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Does Valvoline Rotate Tires?
Valvoline is a speed lane oil change set up which means there’s a pit dug underground.
A tech works in this down in this pit and as the car drives over the pit, the technician stands in the pit and has access to the oil drain plug and oil filter. From that easy access point, they can drain oil very quickly.
Once the oil is drained, the tech in the pit down below yells to a tech up top that the oil is done draining and that the drain plug is tight. Then the tech up top can start adding oil.
The speedlane setup allows for oil changes in half the time of usual oil changes because there’s multiple people working on your car and you don’t have to lift the car.
But you can’t rotate tires without lifting them, right? Well Valvoline has a special machine that lifts the car up about 8 inches off the ground.
The machine that Valvoline uses to rotate tires and the amount of techs allows the tire rotation to be done quickly and efficiently.
With all four tires lifted off the ground, a couple of techs zip the tires off the car with an impact gun and move the front tires to the back and the back tires to the front.
This rotation allows you to maximize the life of the tires. Rotating tires on a regular basis will save you from uneven tire wear and having to buy tires earlier than you would if you did not rotate.
In a full service garage a tire rotation usually takes between 15 to 30 minutes because the car has to be driven in by one tech.
The lift has to be set. The car has to be lifted up about chest height. Then only one tech rotates all four tires in the correct pattern specified by the manufacturer. IE front to back, or criss-crossed.
But when you have multiple people working on the same job (a tire rotation), time goes quickly, which is why Valvoline can get it done in half the time.
When you have more people working on the car, the time it takes to do the job of one mechanic decreases exponentially since it’s now being done by two or three people.
Valvoline Speed Time
Taking your car to a speed lane like Valvoline is almost like a pit stop in Nascar.
In Nascar, all sorts of services can get done to a racecar in about 10 seconds because there’s a team of mechanics working on the vehicle.
Well, the same is true about Valvoline. All sorts of services are offered, including tire rotations, in a fraction of the time, because there’s so many people working on the vehicle.
But this is also why the cost is higher. If you take your car to a full-service shop, you may have to wait for an oil change, but pay only $30.
As well, you’ll get an under car inspection by a more experienced technician. But like mentioned before, you may have to wait 30 minutes.
And if the shop is busy, you could be waiting up to three hours since there is a long line in front of you.
But at Valvoline, the speed lane is designed to push as many oil changes and tire rotations in and out as quickly as possible. So a 15 minute oil change with a tire rotation is quite common at Valvoline and probably is the norm.
But this is why at some Valvolines you’re looking at a bill over $100 for these services. The quick turnaround is what you pay for at Valvoline.
Tire rotations are available at all Valvoline Instant Oil Change locations.
This means anywhere you can get your oil changed, you can ask for a tire rotation. But while all locations are equipped with lifts, that doesn’t mean they are always operational.
Some locations will not be able to do tire rotations because their lift is currently broken, or down for service, meaning they are unable to perform the service.
This operational failure can be a major nuisance since you go in expecting a ten minute tire rotation and leave not receiving a tire rotation at all.
This down time can be for regular scheduled maintenance meaning just for the day.
Or it can mean that the machine will be down for months at a time while the shop waits for things like parts or specially trained service techs to come and repair the lift.
Either way, if you are dead set on having your vehicle’s tires rotated, it’s most likely a good idea to call the VOIC ahead of time to make sure their machine is currency operational.
I called a Valvoline Instant Oil Change for this article just to make sure all locations offered tire rotations (which they do), and the store I called had a broken machine.
And I remember from my time working at Jiffy Lube, our tire rotation lift was broken for a couple months as well while we were waiting for corporate to come out and fix the lift.
So call ahead if you are looking to get your tires rotated.
Other Speed Lanes
Other common speed lane franchises offer tire rotations in 10 minutes as well.
For example, I used to work at Jiffy Lube which is almost an identical set up to Valvoline, and we had a tire rotation lift.
The lift worked just like the one at Valvoline, by lifting the vehicle off the ground about 8 inches.
Then two techs, one on each side, would work on the tires. Really, the tire rotation itself would take about only 30 seconds.
But setting the lift, doing the checks, zipping the tires back on, and other extra steps added up to about 10 minutes.
These speed lanes are constantly looking for other quick, extra work, so some checks of commonly replaced items are always done.
As they should be, since you have the tires off once every other oil change, you should look for wearing parts, otherwise you won't know if something has gone wrong underneath.
About The Author
Christopher Sparks has been servicing vehicles since 2012. After completing the automotive studies program at Camden County College, he was awarded an Associates's Degree in Applied Science. His first job was a lube-tech at Jiffy Lube, and is currently an independent B-Technician servicing vehicles for the United States Postal Service. Christopher is ASE certified and loves rebuilding engines.Read more about Christopher Sparks