Tires for older, lower annual mileage cars?

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Re: Tires for older, lower annual mileage cars?

Post by finite_difference » Thu Feb 13, 2020 9:11 pm

Buy the best tires you can afford.
The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. - Thich Nhat Hanh

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Re: Tires for older, lower annual mileage cars?

Post by dm200 » Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:00 am

I just looked at my 2003 Corolla tires - all four are Cooper brand (?)

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Re: Tires for older, lower annual mileage cars?

Post by firebirdparts » Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:32 am

I collect cars and mine all have low use because I switch around all year. I experiment with all tires all the time, and I have had mixed results and in some cases flamboyant failures. I had a set of Michelin Primacy tires on a Lexus LS430, and they cracked after 3.5 years. One cracked clean through the sidewall and went flat, and I had to discard them all. So I am really not going to use Michelins any more. I have a much cheaper General on there now, and one of them feathered and became noisy. I turned it around backward and so far it's doing okay. My son had an unbelievable failure on a Cooper, but we've bought more of them since then. They're cheaper and a lot of people carry them. The tire came apart in a really strange way and I don't expect to see that again. Hope I'm right. The coopers do not seem to have casing and cord failures or get lumpy or noisy. So far.

Overall, it's just guesswork. I would and do look at ratings online, but really, you never know what kind of service you're going to get. I don't know what happened to Michelin, but if they are going to fail that fast just due to basic poor quality, then I just don't think there are a lot of rules any more.

P.S. I probably should just give some additional advice as a car guy. If you are concerned about your safety, buy a soft, sticky tire. Not an expensive tire, a soft tire. The mainstream thrust of tires is to make them last longer, and you don't want that. So you will have to fight a wave of ignorance headed the wrong direction. There is a lot of oil in a tire. It would surprise you how much. The tire will lose some of that and get harder over time, and so if you think the tire is not as sticky as it was new, replace it. Tread is not really a factor for you.
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Re: Tires for older, lower annual mileage cars?

Post by GeMoney » Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:47 pm

I'm in the same situation. I have a 2005 Toyota Corolla with extremely low miles. Regardless of brands, the key is to occasionally inspect the tires for tread wear, general wear (including tears on the side) and tire pressure. Per Consumer Reports, some of the ratings for the lesser know brands such Hankook, Falken, etc are pretty decent. Also they recommend barring any recommendations from the manufacturer to replace the tires at 10 years even if there's enough tread. If you have a Costco membership I see they started to cell BF Goodrich tires again which are manufactured by Michelin. They currently have a $110 discount which brings the cost down to the lesser known brands after installation.

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Re: Tires for older, lower annual mileage cars?

Post by inbox788 » Fri Feb 14, 2020 5:13 pm

mmmodem wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 12:05 pm
Being a Boglehead, I look at this way. I can buy brand new Michelin Defenders with 80k mile warranty or I can buy Riken tires for 50% the cost. They last only 40k miles. Because I drive very little I will have used up these tires in 4 years. The Michelin only has 40k on it. Meanwhile I buy another set of brand new Rikens with the latest tire technology that now outperforms the old Michelin Defensders. After 6 years, I can have 2 year Rikens with plenty of tread or I can question whether I want to keep driving on 6 year old Michelins or spend more money.

If the difference were a few bucks, I wouldn't advocate for buying value in tires. We're talking $400 or $600 - 800 for a set of tires installed. Performance and stopping distance is not at issue here as I already explained. It's perception and marketing in my opinion.
I recently replaced Michelin Defenders with 90k warranty, but they only latested 40k miles over 6-7 years, so aged out (also they were showing some small cracks). At 5 years, they had 35k and were already down to 4-5/32 thread left. Trying to claim warranty requires good documentation of rotations and wearing down to levels I'm uncomfortable with. Had to get to 2/32 before 6 years, which wasn't going to happen (seems poor treadlife is not uncommon with the Defenders, just google it). I changed them out for Yokohama Avid Ascends that was less expensive (still has a long 85k mileage warranty, but it was not a factor). I could have saved even more by going with a cheaper tire, but I think performance would have suffered. Quiet, comfortable ride and wet traction are my main concerns, and so far I'm happy with the new tires.

Generally, softer tires wear out faster and it takes harder tires to last these longer warranties. I don't know if harder or softer materials age more gracefully or perform better when older. Rubber gets harder and dry out as they age, but supposedly softer tires dry out faster.

Anyway, with 10k/year, math works out one way, but at 5k/year, most all tires will age out before wearing out. I'd rather be on new good or better tires, than the best 6 year old tire with 4/32 wearing down to 2/32 and 40k miles on them, specially on a wet day. Goes without saying, avoid bad or poor tires altogether, but with lower annual mileage, I'd go with good newer tires over better older ones. ... to-useless

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Re: Tires for older, lower annual mileage cars?

Post by Puretaxableindexer » Fri Feb 21, 2020 9:51 am

I bought Kelly Edge tires from JustTires for my CRV a year ago and they function/handle much better than the Continental tires that came with the SUV. JustTires did a quick job & good with everything listed in my invoice.

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