Best Place To Buy Tires Online
Tire Rack is simply the king of online tire retailers. The Indianapolis, Indiana-based company got its start mail ordering tires through multi-page ads in all the enthusiast magazines. When the internet really began to take off, Tire Rack was the first retailer to capitalize on the fact that we were all goofing off online when we were supposed to be working. We bought our first set of winter tires through Tire Rack back in 2000 for a 1988 Volkswagen Jetta and they seemed to arrive before we’d even ordered them. Their site is an amazing resource of everything you could possibly want to know about tires.
Discount Tire Direct
If Tire Rack is Coca-Cola, you could think of Discount Tire Direct as maybe not Pepsi, but definitely RC Cola. It got its start the same way Tire Rack did, selling tires out of multi-page ads in popular magazines. It was slower to capitalize on the internet, but still offers a ton of information through its website. It also offers a wider range of brands, from household names all the way down to brands you’ve never heard of before, and probably wouldn’t want to mount on a car you intended to keep. Discount Tire’s advantage over Tire Rack is that while it does ship directly to your house, it also manages a number of stores in convenient locations around the country that can handle the mounting and balancing duties.
SimpleTire is pretty new to the game, but they are rapidly making a name for themselves. This company was created as a one-stop-shop for tires, in an effort to make the process as easy and hassle free as possible for their customers. On the SimpleTire site, you can get everything done, all at one time. Choose the tires you want, compare and contrast, schedule installation, have the tires sent to your chosen location and pay. The only thing left to do is arrive at your installation appointment. Very simple, as the name suggests. We like this company because they have a very intuitive website, which helps you make the best decision for your car. We also like SimpleTire because they have maintained a rare concept in online sales. They do not have an AI. When you contact SimpleTire online, or by phone, you will always be talking to a person. Always.
Goodyear is unique from almost all of the other tire brands we researched in that it will allow you to purchase tires via its own website, and ship them to your door, or to a local Goodyear retailer. In all honesty, we haven’t heard a lot of feedback with Goodyear’s direct tire retailing, but this is a company with a legendary brand to protect. A search of some popular tire sizes indicates that they’ll ship out a set of tires and have them mounted in two days. The downside with Goodyear is the absolute lack of anything other than Goodyear tires. Goodyears are generally great, but if you’re interested in other brands, you’ll need to look elsewhere.
Amazon.com is relatively new to the tire business, but it’s quickly making some headway against the more recognized brands. On the plus side, if you have an Amazon Prime membership you get free shipping, which is kind of a big deal with tires. Shipping at some of the other sites can be costly, but most have eaten the cost of shipping themselves and built that into the price of the tire. Selection is sort of a plus for Amazon, too, although we say that with a caveat. Amazon will sell you a quality tire from a brand you recognize, but it will also sell you off-brand garbage that you could only call round in the most generous sense of the word. Like everything else on Amazon, it’s a caveat to the emptor.
The retailing giant has been in the business of selling tires for years, mostly through its larger stores with garage facilities that can mount and balance your new tires, and dispose of your old ones. More recently, though, Walmart will sell you a set of tires through its website and ship them to your door for free. If you’d rather, you can have them shipped directly to a Walmart store where you can have them mounted, though not every Walmart store has a garage. The other thing to keep in mind with Walmart is that along with all of the nationally recognized brands, they also supply a startling number of questionable brands lacking anything to recommend other than the bottom-dollar price.
NTB stands for “National Tire and Battery” — the “B” added in 1997 when Sears consolidated Tire America and National Tire Warehouse and began selling its DieHard brand of batteries through the new chain. In one of a series of wrong decisions, Sears sold off the chain of 226 stores in 2003, leaving it to prosper ever since. NTB offers a wide range of popular brands and unlike some of its competitors, there aren’t any weirdo off-brands in its stable. You can buy online via its website and have the tires shipped to you, or you can ship to anyone of its service centers to have the tires mounted and balanced, and your old tires disposed of.