Best Tire Covers

Updated April 2020
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

30 Models Considered
6 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
338 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best tire covers

Last Updated April 2020

There are four points of contact between your vehicle and the road — the tires. They need to be the right tires in the right condition in order to do their job properly. That means sometimes you’ll need to store your tires during the off-season. For example, winter tires need to be put away during the summer, and summer tires need to be stored during the winter.

Tire covers may be designed for on-vehicle use or for storage. The biggest difference between tire covers is their size. Without properly sized tire covers, your tires will not be properly protected, and the tire covers may wear out faster than they should. In addition, the materials, closure, and handles can vary from one cover to the next.

Choosing the right product can be challenging, but fortunately, tire covers are fairly inexpensive. To learn more about the types of tire covers available, continue reading our buying guide.

Even with tire covers protecting your tires, they still need to be driven on at least once a month to avoid flat spotting and brittleness.

Do I need tire covers?

If you’ve got a trailer, camper, or RV, you probably won’t be driving it year-round. There may be weeks or months at a stretch when it is parked, going nowhere. Whether putting them in storage or protecting them while your RV sits waiting, you need some covers for your tires.

The UV radiation from the sun can leave tires brittle and cracking. Snow, rain, and drought can take a toll on tires that aren’t moving. They can stiffen up, becoming hard and prone to breaking if they’re not used on a regular basis. Rubber has to be continually flexed in order to remain pliable.

Whether you have a vehicle that may go unused for months at a time, an antique vehicle with delicate tires, or tires that need to be stored in the off-season, tire covers can help keep one of the most important parts of your vehicle in great shape.

Key considerations

Size

This is the number one area where people go wrong, especially when buying tire covers online.

Before you buy tire covers, grab a tape measure and go outside to the garage or driveway and measure the diameter of your tires from tread to tread. Then measure the width of your tires.

Now you’re ready to buy some tire covers.

When you’re buying individual tire covers, almost every manufacturer will include a sizing table. Compare the sizes with the measurements for your tires and get the corresponding tire covers. Because measurements can vary from one manufacturer to another, it’s usually a good idea to get the next larger size — just in case.

Storage

Just as there are different ways to store your tires and vehicle during the off-season, there are different types of tire covers for each method.

The covers for use when the tires are on the vehicle and the ones for use when the tires are off the vehicle are not interchangeable. Make sure you get the appropriate ones for your storage needs.

On the vehicle

If you’re storing the entire vehicle, such as an RV or camper, you’re more than likely to store it with the tires still mounted on the vehicle. In those instances, you’ll need to get a set of four tire covers or get two sets of two.

These tire covers cover the top of the tire and most of the tread down to the ground. They’ll also cover the outer rim of the wheel and the lug nuts. The only thing still exposed will be the back of the tire under the vehicle. Even there, the rubber will be mostly covered, except for the bottom where it comes in contact with the ground.

Off the vehicle

If you’ve got two sets of tires for your car or truck, you’ll probably remove one set during the winter or summer and store them until it’s time to swap them again when the seasons change. In this case, you’ll need either individual totes that surround each tire or a large cover that can be pulled over a stack of tires.

Larger covers resemble a cloth tube or cylinder that can be pulled down over the tires and zipped closed. These totes are covers that completely encircle the tread on each individual tire.

EXPERT TIP

If your tire cover begins to show signs of wear and tear, replace it immediately. Its only purpose in life is to protect your tires. If it is too damaged to properly protect your tires, it’s no good.


Staff  | BestReviews

Features

Material

Tire covers are made from a wide variety of materials.

Vinyl that has been treated to be UV resistant is the most popular choice due to its affordability and waterproof design. However, there are several materials to choose from.

Aluminum film, hard plastic, 600D Oxford, and polyester tire covers are also available. The lining on them can be cotton, felt, polyester, or fleece — a soft inner lining has a better chance of protecting the treads of your tires from damage.

Hard plastic covers are generally restricted to single covers used to protect spare tires that are mounted on the back of an RV.

When comparing tire covers, consider the thickness of the material and whether it is UV proof and weatherproof. UV treatment is particularly important if you plan to store your tires on-vehicle or outside as sunlight can wear on your tires faster than other elements.

Handles

Carrying handles on tire covers are usually only found on tire totes for individual tires that are being stored off the vehicle. The tires, in this case, are normally taken off the rims, so you only have the weight of the rubber tire itself to worry about. The handles will make it easier to carry the tires from place to place.

