Consumer Tire Inc. installed a nitrogen inflation system a few weeks ago to help prevent corrosion in its customers' wheels, but high gas prices have turned it into a new selling point.
President D.D. Coley said local media reports about the Mentor dealership's system focused on nitrogen's ability to maintain tire pressure better than air, which helps save fuel. ``Now we have people coming in just for the nitrogen,'' she told Tire Business.
Consumer Tire's second location in Euclid, Ohio, should get its nitrogen system, supplied by Branick Industries Inc., soon.
Some Consumer Tire customers who have long commutes have reported saving as much as two miles a gallon with nitrogen. ``With higher gas prices, anything we can do to achieve better gas mileage is a good thing,'' she said.
Ms. Coley added that about five to 10 new customers a day have been coming to her shop, intrigued by the buzz about nitrogen. Only a few have bought other items such as oil changes, but Ms. Coley said the dealership will wait for them to return for bigger tickets later.
The dealership charges $10 for a nitrogen fill-up, which includes a tire rotation. There is no charge for customers buying four new tires or for getting the nitrogen topped off later.
Consumer Tire sells Goodyear, Bridgestone, Firestone, Michelin, BFGoodrich and Uniroyal tires.