Woes of Retreaded Tires on Cars

Woes of Retreaded Tires on Cars

by RJC

Retread  tread band

Retread tread band

As a single mother of a very active middle school preteen, my car is vital. And of course the tires on my car were also extremely important, so one year after purchasing used tires over and again, I decided to splurge. It was going to be brand-new tires for my trusty station wagon, giving me the opportunity to, instead of changing tires every six months, possibly drive on them for a couple years.

I headed to the trusty tire man who sold me used tires over and over again and explained to him that I thought I could possibly afford a new set of tires. He proceeded to extend me credit; I was terribly excited and soon had a brand-new set of tires on my wagon. They were not an expensive set of tires, but I was excited, as I would be able to pay them off in less than four months without a lot of financial difficulty. And I thought to myself, “I'll be able to drive on these for a couple of years, saving money from buying new used tires on a seasonal basis.”

I proceeded to drive through the winter on the tires, no thought or concern in my head, just a general look to make sure they were all inflated properly and, no problems. Come that spring my general look turned into concern as I noticed one tire getting a bit low. I topped it off, and continued to drive through the spring baseball season encouraged by the fact that it seemed to hold air, sort of. Periodically I had to head for the local gas station and refill it, this was becoming a concern. Of course, one day, getting ready to run errands before I had to pick up my daughter for ball practice, which of course, I usually watch, I had a flat tire.

I made a call to my rural neighbor, who I knew had an air compressor on his truck to inflate my tire so I could drive to my trusty tire man. They were happy to help; I was soon on my way. Pulling into the tire store, I was very encouraged thinking this won't be a problem, how wrong I was.

My trusty used tire salesman who sold me brand-new tires, wanted to charge me to fix my flat! This was upsetting; I had bought this set of tires just the fall before, and had expected them to last for two years. Charge me for a flat? I had heard they do it at other tire stores for free. With of course, a bit of grumbling, the tire man fixed my flat for free. And I was on my way to ball practice, secure in the knowledge that I was okay for a while and shouldn't have any problems.

Once again, I was mistaken. Upon explaining my problem to a friend at the ball game, I explained that I had bought retread tires brand-new last fall, and my trusty tire men wanted to charge me for a flat. Well the first thing they said, “You bought retread's?” and I, Of course, saying, “Yes. I bought a brand-new set of retreads, and they should last me for a couple of years.” The next comment out of their mouth was a bit upsetting.

Come to find out, after a certain amount of mileage anywhere between 20,000 to 30,000 miles, which I put on my car yearly, a retread can separate. The images going through my mind at that time, were appalling, shocking, and extremely upsetting. I thought to myself, “I drive my child all-around in this car with my tires leaving shreds of themselves behind while going down the freeway”, I was disturbed and actually, quite terrified.

After the Ball game, I'd limped my way home, nothing wrong with the car really just my brain and of course I didn't sleep well either. What was I to do; a single parent, low income, and I had already spent my tire money over four months just a few months earlier.

Needless to say, within a day or so, I was at another tire store discussing my problem, and explaining that I was terrified to drive the car. They kindly explained to me that retreads were not something to purchase for a daily driver, that retreads were usually used trucks, commercial vehicles and for a vehicle with very low use. Fortunately, they took my plight into consideration and a brand-new set of used tires (again!) were installed on my station wagon. I thought to myself, that at least even if they were used, I wouldn't have to worry about them possibly flying apart going down the road. Also, I was very happy with their explanations, and the idea that they understood that I was a single parent, with one vehicle, that I put a lot of miles on yearly, and that I wanted it to be safe.

What could I have done different, how can I keep myself from being taken by the trusty tire salesman, or other salesman. Now I know, now before I make any major purchase I hop online. I research the item I am going to be purchasing so that I can assure myself that I won't have nightmares about tires falling apart doing 70 down the freeway.

When it came time to purchase new tires for my station wagon; of course, I didn't want to purchase used again I had just gotten out of that racket, I hopped online. And found many ways to ensure that I was going to be purchasing a good set of tires for what I intended to do with my vehicle. The answer, tire reviews, recalls and safety information sites as well as Consumer Reports and Consumer Affairs.

In all fairness retreads have come a long way from falling apart on passenger vehicles, in fact, they're not commonly sold for passenger vehicles anymore. They're much more frequently seen on trucks, commercial trucks, buses and other heavy-duty vehicles that have more than just four tires. Although, if you check recalls today, you'll see Firestone recalls on Ford Explorers and the tires falling apart going down the road, causing major accidents. Use your Internet search tools to discover what kind of tire you should purchase, the safety rating, speed ratings, as well as current reviews on mileage, drivability, and cost.

