Tires can be expensive. If a tire on your car blows out or you need to purchase a new set, you have a decision to make. You have to decide whether to invest in new tires for your car or whether you should purchase used ones. Learning the pros and cons of used car tires will help you decide which option is better for you. Here are a couple of the pros and cons of buying used car tires.

Cons of Buying Used Car Tires

As with all products, their drawbacks must be considered before purchasing. When it comes to used tires, the biggest issues include:

Limited Warranty

One of the downsides to buying used tires is that they may have a limited warranty. When you buy new tires, many manufacturers are now warranting their tires for one to six years. This is a lengthy warranty that can give you peace of mind that your tires will function as they should. 


When you buy used tires, the manufacturer's warranty is non-transferable, so you may only receive a limited warranty from the company that sells them to you. In most cases, this is anywhere from 30 days to six months.

Availability Issues

The other downside to buying used tires is that you may not be able to find your size. If you have an older car with hard-to-find tires, or a popular model that other people need, you may run into availability issues. If you need a tire now, you may not always be able to find it right away.

The Perks of Buying Used Tires From a Junkyard

Since there are plenty of perks that come with buying used tires from a junkyard, we're going to cover the most common reasons:

Quality & Safety

Believe it or not, used tires from a junkyard can be as good as new. However, it's important to do a bit of research on the tires you're looking at before you purchase them. On the tire’s sidewall, you can find the tire's serial number to find out how old it is. If the used tires you are looking at happen to be over five years old, they may have already deteriorated enough to render them unsafe for the road. 

In addition to this, check out the tread of the tire. If the used tire has at least 50 percent of its tread, it still has plenty of life left in it. Another thing worth mentioning is that it's important to purchase used tires from a reputable junkyard. This means that they look after their products and know what is safe to sell.


Since millions of tires sit in landfills and contribute to the pollution of our planet, buying used tires from a junkyard helps minimize the long-term problems tires often contribute to. In addition to depleting our natural resources, tires in landfills release harmful chemicals into our water and soil as they decompose. If such tires are burned for fuel, they emit several harmful chemicals into our atmosphere. So, in addition to saving money, buying used tires helps lessen the environmental impact used tires often create. 

Save Money

Sure, one can drop a couple hundred dollars on a single new tire through a dealer or manufacturer, but more often than not one can buy an entire set of new junkyard tires for the price of one. Although junkyard tires may not come with a warranty, several junkyards offer a return policy that will protect a customer in the event the tire/tires underperform. 

If you have a vehicle you don't plan on keeping or have a vehicle you're leasing, junkyard tires are an excellent choice. They're a sensible choice in such situations since you're not investing long-term in something you won't have for very long.

The Lifespan

The other advantage to buying used car tires is that they can have as long a lifespan as new ones if you know what to look for. If you are looking to purchase used car tires, look for tires that are not worn and still have a reasonable amount of tread on them. The more tread the tires have on them, the longer they will last. Paying close attention to this will help you find tires that can last you years, even if they are used.

Buying Used Car Tires: What You Need to Know to Choose a Quality Set

When you head to the salvage yard to pick out a set of used car tires, you can’t just grab the first set you find. Before you buy, make sure each tire in the set features the following characteristics:

Tread depth

To ensure you’re getting tires that have plenty of life left in them, measure their tread depth before you buy. It’s worth picking up a tread depth meter for around $5 at your local auto supply store to make sure you’re getting an accurate measurement. Try to avoid buying tires that measure less than 4/32nds of tread.

Tire age

Since tire manufacturers recommend replacing tires every five or six years, you’ll want to check out the age of each tire, which you can find on its sidewall. Old tires are more prone to cracking and other deterioration that could put your safety at risk on the road. If you find older tires that appear in great shape, they may still be a viable choice, as long as they don’t have any visible defects and the tread depth checks out.

Quality seams

Visually inspect the seams along the sidewall of each tire for bubbling, unevenness, splitting, patching, or signs of plugs. It’s also a good idea to feel along each seam with your fingers to detect minor defects you may not be able to see with your naked eye. If you notice any seem defects, don’t buy the tire.

Getting high-quality used tires starts with the basics listed above, but if you need additional information, check out our blog here for more expert tips.  

ACE Auto Parts: Your Used Tire Professionals

Used tires are not for everyone. But if you have made the decision that they are for you, visit Ace Auto Parts in St. Paul, MN. We sell a huge selection of used auto parts, including car tires and batteries. Visit our website to search our inventory, call us at 651-717-4299, or stop by our salvage yard today.