Recycling Tires – Where To?

Proper tire disposal is crucial to avoid their rubber, metal, and other components ending up in landfills. Used tires require special handling for environmental and health reasons. Luckily, many responsible disposal options exist. Read on for how and where to sustainably get rid of old tires.

Understand Risks

Used tires pose environmental and safety hazards when improperly discarded. They take up valuable landfill space and trap methane gases as they slowly degrade. Illegal dumping creates breeding grounds for mosquitoes and rodents. Burning tires releases toxic emissions. That’s why responsible tire disposal is essential.

When stockpiled in large quantities, tires become major fire hazards. Tires burned in the open air can ignite hard-to-control blazes emitting hundreds of pollutants. Even in regulated facilities, outdated incinerators still release concerning emissions. The non-biodegradable materials linger long after disposal.

Prepare For Drop-off

Before bringing old tires in for recycling or disposal, make sure they are ready for transport and processing. Remove any metal components like studs, wheel weights, or bands. Check facilities restrictions on accepting rims or attached tire/rim combinations – many require tires separated from rims. Keeping hardware with tires complicates recycling efforts.

Split any full spare tire and wheel assemblies. Deflate tires fully for safety when transporting. Clean excess debris off treads and sidewalls to avoid contaminating recyclable rubber. Load manageable quantities you can unload yourself. Take precautions securing loads during transport. Advance preparation streamlines proper drop-off.

Utilize Retailer Programs

Many automotive retailers and tire shops offer recycling programs when purchasing replacements. Ask if they collect old tires for disposal when having new ones installed. Some states even prohibit retailers from charging disposal fees. Take advantage of this convenient recycling option tieed to your purchase.

Retailer collection helps keep used tires out of landfills and improper dumping sites. Make sure to have tires ready for transport as described above. If purchasing online, you’ll need to pursue other disposal methods for the old tires being replaced. But for local in-person sales, retailer recycling is quick and easy.

Drop Off at Designated Sites

Your city or county may sponsor periodic tire collection events or have permanent drop-off locations. These allow residents to properly dispose of used tires for free or a nominal charge. Search “[your area] tire disposal” to find upcoming collections or year-round public drop spots. Call to verify accepted items and any quantity limits.

Use government-run disposal days to clear all four tires plus any spares. Confirm any pandemic restrictions impacting events before attending. Pay attention to quantity allowances and only transport what you can unload yourself. Take advantage of these sponsored opportunities to prevent improper dumping.

Explore Recycling Options

Some scrap yards and recycling facilities accept tires for processing into new products like rubber mulch, playground surfaces, and rubberized asphalt. Contact local centers to ask if they take tires and any fees involved. Recycling gives tires renewed purpose.

Choose recyclers practicing environmentally sound procedures. Ask how they process and repurpose materials. While tires get degraded and downcycled through recycling, it’s better than indefinite landfilling. Supporting legitimate recyclers also encourages expansion of responsible options.

Properly disposing of old tires does require some extra effort compared to tossing them haphazardly. But we all must make that effort for the good of the environment. Tires disposed of irresponsibly pose dangers to communities through pollution, fire risk, and disease vectors. By taking the time to drop-off, recycle, or utilize retailer disposal programs, we keep tens of millions of tires out of unsafe dumping each year. It’s a small inconvenience that pays off through cleaner land, water and air for everyone long into the future.

Where to Dispose of Used Tires

Where to Dispose of Used Tires


    – Disposing of used tires: what does the law say?

    – Used tires in landfill: what are the risks?

    – Where to dispose of your used tires?

    – A second life for used tires

Many people still rely on landfills to get rid of their old tires, although this is prohibited. However, it is also forbidden to abandon them in the middle of nowhere or burn them in the open air! There is, therefore, only one solution left to get rid of your used tires: have them taken back by the producers and importers who are required to ensure their collection and treatment. 

Disposing of used tires: what does the law say?

It is strictly forbidden to abandon, dump or burn used tires in the open air. To avoid the nuisance created by deposits and the fire risk, tire producers and importers must ensure the collection and processing of used tires, either through their own system or by delegating this activity to collective organizations (collector, approved processing facility operator.

As a direct consequence of this recycling obligation, new tires have increased their purchase price by a few dollars to finance this rubber’s recovery.

Please note: bicycle tires are not affected by this regulation.

Used tires in landfill: what are the risks?

Because of their composition (a mixture of rubber, steel, and various textiles), and although they are not considered toxic or dangerous waste, used tires cannot be deposited in a landfill.

And for a good reason, as they can become a source of nuisance for the latter, they can only be handed over to professionals authorized to carry out this task.

It is not without reason that landfills no longer accept used tires:

    – in case of fire, used tire deposits can be dangerous for health and the environment;

    – tires can cause instability of the landfill soil;

    – the shape of the tires is conducive to the nesting of rats and mosquitoes;

    – they take time to degrade;

    – not recycling them is considered an actual waste, as they have high calorific value.

Where can I get rid of my used tires?

Where to Dispose of Used Tires

Since used tires are no longer accepted in landfills and are subject to an obligation to be taken back by all professionals in the sector, the holders and consumers of used tires must therefore call on approved professionals.

The professionals subject to this take-back obligation are

    Tire producers or importers who are technically and financially responsible for processing used tires.

    – Distributors (garages, car centers, etc.) must take back tires free of charge. They are responsible for storing them before handing them over to the collectors of the sector.

    – The collectors must be responsible for collecting, grouping, sorting, or transporting the waste to the treatment facilities.

    – The treatment facility operators, who, as their name indicates, are in charge of the various recovery methods, from recycling to energy recovery, including their use in public works.

Good to know: consumers are not required to bring their used tires to one of the organizations mentioned. On the other hand, they must bring them to their garage, which is obliged to accept them free of charge. But be careful; these garages can only declare used tires equivalent to those installed during the year. Therefore, give preference to your own garage.

A second life for your used tires

A second life on the road is possible for our used tires:

    – reuse of the tires as used tires if the wear limit is not reached ;

    – retreading, i.e., reconditioning of used tires so that they can be fitted to a car again.

Recovery of the material of the whole tire or in pieces:

    – use for public works but also for backfilling or civil engineering works;

    – use by farmers to maintain silage covers;

    – transformation into aggregate for sports fields, construction, asphalt, or noise barriers.

Energy recovery: use as fuel to feed, for example, cement kilns, district heating, or other industrial heaters.