family,  family travel,  Travel

Buying Tires – What do You Need to Know?

Buying tires involves more than just going out and picking the first thing you see. It’s actually quite involved as I found out recently. From getting the right size to picking the tread to finding a good price, buying tires requires some forethought to make sure you get the right tires for your vehicle, your area of the world, and your driving conditions.

Bald Tires are Not Safe

My tires have been bald for quite some time. Last Christmas, right before we left for Miami and a winter cruise, the regular service person I deal with warned me I needed new tires.

Where to Start?

Frankly, I had no real idea where to start so I began researching quickly. I looked on line and I checked various brands and the reputation of each and I talked to my friends about what tires they had and why. My good friend Margarita Ibbott of DownshiftingPro.com spoke highly of her Sailun Tires.

Then of course I asked Facebook too. I got a dozen different opinions there. It was actually quite overwhelming and so was the cost quoted to me at the service centre I trust to handle my repairs and maintenance.

Ask Friends and Family

I filtered through all of the input from friends and family and I asked my husband for his thoughts on what was needed for the family van too. I narrowed it down a bit by checking my current tires to see the size needed.

Two brands kept popping up and Sailun Tires  was one of the brands. I heard good things from friends who had them and I knew of their on line reputation.


Sailun was PTPA tested and approved and the brand had a great reputation on line with the Moms and Dads I know. I also knew that Sailun was on social media interacting regularly with their customers and frankly, I really like that.

How Do I Choose?

My purchasing choices are sometimes impacting by things like that. Does a brand have an on line presence? How do they use social media? Are they on twitter? Instagram? That all matters to me because it shows that a brand is smart and that they have a personality on social media, and also it shows me that they are not afraid to interact with their customers. It was a bit of work to find the tires I needed to keep my van on the road safely carrying my family back and forth every day, but in the end there’s a lot riding on tires so it’s an important purchase and I needed to be informed. Here’s what I discovered.

Buying Tires Made Easy

Buying tires is never really easy. But it can be easier. There are a few things to remember when picking out tires that can help you avoid needless headache and hassle.

Start by Checking Your Current Tires

One of the easiest ways to take all the mystery and guess work out of purchasing new tires is checking to see what you already have. Make note of your vehicle’s make and model and you can start searching web sites for replacements.

Check Your Owner’s Manual

Your vehicle’s owner’s manual will come with recommendations on the type of tire that you should get. Your owner’s manual will tell you the type and rating of tire that will fit your vehicle best and provide the best gas mileage and wear, so be sure to check it before buying tires.

Get the Right Tire for the Job

You can find all-terrain treads, treads made for snowy conditions, treads made for wet driving, and more. When you’re buying tires, pick the right ones for your driving needs. Give some thought to where you are driving and what the season is. Winter Tires are completely different than all season tires.

Shop Around

After you’ve found the tire that’s right for your vehicle, don’t just go out and get the tires from the first place you find. There can be significant variations in pricing from store to store, and from web site to web site too. You can sometimes find great deals on tires at discount club stores. Many stores these days also offer price matching. Shop around and you’ll get the best deal.

Road Trips are Not Negotiable

With so many road trips happening all summer long, it’s important to me that I can trust the tires that I am using to transport my family back and forth to the beach, to Ontario Parks and even to the airport.

As a travel blogger and writer, sometimes I get very short notice and I am expected to be at the airport for a trip quickly. That can be hairy enough packing and arranging everything personally and professionally before I head down the highway to the airport. Clearly, I don’t need to add worry about whether my tires will get me there or not.

Buying Tires Isn’t Brain Surgery, but it Requires Time and Patience

If you’re buying tires, these tips can help you shave some time off of your search. Always begin by checking the manual and the tires that you already have on your vehicle. After that you should have no problem buying new tires that fit your vehicle.

This is part one of a two part series on buying tires. Stay tuned for the second part next week about what I chose for our family minivan and why. I received a set of Sailun Tires for consideration in this series. My opinion is all my own and it is also truthful. 

Mom of two beautiful active girls, traveller, fitness junkie, social media consultant, and keeper of the sanity.


  • Lynda Cook

    When it comes to anything with our cars I’m so happy to be married to a mechanic, he looks after all of that, in fact he just put new rims and tires on his truck and he was so proud and happy how good they looked on his truck, and I’m like ya ok they look fine, lol I just can’t seem to get all excited like he does over tires..lol

    • paula schuck

      That’s great. My brother in law is a mechanic too at Toyota near Cambridge. It’s a good skill to have and saves lots of money. That’s a very useful husband you have!

  • Jeanette

    These are absolutely spot on tips. When it comes to tires I do not feel around with anything other than what is recommended. You don’t want cheap especially on your car.

  • Judy Cowan

    Good tips, tires are definitely a very important part of your car so you need to make sure you get the right ones for the type of driving you do.

  • Amy Worrell

    Having good tires is so important. Not only for your safety but it saves you money in the long run. Win Win!!

  • Suzanne Rudge

    Thank you for providing all of this useful info Paula. I will be sure to share it with my hubby, cause he is the one who will take care of this stuff, LOL.

  • Annemarie LeBlanc

    Thank you for these tips. Good tires are crucial in ensuring road safety. My brother has always been the one to choose the best ones for my car. I will show him this post too.

  • Dogvills

    These are very helpful tips. Buying great quality tires are very important. I haven’t heard of this brand before. I will check this out.

  • Rebecca Swenor

    These are great tips to look for when buying new tires. It is so important to research before buying anything. Comparing prices is an important thing to do as well as knowing what to look for in a tire before purchasing. Thanks for sharing the tips.

  • Kathy

    When it comes to vehicles, my husband is all over it. He’s the one that deals with all this. He went to school for being a mechanic, so he knows a lot. Great tips for finding tires too!

  • Aeryn Lynne

    Awesome tips! I’m going to keep this in mind when I finally get a vehicle, lol. Tires are one thing that have always baffled me whenever I thought about ownership, there is just so much out there and you need to find the right one to suit your daily needs. Thanks for the tips! <3

  • Monica

    I must admit, in the past, when it came to purchasing tires, I let my hubby do the research and leg work. However, that is not what I should be doing, I also need to take the initiative and become more knowledgeable regarding the whole tire buying process. Thanks for the article and all the great tips, we actually need new tires so maybe I will take the lead and purchase them. Won’t my hubby be surprised!

  • JaMie

    I grew up hanging around a garage (my dad owns one), so I know all about tires. I always keep and eye on my tread and pay less attention to brand names and more attention to tread wear ratings.

  • Ann Bacciaglia

    There are so many different tires to choose from it can be so confusing. I have a set of winter tires and a set of summer ones.

  • ERIN

    I am so thankful my husband takes care of this stuff for me! I could totally shop for tires but it takes too much time, lol!

  • Laura Funk

    Keeping good tread on your tires in Colorado is a must. We are in the tire store often with 5 vehicles but it is so important to know these tips and to keep your car in safe working order.

  • diana

    Very helpful! Buying quality tires are a must. I’ll probably need to buy a new pair of tires later on this year so these tips will come in handy.

  • Elizabeth Matthiesen

    I have both summer and winter tires, they are needed in this area. Good tires are essential to road safety, not just for the driver but for others on the road too.

  • Jay Simms

    This is one of the most stressful things about having a car and maintaining it. I hate going tire searching but it is important to get the best deal and the perfect price.

  • Gregory Willard

    I completely agree that you should go to different shops. My wife was telling me that she might want to get snow tires this year, and I was thinking about it as well. It would be nice to see which shop could give us the same tire for a better price.