Car owners know that parts on their cars won’t last a lifetime. Some may need replacement every year, others every few, some depend on the amount o miles you drive, etc. Overall, every part will need to be replaced, including the tires.
As you drive your car, the tire wears down, and the tread reduces, leading to a point where the performance is gone. The same thing goes for age. After 4-5 years, the tire rubber practically dries, leaving you with an unsafe tire.
When the time comes, every owner needs to replace its tires, but where and how are questions. There are tons of shops, but the process needs to start with the purchasing.
There are tons of retailers that you can go to and get a new set of tires. On the other hand, you can also do that from home, using one of the online retailers.
Among the many online tire shops available on the market are Tirebuyer and Tire Rack. Both as very popular, but the question is, which one is better?
What's In This Guide?
What is Tirebuyer?
Looking at the name, you probably have an idea of the type of company Tirebuyer is. Like most other online shops, it came to life in the era where it was popular. Tirebuyer was launched in 2009 and has been providing its services to millions of people around the world.
In the retailer’s lineup, you have tires, like you’d expect, as well as rims. One thing that makes it stand out from the crowd is that it also offers truck, lawn, and trailer tires.
The process of searching for tires is straightforward and won’t take you ages to figure things out. You have 3 options to search: by car model, size, and brand. This is more or less what all the other retailers offer, so it’s not something revolutionary. Things are self-explanatory, and there are slim chances of getting things wrong. If you’re not sure, the support team is there to help you out.
When it comes to available tire brands, Tirebuyer offers models from 22 brands which isn’t too bad. It’s not the most exceptive list on the market, but it covers the popular options, which is what most people are after. You can find tires that range from the cheap to the premium segment.
One thing that makes Tirebuyer unique is in the tire installing department. Like most online retailers, it has recommended tire shops where you can have the tires installed. The thing that makes them unique is the mobile shops. Tirebuyer merged with Tirescanner to offer mobile tire installing services, meaning that you won’t have to travel too far for that procedure. In total, Tirebuyer has over 11,000 tire shops, including the mobile ones, that you can install your tires.
People who don’t mind getting their hands dirty also have the option to install the tires themselves or take them to their favorite shop. In both cases, you can ask to have them delivered to your home, and you’ll be good to go.
What is Tire Rack?
When it comes to online tire retailers, Tire Rack is a company that needs little introduction. Many consider it to be the pioneer of selling tires online, as it was among the first in this industry. The company has over 20 years of experience in the field, meaning that you should expect excellent service.
In Tire Rack’s lineup of products, you can get more than just tires. The retailer also offers a decent range of rims, as well as car parts and accessories. Keep in mind that it’s not a dedicated car parts shop, so you shouldn’t expect to find everything.
Finding tires on Tire Rack is very easy, and anyone can do it with a few information. Initially, you can search by car type or tire size. Alternatively, you can search by tire brand or type. The service offers a lot of flexibility in this regard, and whichever way you choose, you won’t have too many issues.
If you’re unsure which tires to get, you can reach out to Tire Rack’s support team. A representative will help you make the best choice based on your needs and parameters. You can also look around the reviews section, where the professionals review some of the models they have in store. Plus, each model has a review section, so you can take a look at what other owners are reporting for a specific model.
Option-wise, Tire Rack offers a decent variety of tire brands that most people should find satisfactory. The options are decent with 26 available brands but are limited only to passenger cars and commercial tires.
When it comes to tire installation, Tire Rack offers several options, depending on your needs. The ones that most people go for are the recommended shops. Since the retailer is online-only, there are no physical locations where it can install the tires. Instead, it has a list of over 9,000 recommended shops across the US, which will install the tires per Tire Rack’s requirements.
Another option is to have the tires delivered to your home, where you can install them yourself or take them to a shop you use. Both cases are fine, but keep in mind that to install them yourself, you’ll need tools. If you have them but don’t know how to do it, Tire Rack has an excellent guide on the process, meaning that if you follow it, you’ll have no problems.
Regardless of which option you choose, Tire Rack will deliver the tires free of charge, or you can pick them up from one of its locations.
What are the Pros of Tirebuyer?
Tirebuyer, like most other retailers, has something unique that makes it stand out from the crowd. The thing worth mentioning is the mobile services.
The merge between Tirebuyer and Tirescanner meant that you could get the service in your driveway. This is a very nice feature for people that cannot go to the physical shops for various reasons. Instead, they can have the shop come to them.
When it comes to tire shops, regardless if it’s a mobile or a physical one, having more options is always better. Tirebuyer offers you a list of over 11,000 shops throughout the US. As a result, there are slim chances that you won’t find a shop nearby.
Searching for tires can sometimes be a struggle, especially if you’re not well versed in that area. The good news is that Tirebuyer’s search option is very simple to use. There are only a few parameters that you can enter, and you’ll be good to go. If you’re not sure or want to consult an expert, you can reach out to the support team and get some help.
- More than 11,000 recommended tire shops
- Mobile tire services are available
- Easy to use
- Free shipping
What are the Pros of Tire Rack?
Tire Rack is a retailer that doesn’t have any flashy features; it just works and gets the job done. With that said, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have any advantages.
The first one I want to mention is the overall experience when using the service. Searching for the tires is a breeze, and you won’t struggle too much to find the right set. Having multiple options to search is a nice feature for people that don’t know the exact tire size. Since the company had a review section in the early days of its existence, it’s another advantage. You will find tons of reviews on various models that Tire Rack sells. It means that you can get a glimpse of what the professionals are saying about them. Alternatively, you can take a look at the users’ reviews for a specific model.
