There are an estimated over a billion vehicles in the world today. In Canada, more than 28 million tires are used and discarded every year. Given the size, volume, and inherent durability of these tires, disposing of them is no easy task. Most often, old tires end up in landfills, contributing to the growing pollution problems.
It is everyone’s responsibility to protect nature from the toxins brought about by discarded tires. Fortunately, innovative technology has made a substantial improvement in tire recycling. If you think that you need to replace your tires, why not consider buying used tires?
Reasons to Buy Used Tires
Many car owners wonder if it is a good idea to purchase used tires instead of new tires. Among the benefits of buying used tires is cost efficiency and lets you save money— almost a third of the original price of the same model.
Moreover, the environmental effects of used tires are significantly lower than discarding old ones in landfills. Discarded tires would take hundreds of years to decompose—and that is quite a long time!
So, how do used tires affect the environment?
Here are several key reasons that will convince you to buy used tires:
- Keep the Environment Safe
When discarded old tires break down, they release harmful chemicals and heavy metals that can leach into the environment. Some of these chemicals, which can find their way into the soil, are carcinogenic (can cause cancer) and mutagenic (can cause mutations in the genes).
The harmful effects of leaching may not be apparent at first, but eventually, the level of contamination of the soil increases. High levels of toxins can seep into the groundwater. Heavy rains can spread harmful toxins to other locations, potentially harming animals that come in contact with the contaminated water.
- Prevent Pest Threat
Tires have a hollow middle that can easily be filled with rainwater when left out in the open. The collected water can become a breeding ground for pests, such as mosquitoes, increasing the risk for vector-borne diseases like encephalitis. A stack of old tires can also become a shelter for disease-carrying rodents.
Make sure to remove discarded tires to keep your property safe from potential health hazards.
- Prevent Pollution Caused by Tire Fires
Some disposal sites resort to burning old tires either by open or controlled combustion. This process can be extremely dangerous as it releases harmful chemicals into the air. Exposure to combustion sites can be a health and safety risk both to the environment and the workers.
Increased fire risk is also a major concern of discarded old tires. Rubber tires are a great source of fuel when heated. Almost 50% of recycled scrap tires are used for fuel generation. Tire-fueled fires are extremely difficult to control and extinguish. Inhaling the toxic smoke can worsen the existing respiratory conditions.
- Conserve Landfill Space
Dumping old tires in landfills and other disposal sites is greatly discouraged since it can contribute to the worsening pollution problems. Hollow and irregularly-shaped, tires, when discarded, can take up a significant and unnecessary amount of space. Also, tires are made of rubber, which could take about a hundred years to decompose. If that wasn’t bad enough, some disposal sites end up burning old tires, releasing harmful chemicals into the air and posing a fire threat.
One of the ways to conserve landfill space is to recycle tires. In addition to leaving more space in landfills, recycling reduces contaminants that can pollute local soil and groundwater.
- Create New Products
Recycling scrap tires can turn them into useful products. On the industrial side, tire-derived fuel is more energy-efficient than normal fuel from coal. It is a by-product of tire recycling and is often used as a supplemental fuel in cement kilns and paper mills. It also helps boost boiler efficiency, minimize air emissions, and reduce production costs.
Extracting and reusing materials from old tires produce other materials, such as steel and nylon. Rubberized asphalt is derived from old tires, which gives more skid resistance compared to standard paving materials. Scrap tires can also be used for DIY home improvement projects and transformed into items like garden planters, outdoor furniture, and home playground equipment.
Discarded old tires have presented many serious environmental concerns due to their chemical makeup. Tire decomposition, incineration, or accidental fires can release harmful toxins that can cause air, water, and land pollution. Assessing the environmental damage caused by tires means looking into more than just the adverse effects of rubber.
Tips to Consider When Buying Good Used Car Tires
Buying used car tires can help you save money. To help you make the right choice, here are several helpful tips for buying used tires:
- Check Tire Tread Depth
The depth of the tire tread says so many things about the life of the tire. A tire depth gauge is handy if you are going to buy used tires. Usually, the tread depth of a new tire is between 9 to 12/32 inches depending on the size. Car experts do not recommend buying tires with treads under 4/32nds of tread.
- Know the UTQG Rating
When buying used tires, it’s a good idea to check the Uniform Tire Quality Grade Standards (UTQG) rating or the Tread Rating. UTQG plays an essential factor in determining the rate of wear and the number of miles you can get out of your tires. The lower the rating and the softer the tire, the more quickly it will wear out.
Tires with UTQG rating between 450-600 are the most economical and long-lasting. Tires with less than 200 UTQG ratings have high performance and grip power, but they wear out quickly.
To get the most out of your used tires, only buy them from a trustworthy and reputable dealer. Round and Around Tire Inc. offers quality used tires of all major brands at the best value. Our tire specialists will help you choose the right tire brand and model to suit your needs, driving habits, and budget. To purchase used tires in Hamilton, give us a call at (905) 393-8474 or visit our tire shop.