Tire Rotation - New Costco policy?? -s : | platizazvonok.ru
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-09-2012, 01:01 PM Thread Starter
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Tire Rotation - New Costco policy??

I just took my Sonata to Costco for the "free" tire rotation that one is supposed to get when you buy tires from them (as I did).

The front tires were worn more than the back tires - measured at less than 1/16" difference - this is I why I took the car in. Visually, all the tires look like new.

They said they couldn't do a rotation because of the differential wear - said I had to buy new tires (I had paid $200 a pop for the old ones).

They also noted that the car had scratches on it when brought in - the car was, and is, thankfully still in mint condx.

Lastly, they were going to cross rotate the tires as per the Hyundai manual, even though the tires were clearly marked as "directional" (not to be cross rotated .

Bottom line: I took the car to a local garage and had them rotated by the guy who does the state inspections. He commented that the old tires looked as good as new and thought Costco had gone crazy.

Query? What is going on here? It looks to me like Costco is using all the "free stuff" to get people back in to sell tires to. I found hundreds of similar views and complaints on the 'Net.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-09-2012, 01:36 PM
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Simpler to rotate your own. Takes me 30 minutes and I don't have to leave home.

As to Costco - they are are drugs or should be.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-09-2012, 02:35 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by cbx4evr View Post
Simpler to rotate your own. Takes me 30 minutes and I don't have to leave home.

As to Costco - they are are drugs or should be.
As always it seems - DIY is the way to go. Somebody said Costco is following some sort of theory that the "best tires" always go on the rear of the car.

But, on any front engine/front drive car like the Sonata, the primary wear is up front - so the back tires will always be the "best" ones. Go figure. Under that theory you would never rotate tires ( which is the service I got).

Looks like your basic bait and switch - use the promise of free stuff (and they have a long list) to get you in and push new tires.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-09-2012, 09:27 PM
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We have the same policy at the Sam's Club I work at. If the tread difference between front and rear tires is more than 2/32nds of an inch (1/16th), we are supposed to decline rotation service. At my store in particular, we don't have a problem rotating the tires as long as all tires have plenty of tread above the wear bars. If one end has almost new tread, and the other end is almost worn out, we definitely will decline rotation and recommend replacing 2 tires (or all 4 if the vehicle is AWD). The main thing is having best tread at the rear axle, regardless of FWD, RWD, or AWD, to prevent fishtailing when coming into water on the road. You can always control the front end with steering, but you have no control over the rear.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-09-2012, 10:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kn5owa View Post
Somebody said Costco is following some sort of theory that the "best tires" always go on the rear of the car.

That is not theory, it's actually true.

Same principal applies for winter tires. If you only put on two they go on the rear not matter if RWD or FWD.

+1 to Philm's comment above.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-10-2012, 02:51 AM
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I have my Father-in-laws CRV rotated at Costco. If they do not rotate it and have it on record then it didn't happen. Should you need it for warranty replacement you'll be out of luck. He didn't rotate regularly and wore his fronts out in about 30k while rear had half life still. Michelin 50k mileage warranty was garbage. To top that off since his CRV is AWD (actually front until it senses slip) he also trashed his differential. $450 for new tires, $1,000-ish for differential was not a cheap lesson for him. I now take it in every 2 months and have them rotate. I've also purchased 2 new tires at less than 1/2 price when they prorated the ones they were not able to fix on flat repair (gotta love construction sites).

One part of their policy that REALLY irks me is the fact that they won't fix flat tires you didn't buy there even for a fee. I wrote letters to manager and HQ and pointed out my numerous tire purchases. Lets say I just bought a new car and it has less than 1,000 miles on it and I get a flat in their parking lot they won't repair it. I don't care if I didn't buy it there, not looking for free repair, charge me the $20 and fix the F'n thing. Maybe I'll be more apt to buy from you next time instead of Tirerack when I do need new ones!

As for the new on the rear......worn anywhere sucks. Yes it sucks when the rear comes around (just watched a guy 2 days ago on an exit ramp get slammed when he spun out in the rain) but for always being able to control with steering I think not. When my front tires wore down I hydroplaned and drifted lanes a lot more than when I swapped front with rear.

Summer, rain, winter I always try to keep my best tread up front because I notice it in the poor conditions and stopping/turning is my priority (but then I'm only max 2/32" difference anyway) and replace all 4 when they get to 4/32".

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-10-2012, 03:12 AM
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Buy tires somewhere else. I've been buying tires at discount tire for years, becouse of free lifetime rotate and balance, and good customer service. I'm going to buy 4 new tires from them by the end of summer, since my crappy made-in-China kum-hos are near the wear bands after 36k, but have worn very evenly with rotations every 10k. Never had a issue with discount pro rating warranty on tires, or taking advantage of the extra road hazard warranty when I had a tire blowout and the tire could not be repaired. Read the fine print before you buy tires. I want the General Altimax tires, since i do not live where it snows. I will not buy Michelin tires again, becouse not only are they expensive, they also wear fast, and Michelin will not honor treadwear warranties, fyi.

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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-10-2012, 09:32 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by philm00x View Post
The main thing is having best tread at the rear axle, regardless of FWD, RWD, or AWD, to prevent fishtailing when coming into water on the road. You can always control the front end with steering, but you have no control over the rear.
If you have a fwd car, front engine, the front tires will wear faster the minute the car leaves the showroom -

So, the best tread will always be at the rear.

Then why rotate? Leave 'em alone and the best tread will always be in the rear and you will need new tires very quickly.

I think Costco's policy is lawsuit driven - you will always make money and never get sued for selling new tires. Having anything to do with used tires, repair, rotating, or anything else is an invitation to lawsuit. So Costco simply does not honor their "after the sale" service pitch.

P.S., I took the car directly to a state inspection station - they found nothing wrong with the tires, stated that they looked as "good as new".

As to possible danger, I would worry far more about worn tires on the front than the rear. The fishtailing/water thing is a nuisance - a blowout on the front could be a killer. I have seen this reference to fishtailing in the water on the 'net before. Are people using their cars as boats?
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-10-2012, 11:10 AM
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Costco are not mechanics. They are kids who know nothing about cars. Do not bring your car there ever. Just do your own tire rotations and you will be safer.


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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-11-2012, 01:51 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by pare_john View Post
Costco are not mechanics. They are kids who know nothing about cars. Do not bring your car there ever. Just do your own tire rotations and you will be safer.
Good advice - And from the number and overall nastiness of the complaints I am seeing about Costco's tire policies on the internet, it looks like they are leaving the door wide open for a class action lawsuit.
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