Keeping Tires Away from Landfills: 6 Practical Solutions

Keeping Tires Away from Landfills: 6 Practical Solutions

Proper waste disposal is crucial for maintaining environmental health, especially when managing used tires. Millions of tires accumulate in landfills yearly, posing serious environmental and health risks.

Let’s explore practical solutions to mitigate tire waste and highlight the importance of proper tire disposal from landfills to protect our planet.

What is The Impact of Tire Waste on The U.S.?

Every year, Americans add over 290 million scrap tires to the growing piles nationwide. This isn’t just a statistic; it’s a major environmental concern.

Think about it: each person contributes about four tires annually. These tires occupy vast space in landfills, already bursting at the seams.

But the issue extends beyond space. Landfills aren’t designed for something as durable as tires. They don’t break down easily; over time, they accumulate, leading to overfilled, inefficient waste management sites.

What Risks Do Tire Piles Pose to Health and The Environment?

Used tires potentially store stagnant water with mosquitoes breed

Tire piles are more than just an eyesore; they are breeding grounds for trouble. Water collects inside these tires when it rains, creating perfect conditions for mosquitoes to breed.

These insects are not only pests but also carriers of diseases, which can spread to humans and animals. Furthermore, piles of tires are highly flammable.

When they catch fire, they create thick, toxic smoke that releases harmful pollutants into the air. These pollutants include chemicals that are dangerous to human health and harmful to the environment.

The tire fires themselves are hard to control and can burn for extended periods, causing long-lasting damage to the local air quality. Rodents find homes in these tire piles, too. They can carry disease and cause further health risks to people living nearby.

How Can We Help Keep Tires Away From Landfills?

You might wonder how you can reduce tire waste. Several practical solutions can help divert whole tires from landfills.

Each method tackles waste and turns what would be trash into valuable resources. Let’s explore these solutions.

1. Curb ramps

Smooth Curb Ramp

Imagine turning old tires into something as useful as curb ramps. These ramps help vehicles transition smoothly from the road to the driveway.

By recycling tires into curb ramps, we not only solve a common problem but also use up a lot of rubber that would otherwise clog our landfills. Smooth Curb specializes in creating durable, recycled rubber that fits perfectly into your daily life. Check out their offerings here.

2. Rubberized asphalt for road paving

Using rubberized asphalt for road paving is a smart way to reuse old tires. This technique blends ground-up tires with asphalt, creating a paving material that is not just longer-lasting but also quieter than traditional pavement.

Integrating recycled tires into the mix not only reduces noise pollution but also cuts down on the need for new materials.

3. Tires as fuel

Close up of man's hand to fill up the car with fuel

Did you know that most tires, or discarded tires, can be converted into fuel? This process, known as tire-derived fuel (TDF), uses tire shreds as a high-energy alternative to traditional fuels. The steel wires in tires are separated and recycled separately, enhancing the sustainability of this method.

Power plants and industrial facilities use TDF because it burns hotter and cleaner than coal. This method helps rid landfills of massive tire quantities while providing an energy solution.

4. Highway sound barriers

Another innovative use for old tires is constructing highway sound barriers. These barriers effectively reduce traffic noise, which impacts nearby residential areas.

They combine shredded tires with other materials to create a dense, sound-absorbing wall. It’s a perfect example of turning waste into something beneficial for the community.

5. Highway resurfacing

Highway resurfacing is yet another avenue where old tires get a new life. Using crumb rubber from tires makes the resurfacing material more flexible and durable.

This means fewer repairs and a smoother ride for you. Plus, it’s a greener option, reducing the reliance on new, raw materials.

6. Rubber surfacing

Rubber floor using recycled tires paved on the surface of the playground.

Finally, rubber surfacing for playgrounds and athletic tracks is a safe and eco-friendly use for old tires. This surfacing is soft, reducing the risk of injuries during falls and providing a comfortable playing surface.

Schools and parks benefit from this cost-effective, recycled material, ensuring safety without compromising environmental responsibility.

How Can Consumers Help Reduce Tire Waste?

As a consumer, you have more power than you might think to help reduce tire waste. Start by choosing durable tires in any tire store. These last longer, meaning you won’t need to replace them as often. Fewer replacements mean fewer tires ending up in landfills.

When it’s time for a new tire, consider buying retreads. For retreaded tires, use your old tires’ casing with new tread attached to the surface. This process significantly reduces waste and saves you money.

Additionally, support businesses that recycle truck tires. Purchase products made from recycled tires, like rubber mulch for your garden, floor mats, or even tire swings.

These actions create demand for recycled products and encourage more tire recycling. By making these choices, you help cut down on waste and contribute to a greener planet. Your choices push industries towards more sustainable practices.

Furthermore, consider buying eco-friendly products like curb ramps made from 100 % recycled rubber materials. These products serve practical purposes and contribute to healing our environment. By choosing such items, you reinforce a cycle of sustainability that benefits everyone.

Final Thoughts

Adopting sustainable methods to manage waste tires is an often overlooked but significant environmental issue. By implementing solutions like creating driveway curb ramps, you protect your vehicle from potential damage caused by harsh curb encounters and contribute to broader environmental efforts.

Each of these solutions helps keep tires out of landfills and supports a sustainable future by knowing how to dispose of unwanted tires responsibly.

If you’re interested in more information, check out our related blogs on our website, including “6 Innovative and Practical Ideas to Repurpose Old Tires” and “Where Do Old Tires Go: Guide To Disposal And Recycling Practices“.