PFT #11 - Personal Finance Tip: Buying Used Tires Online Can Be 50% Cheaper for Your Budget
Updated: Mar 3, 2022
This week we are going to talk about the cost of automobiles. We suspect that most people do not realize that everything centered around the cost of owning and maintaining cars collectively can be the most expensive of all items in the monthly budget. There is the auto insurance, gasoline, and washing the car as well as the car note.
For example, according to Credit Karma, the average monthly car payment in the budget was $568 for a new vehicle and $397 for used vehicles in the U.S. during the second quarter of 2020; and according to Experian credit data, the average lease payment was $467 a month in the same period.
Now throw in maintenance and mix in some teenagers into the driving family, the costs really begin to add up. Yeah, and kids tend to make mistakes which leads to higher auto insurance costs to start and if they get into accidents or get tickets if it compounds the situation.
Okay so, this sounds depressing.
So let’s roll with it; and what we’re speaking about are tires. Before too long tires need to be replaced.
So when it comes to replacing tires, they can cost anywhere $500 - $1,000 depending on the brand, tire rating, size and other factors. So that’s expensive.
So what we always like to speak about are hidden ways to improve your personal finance by cutting costs while getting a quality product. So what people do not commonly think about is buying used tires.
The first thing you need to determine is when you need a replacement. So here’s a tip:
Using a penny, If Lincoln's entire head is visible, the tire is worn to approximately 2/32" and is considered legally worn out in most States.
Now, new tires typically are 10/32" to 11/32" for their original tread depth and winter and/or snow tires and light truck tires typically are deeper. Hence, you can choose a depth range that works for you.
So when shopping, there are a handful of great websites where you can buy gently used tires such as bestusedtires.com and the cool thing is that they often are half the cost of new ones.
Plus they are shipped directly to your door and then you can have them mounted and balanced at your local tire center for a small cost.
So we think this is something that you may consider in the never ending highway of automobile cost in your budget.
David and I with three kids estimate that we’ve replaced tires 10 times over the last 10 years and we have saved several hundred dollars by choosing this path . . . and so can you!
So that will do it for the personal finance tip of the week.