A tire, or more commonly a tire, is composed of rubber (based on isoprene polymer), steel, textiles and various elements that reinforce the strength of the rubber.
Nearly 300 billion units are produced each year and end up, more or less quickly depending on the conditions of use (mileage, speed, pressure), being too worn to ensure the safety of vehicles. This is known as reusable used tires (RWT) or non-reusable used tires (NRWT) in the tire industry jargon. This raises the question of their end-of-life.
A European directive prohibits the disposal of tires in landfills in order to promote their recovery and recycling. In addition, it is of course forbidden to abandon old tires in nature, where they disfigure the landscape and, among other things, offer mosquitoes favorable places to develop.
In France, the recycling of used tires is the responsibility of the producers, gathered within the Aliapur recovery organization. Thus, when new tires are purchased, garages and tire centers are required to recover the old ones.
The same applies when used tires are brought to these actors, who may, however, ask for an environmental contribution. This can vary from a few dozen cents (two-wheelers) to a hundred euros (civil engineering equipment).
Once collected, reusable used tires are retreaded. Retreading consists of replacing the worn tread of the tire to restore its capacities and allow its reuse. This practice is mostly used for truck tires.
RECOVERY OF NON-REUSABLE TIRES
Non-reusable used tires can be recovered in several ways, whole, in pieces or shredded. Among the modes of recovery, we count :
the support of silage tarpaulin in agricultural environment (the most visible) ;
the constitution of road embankments or constructions and drains;
the support of railroad tracks, to reduce vibrations and noise;
cushioning playgrounds and synthetic turf for sports stadiums;
fuels and raw materials for cement and steel plants;
molded objects (shopping cart wheels).
RECYCLING USED TIRES: A CONTROLLED PROCESS
Since 2003, the end-of-life of tires has been governed by a European directive. In France, articles R 543-137 to 152 of the Environmental Code regulate the management of used tires as follows
It is forbidden to leave or burn a used tire in nature
It is preferable to recycle the tire rather than destroy it
Tires purchased new in France must be recycled
Distributors of new tires must take back used tires free of charge within the limit of their annual sales.
THE SECOND LIFE OF USED TIRES
There are different ways to recover a used tire, whether it is in pieces, whole or melted, for example:
32% of recycled tires are recovered and used to line the floors of playgrounds and sports halls
18% are used to provide substitute fuels for cement factories or urban heating systems.
24% of used tires end up unchecked, in the middle of nowhere, unfortunately.
14% are recycled to be reusable again
10% end up in the construction industry
In general, it is possible to find it recycled and in different forms as in molded objects, such as shopping cart wheels. In playgrounds and synthetic turf on sports fields, as fuel and raw materials for cement factories. In railroad track supports to reduce noise.
TIRES AS DECORATIVE OBJECTS?
Yes, you read that right! Why not give your tires a second artistic life? Many interior decorators or DIY enthusiasts use their old tires in their interior and exterior decorating. It turns out that they can also be very useful.
Make garden furniture
Make a swing or other games for children
Make a basket for a dog or cat
Serve as recycling garbage cans
Create a sandbox
Make a flower pot
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