Tyres support the weight of the car and help translate your drive commands on the road surface. This means enduring friction and high temperatures every time you drive. As you would expect, a high-quality tyre is made from a rubber material that can withstand these conditions and are engineered to meet your driving needs.
It is, therefore, no surprise they tend to be expensive. Many car owners often have a hard time calculating how much they should spare for a good set. If you’re out to understand how much these rubbers will cost, you came to the right place.
We’ll get to that and a lot more in a minute but first, how do you tell you need new tyres?
How do I tell my car needs new tyres?
Besides the salient clue of the tyre going flat when you run over a sharp object, there are other tell-tale signs that presage you need a set of fresh wheels. You probably need to check your car tyres to see whether they need replacement if:
- You notice your treads have worn out or stopping distances are increasing.
- You hear constant vibrations from the steering wheel or the body of the car.
- Your car starts showing decreased handling ability.
- You hear a shrill when negotiating bends.
- The steering wheel of your car appears to be pulling in one direction.
Some of these signs are related to other problems, so do a careful inspection and only move to get new tyres if you are convinced they need replacement.
What should I do when I need new tyres?
They are two things to do when you need to replace your tyres. The first is getting the correct details of the tyres that fit your car, and the other is actually replacing them.
Start by noting the most important elements, such as size, load rating, and the brand.
The first set of numbers on the side of your current tyres will help you figure out the tyre size that fits your vehicle. The next set of numbers specify additional details like the load and speed ratings of the tyre. Once you’ve noted the tyre size and relevant ratings, you can then go shopping.
How much do new car tyres cost?
Unfortunately, there is no definite price for new tyres. Several factors such as type of tyres, the car you drive, the quality of the tyres, size, and the tyre brand will determine the overall price you pay. Like most items, the better the quality, the higher the price. This is why premium tyres cost more than budget tyres.
Narrow or smaller tyres also cost less than thicker and bigger ones because the latter are made using more material. Renowned tyre brands like Michelin and Bridgestone generally price their tyres higher than less popular ones.
So how much do new tyres generally cost in Australia?
The price of a new small car tyre in Australia is around $200. Premium tyres from manufacturers like Michelin have an average unit price of $250, rising to $500 or more. Budget tyres, on the other hand, cost less and have an average price range of $100 to $250 per tyre.
Keep in mind that some car tyres are designed for specific terrains and conditions. These may cost higher than standard ones because manufacturers spend more resources to design and develop them.
The price of a tyre in most shops is typically inclusive of new valves and fitting. However, be sure to confirm; otherwise, you might unknowingly incur an extra charge. Other services involving tyres e.g. tyre rotation, wheel alignment and balancing, are additional and, thus, not included in the price.
That said, it is a good idea to carry out wheel alignment when fitting new tyres to ensure everything is in order. The cost of this service varies depending on your car make and model. On average, it will set you back between $70 and $120. Cars with complex suspension systems will be on the costlier end, whereas the older models whose suspensions are much easier to work with will cost less.
If you are not sure how much a new tyre for your vehicle will set you back, you can ask a mechanic for an estimate. You can alternatively use online tyre comparison sites on the internet to help you get the right price range for the tyre you want.
Should I consider cheap alternatives?
Your car’s ideal tyres may seem expensive, but they will definitely be worth it. You may be tempted to go for cheaper ones to save a few dollars, but that will likely jeopardise your safety on the road.
Cheap budget tyres are usually made of a relatively harder rubber which is much simpler to manufacture hence the low price. The rubber used in premium tyres is much softer and providers better handling as well as fuel efficiency.
When should I replace my car’s tyres?
You should start thinking about replacing your car tyre immediately you notice something is amiss with it, or you have any indication that the tyre is at the end of its useful life. This is incredibly important for keeping you safe on the road.
A good tyre lasts for an average of two or three years, but this period can vary depending on the terrain you drive in, how much driving you do, and your general driving habit. For instance, if you’re an aggressive driver, your car tyres will likely get worn out faster.
Note that your tyres can still get worn out before their estimated time range life span, so don’t wait until the time lapses before getting new ones. As good practice, check your tyres each time you take out your vehicle for maintenance. It is easier to carry out a visual inspection on car tyres since they aren’t hidden like other components. You can touch them and feel the tread surface to check the tread depth, wear, and if they are still in shape.
Is it possible to buy only one tyre?
Yes, it is possible to buy only a single tyre. You can be caught in a situation where you only need one tyre e.g. when you want a spare tyre for your 4×4 vehicle or when one of the tyres on your car becomes flat.
The majority of the tyre shops in Australia will sell you a single tyre if that’s what you need. However, in some cases, it might be better to buy a set of four tyres all at once if your budget allows. This could be the case when you want to replace all your vehicle’s tyres that have become worn-out.
Just as with items on a supermarket shelf, you can also save some money when shopping for tyres. There are a couple of ways to go about it.
First, you can opt for bulk purchase as some tyre store give offers when you buy a set of tyres at the same time. The common offers are discounts that feature considerable price slashes and the standard ‘buy three or more and get one for free’ deals.
Consider a mobile tyre fitting service (like Tyroola) that may save you money on the cost of the tyres thanks to their online store, as well also saving you time in getting them fitted.
You can also save money by watching out for car tyre deals and making the most of them as soon as they arise. Next time you plan on getting a new tyre, consider checking if the tyre brand or tyre shop has an offer.