How Much Are Run Flat Tires? Are They Worth It?
In today’s day and age, there are many different types of tires you can choose from. If you own a performance car and you want to make the best of it, a performance tire is likely your best choice. If you want the quietest and most comfortable ride possible, you ought to go with a touring tire.
However, if you want the ability to keep driving even if you puncture a tire, a run-flat tire is your only choice. So, how much does a run flat tire cost?
Run Flat Tire Cost
A run-flat tire tends to cost around 30%-50% more than a regular non-run-flat tire. This means that you can expect to pay around $150-$200 for a lower-end run-flat tire that isn’t going to give you the best experience. If you want the best run-flat tires on the market, you will often have to pay $500 or even more per single tire.
All in all, it makes sense to go for a run-flat tire as the added flexibility you get from it can often be a lifesaver if you get a flat in a remote area.
What Are The Benefits Of Run-Flat Tires?
- Added Control
- No Need For A Spare Tire
Do Run Flat Tires Offer Better Control?
Yes, they do. Sometimes you will get a puncture while driving and you won’t even be able to tell until you start losing control. If you go over a sharp object while going at high speeds, there is a great deal of chance that you will lose control and even crash. Run-flat tires are designed to offer you more control even if you don’t notice that you had a puncture.
Even if you do notice a puncture immediately, you will still be able to continue driving in a much safer manner. All in all, the control you get from a run-flat tire is substantial both when the tire is untacked and especially when the tire is punctured.
Are Run Flat Tires More Durable?
Run-flat tires are constructed using stiffer rubber compounds that are able to withstand heat much better. This is vital when a puncture happens as the inner friction of the tire isn’t going to reach dangerous temperatures if you aren’t driving too fast. Run-flat tires also tend to have stiffer sidewalls that are able to go over rougher surfaces without compromising tire structural integrity.
These stronger sidewalls take all the abuse when the tire eventually punctures and this is likely the greatest structural difference between a normal tire and a run-flat tire.
Are Run Flat Tires Safer?
Yes, they are. It is said that more than 30,000 accidents happen every year due to tire-related issues, and the most dangerous tire-related issues are indeed punctures. As such, having the confidence to keep driving when you get a puncture in itself is a huge safety boost. Because run-flat tires are able to withstand the weight of the car when the tire is punctured, you can only imagine how strong they are while properly inflated.
You are far less likely to get a tire slipping off the wheel if you are sporting run-flat tires which also means that your cornering experience is going to be safer.
Are Run Flat Tires More Convenient?
One of the most noticeable benefits of a run-flat tire is that you don’t have to stand by the side of the road to change a flat tire. A run-flat tire enables you to drive around 50 miles up to 50mph without worrying that you will lose control or damage your wheels. Either way, always be sure to follow the specific recommendations that come with each individual run-flat tire.
Changing a flat tire by the side of the road is also really dangerous, especially during rainy or foggy nights when visibility is at its lowest.
Do You Need A Spare Tire If You Have Run Flat Tires?
Having a full-size spare tire in your trunk is always going to be the best choice as it enables you to drive without limits and a specific speed limit. However, if you are not often driving long distances through remote areas, you can rely on having just run-flat tires and no spare wheel in the trunk.
This means that you will have more space in the trunk for your luggage and that your car is going to be lighter. This can make a difference in your fuel bills after a long while. It may not be much, but everything counts these days.
What Are The Drawbacks Of Run-Flat Tires?
- The Price
- Worse Ride Quality
- Not The Best For Slippery Surfaces
- Useless When Punctured In A Remote Area
Are Run Flat Tires More Expensive?
With all the raising prices these days, it is becoming rather difficult to buy the best products out there. Sometimes we have to compromise when it comes to the price which isn’t really a good idea when it comes to tires. However, run-flat tires are indeed more expensive which means that you can expect to pay up to 30% or 50% more as opposed to a regular tire.
If you consider that you need to buy all four tires at a given moment, these price hikes can make all the difference in the world.
Are Run Flat Tires Less Comfortable?
With all the added stiffness, control, and stability, you will have to pay a price that comes in form of subpar ride quality. This is why many people aren’t all that fussed about run-flat tires as they tend to be noticeably less comfortable. Sure, top-end run-flat tires made by premium brands are not nearly as uncomfortable, but these cost a fortune.
These differences are most apparent when driving at highway speeds which is also a bummer as run-flat tires are intended mostly for those who spend most of their driving time on the highway.
Can I Repair A Run-Flat Tire?
When a run-flat tire punctures, you can’t repair it because its structural integrity has been compromised. This is also a significant drawback to run-flat tires because you can patch most other tires if the damage isn’t too severe or too close to the sidewall. Be that as it may, Goodyear has recently come out with a run-flat tire that can be repaired by a trained Goodyear technician.
Are Run Flat Tires Good For Slippery Surfaces?
A non-punctured run-flat tire can do its job on wet and slippery surfaces without any issues, but this tends to change when a run-flat tire punctures. Because a punctured tire is a lot more flexible than an inflated tire of any kind, it may be a bit tricky to maintain traction at all times. Either way, if you drive slowly and safely, this is not going to pose any issues.
What To Do When A Run Flat Tire Punctures In A Remote Area?
If your run-flat tires get punctured in a remote area, far from any civilization, then it makes little to no difference as all run-flat tires are designed to be driven usually up to 50 miles when punctured. Some say that if you drive slowly, you can drive with a punctured run-flat tire for longer, but that is not the case. As such, it’s never a good idea to drive on a punctured run-flat tire for too long.
What Are The Best Run Flat Tires?
- Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus
- Michelin Primacy MXM4 ZP
- Pirelli Cinturato P7 Run Flat
What Makes A Good Run Flat Tire?
A good run-flat tire is one that maintains all the benefits commonly associated with run-flat tires but is also comfortable, quiet, and not overly expensive. Because these qualities come with a premium, there aren’t too many run-flat tires that fit this description. It’s also worth mentioning that, objectively speaking, only premium tire brands make really comfortable and quiet run-flat tires.
Do I Need Run Flat Tires?
In the past few years, run-flat tires are becoming more and more common because they somewhat negate the need to have a spare tire in the trunk. Be that as it may, not everyone “needs” run-flat tires. If you are someone who spends most of your driving time in the city where you can easily replace a flat tire or call for assistance, you are better off without paying for a run-flat tire.
On the other hand, if you are often driving long distances and you can’t fathom changing a flat tire beside the road, you should invest in a run-flat tire. Even so, having a full-size spare is always going to be the best option.
A run flat tire costs around $150 to $500, or even more if you want the best run-flat tires money can buy. The necessity of run-flat tires can be debated endlessly, but you can’t argue against being able to continue driving when you get a puncture. If you add more control and more safety on top of that, it quickly becomes apparent why so many people prefer run-flat tires.
Either way, if you want to know more about the best run-flat tires you can buy, be sure to read our “Top 11 Best Run Flat Tires” article.