Sunday, January 24, 2010

Nitrogen tires

The low pressure light came on for my driver side rear tire a week or two ago.  The light for "spare low pressure" has been on for MONTHS.  How annoying is it that the car tells you when your spare is low?  I mean, I guess it's a good thing, but is it really CRITICAL information?  Anywho, today we set out to get my tires pumped up.  Problem was, my tires have nitrogen in them.  Supposedly, using nitrogen in tires is better for fuel mileage, which you can read about here.  Apparently this is a foreign concept in Ohio.  We set out at 2:45 to try to find a place to get them filled up and started at Walmart.  We went in there and asked them if they could put nitrogen in my tires and they gave us the stupidest looks like that was absolutely out of the question and how dare we ask.  So we asked if they knew of a place and they told us that CostCo did it.  Well, we don't have a membership to CostCo because all we have in NC is Sam's.  So that wasn't going to be an option.  Well, we pulled out of the Walmart parking lot and there is an AutoZone across the street so we thought they might know of a place to get it done.  Steven went in there to ask them and the guy behind the register said "Nitrogen in tires?!" like he had no clue what that was, but he asked his co-worker anyway and that dude said that maybe we could try the airport because didn't they use nitrogen in planes?  Yes, AutoZone boy, they use nitrogen in airplane tires, but I doubt they have a service for the general public to get their tires inflated.  What, are people going to drive their cars out on the tarmac and say "Pump me up!"  I think that would be a security risk.  So we googled tire places on Steven's Blackberry and I called around (meanwhile driving around to the places we knew of, which were all closed, it being Sunday and all) and no one had nitrogen tire service and they all said that maybe we should try CostCo.  So at this point, we were getting desperate.  We decided to go to CostCo and see if we could sneak in the side door and talk to the auto mechanics.  We had this script in our heads, all ready to barter and sell our souls to the devil to get them to put a little nitrogen in my tires without having to get a membership.  We were able to sneak in and talk to the guy, and he said that it's a common misconception that you have to put nitrogen in your tires if you already have nitrogen in them, but this isn't true and that you can put regular air in them because regular air is 78% nitrogen anyway.  Really?  Seriously?  We just wasted 45 mins of our lives looking for something that we didn't even need?  So the guy told us to pull around and he'd top off all my tires AND the spare with regular air, no problem.  Nice guy.

Just an fyi to all you nitrogen tire owners out there...

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