Is the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty Worth It?

If you own a car, you need tires and it’s not a cheap purchase! If you buy your tires at Walmart, not only will you save money, but you may purchase an additional Walmart Road Hazard Warranty to protect your purchase.

Walmart offers two tire protection plans that are supposed to help you save money on unexpected tire issues throughout their lifetime. 

Is the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty worth it or is it another way to get you to spend needless money?

We spell it out for you in our review below.

What is the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty?

Walmart has two road hazard warranty programs:

  • Walmart Road Hazard Warranty – This warranty covers unexpected flat tires and normal wear and tear of the tires. Walmart will repair the tire or replace an unrepairable tire for free, but only through the use of the first 25% of tread.
  • Walmart Lifetime Balance Plan Warranty – This warranty protects your tires for their lifetime and helps you keep them in optimal shape. The Lifetime Balance Plan Warranty covers the cost of all tire rotation and balance as long as you own the tires regardless of the tread.

How Does the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty Work?

The Walmart Road Hazard Warranty is in addition to the manufacturer’s warranty. Most tires come with some type of manufacturer’s warranty that protects you from manufacturer defects or premature wear and tear under normal use.

This means if you run over a nail or hit the sidewall on a curb and damage it, the manufacturer’s warranty wouldn’t cover it. You’d be on the hook for the cost of a new tire and installation.

If you have the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty, though, you may be able to file a claim and have the tire repaired or replaced for free. The Walmart Road Hazard Warranty doesn’t cover every issue, but it covers more than a manufacturer’s warranty covers.

The Walmart Lifetime Balance Plan warranty helps you take care of your tires. Think of it like you going to the doctor for an annual checkup. You should bring your car in every 6 months of 7,500 miles to avoid uneven wear and tear that could cause other serious and expensive car issues.

You’ll pay for the service upfront, but be able to bring your car into any Walmart Auto Care Center for a free tire rotation and balance. This is one of the best ways to prevent your tires from wearing down prematurely and any other damage to your car.

How Much does the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty Cost?

Both the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty and Lifetime Balance Plan warranty are an extra cost. You pay the retail price for the tires and can choose to add either road hazard warranty.

Both plans cost $10 per tire or $40. If you chose both, you’d pay an extra $80 on top of what you paid for the tires but have protection should anything happen while you’re driving and when your tires need to be rotated and balanced.

What’s Covered on the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty?

The Walmart Road Hazard Warranty covers any issues you experience on the road that damages your tires. If you run over a nail, hit a workhorse, or hit a pothole and it damages your tire, the road hazard warranty will cover it.

The warranty also covers flat repairs and if they can’t repair it (if there are too many holes or the damage is too bad), they’ll replace the tire for free as long as you’re within the first 25% tread wear.

What’s not Covered?

The Walmart Road Hazard warranty doesn’t cover preventative maintenance including rotating and balancing your tires. You’ll need the Lifetime Balance Plan warranty for the preventative service. 

The road hazard warranty plan also doesn’t cover the cost of replacing an unrepairable tire once you’ve used up 25% of the original tread. At that point, you’d be on the hook for the cost of repairing the tire. 

How to File a Walmart Road Hazard Warranty Claim?

If you have a tire issue and paid for the Walmart Road Hazard warranty, you must file a claim over the phone or in person.

Making a Road Hazard Warranty Claim on the Phone

Call 1-800-925-6278 and ask for the Walmart Auto Care Center. You’ll speak to a representative, tell them the issue, and schedule an appointment to bring your car to a Walmart car center.

Making a Road Hazard Warranty Claim in Person

If you’re in a true bind or you are close to a Walmart, you can try going into the auto center without an appointment to tell them of your issue. They may be able to see your car right away or they may make you schedule an appointment. 

What if Walmart Denies your Road Hazard Warranty Claim?

You have the right to appeal if Walmart denies your road hazard warranty claim. If you know you’re within the 25% tread rule and the issue is covered, appeal the decision. You can talk to a manager at the local auto care center or call 1-800-925-6278 and ask to speak to a supervisor.

Make sure you have plenty of evidence/reasons why you feel the decision was in error.

Walmart Road Hazard Warranty vs Discount Tire Certificate for Repair, Refund or Replacement

Discount Tire is another popular store to purchase tires at a discounted price. Like Walmart, Discount Tire offers a program to protect the investment in your tires.

They call it the Certificate for Repair, Refund, or Replacement. Here’s how it works.

Unlike Walmart’s program, Discount Tire’s program covers the tire until its last legal thread of tread (up to 3/32”). The tire must also be within its first 3 years of use since you purchased it. If you experience any defects or nonrepairable road hazards, Discount Tire will refund the full purchase cost of the tire plus sales tax. 

They will also allow you to purchase the same or similar tire for the same price, essentially exchanging the tire. They don’t prorate the mileage or age of the tire – everyone gets the full price if they’re within the 3-year limit and the tread usage. 

Walmart Road Hazard Warranty FAQs

What is Walmart’s return and exchange policy for tires?

Walmart allows customers to return tires for up to 90 days, just like the rest of their merchandise. However, you can only return tires if they haven’t been mounted and used. Once the tires are mounted, you cannot return them. Your only option is to file a claim on the manufacturer’s warranty if there is a defect or the Road Hazard Warranty if you purchased it and are having a problem.

How long is the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty good for?

Walmart states the Road Hazard Warranty is good for the life of the tire, but their fine print states that it’s good for the first 25% tread use. This differs from the Discount Tire plan which guarantees the tire’s function and the ability to have it repaired for the life of the tire (up to 3/32”).

Are Walmart tires under warranty when you buy them?

Walmart tires are under the manufacturer’s warranty when you buy them. Like any product, the term and length of the warranty vary by manufacturer. Contact the manufacturer or ask your Walmart representative before buying them.

What does a normal tire warranty not cover?

Tire warranties cover manufacturer defects or premature wear and tear even under normal use. What they don’t cover is damage due to any of the following:

– Not keeping up with the tire’s maintenance including rotating, balancing, and inflating the tires
– Reckless driving
– Improper use of the car
– Vandalism or theft

Do you need a new road hazard plan when you buy new tires?

Every time you replace your car’s tires, you’ll need to buy a Road Hazard Plan and Lifetime Balance Plan if you want to add them. The cost is $40 per service each time you replace your tires. The warranties don’t last for the life of the car, but rather the tires themselves. 

Most tires last 4 – 6 years, but it depends on how far you drive, in what conditions, and your driving habits. Since the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty only lasts for the first 25% of tread, you won’t have coverage for the life of most tires.

Final Thoughts – Is the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty Worth It?

Whether or not the Walmart Road Hazard Warranty is worth it is debatable. At a minimum, you’ll pay $40 and if you want the Lifetime Balance plan, you’ll pay $80.

The road hazard plan doesn’t last for long, making the Discount Tire plan a better purchase. While they don’t disclose the cost, it’s a fraction of the cost of a new tire and it lasts for the life of the tire or up to its legal tread limit.

Kim Pinnelli is a personal finance freelance writer and koopy.com contributor. She lives in the Chicago suburbs, writing from home for the last 13 years. Kim enjoys helping people understand personal finances and writes on topics about saving money, investing, planning for retirement, and ways to increase income. In her free time, Kim enjoys hanging out with her 3 children, reading, crocheting, and spending time outdoors.

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