Costco offers great deals on tons of things for both your home and your vehicle, but shopping there isn’t as easy as just walking in.
Costcos require memberships to shop at their stores, but does that include their tire centers as well? Do you need a Costco membership to buy tires there?
Costco’s rules state all decisions are made by the individual tire centers, but most of them won’t install tires unless you’re a member. Some of them will sell you tires you can leave with to install yourself, but again, it’s at the discretion of each individual Costco tire center.
Even members can’t just get them to install tires on any car they’d like. They’ve got to let them know which car they’d like to put their new tires on while they’re buying them.
Costco won’t let you leave with their tires unless they’ve installed them on your car. So, you shouldn’t try to buy any from them unless you’ve got a membership there.
If you try to buy some without a membership, Costco might not let you get them installed. You’ll have to pay an $18.99 fee per tire if they don’t install them for you.
You also have to tack any taxes charged by the city on top of that fee, too.
They’ve standardized which tires they’ll install if you’re not buying a full set.
If you only buy 2 of them, they’ll put them on the rear axle first.
You don’t have to worry about that if you’re driving a vehicle with a single axle, though.
If you want to learn more about the warranty that Costco provides on their tires, make sure to take a look at my full guide on the Costco tire warranty!
Snow Tire Rules at Costco
Costco has a wide variety of snow tires that are good for winter driving if you live somewhere cold. You have to follow all their rules if you’d like to get some from them, though.
You can buy 2 snow tires at a time if you’ve got a rear-wheel-drive car.
They’ll let you install them both on the rear axle, so they’re the ones delivering power.
Everyone has to buy 4 wheels if they’re driving a 4WD vehicle.
This also applies if your car has an AWD transmission, too.
Only tires that meet or surpass your car’s speed rating will be installed. You can check your car’s speed rating by looking in its manual, most of the time.
Replacing them on a 4WD can be a little tricky sometimes because you’ve got to make sure their treads match. Sometimes, Costco will let you buy 2 tires for them at one time.
However, you have to make sure the new tires have the same amount of tread as the old ones. If there is more than a 1.5-inch difference, they won’t let you get them.
Costco also limits which tires you’re able to buy according to their load capacity. They’ll only sell tires that meet your car’s load capacity rating.
Why Buy Tires From Costco?
Costco has some of the best prices when it comes to new tires. However, you can find them cheaper at other stores if you’re trying to find the best deal.
That’s not the only reason people are shopping at Costco, though.
Costco also has a ton of other benefits they include with all their tire sales. You can ask them to install new tires for you, and they give you a lifetime maintenance package.
You can ask them to refill the air in your tires for free as long as they’re on your car. They’ll also balance the tires whenever you’re at the store without charging anything.
They’ve got a free tire rotation service as part of their maintenance package as well.
Plus, they will help you if one of the tires has a flat. If they can repair it, it won’t cost you anything.
Each time you visit them to service your tires, they’ll install new valve stems.
Cars that have TPMS may have to pay an additional charge. They’ve got to install different valve stems, so it’s a little more expensive.
Another reason why so many love going to Costco for tires is because they’re filled with nitrogen.
Nitrogen has larger-diameter molecules than regular air, so it doesn’t leak as much.
You can ask Costco to refill your tires with nitrogen, and they’ll do it for free if you bought them there.
Filling your tires up with nitrogen can have a tremendous impact on your fuel economy.
Plus, they’ll stay inflated for longer, improving their lifespans.
The last thing everyone seems to love about Costco is their road hazard warranty.
Anything you buy from them automatically has a 5-year warranty. If your tire fails within that timeframe, you can get a free replacement.
You still have to follow their tire care recommendation if you have the warranty, though. Otherwise, you won’t qualify.
Following it isn’t hard since they’ll provide tire care at no cost. Just make sure you’re following all their instructions if you buy something from them.
Your tires only qualify if they’ve been used under normal conditions, too. So, don’t try to take them off-road if they’re meant for a passenger car.