Shopping for tires isn’t a fun task. It’s not like buying new décor, comfy clothing, or a TV for movie nights; it’s really just another expense forced upon you.

But picking the right tires, maintaining them properly, and replacing them when needed might save your life—and is likely to make driving more pleasant and improve gas mileage and other costs. If it’s time to replace your treads, we’ve got the score on how to buy the best replacements at the lowest cost, including price comparisons of local and online suppliers.

We found major price differences among independents, chains, new-car dealers, and online-only outlets, with some outlets charging hundreds of dollars more than others for the exact same set of tires. For example, we found we could pay between $830 to more than $1,500 for a set of four Michelin Latitude Tour tires for a Toyota Highlander.

Another way to save is to pick a brand and model of tire that offers good treatwear, traction, and handling, but at a lower price than comparable-quality treads. In Consumer Reports' tests, several tires with top overall quality scores cost less than tires that received low scores.