For the guys already familiar with Tire Rack — maybe the best place to shop for tires online — this post is just a reminder. You can shop for winter tires now and save.
Think about it… When is the best time to shop for Christmas wrapping paper? The day after Christmas. When’s the best time to shop for Peeps? The day after Easter.
So, there are two good times to shop for winter tires. One is around the end of September, just before serious winter driving conditions set in. The other is now, right before the beginning of spring. As we get to the end of winter, tire retailers are going to be offering deals on winter tires, particularly ice and snow tires, so inventory can be cleared out.
You can take advantage of deals on winter tires now and save up to $100 on a set of four tires. Depending on where you live, either mount them on your car now — because, at least in states from Idaho to Michigan to Maine, winter snow and ice are far from over and you’ll still benefit from having secure winter tires on your vehicle — or stick them in storage and put them on your car or truck when winter rolls around again.
Meanwhile, instead of saving 75 cents on Christmas wrapping paper, you’ll have saved a bunch of dollars on winter tires for next season.
If you’ve shopped for tires, wheels, or auto accessories online at Tire Rack before, then you know that they often offer several deals and promotions on tire purchases. Now is no exception. Even if you don’t find a huge sale on your preferred brand of winter tires, you can still save by taking advantage of current special offers. For example, as I write this, Tire Rack is offering:
- A $50 Visa prepaid gift card on the purchase of 4 General tires
- A rebate of up to $80 on the purchase of a set of Goodyear or Dunlop tires
- A $70 Mastercard Reward Card with the purchase of a set of Michelin tires
- A $60 mail-in rebate with the purchase of Pirelli tires — and an entry for a trip to Rome.
Some of these promotions will expire soon, so I recommend not waiting. Click here to see all current special offers available at Tire Rack.
However, even if you miss one of the promotions listed above, Tire Rack will be offering new special offers down the line, so when it’s time to shop for tires, check back with them by clicking the link above.
A top-rated winter tire for snow and ice: the Michelin X-Ice Xi3
Regarding the best winter tires for snow and ice, both Consumer Reports and Tire Rack recommend the Michelin X-Ice Xi3. These top-rated studless tires provide excellent traction on ice while still handling well on clear roads. Customer reviews for the Michelin X-Ice Xi3 on Tire Rack average 8.9 out of 10. The expert testers at Tire Rack rated them numerically high among four top models of winter tires this season — and, as I mentioned, Consumer Reports made them their recommended winter tire as well.
See the video at the bottom of this post for a summary of Tire Rack’s recent winter tire testing.
The Michelin X-Ice Xi3 tires are the third generation of Michelin’s X-Ice line of tires, following the Michelin X-Ice Xi2, which is also highly-rated. In fact, for certain sizes, you can find a good discount on Michelin X-Ice Xi2 ice and snow tires at Tire Rack right now. If you want a deal, check to see if they still have a size of the Xi2 that fits your car.
If you’re interested in the best all-season tires for your car for all the seasons besides winter, see my other posts about the best tires, including this one about Michelin Defender tires.
For those who have never shopped at Tire Rack or have never thought of shopping for tires online, why shop there?
The reasons to shop at Tire Rack can be summed up in four words: knowledge, expertise, service, quality.
The guys at Tire Rack began as tire retailers back in the 1970s. They created one of the first websites for selling tires online way back in 1996, when online commerce was just getting started. As you might imagine, they have refined and added to their website since then, until it is probably the most extensive and complete resource for shopping for and buying high-quality tires, wheels, and auto accessories in the world.
When you first shop at Tire Rack, you may be overwhelmed by the amount of information they make available so you can choose the best tires and wheels for your particular car or truck. You can tailor your shopping experience by following the various lines of navigation they offer throughout their website, from detailed reviews, tests, and summaries of tires to simply enabling you to enter the make and model of your vehicle and suggesting the best tires for it. You can navigate by particular models of tires and by particular brands. You can navigate by season, by rating, by performance, by video reviews, customer reviews, and more. You definitely have all the knowledge you need when making a tire-buying decision at Tire Rack. Along the way, you’ll learn a lot. Your friends may start coming to you with their tire-buying questions…
The team members at Tire Rack are experts on tires. They personally test the brands of tires they sell. You can watch videos of their tire tests and see extensive tire-buying guides. You can read in-depth reports or quick summaries. The Tire Rack technicians spend 80 hours a year in class or in real-world driving situations learning about all the brands and types of tires they offer.
Tire Rack is known for their friendly, helpful, and reliable customer service. They wouldn’t have been in business this long unless they were satisfying a lot of customers. (They have over 18,000 “Likes” on their Facebook page, for instance.) You can read many customer testimonials on their site — and you can tell that a lot of the customer reviews are written by guys (and gals) who know cars.
Finally, Tire Rack carefully selects all the brands and types of products they sell. Everything they sell has to be of high quality — you will not find second-rate or shoddy products at Tire Rack, whether it’s tires, wheels, brakes, headlights, windshield wipers, and so on. Unlike many retailers, they have made their reputation by selling high-quality merchandise, as opposed to just the cheapest merchandise.
Don’t get me wrong, though — the prices at Tire Rack are not high. In fact, they offer some of the best prices on the Web. And their selection of tires is probably better than any particular tire retail store you have in your town.
Getting tires from Tire Rack: the nuts and bolts
How does it work to shop for tires online at Tire Rack? You pick the tires you want and order them. Tire Rack can ship them directly to you or ship them to one of their recommended installers in your area (you’ll usually have multiple choices of installers). If you go to one of their “Price Pledge” installers, you can know when you order your tires exactly how much you’ll pay for installation of your new tires. Tire Rack even refines their carefully-selected list of recommended installers by asking for customer feedback about installers on their website.
Most parts of the United States are within 2-day shipping of Tire Rack’s multiple distribution centers.
When your tires arrive, you will be notified by email (one of several notices you’ll receive as your order is completed). Then you set an appointment for installation, drive your car over and get it done. No muss, no fuss.
I hope you consider getting a good deal now on some top-quality winter tires at Tire Rack. Whether you drive on them for a couple more months or wait to put them on for next winter, you’ll have saved money and you’ll have the peace of mind of knowing you’ve “banked” some safe, high-quality tires for when winter driving once again gets gnarly.
And — like many people who shop there — you may become a customer of Tire Rack for life.
See the following video from Tire Rack for their recent test of four of the top winter tires, including the Michelin X-Ice Xi3: