This is an article written by Eric Peters from Bottom Line Secrets. If you are looking to replace tires on your vehicle, well he has some good suggestions.
There is one easy way to save money on car maintenance — tires. When it’s time to replace a vehicle’s tires, many people simply return to the dealer and buy the original brand of tires that came from the factory. That’s often expensive — and not necessary.
What you might not know: Prices for high-quality tires vary — tremendously. You can potentially save hundreds of dollars by buying the same general type of tire — such as all-season, high-performance, touring, etc. — but a different brand and/or model. Just make sure that your new tires meet the minimum requirements for load (the weight the tire is designed to carry), heat and traction ratings recommended by the vehicle manufacturer.
Prices also can vary by season. High-performance summer tires, for instance, often go on sale in the fall. In addition, it is sometimes possible to realize tremendous savings by purchasing tires from online retailers, such as The Tire Rack , where you also can read reviews of tire models by customers. Be sure to factor in the cost of shipping the tires, as well as the cost of having them mounted and balanced.
Helpful: Have your tires rotated regularly. A good rule of thumb is every 3,000 to 5,000 miles. People often forget that this basic service helps ensure that tires last as long as possible. Many tire shops do it for free if you buy the tires from them or have the tires mounted there.
Some other useful hints are:
To get the most out of your tires always make sure that your tires are properly inflated. The statistics on this is that it will give you a 3% increase in gas mileage.
If your tires are in good condition and you travel at least 15,000 miles a year and get say, 25 miles to the gallon @ 3% improvement because of correct inflation you can save approx. 17.5 gallons of fuel a year which at about averaging $4.00 that would save you round about $70 a year.
Alignment Tips: alignment generally refers to the adjustment of a vehicle’s front and rear suspension parts. Proper alignment helps ensure that your vehicle handles correctly and help in crease the life and performance of the tire.
Balancing: Balancing compensates for the weight of tire and wheel assembly after the tire is mounted. If your wheel is out of balance it will cause eccentric tread-wear and vibration also it puts stress on other parts causing premature wearing. You will feel a vibration in your steering wheel if your wheels are not properly balanced.
Driving Habits: Speeding will generate excessive heat and increase the tire wear and durability. Fast turns on curves and around corners will cause wear and of course hitting curbs and potholes on the road will increase deterioration of your tires.
If you need anymore information MIchelin website has an excellent maintenance question and answer page