How Much Does Balancing Your Tires Cost?


Written by:  Howmuchisit.org Staff
Last Updated:  August 13, 2018

Every cautious driver knows that a balanced set of tires is very important.  Out of balance tires can affect many other components of the car such as the bearings, shocks, and the tire itself.

Wheel balancing is a procedure that analyzes the condition of the tire and if it is in need of an adjustment.  Balanced tires can lead to a smoother ride and reduced tire wear.

Tyre by Sean MacEntee, on Flickr
Tyre” (CC BY 2.0) by Sean MacEntee

How much does it cost to balance tires?

A full rotation will cost anywhere from $18 to $35.

On average, balancing tires will cost about $5 to $15 per tire.

Balancing costs can vary according to the size of the wheel.  The mounting and balancing of a wheel up to 16 inches (a set of 4)  can cost up to $60.  For wheels 17 to 18 inches (set of 4), the cost will be around $85, and for wheels 18 to 20 inches,  can cost as high as $110.

A wholesale club such as Costco will balance your tires for as little as $3 to $4 per tire.  If you have a membership, you may want to check the prices.

According to a forum thread on PassatWorld.com, Passat owners claimed that they had to pay anywhere from $8 to as much as $15 per tire.

Walmart has a lifetime balance package that can cost around $6.50 per tire.

Austin Davis at myhonestmechanic.com said he has seen shops charge anywhere from $45 to $85.

Balancing your tires overview

When you buy new tires, mounting and balancing are often included for life.  If this is an option, make sure that you receive all of the appropriate paperwork.  Some tire retailers also include lifetime rotations, balancing, and flat repairs.

There are shops that will also include hydraulic attachments to prevent damaging the wheel.

During the process, most mechanics today are going to use advanced technology that can help precisely balance the tires.  This technology will not only help balance the tires the right way, but it can also help prevent further damage in the future.  Each tire should be removed and will be placed individually on a balancing machine.  While on this machine, each one will spin to ensure the weight of the tire will be balanced evenly around the axle.  If it detects any imbalance, it will attach a lead weight to make up for the weight difference.

They should also check the tire pressure, the tread depth, wear and the balance of your tires.  They will make sure your tires are suited for the road.

Most jobs should take less than an hour to perform.

What are the extra costs?

If there has been damage to the tire, you will need to pay for the new tire.  See, “How much do new tires cost?

Tires which are purchased from other dealers who are not offering mounting and balancing services may also force you to pay extra for these services.

Some shops may charge an additional cost for the hydraulic attachments.

Don’t forget to add additional taxes and fees.  To play it safe, add around 10 to 20 percent to the quote.

Tips to know:

Experts will recommend that tires should be rotated every 6,000 to 15,000 miles.  This is going to greatly depend on the make, model and age of the car.  To help remember, get your tires balanced after every three oil changes.

Balancing your tires is going to help even out the tire wear as well as make sure that you’re getting the maximum value for your tire investment.

Some experts note that balancing your tires won’t do you any good.  Only balance your tires if you feel any sort of vibration or problem.  Don’t balance your tires just for the heck of it since any deem this as a waste of money.

If you plan on purchasing new tires, try to purchase with a company that will offer a lifetime rotation or balance.  This is a great way to save money down the road.

Remember that experts are going to quote you “per tire.”  Make sure that you ask for a final quote.  If the quote is $13, it’s a good chance that they are trying to say $13 per tire.

If you plan on getting your tires rotated, you may want to ask them to throw in a balance.  Many mechanics will provide a discount since all of the tires will be removed anyways.

How can I save money?

If your tires are already being removed with another repair such as brake repair, it may make sense to rotate your tires at the same time.

Go to the shop or service provider where you have been before.  This may allow you to get discounts on the cost of the labor and other services.  It’s not uncommon to hear shops balance tires for free for those that have had the work done in the past.

Getting your car regularly checked and serviced can help you avoid unnecessary repairs and costs.

Only buy tires from stores that offer free mounting and balancing.

Some bigger named tire shops may balance your tires with no strings attached.  The reason for this offer is their hope that you will become a loyal customer and come back to them in the future.

Check major companies websites for coupons and deals.  It’s not uncommon to find deals that include an oil change and wheel balance all in one.  This is a fantastic way to save a good amount of money.


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