Kost Tires combines growth with care

Kost Tires, and its 52 locations in New York and Pennsylvania, recently became part of the Mr. Tire Auto Service Centers network but still offers small-town care its customers trust.

Mr. Tire is part of the nation’s largest company-operated automotive chain, with more than 1,000 locations in 25 states.

Though the signs on Kost Tire locations are changing, the staff guarantees that the auto service centers will continue to provide the care its customers have relied on since 1938.

Chris Trapane, store manager of the Washington Blvd. location, said his operation provides “pretty much all automotive services.”

This includes oil changes, brakes, alignments, shock and struts, air conditioning, exhaust and, of course, tires.

Every location’s mission is to take care of each customer’s vehicle as if it was their own, providing the kind of convenience, service and value that Kost’s staff would appreciate if they were the customer.

The tire and auto service operation was founded over 75 years ago by Mike Kost in Forest City and remains a family-owned business, despite its vast expansion since then.

Its website boasts a rating of 18th among the top 50 independent tire dealers in the nation and says Kost has been featured in some of the industry’s most popular national trade magazines.

The service center offers customers low prices and great care while still providing helpful, small-town hospitality.

Though there are a handful of guys working at the Williamsport location, 1304 Washington Blvd., the company employs over 300 people in its service centers.

“Our employees have been here a long time, most for no less than five years, I believe,” Trapane said.

The company strives to give opportunities to local, ASE certified employees and state inspection technicians.

Trapane credits his employees and the community that surrounds them for Kost’s success.

“Our customers love us. We have a guy that brings us food when he comes in,” the store manager said. “We’ll have people in the waiting room and someone will walk in off the street and tell our customers that they picked a great place.”

He laughs and denies he gets his friends to do it.

“They just like us. We do a good job,” Trapane added.

Kost’s 52 locations are stocked with a variety of tires: Dunlop, Firestone, Sumitomo, Cordovan, Good Year, Michelin, Bridgestone, Hankook, General, Uniroyal, BF Goodrich, Pirelli and Cooper.

And if for some reason, they dont have the tire a customer is looking for, they promise to get it.

In the end Kost Tire & Auto Service sticks to its philosophy – “take pride in your performance.”