Run flat tires

Michael Owner/Technician Quakertown, Pennsylvania Posted   Latest   Edited  

What are your thoughts on replacing tires that were OE run flat (in this case a BMW) with non run flat tires? Cost is the obvious factor and yes, I am a believer that if you're buying a BMW you should be able to afford the OEM tire but, obviously that is not the mindset with some.

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Blair Owner/Technician
Seven Valleys, Pennsylvania
Blair Default
 

It's extremely common practice for us to replace run flats with standard tires. Cost, ride quality and performance are all factors. The M version of whatever your working on likely has something called a "mobility kit" available more or less just a sealant and pump assembly I always suggest that when moving from the OE tire but largely people don't go for it.

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Brandon Technician
Medina, Minnesota
Brandon Default
   

It's insanely popular to switch to a regular tire after the factory run flats are worn or even earlier. The ride can be harsh and loud, they can wear in odd ways. They're also known for cracking rims on the 5 Series. We just make sure the customer is well aware they won't have a spare and some will also purchase the road side kit included with many cars that don't have a spare (tire sealant…

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Samuel Technician
Somers Point, New Jersey
Samuel Default
 

Brandon....top notch response!!!!

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Samuel Technician
Somers Point, New Jersey
Samuel Default
 

You somewhat answered your own question.... However, I will elaborate....Being a professional, I have the mindset that upon completion of the repair or replacement the vehicle should match original or better. You have 2 options. 1. If you are "by the book", Stick to your business beliefs and business model. 2. If you are flexible, explain to the customer the differences and why. Additionally…

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Michael Owner/Technician
Quakertown, Pennsylvania
Michael Default
 

Great feedback guys! Much appreciated.

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Richard Technician
Michigan City, Indiana
Richard Default
 

We do it all the time. Providing we are replacing all four. Never combine run flats with standard tires. Also, do they have a spare tire?

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Michael Owner/Technician
Quakertown, Pennsylvania
Michael Default
 

Yes, they do.

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Michael Owner/Technician
Montreal, Quebec
Michael Default
 

Being from Montreal where I have to deal with this every 6 months (Winter tires are mandatory). I find that as long as you inform the customer that they will be pretty much be stuck if they get a flat and they are ok with that you should be ok. A good quality non run flat will be quieter and cheaper for sure (and for winter usually you options are much better in a non run flat). Always make sure…

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Jim Mobile Technician
Southampton, Pennsylvania
Jim Default
 

All GREAT responses, On a personal note, I made the switch on my Wife's 5 series, but for whatever reason never mentioned it to her. She is NO DUMMY when it comes to vehicles, she ran one of my three shops. What happened was she picked up something on the road and when the tire pressure went down, the dashboard should a message that the vehicle could be driven for up to 50 miles at a reduce…

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Dennis Owner/Technician
Danielsville, Pennsylvania
Dennis Default
 

I also changed my wife's 15 Mini S to non-run flat's for the difference in ride. I wouldn't have a problem with changing them for a customer. Just point out all of the issues that have already been brought up.

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Michael Owner/Technician
Quakertown, Pennsylvania
Michael Default
 

We were sure the customer wouldn't want the run flats because of cost. We layed out the pros and cons of run flats but he wanted to use the run flats.

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Jamey Owner/Technician
Ventura, California
Jamey Default
 

If your customer owns the car, it’s their choice. If the vehicle is leased, they will buy run flats when they turn it in. BMW, and most higher end leases specify the types and brands of tires that can be on the car at end of lease.

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Martin Instructor
Burnaby, British Columbia
Martin Default
 

Hi Michael. Brandon nailed it. Run flat tires often have objectionable operating characteristics and replacing them with a non-run flat tire has become the norm. Rim wise, there is an extra hump, but properly sized tires will fit and perform correctly. I would recommend a little research about the best non run flat options out there for the vehicle in question. I have found that there will be…

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James Owner/Technician
Pike, Pennsylvania
James Default
 

We've been switching out run-flats for years now when a customer requests it and it is almost always to improve the ride but we discuss the differences and let them know that's why we also disclose it on the bill to cover our butt.

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