Oil prices trigger tire price spike

FRESNO, California

The rise in oil prices have also driven up the price of tires. A smoother ride now comes at a higher price.

People who have put off buying new tires because of the recession have found prices have risen about 20-percent in the last year.

Nicole Ozburn of Fresno just spent $500 on two new tires. Ozburn said, "I was just shocked at how much they cost. I felt I had to mortgage my first-born. I'm still in need of two more."

April Ayers just spent 700-dollars for four tires. She said, "It's just outrageous. I remember when it was like $75 to have a tire fixed. Now you'd think they were made of platinum."

Ron Perry of Wheel King in north Fresno said across the board all tire brands have gone up in price. He explained part of the problem is tires are made up of about 20-percent petroleum.

Perry said, "The oil affects it a lot. When the oil prices are up prices are going up in the tires."

But Perry added it's not just the price of petroleum affecting the price of rubber tires. "There are other products that are mixed in with it. You have steel. Steel is always on the rise too."

Many tires have steel belts.

Perry hopes an out of balance industry begins to correct itself. "It's hard to predict the future but I think it will kind of stable off for the time being but we've kind of gone through that pain of everything going up."

Perry said some customers leave after getting a new tire quote but later return when they find tire prices have risen everywhere else.

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