Tire Review - Pathfinder Trail A/P from Discount Tire Company

Discussion in 'Product Reviews' started by ChevyFan, Jul 20, 2009.

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  1. ChevyFan

    ChevyFan Administrator Staff Member 1000 Posts

    Pathfinder Trail A/P Tire Review
    purchased from Discount Tire Company

    Summary
    I bought four Pathfinder Trail A/P tires from Discount Tire company in Texas in 2005 and 2006. Two were bought in 05 and two in 06 for a 2002 Chevy Trailblazer LS 2WD vehicle. The tire size is 245-70R16 for all four.

    Since owning them, the tires have behaved properly for an inexpensive "economy" full-sized tire that currently retails for $106 per tire. They produced moderate road noise, decent comfort from bumps, acceptable traction and grip on dry pavement and very good grip and traction on wet surfaces.

    We put the tires to moderate use, mostly around town in a mix of all types of city traffic from light to very heavy stop and go, occasional light trailer towing and also occasion medium to long distance road trips.

    On July 20th, 2009, one tire failed at 35,000 miles in a major blowout at 65 MPH freeway speeds during 90-95 degree hot weather. The blown-out tire and all of the remaining tires did have legal tread on them (as noted by the police offier who stopped to assist and direct traffic on I-75) but it was very close to being out of legal tread (see photo below). It was the sidewall that failed.

    Warranty Review and Replacement Tires
    With a spare tire on the vehicle, we pulled into the Discount Tire store in Sherman Texas, and as a testimony to the wonderful database network that Discount Tire has, they were able to find both of the invoices for the tires that were put on the vehicle and verify that two tires were covered under replacement and two had warranty status.

    After some discussion, they concluded that they would replace one tire for free (as two of the tires did have the Free Replacement certificate) and they would cover the other tires tread wear as a pro-rated discount of about $35 per tire, based on mileage.

    We decided to keep the full-size spare tire (which has never been used) as a road tire #1. We turned one of the better tires that was on the vehicle (with 27,500 miles on it) into the new spare tire, and we got three new road tires #2, #3 and #4 - again one for free and two at discount.

    Total Cost
    All total, 2 new tires, 3 replacement certificates, mounting and balancing, disposal fees and tax ... we got back on the road for $252.

    Tire Life
    These tires have to be made for the Truck / SUV market and they come with a 40,000 miles pro-rated warranty. We didn't see that many miles on them, and I am very surprised that they wore down so quickly and that one failed at 32,500 miles.

    2 lasted 27,500 miles - almost no legal tread left (not very good at all)
    2 lasted 32,500 miles - one blew-out with almost no legal tread left, the other also had almost no legal tread left and showed significant cracks in the sidewall. (nothing to write home about)

    All in all, the tire is a good entry-level tire to get you on the road, but you'll be back into the tire shop long before you wanted to. In the end you're likely to spend just as much money as you would have if you had gotten a more expensive tire that would laster longer. Had we spent an extra $50 or $60 per tire to begin with, we probably would not have had to worry about a blow out on the freeway from sidewall failure and we would have a better ride and drive the whole time as well.

    Pathfinder Trail A/P tire blowout before 35,000 miles.
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    Pathfinder Trail A/P tires on a Chevy Trailblazer
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