I saved myself $354 yesterday!

In Uncategorized on May 23, 2009 at 8:03 pm

My car needs new tires. They are bald. The wear bars are flush with my tire tread surface on all four tires. I knew they needed to be replaced when I was having trouble in the snow and slush this winter (yes, I live in Canada, remember?). In fact, I put my car in the ditch twice. Hurray for CAA.

So this spring it was decided I would start the search for new ones. Since I have a lot of luck with things, it turns out my car has a very specific (and pricey!) type of tire. Great.

Yesterday I went through and systematically called every place that came up under Tires in the Yellowpages for the city in which I live. I got quotes from each and every one of them. When I asked for my quotes, I made sure to indicate I was looking for the best price and asked if they had any specials. Several of the smaller places let me know well in advance that it may not be likely they could match a larger distributer’s price, but still gave me their quotes anyways. One even brought price down $5 a tire – I appreciated that, especially since it came from a small business owner who’s margins were probably not that large to begin with. One even looked around his shop for a set of used ones that had just come in, but it turned out their weren’t the right size – darn!

The average price I was getting was anywhere between $680 and $800 for a set of brand new tires installed – these were very low quality (generic brand) tires.

Finally, I called a place on the list who informed me they had a set of used tires on hand. Great!

Then they gave me their price.

$50 per tire, including installation.

Ok, what’s the catch. I asked how much life was left on the tire. They guarantee 75% remains on the tire and each one comes with 30 days of warranty. Sounds good to me.

With a quick look online to find out what to look for in a used tire, I head to their warehouse to see them for myself. Turns out they only had one set, but they still held 90% of their tread. Perfect. Next question was to ask when they could install them – they asked me if I would mind waiting 15 mins!

Next week I go and pick up the second half of my new set of used tires. In total, a set of new tires will cost me $226, taxes in. With the sale of an old piece of sports equipment I had hanging around last week that brought in $350 surplus – I still have $124 additional dollars to put towards my debt this week.

Or, alternatively, since I allow $30 a month to be allocated into a Car Maintenance fund, I can just allow that part of my budget to repay the cost of new (used) tires and keep the $350 as a chunk of cash to pay entirely towards my debt. I guess I can play around with how to go about this.

And that’s how you find a bargain. I love it!

And as an update, I looked up consumer reports on the brand of tire I got, and they were rated second overall for private brands of tires. Double bonus.


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