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Archives for 2014

Tire Tread Patterns: What Are Your Tires Telling You?

tire tread patterns and wear patternsNot sure how to listen to your tires? We’ll try to help. However, if “think” something isn’t quite right, it’s better to stop in and have us take a look than to guess or risk more serious problems later. In many cases, simply altering how much the tire is inflated or rotating the tires is all that is needed. At other times,there may be much bigger underlying issues that need to be immediately addressed.

Common Tire Tread Wear Patterns

Tread of Your Tire is Worn Down on the Outside: Worn tread on the outsides of your tires is usually an indication of under-inflation. Check the proper inflation of your tires and adjust.

Tread of Your Tire is Worn Down in the Middle: When only the middle tread is worn down on your tires, it’s likely due to over-inflation. Check the proper inflation of your tires, or let us take a look.

Visible Cracks Anywhere on Your Tire: Old tires, tires exposed to the sun for prolonged periods of times, and tires that have hit curbs or potholes can have bulges or cracks visible to the eye. (They can also have damage that isn’t visible)

All tire tread will eventually wear down, and it will be time to get newer tires. Make sure you are rotating your tires at proper intervals, inspecting them often, and calling us with any questions or concerns. We want you SAFE on the road!


Merry Christmas

Merry ChristmasfromThe TireZoo

Holiday Hours 2014

The TireZoo of Anoka and Bloomington, MN will be closing early at 1:00pm on Christmas Eve; Wednesday, December 24, 2014, and will remained closed on Thursday, December 25th so our employees can celebrate the holidays with their families.

Both locations will be open regular hours on New Year’s Eve (9am-6pm), but will be closed on Thursday, January 1, 2015 for New Year’s Day.

Tire Zoo Highlights in 2014

tire zoo2014 was an amazing year! We welcomed quite a few new changes this past year.

Tire Zoo Extended Hours

We extended our Saturday hours to 5pm for both the Bloomington and Anoka locations.

New Tire Zoo Website

This past fall we rolled out a brand new website with an enhanced new tire search feature and database!

Great Tire Zoo Reviews

We received some fantastic reviews from customers on Facebook, Google, Yelp, and via our website. Here’s one of the more recent ones:

Always great service and pricing. Been buying tires here or at their Anoka store for over 15 years. ~Todd F.

High Traffic Tire Zoo Blog Posts

There were several blog posts that generated plenty of interest and traffic in 2014 too.

A year ago, we published the blog post, Double Check Tire Pressure in Extreme Cold which is currently our most popular blog post. It’s been extremely cold here in Minnesota already, and it’s not even officially winter yet!

Snow, cold, and winter driving is clearly on the minds of our readers. Another of our most read blog posts is Snow Tires vs All Season Tires. If you need help determining if snow tires are the way to go for you and your vehicle, give us a call.

Two other very high traffic blog posts this past year have to do with Where Used Tires Come From and whether or not you Can Buy Just One Tire.

 Popular Tire Zoo Coupons Still a Favorite

Printable coupons have been updated on our new website, but are still available to our customers on our “Specials” page!

2014 has been a great year at the Tire Zoo, and we look forward to wishing all of your a wonderful 2015! We’re certain 2015 is when we exceed 1000 fans on our Facebook page too.

Famous Flat Tires

Time to have a little fun.

In real life, tire trouble is no laughing matter. In the movies, we find it safe to poke fun at the situation from the safety of our living room or a movie theatre. Here are a few of the most famous flat tire scenes we could find. What would you add to this list?

Who could forget the famous flat tire scene in “A Christmas Story”?

And of course, McQueen in “Cars” when he loses his tire while racing.

There’s a great scene in “Adventures of Babysitting” when a vehicle full of kids has a flat tire on the freeway that leads them on a long, humorous adventure. We couldn’t find a clip of the flat tire, but this is a great scene when she sings the Blues about the night she’s having.

Why Buy Used Tires

why buy used tiresUsed tires are something that can have plenty of quality, life, and value left in them. Not all used tires are the same, and the quality of used tires is difficult for untrained people to judge (don’t buy just any used tires or accept “free” tires from someone without having them checked out). Our tire technicians are experienced in determining the quality of used tires.

There are times when it’s best to invest in a set of new tires, but there are certainly reasons to buy used tires as well.

Why Would I Buy Used Tires?

Having been in the tire business for over 35 years, we have the advantage of getting to know our customers and needs. We can pass along to you their reasons for choosing to buy used tires rather than brand new ones.

  1. Low on cash: You can’t afford new. If you’re on a tight budget, quality used tires are a very good option.
  2. One tire blew: You lost one tire, but don’t want to replace them all. The TireZoo has such a large used tire inventory that in most cases we can match your existing tires perfectly so you don’t have to replace all four.
  3. Vehicle is on its last leg: If you’re not sure how much longer your car is going to last, used tires are a good idea. It’s hard to justify putting new tires on a really high mileage vehicle.
  4. Your lease is almost up:  If you’re worried the tires on your vehicle won’t pass lease inspection, we can help you with less expensive used tires that will pass!
  5. Front-end issues: Your vehicle has front-end issues you can’t afford to repair at this time.
  6. Off-road and tough driving conditions: Hard on your tires? End up blowing them out before the tread wears out? If you typically drive for unusual purposes; off-road, potholes, and/or rough terrain, used tires are a great idea.
  7. Saving money is a goal right now: The TireZoo has may sets of tires that are “like new” but cost considerably less. Why not save the money?
  8. The Tire Zoo offers a 30 day warranty on all used tires.

