Buying and leasing

Buying car tyres online – what you need to know

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There are benefits to buying car tyres online – but there are a few things to watch out for. Source: iStock / MorePixels

Like many countries, Switzerland has a thriving online shopping market. This is nothing new. The Swiss are particularly fond of buying clothes, accessories and electronic items online. Nowadays, you can also buy car tyres from many places on the web. Comparis shows you the quickest way to find the right tyres for your car.

You can find many tyre sellers on the Internet and the range of tyres available is enormous. As a buyer, you can soon become overwhelmed. Discover the easy way to a successful tyre purchase. 

1. The right tyre 

First and foremost, you need to know which tyre is the right one for your car. You can find the information you need from the code on the wall of your old tyre (e.g. 195/65 R15 91T):

195/65 R15 91T: Tyre width – the first three-figure number refers to the width of the tyre in millimetres.

195/65 R15 91T: Profile – the second number indicates the profile or aspect ratio in percent. In our example, the tyre height is 65 percent of the tyre width.

195/65 R15 91T: Rim size – the number after the R tells you the rim diameter in inches ("). This is measured diagonally from rim edge to rim edge.

195/65 R15 91T: Load rating– the last two-figure number refers to the load rating of a tyre.

195/65 R15 91T: Maximum speed – the letter at the end indicates the maximum permitted speed for the vehicle. 

Struggling to find the code on your tyre? Have a look on the door frame, on the fuel cap or in the vehicle manual. Otherwise, the Road Traffic Office will also be able to help – you just need to know the model designation number of your vehicle.

Incidentally, if you find more than one of these codes, they will all be compatible with your car. Just make sure the rim size is the same as that of your current tyres.

2. The right search process

Once you have found the right tyre size for your car, you can start your online search. Bear in mind that the quality of tyres can vary greatly among all the deals out there. Simply choosing the cheapest tyre you find would therefore be unwise. Remember that the tyres are the only point of contact with the road and have a huge influence on driving safety, both in summer and winter. It's therefore advisable to pick out two or three deals that you consider suitable, then find out about the quality and safety aspects. This way, you avoid making a purchase you might regret.

Our tip: check the prices of tyres at your garage and compare them with your online deals.

3. The right quality

The EU tyre label provides a rough guide to quality. Obligatory in Switzerland since 2014, this label provides information about safety (tyre's grip on wet roads), energy efficiency (effect on fuel consumption) and noise levels (external rolling noise). However, there are other product characteristics that are relevant to safety, such as durability, stability and braking characteristics. You are strongly advised to check out the tests carried out by TCS or ADAC before making your purchase.

4. The right online tyre store

When choosing an online store, bear in mind the following critieria:

Right of return: Does the store offer a right of return? Never buy tyres on the Internet that you cannot return.

Tyre fitting centre: You will need a specialist to fit your tyres, so make sure that the tyre seller partners with tyre fitting centres and that these are located nearby.

Additional costs: You usually have to pay additional costs, such as fitting and wheel balancing, on top of the price of the tyres. So make sure you compare these extra costs too. You will usually be charged extra for things like aluminium rims and disposal of your old tyres.

Note that prices differ not just between online stores, but also between the tyre fitting centres that work with these stores.

Customer ratings: Check the latest customer ratings for the online shop. They will give you an idea of whether the supplier is trustworthy and whether other customers were satisfied with the buying process.

Searching for tyres in Switzerland

Would you like to compare multiple suppliers on one platform and set a price alert so you don't miss a deal? Then we recommend the Comparis tyre search engine. Search now for summer and winter tyres that offer the best price-performance ratio – quickly and easily.

Summary

Buying tyres online is not like shopping for shoes, clothes or accessories. You should make sure you do your research first. Buying the wrong tyres could adversely affect your safety on the road. Still feel uncomfortable buying tyres on the Internet? If so, you can always pick two or three deals online and use these as a basis for negotiating with your garage. They will often try to match the online price. In addition, the garage will also check fluid levels, lights and brake pads when changing your tyres, which the cheaper tyre fitters working for online suppliers don’t usually do.

Comparis wishes you a safe journey.