F1s, Bridgestone Potenza Pole Position,, Yokohama Advans, PIrelli P Zeros, etc....

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dm200
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by dm200 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 12:14 pm

novemberrain wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:56 pm
Curious
1. When do you guys change tires ? I know that tire tread depth is 8/32 mm for a brand new tire and 2/32 mm for a completely bald tire. The tire shops try to scare you into buying new tires even at 5/32 mm. I myself have been buying as soon as they dip below 3/32 mm. I bought a electronic tread depth gauge to accurately measure.
2. What brand ? I myself buy mid priced brands like Cooper / Falken. I don't buy high priced ones like bridgestone / michelin. I don't buy the entry level brands either : Sentry etc.
We usually get tires at Costco. Last year, on our 1998 Camry, my wife got two new tires there. They were Michelin Defenders - and the Defenders are top rated by Consumer Reports. I cannot recall exactly what she paid, but I think the price was very reasonable. They mounted the new tires on the back - and moved the back tires to the front. The front tires were the bad ones (no tread left). There still seems to be quite a few miles left on the older front tires, but at some point we will almost certainly replace them with Michelin Defenders from Costco. Since we drive few miles per year, we will lean towards replacing them earlier because of the age of the tires.

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dm200
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by dm200 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 2:35 pm

I just read the most recent Consumer Reports on tires - and the Michelin Defenders were again check rated in their category.

:happy

While you can often save at Costco with their periodic discount if you buy four tires, I don't think (for us) it makes financial sense to replace two other tires with a lot of tread left.

jrbdmb
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by jrbdmb » Thu Oct 18, 2018 3:30 pm

Murgatroyd wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 6:28 am
Spend some time on tire rack.com. Tires perform differently based on the car. You can search tires that fit your car and read consumer reviews for your exact situation. I’ve done this a number of times with great results. There have been times where I really liked a tires performance on one of our cars but it was not recommended on the other. My experience is to not get locked into a certain brand.

Good luck.
I second this recommendation. I was biased for Michelins, but based on Tire Rack reviews not all Michelins are created equal - one of the newer models that fit my F150 have been roundly criticized for mediocre performance and poor tire wear. And when I finally bought a set of Michelins at Sam's Club ($140 off sale) I passed on the ones they had in stock and had to special order the MX Defenders.
Last edited by jrbdmb on Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:13 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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sunny_socal
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by sunny_socal » Thu Oct 18, 2018 3:47 pm

novemberrain wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:56 pm
Curious

1. When do you guys change tires ? I know that tire tread depth is 8/32 mm for a brand new tire and 2/32 mm for a completely bald tire. The tire shops try to scare you into buying new tires even at 5/32 mm. I myself have been buying as soon as they dip below 3/32 mm. I bought a electronic tread depth gauge to accurately measure.

2. What brand ? I myself buy mid priced brands like Cooper / Falken. I don't buy high priced ones like bridgestone / michelin. I don't buy the entry level brands either : Sentry etc.
Why ask if your mind is already made up?

I always go with Michelin. "Buy once, cry once..."

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Kenkat
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Kenkat » Thu Oct 18, 2018 3:49 pm

3/32 or so unless going into winter, then 4-5/32.

I have Goodyear ComforTred, Cooper CS4, General Altimax rt43 and Goodyear Eagle Sports on my 4 cars. Michelin tires seem good but seem so expensive compared to other brands. May be worth it as they typically wear great but I usually go with other brands that are significantly less money.

Tires are very model and car specific. I had good wear from Pirelli P Zero on my Camaro but Pirelli P7 Cintauro only lasted 20k on a Camry. It should be the opposite. The Camry also chewed through a set of Yokohama Avids quickly as well but Goodyear ComforTreds wore well on the Camry as well as previous cars I have owned. Cooper CS4 have been on multiple vehicles and those have been positive. The General Altimax are on the Camry now; first try of General but they get great reviews and are priced well so we will see. My son drives that now so he is putting less miles on it.

Tire Rack is a good resource for research but I’ve shopped around for tires + install - sometimes Tire Rack is cheaper and sometimes local is cheaper.

SDLinguist
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by SDLinguist » Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:43 pm

dsmclone wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:33 am
Just my personal opinion but I don't think tires are something to be brand loyal to. All the big boys make both good and bad models and what one person may find great another may find terrible. The car you put them on also matters. This is why you go to tirerack or a forum for your car and get opinions from people who actually have experienced the tires. Even though they both may require the same size tire, I wouldn't expect someone driving a Toyota Camry in southern california to need/want the same brand/style of tire as someone driving a BMW m235i in northern michigan.
What are you talking about?! Even the Camry should run on a set of MP4S or Conti ExtremeContact Sports during the summer :P

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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by Big Dog » Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:51 pm

I've been happy with my Bridgestones, an all weather 3 season tire and a set of Blizzaks for winter.
You might want to research the so-called all weather tires. They are generally worse at stopping in both dry and wet conditions than are summer tires most of the year. Of course, summer tires are not very effective in cold weather, but then you switch out to snow tires so summer might be better 9 months per year than All Season. And summer tires are more sticky, so not as long-lived. But then, since that small patch of rubber on the road is the most important thing in your car's safety.....

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dm200
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by dm200 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:58 pm

I go back to when most auto tires were "bias ply" (before radials). Going to radial tires was a huge improvement - including all weather types that mostly eliminated the need for snow tires in winter - along with the advent of front wheel drive vehicles.

david9117
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by david9117 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:58 pm

Once my tires reach 4/32 I start looking for costco deals..... I have a odyssey minivan and never get the 80K touted on Michelin Defender. More like 35K. Even the Costco tire person said that with heavy vehicle like odyssey you will never get to 80k.

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dm200
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by dm200 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 5:00 pm

david9117 wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:58 pm
Once my tires reach 4/32 I start looking for costco deals..... I have a odyssey minivan and never get the 80K touted on Michelin Defender. More like 35K. Even the Costco tire person said that with heavy vehicle like odyssey you will never get to 80k.
I think I even saw Defenders with mileage of 90K.

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dwickenh
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by dwickenh » Thu Oct 18, 2018 5:26 pm

novemberrain wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:39 am
Thanks all.

A few of you commented on the reliability of tires as they wear. I am all for being safe. But practically speaking, do you know of anyone you know who had a mishap with tires being too work out ? I have driven 350,000 miles among my cars and only once has a tire blown out when I was driving. And that too was not an instant blowout. It took like 20 minutes before I even realized something was wrong. The car was still stable and driving ok. Did anyone here get in any danger (or know someone who did) ?
I handled Auto damage claims for about 40 years- half as a body shop owner and half for an Insurance company. Most of the one car
accidents I inspected that had left the roadway had either a drunk driver, worn tires, or both. Tires on wet pavement are very important
as hydro plane is a dangerous thing with today's road conditions. Lanes are more cupped and retain more water in the grooves.

4/32 is time to replace, 5/32 is time to look for a deal.

Dan
The market is the most efficient mechanism anywhere in the world for transferring wealth from impatient people to patient people.” | — Warren Buffett

yousha
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Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Post by yousha » Thu Oct 18, 2018 5:31 pm

For whatever reason I have 28 pounds on all four tires but in rechecking them about 3 weeks later they all gap to 37,33,33,and 31. Why and what can I do to keep them from going up. I could understand losing tire pressure but going up has got me confused.

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