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Tire Rotation Cost Estimate

Worried you might overpay for your tire rotation? Use Jerry’s GarageGuard to get a fair cost estimate for your tire rotation.
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John Davis
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Reviewed by Kathleen Flear, Director of Content
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Edited by Jessica Barrett, Senior Car & Insurance Editor

How much does it cost to rotate tires?

It costs about $35 to $45 to get your tires rotated.
How long does it take to rotate tires? It may take about one hour to rotate your tires, depending on the tools and popularity of the mechanic.
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How did we estimate these prices?

Jerry's experts researched and collected data from 2500+ real repair shops in all 50 states in the US, including everything from the total cost of repair services to the hourly labor cost for mechanic labor in each shop. We combined that data with our expert database of hundreds of real repair jobs, thousands of real cars, millions of real car part prices in order to best estimate the cost of each repair service. Our labor cost estimate is calculated by taking the average hourly labor rate for a certified mechanic in the US, times the number of hours it takes on average to complete a repair. We recommend you compare your local shops with Jerry and contact those shops directly to get final pricing for your vehicle.

What parts do I need to rotate tires?

Here’s a list of the tools you’ll need to rotate tires. Bear in mind, it’s not a casual process! 
  • Lug wrench or tire iron: This tool allows you to loosen and tighten the lug nuts that secure the tires to the car. Your vehicle may have come with this tool, or you can buy one for about $10.
  • Jack: A jack is used to lift the car off the ground, providing access to the tires for rotation. Cost: $20 to $100.
  • Jack stands: Jack stands are placed under the car to support it securely while you work on the tires, ensuring safety during the process. Cost: $20 to $50 for a pair.
  • Tire pressure gauge: This handy tool helps you check the tire pressure, ensuring they are properly inflated for optimal performance and safety. Cost: $5 to $10.
  • Torque wrench: A torque wrench allows you to tighten the lug nuts to the recommended specifications, preventing over-tightening and potential damage to the wheel studs. Cost: $20 to $100.
Note that you can rotate your tires at home if you have the proper lift, but tire balancing is usually recommended whenever you rotate them. For this, you need specialized equipment at a mechanic’s shop.
Popular brands for jacks and jack stands include Craftsman, Pro-lift, and Torin. For lug wrenches and tire irons, some popular brands include TEKTON and Gorilla Automotive. You can purchase your tire rotation supplies from auto parts suppliers like AutoZone and Advance Auto Parts, retail chains like Walmart, and online retailers like Amazon and eBay.
OEM parts typically do not exist specifically for tire rotations. Tire rotations involve moving the existing tires from one position on the vehicle to another, such as swapping the front tires with the rear tires. During a standard tire rotation, there is usually no need to replace any parts as long as the tires are in good condition and have sufficient tread depth.
Visit local auto parts stores like Advance Auto parts and AutoZone, retail chains like Walmart or online retailers such as Amazon or eBay for a wide selection of tools like jacks, jack stands, and torque wrenches. Check for compatibility with your vehicle and consider factors like quality, warranties, and weight limit before making a purchase. 
The lifespan of most tires is between 25,000 to 50,000 miles. However, high-quality tires and proper maintenance can prolong the life of your tires to 60,000 to 75,000 miles or more. Discount tires are usually used, and they may last for fewer miles.

Where can I get my tires rotated?

Searching for the perfect spot to rotate your tires? Jerry's
GarageGuard™
can help. 
Compare costs from over 2,500 vetted repair shops across the country, and peruse fair price estimates, real hourly labor rates, and even reviews from satisfied customers. 
Check out our vetted shops below and get the app to compare quotes in your zip code.
171 Reviews
Meineke Car Care Center #1667
address
Lee's Summit, Kansas City, MO
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$0
124 Reviews
Noble Wholesale Tires & Auto Repair
address
1755 Gulf to Bay Blvd, Clearwater, FL
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$0
159 Reviews
Just Tires - New Castle
address
71 Christiana Rd, Newark, DE
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$90
190 Reviews
Fairburn Emission and Automotive
address
418 SE Broad St, Fairburn, GA
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$115
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How did we vet these shops?

