Buying used merchandise from a private seller online or through local classified ads might be the easiest and cheapest way to procure inexpensive tires. You could end up with a really great deal upon buying from an honest person looking to unload some old, unwanted tires. The tires, however, are still secondhand. So, you should take a few additional measures to ensure your good deal really does end up actually being good.
Evaluate the Condition of the Tires
Purchasing used tires from a private seller is rarely problematic when you have the experience to perform a solid inspection on the rubber. Unfortunately, unless you are versed on how to tell if a tire is in good condition, you won't be able to pick up on the defects. Ascertaining the age of the tires is also important since older tires could be worn and prone to blowouts.
The best advice available here is to take the tires to a service like Action Al's Tire Company for installation. Prior to the tire installation process, a mechanic could perform both an inspection and evaluation of the tires.
If the tires aren't in all that great of a condition, you should get a refund from the seller. The not-so-positive return trip is going to be a little easier provided you did two things prior to the sale.
Create Your Own Receipt for the Sale
Prior to buying anything, create a legible blank receipt form on a computer. The receipt/bill of sale should include terms detailing what factors guarantee a refund on the purchase.
Fill out the receipt on your own and request the person hand you a driver's license or other form of identification. This way, if the tires fail and cause an accident, you know exactly who to contact and what his/her actual residence is.
Purchases the Tires with Credit Card Checks
If a credit card company extends consumer protections and insurance to purchases made with a credit card check, using the checks might present a backup strategy if the seller is unable to refund your money if things go wrong. The aforementioned receipt provides you with the necessary evidence the credit card company will likely request about the purchase.
Your job is still not done though.
Consistently Check the Condition of the Tires
Just because the sale went through easily and the tires have worked fine for several months does not mean your job is done.
Have the tires rotated and inspected every time the vehicle is due for an oil change. This way, you always know exactly what the condition of the tires is at all times. Remember, the tires are used and you must stay on top of their condition more than would be the case with brand new ones.