Comments for Woes of Retreaded Tires on Cars

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Truck tires for sale
by: Clark

Replacing your truck tires is one of the regular expenses to be expected when operating a commercial truck.

Irregular wear, however, can force you to replace truck tires early and waste money.

You should be aware of the most frequent causes of irregular tread wear and tire failure while driving and maintaining your rig. That way, you can do everything within your power to keep wear to a minimum and safely go for longer without replacing your tires.

Editorial Comment:

We agree completely with your comments and recommend the blog post you have expanding on this topic at: www.huntertires.com


by: Andrew R

I own 3 vehicles.... 2 trucks and a car. I have ice racing retreads on the car. 33in mud retreads and will soon have retreaded drag slicks on the other.

My friends, family and I have run retreads to great success. We are all car people though. We maintain our alignments, air pressure and I supervise any tire balancing I require. A brand new tire will fail if you neglect any of those things.

I utilize two different retread companies and I buy with confidence. We even run studded retreads in the winter.
The men and women working at these companies want to see their own families safe just as we do. I doubt they are all driving on 300 dollar apiece Toyos.

Best of luck to all.

no no no
by: Anonymous

i had bought a new set of tires 3months ago from my friend cause he got rims. anyway the back passnger side tire was leaking air and couldnt be fixed so i went to a tire shop to get a used tire until this coming thursday when i also was goin to get rims. they sold me a recapped tire and i didnt kn it has bn about a moth since i got it and i jus coming home friday nite from nashville and all the tread came off my tire the car went out of control. lucky i was by a exit and it was low traffic or it could have bn really bad. it messed my car up and everything. i had never heard of a recapped tire until now the tire is still up

Benefits of Retreaded Tires
by: Tire Retread & Repair Information Bureau

We often see these misunderstandings about retreaded tires, separations and the causes of rubber on the road. The truth is, there have been major technological advances in the production of retreaded tires over the last several decades and you simply can't compare a modern retreaded tire to retreaded tires that may have been produced 30 years ago. As one of the Anonymous posters stated here, it's important to properly maintain, inflate and repair your tires, whether they're new, used, or retreaded.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration published a study in 2008 (Commercial Medium Tire Debris Study - Report No: DOT HS 811 60) in which they collected almost 1,500 pieces of tire fragments from the roads. The study concluded that the fragments they found were from NEW and retreaded tires in equal proportion to their service on the roads and had little to do with the manufacturing or retreading process. The top 2 types of damage they discovered from the debris studied were the result of road hazards (39%) and excessive heat (30%).

Retreaded tires provide important economic and environmental benefits by significantly reducing the costs for our private and public fleets to operate their vehicles, by keeping millions of tires out of landfills annually, and by saving millions of gallons of oil and reducing carbon emissions in the production process of retreading tires.

For more information please visit the Tire Retread & Repair Information Bureau at www.retread.org.

False Thoughts on tires...
by: Anonymous

There are a few things you should consider in your story. The amount paid for used tires can add up but understanding that buying time is often easier then shelling it all out at once.

A few things, tires are not a buy and forget item. When maintained properly even retreads are safe to use. Your air pressure should be checked with a gauge at least monthly. Tires will naturally lose up to 1psi per month. (New or used) Air pressure has a huge affect on tires. Consider that NASCAR changes air pressure in .25psi increments. Your car will lose four times that in a month. Check air monthly.

Second be sure that when you do have a tire going low (as noted in your post) do not wait to have a low tire fixed or checked. When a tire runs low on air pressure it also runs hotter. Heat is a major problem in tires. It is ultimately what causes tires to fail. Also when running tires with low air pressure you run the risk of damaging the tire from the inside also causing a possible failure. This all leads back to air pressure.

Lastly be sure that when a flat is repaired it is done so properly. Repairs should follow RMA guidelines and should be repaired from inside the tire. The repair should include a plug and a patch done from the inside. A gummy plug is not an acceptable repair. Without going into great detail gummy plugs can lead to separations as noted in your post.

A few simple steps on your part will help make your tires last and your car safe. But if you do not do your part no one else can.

Just Buy New tires!
by: Robert Platt Bell

While new tires may seem expensive, the cost of mounting and balancing used tires over and over again will eventually exceed the price of a new set.

I have a set of Michelins on my car that were expensive, but they have lasted over 60,000 miles - nearly five years. In that time, the author of the article above has paid for mounting and balancing used tires TWELVE TIMES.

Penny wise, pound foolish.

Good tires are expensive, but they are a value, they are safer, and since they last longer, they are more cost-effective.

Stop messing around with used tires, retreads, cheap tires, and other poverty-think techniques.

Buy a good set of tires and then forgetaboutit!



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