- Dec 28, 2006
The previous two times I bought tires I got them online and had them mounted and balanced at local shops. The first time was in late 2008 and I used a local used tire shop and the cost was around $50. In early 2011 I used a local service station that really was a 2 person mom & pop operation and paid $48. So when my Coopers arrive at the house, I throw them in the trunk and head over to the mom & pop station. It's closed. I stop by one other place on the way home - the guy is sitting in the shade, not a single customer and wants $85. I ask him if he'd take $50, he said $70 and I'd have to take the old tires with me. He had no customers and no cost associated with selling me tires. Pure labor and he wouldn't take $50. Okay, I head back home and start calling local shops. Two shops will not mount other people's tires and I get quotes of $65, $81, $90, & $105. I look on Walmart's TLE web page - $13/tire with an additional $1.5/tire disposal fee. I think about the horror stories and worry about the possibilities, but decide to give them a shot. So my wife goes with me and we head over today. There are 2 tire jobs ahead of us, it's shift change and the women that puts the orders in the computer wants to leave so she gets the guy doing oil changes to take care of me. Not building my confidence, but I leave the key and we go wonder around the store. End up in the waiting room and the guy that does the tire work comes in. He tells me he's about to start and asks if I want the old tires - I tell him no. I watch through the window and he 'looked' like he knew what he was doing. All four mounted and then balanced, lugs checked with torque wrench. Almost 3 hours, but car is done so I head out and my wife pays the bill. We get home and I get the receipt from her to put in the file (free rotation every 7,500 miles) and notice that they only charged for the mounting and tire disposal. $28 at Walmart v. $65 at the cheapest mom & pop (very rude on phone and not open on Saturday). I'm not sure why the local guys are charging so much now. I really do like to support local business, but they should at least act like they WANT my business. High prices, rude, and lazy was my unfortunate experience with the locally owned shops. Didn't realize I was going to ramble forever - sorry for the long post.