Jerry experts researched 2500+ real repair shops across the US. We talked to real shop customers, and analyzed both real shop pricing data and thousands of real customer reviews from each shop to verify them individually. We do not partner with the shops listed above, and our analysis is always unbiased.

How will a mechanic rotate my tires?

Here are the basic steps in a standard
tire rotation
:
  1. Lift the vehicle
    : The mechanic uses a jack to raise the vehicle off the ground, creating enough space to remove the wheels easily.
  2. Remove the wheels: All four wheels are carefully taken off the vehicle, ensuring they are free from any attachments.
  3. Inspect the tires: The mechanic examines each tire for signs of wear, damage, or any issues that may require attention.
  4. Determine rotation pattern: Based on the type of vehicle and tire condition, the mechanic selects the appropriate rotation pattern to ensure even wear.
  5. Place tires back: The tires are reinstalled on the vehicle in specific positions according to the chosen rotation pattern.
  6. Tighten lug nuts: Using a torque wrench, the mechanic tightens the lug nuts to the recommended torque, ensuring secure attachment.
  7. Lower the vehicle: The vehicle is lowered back to the ground gently after the tire rotation is complete.
  8. Final inspection: A final check is conducted to verify that all tires are properly aligned, secured, and the rotation has been performed correctly.
In most repair shops—and even Costco, which does tire rotations—they’ll recommend that you balance your tires at the same time as the rotation. This is a good recommendation.

What happens if I don’t rotate tires?

If you don't rotate your tires regularly, several issues may arise:
  • Uneven tire wear
  • Reduced tire life 
  • Poor handling
  • Risk of tire failure
  • Decreased fuel efficiency
Don’t risk a blowout! Rotate your tires regularly.

What is a tire rotation?

Tire rotation is a routine maintenance procedure where the positions of the tires on a vehicle are changed. The main purpose of tire rotation is to promote even tread wear on all four tires. 
During a tire rotation, the tires are moved from one location to another, typically from front to back and vice versa or in a cross pattern. Sometimes, the spare tire will be rotated into the mix.
Since the tires on the front and rear axles of a vehicle wear differently due to various factors like weight distribution and steering, rotating them helps distribute the wear more evenly. This extends the overall tire life and maximizes their performance and safety. 
The recommended rotation pattern may vary based on the drivetrain configuration and tire specifications, such as a rearward cross or forward cross:
All-wheel drive and four-wheel-drive vehicles: These vehicles often have different tire sizes or tread patterns between the front and rear axles. The rotation pattern for AWD and 4WD vehicles may involve a side-to-side or X-pattern rotation to maintain even wear on all tires.
Front-wheel drive vehicles: FWD vehicles typically have uniform tire sizes and tread patterns on all four wheels. The rotation pattern for FWD vehicles is usually front-to-back and back-to-front.
Rear-wheel drive vehicles: The tire rotation pattern for RWD vehicles typically involves moving the car’s tires from the rear to the front in a cross pattern, and the front tires are moved straight back to the rear.
Some vehicles have directional tires where the tread pattern is intended to rotate in a single direction. These tires are designed to be mounted on the vehicle in a specific orientation, and their tread pattern typically features large, continuous ribs or grooves that form a V-shaped or arrow-like pattern.
Regular tire rotations are essential for maintaining balanced handling, stability, and proper traction of the vehicle. Following the recommended rotation schedule based on the vehicle's type and tire specifications helps ensure a smooth and safe driving experience. 

When should I rotate the tires on my car?

Tires should generally be rotated every 5,000 to 7,000 miles, or whatever your manufacturer recommends. You should also rotate them if you notice any signs of uneven wear, pulling to one side, or reduced fuel efficiency.

How often should I rotate tires?