In terms of the available brands, Tire Rack is far from the leading retailers in this area, but it’s still good. You’ll find tires from 26 brands, which should be fine for most people. Ranging from cheap to premium, there’s a tire for every buyer.
Regardless if you’re an expert or novice, you can utilize the support that Tire Rack offers. A representative will be with you to help you make the best choice possible.
Once the purchasing process is done, you’ll need to have the tires installed. Tire Rack gives you several options, which is another advantage of using the service. There are over 9,000 recommended physical shops, which is the most commonly used option. People schedule a date and time, take their car there, and the job is done.
Some owners already have a tire shop that they use, in which case, they can ask to have the tires delivered to their homes. From there, they will need to take the tires to the shop to have them installed. Alternatively, they can also install the tires themselves if they have the tools. Tire Rack has a very good guide section regarding this.
The last pro of going for Tire Rack is the additional products. Apart from tires and rims, the retailer also offers car parts and accessories. This may not be positive for some people, but having the option to purchase tires and parts from the same store is a nice touch.
- Over 9,000 tire shops
- Excellent support team
- 26 tire brands available
- Offers car parts and accessories
What are the Main Differences Between Tirebuyer and Tire Rack?
In essence, both retailers are pretty similar when it comes to tires. When you start to dig a little bit deeper, you realize that there are some key differences worth mentioning.
I’ll start with the available brands. Tire Rack offers tires from 26 brands, while Tirebuyer has 22, which is fine in both cases, as the most popular brands are already covered. While Tire Rack takes the edge with the number of brands, Tirebuyer offers more variety in terms of applications. Both retailers offer passenger tires, but Tirebuyer also provides truck, lawn, and trailer tires as well. On the other hand, Tire Rack has car parts and accessories.
In terms of shops where you can have the tires installed, both are pretty good at having plenty of those. Tire Rack has 9,000, while Tirebuyer has 11,000. It’s clear that looking at the numbers, Tirebuyer has an advantage, but there is another one. The merge with Tirescanner meant that now Tirebuyer can also offer mobile tire shops, which is the main difference between both retailers.
Simple Tire Available Tire Brands
- General Tire
- Cooper Tires
- Toyo Tires
- Mickey Thompson
- Dick Cepek
- GT Radial
Tire Rack Available Tire Brands
- Dick Cepek
- General Tire
- Power King
Honestly, as hard as I try, I cannot find something big enough so that one retailer is better than the other in terms of customer service.
On the content side of things, Tire Rack and Tirebuyer are very closely matched. There are tons of articles covering everything that a car owner should know or wants to know about its tires. They range from tire reviews, guides on installing tires or checking their health to explaining how they work, and choosing the right ones. Looking at the content, I feel like I’m looking at the same website with a different layout—excellent content, rich with information and guides.
One area with a slight advantage for Tirebuyer is the content about the type of tires that Tire Rack doesn’t offer. There are plenty of articles about lawn, golf, gardening, or trailer tires for people that aren’t sure how they work or how to keep them in good shape.
Sometimes you may get stuck in a situation where the content on the website won’t have the answer to the question you have. In this case, getting in touch with support is the best way to go. Tirebuyer and Tire Rack have excellent support teams that will help you as best as they can. Regardless if you want a recommendation or need something that isn’t available on the site, a representative is just a phone call away.
Winner: Tire Rack
Despite giving the winning title to Tire Rack, the value for both is quite even, except for one thing.
In terms of price per tire, the differences are negligible. You can find tires that are several dollars more expensive with Tire Rack or vice versa. In this regard, both are evenly matched with some very minor differences.
In terms of the tire shops, the prices are dictated by the shops themselves, so it’s not something that either retailer can control. Keep in mind that the prices for the mobile shops are a bit more expensive because you also pay for the service that comes to you.
Discounts are common with both retailers, and depending on the model or season, you can get a pretty big price cut. In most cases, this is when you purchase a set of 4 tires, but you can find some discounts on individual ones.
Finally, the shipping is free on both sides, meaning that this is another aspect where things are identical. One small difference that caused me to give Tire Rack the award is that you can get an additional discount. Even though the shipping is free, you can knock a few dollars off the price if you go to a warehouse and pick up the tires yourself. I recommend this option if you don’t mind doing it and if there’s a warehouse close to where you live.
Use Tirebuyer if:
- You need lawn, tractor, or trailer tires as well
- You want to utilize the mobile tire shops
- You don’t mind having slightly fewer options
- You are after tires or rims only
Use Tire Rack if:
- You want to purchase car parts and accessories
- You want to have more brand options
- You want to have a discount for picking up the tires yourself
- You don’t need other types of tires
Tirebuyer and Tire Rack are both some of the best online tire retailers, meaning that regardless of which one you go for, the experience will be positive. Regardless of the differences, both services are an excellent place to purchase your new set of tires.
There are some areas where one is better than the other, but not by much. Tire Rack, for example, is a retailer that offers more brands than Tirebuyer. On top of that, you can also utilize the service and purchase some car parts or accessories if you need them. Installation is a simple process in one of the 9,000 recommended shops where all you need to do is schedule a time and date.
It’s a similar process with Tirebuyer as well, with slightly more shops. There are over 11,000 recommended shops where the retailer will deliver the tires free of charge. In addition to that, you can utilize one of the mobile shops and have the tires installed at your home.
Price-wise, there isn’t a huge difference, and you can utilize some of the discounts both retailers offer. Combining both aspects and you get excellent value. Tire Rack has a slight advantage where you can get an additional discount if you pick up the tires yourself.
Some people may have a preference towards Tire Rack or Tirebuyer, but at the end of the day, regardless of which one you choose, you can expect excellent service.