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Basic Tire Change Questions for MS

Discussion in 'Model S: Driving Dynamics' started by iffatall, Jun 2, 2016.

  1. iffatall

    iffatall Member

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    I am nearing 35k miles on my MS with stock 19" Michelin tires from Dec 2013, and am now starting to consider change of tires. With no experience of ever buying and changing tires on a car before, I have some very basic questions.
    1. Which tires to buy?
      Summer? All Season? Quiet? Performance?
      There is already a lot of discussion about this on the forums, and I have been following most of them for a while. So this question is already close to "answered" for me, and I have more or less settled for Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus. But I would appreciate any additional inputs too.

    2. Where to buy from?
      Online? Aspects to consider other than price? Warranty? Also, how do they know how much the tire has been used to validate warranty? Any catch when a tire is on sale?

    3. How to install?
      Does the seller also install the tires? Do I bring the tires to a Tesla SC to install? How much does it cost? Any other considerations? What happens to my old tires?

    I didn't just want to go by what the internet says, suspecting some aspects might be different in case of Tesla.
     
  2. DFibRL8R

    DFibRL8R Member

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    My 2 cents...

    1. Depends on your driving style and priorities. If you favor efficiency (like me), The all season pirellis are a good choice. I just installed them a few weeks ago and have liked there ride, quietness and efficiency. If you have a P85 etc they are probably not grippy enough, Michelin Pilot supersports seem to be a popular choice with the higher performance folks. Based on the fact that you are getting your first set of tires since purchase, I would guess your driving style is fairly conservative!! Unless you drive to Tahoe in the winter, All Seasons (or even Summer tires) should be fine.

    2/3. I bought from Tire Rack online. They have a road hazard warranty standard and will ship to your home or directly to a shop where you will have the tires mounted and balanced. I believe most Tesla service centers will not install models of tires that Tesla does not sell. You could also buy from your local tire shop directly (Costco, Sears etc). You can call and check prices and ask for cost of installation/balancing. They should be able to just keep your existing TPMS on the wheels with no rest required. The shop will dispose of your old tires for a nominal fee. Tires tend to go on sale at different retailers by brand (sale on pirellis/michelin etc) often in the form of a mail in rebate. Try google search. They record the milage of your car when installed and if you need a warranty claim calculate miles driven from there.
     
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  3. roblab

    roblab Active Member

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    My experience with Tire Rack when my tires were on sale, with shipping, and installing at my regular tire place (not Tesla), I saved about a hundred bucks per tire. I put on the very same tires I removed. Now with my new Tesla, which came with Michelins instead of Goodyears, I will probably move "up" to Michelins which have a better Tread Life rating (500). It was worth while to compare ratings with prices, and to wait for sales, which often happens around fall when everyone is buying winter tires. Being from CA, I only use all season.

    Buying from places like Tire Rack, or maybe Costco, can be worth it. Just check the ratings and make sure you are getting what you need (by ratings, I mean the Tread Wear, the Traction, etc. printed on each tire)
     
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  4. iffatall

    iffatall Member

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    Thanks DFibRL8R and roblab for your responses. You really help clarify a lot of questions I had on mind. Now I have a few more :)

    I don't have a P model, just 85. I do drive to Tahoe or other snowy areas in winter, but I figured in most cases I have to mount snow chains anyway, so it should be fine. That is why I never considered summer tires. But do you mean the Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus tires are terrible in wet or light snow conditions?

    How much does it normally cost to get the tires mounted? I just want to have a ballpark figure so I know what to expect. And what about the fee to dispose of the old tires? Is there any way to avoid this fee?

    Also, I was wondering why you mentioned keeping the existing TPMS. Isn't that always the case?

    I think I can wait until fall. I will keep an eye on the tires for sales.
     
  5. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    They are supposed to change out the rubber bits so that it won't leak. The rubber will get hard after it's been on for a tire's life and may crack during the second--particularly in areas with high ozone.
     
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  6. DFibRL8R

    DFibRL8R Member

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    I meant snow. Supposedly the Pirellis have a lower rating for wet traction but I have not had any issues so far in wet conditions in my 60. I considered chains for winter for occasional foul weather use but decided to go with a winter tire instead.

    Cost for mounting/balancing: The shop I just used was about $85 total, the one I used before was about double that for some reason (charged me a fee to re-calibrate the TPMS which seemed unnecessary since I can do that from the touch screen and it isn't even needed if you keep the same TPMS on the wheels).
     
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  7. aus

    aus Member

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    Pretty much every tire shop will match TireRack's price if you ask. So check the price on TireRack and then call a local placed and see how much they're charging. If it's more, as if they'll match TR.

    Typical mounting/balancing price is around $35/hr. Some are less and some are more. Some may want to charge for dismounting and then mounting if you didn't buy from them. Just leave if they try to pull that.

    My local tire shop will do lifetime rotations and balance along with patching or plugs if you bought the tire from them. Also, look for rebates since most manufacturer's have some rebate available for 4 tires.
    .
     
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  8. iffatall

    iffatall Member

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    It is fall, and I am now all set to change my tires. I am going to buy them from TireRack.

    I have one last question though. I just found that the same times are available a little cheaper on Amazon. Is there a catch? I have not come across anyone mention Amazon in the tire related threads here.
     
  9. SomeJoe7777

    SomeJoe7777 Marginally-Known Member

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    I have not bought tires from Amazon, but my questions to them would be:

    a) do they have road hazard warranty like tires you would purchase from a tire shop or TireRack.com?
    b) if they do, and you have a road hazard claim, what is the process with Amazon for claiming the reimbursement?
    c) do they also have proper TPMS modules if you need them?

    My inclination is that a dedicated tire retailer like TireRack.com or Discount Tire might have a better process in place for these tire-specific items than a general retailer like Amazon. If the processes are more convoluted with Amazon, that might be an acceptable trade-off for lower pricing on general passenger car tires, but maybe it's not the best idea for high performance tires.
     
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  10. iffatall

    iffatall Member

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    Got it. I don't think I am going to take a chance here then. Especially because when I looked at it more closely, I found Amazon is actually out of stock and it was actually another seller on Amazon.

    Thanks a lot, @SomeJoe7777 for the quick and detailed response. I was just having some last minute ideas to avoid paying the shipping fee on TireRack.
     

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