Costco Tires

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Costco - Your Tire Discounter!

I recently purchased a set of Michelin X Radial Tires, from Costco Tires. I'm about to tell you why, and why you should consider Costco when you need tires.

I’ve purchased tires from a lot of place including Discount Tires, Big O Tires, TireRack Online, but I had not really thought about going to Costco even though I’m a member. The main reason is because each time I get new tires I usually get a Wheel Alignment and Costco doesn’t do alignments.

But this time was different because I was in a real bind. What happened is I blew out a tire due to a road hazard. I don’t drive much compared to most people and my tires had less than 30,000 miles on them. They were by no means worn out. However they were just over 5 years old, and that is when the warranty ended. So there I was with 1 bad tire and 3 half worn tires and no warranty!

FYI – the reason why most tire warranties end at 5 years even if you don’t have many miles is due to the rubber compounds in the tires wearing out from UV Light and other factors related to age. Michelin, I believe, may warranty their tires for 6 years depending on the model.

So I suddenly needed new tires and I began shopping. First I went to Big O and got a quote of $260 plus installation which was about $15 per tire. I have relatively small rims at 14”and that seemed like a lot to me for their cheapest tire. Keeping in mind I want a good tire, but because I don’t drive much there would be no point in buying the best as in another 5 years they would be off warranty but not worn out.

My next stop was a local Discount Tires. No impressed. Not much more to say about them. And they also don’t do alignments so whets the point? You might as well go to Costco because the service warranty is better and it’s so much more convenient.

I then started my research at TireRack. I have purchased from TireRack Online before, not because I was trying to save money, but because my old car used a tire size that no one else had at the time. I know that sounds crazy, but it happens. TireRack is a great place to research and learn about tires. They carry a wide selection of tires from 18 different manufacturers including BF Goodrich, Bridgestone, Continental, Firestone, Kumho, Michelin, Pirelli, Uniroyal and Yokohama. Good selection, good prices. And they ship direct to you UPS. The main problem is you then have to find a shop to mount the tires. After finding a nice Kumho tire that fit my car, I added on the $40 shipping (Not bad as the warehouse is in Reno), and cost to get mounted it just didn’t make sense to go that route. If you are looking for really high end tires maybe it does? Plus after my recent experience with the road hazard I wanted to be sure I had local service without a hassle.

So off to the Costco Tire Center I went! Unfortunately for me they once again didn’t have my size in stock and I would have to wait a few days. But the good news was Costco was running a $70 off coupon special. I found out about the offer through the weekly emails I get because I purchase from Costco Online. The bottom line is I ended up buying Michelin X Radials completely installed with road hearer, free rotations and balancing, for almost exactly $300. That was actually cheaper than the Cheapo Big O Tires! And it was nice to be able to just show up without and appointment, complete my shopping, and have my car ready when I was done. No wasted time. The trick to this kind of service is to go in the morning on a weekday. Sometimes the Tire Center at Costco can get really busy and the time to wait can be much longer. My tires took about an hour.

About Costco Tires

Costco uses Nitrogen to fill your tires. Nitrogen is more stable (heat tolerant) than Oxygen and is a larger molecule which allows less Nitrogen to escape (The reason that O2, despite a larger MW 32, has a smaller diameter than N2 MW 28, lies in the electronic structure of the molecules. O2 "permeates" approximately 3-4 times faster than does N2 through a typical rubber, as is used in tires, primarily because O2 has a slightly smaller effective molecular size than does N2.). This means your tires stay inflated at the correct levels longer. Plus Costco will inflate your tires for free if you purchase from them. I asked for black caps, if you don’t you might get green caps, and that might not look great with your car. Nitrogen does not attract water so there is less chance for rust and corrosion. Nitrogen tires also supposedly help your tires run at cooler temperatures. So there is really no downside. And yes you can inflate your tires with air at home if you want, but why bother just have Costco do it for you while you are shopping when you need it. And in case you didn’t already know this the air you breathe is 78% Nitrogen, 21% Oxygen, and 1% other gasses.

Costco Only Sells 2 Brands of TiresBF Goodrich and Michelin. In 1988 BF Goodrich actually got out of the tire business and sold their brand name to Michelin. I’m not 100% sure if they are totally owned by Michelin still, but it makes sense. Costco Michelin Tires are “Club Tires”… this means that you can not compare the models sold at Costco to other Models of Michelin because the “Club Tires” are manufactured specifically for Costco. What you can do however is go to TireRack and compare the Costco Specifications to the other Michelin Tires. In my case the Michelin Harmony is almost an exact match.

Costco Lifetime Replacement Warranty – Okay I’ve read a few people complaining about Costco dropping the ball on warranty. But the truth is almost everyone who complained did not comply with the warranty terms. If you do what Costco asks you to do – come in for scheduled maintenance (Rotations, Balancing) you’ll get the warranty you expect. The Warranty is pro-rated. This means if you blow a tire at 20,000 miles and you have a 70,000 mile tire you will have used 2/7th’s of the warranty and will be expected to pay for it. You will be offered a replacement tire at 5/7th’s of the retail cost. Prorating is a very common practice in the Tire Industry. Also if you blow a tire and do not take it to Costco for repair Costco will not reimburse you. Flat Repair is free.

Lifetime Rotation and Balancing – This is a great deal! I’ve seen tire stores advertise up to $40 to rotate and rebalance tires. Costco offers a great deal so be sure to take advantage of this offer. Don’t skip it – do it! It’s no big deal just have them do the service while you shop!

Bottom Line is Costco Offers a very competitive price on very good tires (Especially if you shop during the promotional offers). I just wish Costco did wheel alignments!

Costco Tires

This is an example of the kind of Tire Sales Costco Offers a couple of times per year.  You must be a Costco Member to buy Tires from Costco.
This is an example of the kind of Tire Sales Costco Offers a couple of times per year. You must be a Costco Member to buy Tires from Costco.

Comments 14 comments

glassvisage profile image

glassvisage 7 years ago from Northern California

I think this is a great deal. Costco usually has great deals, though, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised :) This is a great thing to share on HubPages. Thanks!


undagroundjoe profile image

undagroundjoe 7 years ago from Southern California,USA

Wow Great Hub I need new tire right now. I am going to Costco. Good, relevant info...


Hawaii Vacations 6 years ago

I've been buying my tires at Costco for Years and I've been very happy with the service.


TIRESNEEDED 6 years ago

WOW, What a great selection of services. My dealer charges $90 for nitrogen inflation.


Manaen 6 years ago

I got my nitrogen for $20 at a local tire shop. But I didnt really know the benefits of haveing nitrogen in my tire..great post now I know


mccutcrm 6 years ago

Thanks for your helpful information about Costco Tires. However, a correction to your comment on atmospheric gas content, since air is mostly made up of Nitrogen gas; it should be 78% Nitrogen, 21% Oxygen, 1% Other.


MikeNV profile image

MikeNV 6 years ago from Henderson, NV Author

You are absolutely correct... thanks for pointing out my transposition. I have made the correction in the article.


Kevin Beauchamp  6 years ago

I've been buying my tires for years from costco and have been thrilled. But my most recent new set of Michelin tires went bald in 10,000 miles in the front (not uneven wear). Costco has always made things right. But this time they said that these tires had NO Mileage warranty. Now when I bought them, there was no choice...these were the tires theyhad that fit my car and they were NOT cheap!! I did not shop around. I did not check for warranty. Why not?? Because it was Costco...this is the store that takes care of their customers, afterall...or at least they used to. Needless to say, i'm very unhappy about having to buy new tires again after only 10,000 miles. And tires are not the only place that Costco has not stood behind their product (why is Costco now selling products of such inferiority that a tire has zero mileage warranty???). The other issue I have with Costco's new inferior products is with the new Vizio plasma tv I recently bought for my office. The volume is inadequate. By the time I had the time to talk to a tv salesperson there, we were at four months, so beyond the three month costco return policy. The guy said I'd need to deal directhy with the manufacturer and gave me Vizio brochure. BUT I had NOT told him the tv brand. He then did admit that they had a lot of problems with volume on these Vizio plasmas. Since when does Costco think it is ok to sell their members products that they know have issues??? I have lost any trust now in the ability to buy high cost products at costcowithout having to first do hours of research to ensure quality and appropriate warranties first. So, I may as well go back to buying from a local mom and pop shop if costco is no better than any other company in terms of quality and past sale service. Well Costco, it was great while it lasted, but what makes you special anymore???


MikeNV profile image

MikeNV 6 years ago from Henderson, NV Author

My experience with Costco Tires has been terrific. Aside from a major front end problem - and costco does not do alignments - I can see no way anyone could wear out Michelin X Radials in 10,000 miles. Part of the Costco warranty is to have your tires rotated at 7,500 miles. This is routine maintenance. I can not believe that if you had such a problem the technician didn't see it at 7,500 miles.

Follow the maintenance and you are absolutely covered under warranty. There is no reason not to have your tires rotated. So I'm going to throw up the bullshit flag on this one. There is something that is not being told here. Costco is a great company that stands behind their products.

As far as Visio goes... yes they do have problems and yes you can research this online. Costco is VERY CLEAR on their electronics warranty. Why would you blame them? You chose to buy a "cheap" TV. Costco carries Samsung - which is what I own and has operated perfectly for 4 years now. I also have a friend with a Vizio which he bought at Costco and it crapped out at 6 months. He sent it back to Vizio.

People want CHEAP... but they want it to last forever.

I can see no reason to blame Costco for your problems.

Go ahead and go back to mom and pop shops. Find out what kind of warranty you get from them. No one is making you buy from Costco.


DCfromNC 5 years ago

You should not blame Costco for your lack of research on a product. I bought a TV two years ago from Costco, Sharp Aquos, and could not be happier. I spent weeks if not months researching. You get what you pay for pal. Also you said yourself by time you 'had time' to talk to costco you were a month past the return policy. This completely your own fault. If the sound was that big of a deal, why did you not make the time. Practice some personal responsibility in life and life will be much better.


hector c. 5 years ago

I purchased a set of Bridgestone serenity tires at Costco about 2 months ago and put on 1500 miles since then. I have driven in heavy rain at all speeds , light snow, slightly muddy roads etc. I couldn't be happier with this tires, my Mazda 6 really likes it's new shoes!


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 5 years ago from Minnesota

I never would have even though of Costco for tires. You are educating many with your hub. Thanks:)


MikeNV profile image

MikeNV 5 years ago from Henderson, NV Author

People usually buy tires just on price. They don't think about the service for their tires over the years. You can not undervalue the service - free inflation, balance and rotation. Try getting an independent shop to do that for no charge. Plus Costco carries the higher quality tires. I guess for someone who just wants the cheapest tires possible that Costco is not for them. For me I bought during a $75 off promotion so it was actually the best deal at the time. I did also buy once from Tirerack because Costco didn't have the XL version of tires I needed for my truck. So you may not always find exactly what you want with limited selection in some sizes. But over all it's a good place. I mostly like that I can leave my car, go shop and then pick it up when I'm done shopping. No wasted time sitting in the tire story lobby. Costco does not do alignments so that's something to keep in mind.


AllSuretyBonds profile image

AllSuretyBonds 5 years ago

Great Hub. I agree with purchasing tires at Costco. We had to replace a tire on our car a few months back and the tires were really inexpensive compared to other places and the service warranty was great!

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