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How Much Do New Tires and Wheels Cost? Why Do Some Tires Cost More Than Others?

By Tire Agent Staff

April 14, 2022

new tires in a auto store.jpeg

Take a look around, and you'll notice that the price of nearly everything is going up. Quickly. It's not just gasoline. 

But could a conflict halfway around the globe or a global pandemic actually be the cause of $8 deodorant? Many factors drive inflation that people don't know about, but we'll save that for your family to debate over Sunday dinner (have fun with that). 

You're here to learn about tires, so let's focus on how much it costs for new tires and wheels and why. Stay with us, and we'll also give you some money-saving tips on tires and rims because that's what we suspect you really want to know!

Before we get into the ins and outs of what affects tire prices, we've built relationships with several companies that offer payment plans, which can help offset your costs, whether you're looking to replace 2 tires or 4.


How Much Does a Tire Cost? (Why So Much?)

One factor that affects tire prices is size. More people driving sport utility vehicles (SUVs), pickup trucks, and even larger diameter wheels on sedans and sports cars are one driving force behind increased costs. But that's just the beginning.

Here are more factors that affect the cost of tires and wheels:

Tire manufacturing and raw materials

The expenses to produce tires have gone up in recent years. That includes both economy and performance models. Each has rubber, steel, and chemical components, and those costs have risen. As tire companies research and develop better rubber compounds, those expenses get passed to us, the consumers.  

New technology

Manufacturers try to produce higher-quality tires that offer better fuel efficiency and improved performance and longer tread life. Again, we're talking research and development costs, which in turn increases the price of tires to us lucky folks who drive on them.

Safety and handling

This goes hand in hand with the new technology aspect. Manufacturers are spending more time and money to make sure your tires are safer with superior handling on the road. The safer the tire, the higher the warranty, the better the materials, the more expensive tires will be (generally speaking).

Extended tread life

The longer the tread lasts on your tire, the longer the tire's life. If the tread is too thin, it impacts braking and handling, posing safety risks.

That's why manufacturers are using better materials that extend tread life. This means you might pay more for a new tire, but it will last longer, saving you money in the long run.

Fuel efficiency

It takes more engineering and better materials to produce fuel-efficient tires than standard models. But paying more for models that could save you hundreds of dollars at the gas pump throughout the life of the tires is a smart decision.

Custom tires

Installing custom tires on your ride might cost a pretty penny, but it could turn your vehicle into the envy of the town. Custom tires cost more than standard models due to the extra labor and fine materials it takes to make them.

What Are the Average Prices for Tires?

The cost of replacement tires is highly dependent on the type of vehicle they are for. Consumer Reports conducted a survey recently on cost per tire by car type. Here is the median purchase price paid per tire by car type:

  • Coupe/convertible: $170
  • Minivan: $137
  • Pickup truck/van: $187
  • Sedan/hatchback/wagon: $137
  • SUV: $162

To figure out how much 4 new tires cost, multiply the above by 4. As you shop Tire Agent online for new tires, you can see how much a full set of tires costs, and you can also see how much they'd be if you made monthly payments. 

Depending on your location, the average cost of a tire change ranges from $20 to $35 per tire for installation and balancing. Some installers also charge a disposal fee for old tires. 

What About Replacing Wheels? How Much Do Rims Cost?

Wheels, rims, tires. Hopefully, you already know these are all different things. If you need more clarification, check out our article that explains the difference.

So, how much will it cost to replace the wheels on your vehicle? These prices could vary widely depending on your location and the wheels you select.

But the average cost to replace all four wheels is around $725. This includes labor costs, which average $50 per wheel. Speak to a tire pro to find out the exact prices.

How to Save Money on Tires and Rims

Now for the fun part. Saving money.

You can spend hours researching tire costs, and what you'll find is that most prices for specific models are the same or in the ballpark at most retailers -- even the big box stores. 

So, it isn't regular pricing at different stores that will save money. The key to significant savings is finding sales and rebates.

The best place to find promotions and coupons is on our tire deals page. The next best place is to look on manufacturers' websites; that said, we do all that research work for you. We provide the latest manufacturer rebates, coupons, tire discount codes on our Deals page.   

When Is the Best Time to Buy Tires and Rims?

The absolute best time of year to save money on tires and rims is when retailers have Black Friday sales. You'll find good deals at different times of the year, like Presidents' Day, Fourth of July, and Labor Day. But Black Friday is always a winner.

However, most of us shop for tires after we need them, not before. You've got a flat, your tire tread is worn out, or your car is shimmying like a nervous Chihuahua -- you need new tires now. 

Use our tire matching technology to find the right tires for your vehicle, and compare tire prices for SUVs, trucks, sedans, and some light commercial vehicles. We ship all in-stock tires fast and free; get them as quickly as 2 days!

Photo credit: ID 181028864 ©️Chernetskaya|

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