THOSE BIG BLACK CIRCLES are arguably the most important part of your car, but most of us just go to place around the corner. Here’s why you should give it some more thought.
Because of the huge role tyres play in road safety, it is important that car tyres be fitted by someone with the appropriate training and tools. Fortunately there is no shortage of professional specialist tyre fitting outfits or suitably equipped garages that can competently perform the task.
However, tyres are what marketing people refer to as a ‘distress purchase’. Even though choice of tyres can make a marked difference to comfort, safety, performance and handling, very few drivers change their car tyres because they desire an upgrade.
As a result, price is often the most influential factor when it comes to choosing a tyre fitting service. Tyre fitters are aware of this and, while tyres are usually offered with a sticker price, are often willing to match prices quoted by other companies.
It’s also possible to purchase tyres from specialists online and have them delivered to you local tyre fitter.
With specialist tyres such as run-flat examples, metric sizes or vintage cross-plies customers should always contact a fitter ahead to make sure the tyres are available or can be obtained.
A tyre fitting bill will not merely consist of the cost of the replacement tyres; the customer will normally be charged for services including fitting of the new tyres, balancing of the wheels with new tyres fitted and responsible disposal of the old tyres.
Some tyre fitters may also charge a small fee for replacement valves. As these charges can vary, customers should always get a ‘fully fitted’ quote when enquiring about price.
Location may also play an important role when it comes to choosing a tyre fitter. In an emergency the proximity of the tyre fitter is more important, but even under normal circumstances customers may wish to choose a tyre fitter close to work or home for convenience.
In recent years a number of mobile tyre fitting services have become available. These services will come to you with a specially equipped van and often offer a competitively priced service, but will need to be booked in advance.
Things To Remember
Consider how you use your car and the specification of the tyre you need, including speed rating, run-flat, summer or winter use
Do a little homework and make sure you shop around. When you get a price, find out if it includes fitting and disposal of your old tyres
Don’t let cost rule everything – it’s often a false economy to buy the cheapest tyre you can find