Closures

The closure method determines how your covers stay on the tires. Though you will likely only use the closures a couple of times a year, you should still consider their ease of use.

Hooks

Tire covers for tires that are on your vehicle typically use elastic cords much like a bungee cord with metal hooks on them. Once the cover is in place, stretch the cords and connect them with the hooks. It will pull the cover tight and hold it in place during windy conditions.

Zippers

Tire covers with zippers are usually the off-vehicle covers intended to protect a stack of tires. Stack the tires where you want to store them and pull the cover over the stack. Once you’ve got it in place and pulled down properly, zip it up and you’re done.

Velcro

Velcro generally isn’t strong enough to use for on-vehicle tire covers, but is nearly perfect for individual tire totes. It makes the totes easy to open and close. You can pull it snug to fit different sized tires.

EXPERT TIP

For long periods of time, storing your tires off the vehicle is the best way to protect them. This is where tire totes and stack covers excel.


Staff  | BestReviews

Accessories

Wheel felt: FLR Wheel Felts
When you’re storing your tires in a tire tote with the rims, slide these wheel felts from FLR inside the tote before you tighten it. It will keep dust and other particulates out of the tire while it’s in storage and will protect the rim from scratches.

Tire dolly: MaxxHaul Tire Dolly
If you’ve ever tried to lift a stack of tires, you know how heavy they can be. This tire dolly from MaxxHaul has 4 swivel casters that rotate 360º so it can be rolled in any direction. It can safely carry 300 pounds and has a unique design that allows two or more of them to be connected together for moving large loads.

Tire cover prices

For $10 to $20 are single tire covers or covers designed to protect a stack of tires. These are often made of thin materials that may not be treated to protect your tires from UV rays.

Midrange tire covers cost from $20 to $30. These are decent tire covers that will probably last a couple of years and may be sold in sets of four. UV protection and waterproofing are more common in this range.

Tire covers for $30 to $45 or $50 are high-end models that offer plenty of protection. The stitching, fit, and durability of these covers will be better than less expensive options.

EXPERT TIP

Loose tire covers are an invitation for squirrels and mice to get up inside them and build a nest. A snug fit eliminates that possibility.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • Clean your tires before putting the tire covers on them. Otherwise, the rubber may corrode, and you may damage your tire covers.
  • Except in the case of tire totes with wheel felts, tire covers don’t completely encase the tire.
  • Tire covers are cheap enough to be considered expendable. However, if treated well, they should last you for several seasons.
  • If you have multiple sets of tires in storage, take the time to label the covers so you don’t have to take them off to find the tires you’re looking for.

Other products we considered

If you didn’t find what you were looking for in our top recommendations, we have a few other options for you to consider.

We like the Explore Land Tire Covers for their UV-resistant vinyl and soft backing that won’t scratch your tires or rims. They come in a set of four and can be used for Jeeps, trucks, cars, SUVs, trailers, and RVs. An elastic cord with a locking feature ensures the covers stay in place. It's supposed to be a snug fit, but these may be slightly baggy in the center.

We also recommend the VIEFIN Set of 4 Wheel Tire Covers. The price is right and the hooks on the elastic cords hold the covers firmly in place. There is a sizing chart with six different sizes depending on the diameter and width of your tires. Be sure to use it — otherwise, you might wind up getting the wrong size as some buyers have done. These are available in grey, black, and silver.

Tire covers that are too tight risk ripping the seams and becoming useless. When looking for a proper fit, it is better to go slightly large than slightly small.

FAQ

Q. Will tire covers protect my tires from moisture?
A.
No. The backside of most tire covers is open, permitting moisture and humidity to get inside.
 

Q. How long will tire covers last?
A.
There’s no hard and fast answer, but two to three years is probably what you can expect depending on how often the covers are used and whether you store them in a cool, dry place.


Q. Are there any tire covers that cover all the tread and tire while it’s on my vehicle?
A.
No. However, remember that UV rays do more damage to your tires than anything else while your vehicle is not in use. The only part of the tread that is not covered is in contact with the ground and will not be exposed to sunlight.

The team that worked on this review
  • Ciera
    Ciera
    Digital Content Producer
  • Jennifer
    Jennifer
    Writer
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer

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