Tires should typically be rotated every 5,000 to 7,000 miles. However, the recommended rotation interval may vary depending on your driving habits, road conditions, and the type of tires on your vehicle. 
Consult your vehicle's owner's manual or a qualified mechanic for the specific rotation schedule that best suits your car and tires. Regular tire rotations help promote even tread wear, extend tire life, and maintain optimal handling and performance of the vehicle. Add it to your list of regular maintenance tasks!

Can I rotate tires myself?

Yes, you can rotate your own tires if you have the proper tools, a safe working environment, and some basic mechanical knowledge. The process involves lifting the vehicle, removing the wheels, and swapping their positions according to the recommended rotation pattern.
If you're confident in your abilities and have the necessary equipment, you can do it yourself. Otherwise, it's best to seek help from a qualified mechanic to ensure a proper and safe tire rotation. Many auto shops offer a free tire rotation, too, as encouragement to come back for other car maintenance services in the future.

FAQs

No, a tire rotation service and a wheel alignment are not the same. Tire rotation involves moving the tires from one position to another on the vehicle to ensure even wear. Wheel alignment, on the other hand, adjusts the angles of the wheels to the manufacturer's specifications, ensuring proper tire contact with the road and straight tracking. 
While both are important for tire maintenance and vehicle performance, they serve different purposes in extending tire life and optimizing handling.
Yes, tires can wear faster if not rotated regularly. The front and rear tires of a vehicle experience different wear patterns due to various factors like weight distribution and steering. 
Without rotation, the front tires tend to wear more on the outer edges, while the rear tires wear more evenly. Uneven wear leads to premature tire replacement and reduced tire life. 
If you do need to buy new tires from a tire shop, the average cost of a set of tires is between $400 and $600.
If you haven't rotated your tires in a year, they are likely to have uneven wear patterns. Front tires might have more wear on the outer edges, while rear tires wear more evenly. 
Uneven wear can lead to reduced tire life, poor handling, and potential safety concerns. There’s a higher risk of blowouts, too.

Meet Our Experts

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John Davis
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Car Expert
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Certified mechanic with 10+ years of experience
John Davis is an expert automotive writer and former automotive mechanic. John's work spans multiple categories, and he relishes the opportunity to research a new subject and expand his area of expertise and industry knowledge. To date, John has written more than 200 articles covering car maintenance and care, car advice, how-to guides, and more.
Prior to joining Jerry’s editorial team, John worked as a mechanic and freelance writer, creating content for clients including HotCars and SetPower.
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Jessica Barrett
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Car Expert
Jessica Barrett is a senior insurance writer and editor with 10 years of experience in the automotive and travel industries. A specialist in car insurance, car loans, and car ownership, Jessica’s mission is to create comprehensive content that car owners can use to manage their costs and improve their lives. As a managing editor for a team of writers and insurance specialists, Jessica has edited over 2,000 articles for Jerry on topics ranging from local insurance shopping tips to refinancing car loans with bad credit.
Before joining Jerry as a senior content editor in 2021, Jessica created visual content for clients such as Expedia, Vivid Seats, Budget Direct Car Insurance, Angie’s List, and HomeAdvisor. Her content was published in Business Insider, Forbes, Apartment Therapy, and the BBC.
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Kathleen Flear
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Car Expert
Kathleen Flear is an expert insurance writer and editor who heads up Jerry’s editorial team as director of content. Kathleen empowers drivers to make smart car ownership decisions through  best-in-class articles on insurance, loans, and maintenance. Prior to joining Jerry in 2021, Kathleen served as managing editor for a team of SEO content marketing professionals at Article-Writing.co and worked as a freelance writer and editor for a range of digital publications, including Chicago Literati magazine and Golden Words. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English language and literature from Queen’s University, and a master’s degree in creative writing and fiction from Sierra Nevada University.
*The price information provided on our car repair webpages is intended for general informational purposes only. Actual prices for car repair services may vary based on various factors, including but not limited to the make and model of your vehicle, the extent of repair required, and the prevailing market conditions. All prices for real repair shops are estimations based on our research only. Therefore, the prices listed on our webpages should not be considered as final quotes or binding offers.