Many consumers pride themselves on only buying products made in the USA, including their tires.
However, when it comes to tires, only a handful of American companies even exist. They’re also more expensive than imported tires.
So while American-made tires tend to be a bit pricier, are they superior tires?
Today, we’re going to plunge into this theory and see what’s at the bottom of it.
Let’s get started!
What Does It Mean for Tires to Be American-Made?
Tires that are American-made means the manufacturer produces them inside the borders of the United States. However, some consumers take this a step further and don’t buy from foreign businesses, even if they manufacture in the U.S.
The United States produces many tire brands. However, the parent company may be from another country. If American-made tires weren’t already in short supply, tacking on an additional filter reduces them even more.
Are American-Made Tires Superior?
American-made tires tend to have a reputation amongst drivers as being some of the best on the market. However, they also are some of the most expensive. American-made tires are made with high-quality products and some of the best technologies in the world. As a result, they come with a premium price tag.
On the other hand, consumers looking for budget-friendly options will often settle for the cheapest option. These are often of lesser quality and more prone to issues. However, some fantastic budget-friendly tire options can get the job done.
While American-made tires are fantastic, they’re not perfect. Just because your car is rolling on tires produced in the USA doesn’t mean you can forget about them. Some leading causes of tire blowouts are a lack of maintenance and driving with improper tire pressure. If you fail to maintain your American-made tires, they’ll disappoint you just as much as a cheap set of foreign tires.
Who Makes the Best Tire in the United States?
If we consider American-owned tire companies that produce tires in the USA, there are only a couple of options. The two brands that meet this requirement are Cooper and Goodyear. Both of these businesses produce their tires in the United States to the highest possible standards.
It’s important to note that these two companies provide tires all over the globe. As a result, they also have plants all over the world too. However, the tires you see from these brands in the United States were almost always produced in the United States.
How Do You Tell If a Tire Is Made in the USA?
If you want to know if your tire is American-made, you’ll need to look at the tire code. You’ll find this interesting code on the side of just about any tire. This code tells you the specific information regarding the tire. By reading the code on the sidewall of the tire, you can know the tire’s age, size, and maximum speed. What you may not know is that it also tells you where the tire was made.
The Tire Identification Number (TIN) is a three-digit code that follows after the letters DOT on a tire. The first pair of letters and numbers is the code for the plant that produced the tires.
Pro Tip: You can use a Tire DOT Plant Code chart to identify exactly where your tires were made.
Where Does the US Import Tires From?
The United States imports a tremendous amount of tires from other countries. However, we receive most of our tires from China. Exporting tires from China is a massive industry and topped more than $15 billion in 2021.
However, over several years, Consumer Reports tested 172 tires and discovered that they were from 26 different countries. These countries included Canada, France, Hungary, Japan, and Mexico. While China dominates the industry, Thailand and Germany help to round out the top three.
Which Countries Make Best Tires?
Some countries are better than others when it comes to tires. Whether it’s the manufacturing process or the materials they use, you can quickly tell the difference when you see them in person and touch them. When it comes to the best countries for tires, Japan (Bridgestone), France (Michelin), USA (Goodyear) are some of the best tires on the market.
If you keep up the maintenance on these tires by rotating them regularly, checking the tire pressure, and avoiding road obstacles, they’ll last for years in most circumstances. You’ll enjoy a smooth and comfortable ride with minimal road noise. In terms of overall driving experience, you couldn’t ask for better tires.
Are American-Made Tires Worth It?
American-made tires are fantastic, and we always encourage consumers to show a bit of patriotism and support their national economy as much as possible. However, American-made tires come with a premium price, which isn’t necessarily the best option for everyone. If you’re looking for new tires on an old car that you’re struggling to keep running, investing big bucks in tires isn’t likely worth it.
On the other hand, if you’re logging thousands of miles each year and want to do all you can to maximize comfort during the ride, American-made tires can be worth the extra pennies.
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