There are more than 2,200 brick-and-mortar Firestone Auto Care locations across the country, but the tire giant has been quietly rolling out a program that frees you from having to go into one of those stores. Called Firestone Direct, it takes vehicle maintenance and tire service on the road, with technicians making house (or office) calls.
The menu begins with basic vehicle maintenance, like oil changes, battery replacement, and brake service. Tires are obviously a big part of Bridgestone/Firestone business, and tire rotation, repair and replacement are all part and parcel for the mobile service. Of course, they can also help with items that every owner really should know how to do themselves, like replacing windshield wipers, light bulbs and air filters.
But if you’d rather not, all that’s required is a flat surface for jacking up the car and a clean workspace. Appointments need to be made in advance so technicians know what parts to bring. It will cost a bit more, but a Bridgestone spokesperson told us that pricing “is very comparable to the brick and mortar experience.” Bridgestone says no clean-up on the owner’s part will be necessary after the service.
One item that may be of particular interest to used car buyers is vehicle inspections. Especially if you often buy cars from distant locations, a mobile inspection that goes to the seller may be a useful way to get a car checked out before you travel out there to drive it home.
Firestone is able to perform these tasks by deploying a fleet of Ford Transits and Transit Connects stocked with tools. The larger of the vans contain tire mounting and balancing machines right there in the van. Oil collection is done via a vacuum system that hoovers it right up through the dipstick tube.
Firestone Direct began post-COVID, so technicians will don masks and gloves. You can leave your keys in a secure location to be picked up as well if you want to avoid close proximity altogether.
The first areas to get Firestone Direct were Atlanta and Bridgestone Americas’ hometown of Nashville. In March, Tampa and Orlando were added to the list. Bridgestone says it will continue to add cities and plans to expand across major markets nationwide by 2023.