You really don’t need to worry about the quality of used tires; the TireZoo has only a 5% return rate on used tires. That is extremely low. If you have questions about why you should buy used tires or if new tires are a better idea, give us a call or stop by. We’ll be upfront with you and give you the answers you deserve!

Happy Thanksgiving


Winter Driving Problems

winter driving problemsSome people love the snow. Others dread it. All Midwesterners have to deal with it at some point. Unless we want to stay cooped up in our houses for four months, we’re forced to drive in winter weather conditions.

Many winter driving problems can be avoided or lessened with proper preparation. Here are some tips to help you avoid or deal with undesirable winter driving problems:

  • Check your tire condition now. Check for proper tread, proper inflation, and any other issues like bulges or uneven wearing. If you’re not sure how to do this, stop by and we’ll take a look.
  • Get your oil changed, tires rotated, and other general maintenance done. Winter is NOT the time to gamble with your vehicle running well.
  • Talk to a tire specialist at the TireZoo about whether snow (winter) tires are a good option for you.
  • Have winter gear in your vehicle and be prepared for a situation where you’d be stalled for a while on the side of the road.
  • Never go anywhere, especially at night or in stormy conditions without someone knowing that you’re traveling and which route you’re taking.
  • Keep your phone charged and a charger with you, but don’t assume your phone will work when you need it.
  • At the first indication of trouble, pull your car off the road and away from other traffic.
  • Alert oncoming traffic that you’re there, especially if visibility is pour. Use your hazard lights or reflector triangles behind your vehicle.
  • In the case of a flat tire, call a tow truck unless you know how to change the tire and have all the necessary items to change the tire and keep yourself safe and warm while doing so.
  • Calling 911 is always an option if you are worried about your safety, have children in the car, and your situation is hazardous.

Christmas Gift Ideas for Commuters

  1. Christmas Gift Ideas for CommutersIonic Air Purifier: Lots of time inside a vehicle can mean stale, smelly, and dusty air. An Ionic Air Purifier might be a perfect gift for someone who would appreciate a clean, fresh vehicle inside.
  2. Car Detailing Certificate: Who wouldn’t want the inside of their vehicle cleaned and carpets shampooed.
  3. Remote Starter Kit: On frosty mornings there’s nothing better than leaving for work in a pre-warmed vehicle.
  4. Mobile Coffee Maker: Nothing says, “Christmas Gift Ideas for Commuters” like a mobile coffee maker! Not that practical, but definitely a solution for a coffee lover who wants to multi-task with a long commute ahead.
  5. Cargo Saddle Bags: Similar to a motorcycle or bicycle saddle bag, these are soft sided and helpful when having to haul more than will fit inside your vehicle.
  6. Bluetooth/Touch Screen Gloves: Stay off your phone while driving, but be able to check messages without removing your gloves.
  7. Noise Canceling Smart Phone or Headphones: Perfect for frequent public transportation commuters and air travelers. Block out the noise around you.
  8. Jumper Cables: Anyone who parks their car outside over night throughout the winter will appreciate a set of jumper cables at some point.
  9. First Aid Kit: You never know when and what will be needed.
  10. Winter Survival Kit: From a kit to warm blankets, shovels, and cold weather gear, the commuters in your live will know their loved with this potentially life saving gift.
  11. Sirius Radio: Give the gift of no commercials and desired tunes during their commute.
  12. A New Set of Tires: Whether new or quality used, a college commuter will love this gift. The TireZoo can help you shop for this item. Give us a call!
  13. Gas Cards: Not glamorous, but definitely appreciated and guaranteed to get used more than a tie.

Fun Facts About Tires and the TireZoo

fun facts about tiresFACT 1: You do not need to replace all four tires at the same time. The TireZoo can help you match one, two, or three existing tires with replacement tires.

FACT 2: The TireZoo is on Pinterest and has boards dedicated to ideas on repurposing old tires, travel snacks, tire and auto decor and parties, and entertaining kids on road trips.

FACT 3: A semi-truck usually has 18 tires; depending on the truck and trailer it can have 10-22 tires! Have you heard the term “18 Wheeler” before?

FACT 4: There’s a free tire facts app you can download that works on Androids and Apple products.

FACT 5: The TireZoo has TWO locations in the North and South Metro; 1 in Bloomington and 1 in Anoka, MN.

FACT 6: It is estimated that less than half of all drivers check their tire condition on a regular basis.

FACT 7: The TireZoo, which began as All Season Tires, started in 1979

FACT 8: Tires contain belts in their inner manufacturing that help keep the tread strong and stable. Belts can break inside the tire, causing bulging, blowouts, and/or irreparable damage to the tire.

FACT 9:  The date your tire was manufactured can be found on the side wall, read in a series of numbers explained here that include the week and the year.

FACT 10: Tires that have exhausted their initial intended use are often called “spent” tires.

If there is anything you need to know about tires, replacing tires, or finding a specific tire please don’t hesitate to call us or stop by. We’re happy to help!