Thinking about a new set of wheels and tires for that garaged love of your life, its an expensive decision so you better get it right the first time. Fortunately our Dan Maffet knows just the tire experts that can eliminate all the guesswork and their ready to give you the “deets” on MotorWeek’s “Your Drive.”

DAN MAFFET: Buying a wheel and tire package can be a stressful situation if you’re not sure of the right wheel/tire combo and the dimension you need. If you buy the wrong one, if can be very costly.

I’m here with my friend TJ, and we’re going to talk about technology you can use to make sure you get the right one. TJ, thanks for having me.

TJ CAMPBELL: Thanks for being here.

DAN MAFFETT: Tell me what this is.

Tire and Wheel Fitment 2

TJ CAMPBELL: This is called a faro arm, and we use this to create a digital rendering of the wheel well of the vehicle. We measure brake caliper, brake rotor, the fender lip…all the hard parts that a tire and wheel package may come into contact with, and it creates a CAD drawing that we can use to make sure, like you said, customers can get the right package the first time.

DAN MAFFETT: So this is, generally, using the camera system to create a digital map of what will and will not fit.

TJ CAMPBELL: Yes, that’s right, and then we overlay a similar drawing of the tire and wheel package and we find any places that where may be a potential pitfall, where something may come into contact.

DAN MAFFETT: And that’s really important, because we have things like these. These are the exact same dimensional wheels, but one fits and one doesn’t.

Tire and Wheel Fitment 3

TJ CAMPBELL: Yes, that’s right. If you were just looking at the published dimensions, they’re both 18 by 8, the right bolt pattern, the same offset. You know, dimensionally, everything is identical, but because this wheel has a different barrel profile than this one does…this first on the vehicle, whereas this comes into contact with the caliper. It would physically go on the vehicle, but as soon as you try to spin it, it’s going to damage the wheel and the caliper, and like you said, be a very costly mistake.

DAN MAFFETT: Expensive mistake for sure. Now, I’m sure you have some kind of a system in place, so that when people order wheels and tires from a place, that would throw a red flag with what is dimensionally not a good fit.

TJ CAMPBELL: Correct. We try to get every order by year, make and model to make sure that it’s something we recommend. But, of course, sometimes people try to go their own way and find something, and so to prevent any, like you said, costly mistakes, we have real live human beings that review every order that’s placed online, and if they see something that’s a red flag, they’ll reach out to the customer and say ‘Hey, this might ruin your day.’ Sometimes the customer says ‘I know exactly what I ordered, just let it go.’ And that’s great. But other times, the customer is very, very appreciative because they’re not sure how they got to where they were, and it wasn’t something that was going to work.

Tire and Wheel Fitment 4

DAN MAFFETT: It wasn’t pretty.

TJ CAMPBELL: Absolutely, so sometimes we save the day.

DAN MAFFETT: That’s fantastic, well, thanks for having us. I appreciate it very much.

TJ CAMPBELL: Thank you so much for being here, it’s been great.

DAN MAFFETT: As always, if you have any questions, hit us up, right here at MotorWeek.