No matter how diligent you are in maintaining and rotating your tires, sooner or later the tread will be gone and the tires will have reached the end of their life. Or have they?
If you take a look at a tire that is “completely” worn out, you will notice that the tread is basically gone and the tires just can’t grip anymore. But you might also notice that the rest of the tire seems to be holding up just fine.
Most of the costs involved with manufacturing tires go directly into producing the tire body. The actual material cost of the treads themselves are just icing on the cake.
Because of this, there are many companies producing retreaded tires. Since these tires cost little to manufacture, there is usually a corresponding drop in the price at which they are sold.
Retreaded tires are undoubtedly cheaper than new tires. But are they safe? Commercial airlines and the military certainly think so, as they are willing to use retreaded tires on many of their vehicles. In fact, some estimates place the amount of retreads in use on commercial aircraft as high as 80 per cent. The average commercial aircraft tire is retreaded six times. Some tires can be retreaded up to a dozen times before finally biting the dust.
It should be noted that these are aircraft tires. Although they must perform perfectly when called upon, they simply aren’t in use very often. However, many truck, bus, and taxi fleets depend on retreaded tires.
Not every worn tire can become a retread. First the worn tires, called “casings” must be carefully inspected for faults. As there is no shortage of worn tires, retreading facilities choose only the very best.
Next, whatever tread is left is buffed away and a new tread applied. The procedure used is very similar to the one used when applying tread to a brand new tire. The key components are heat, pressure and time. After the new tread is applied, the tire is cured and sent for a final inspection.
Whether or not to purchase retreaded tires is a decision best left to each consumer depending on their situation. For someone on a tight budget retreads can be an attractive option, as it can free up some cash for tire maintenance. Monthly pressure checks and a regular rotation schedule will always be the very best way to stretch your tire buying dollar.
Source by Guy Goodyear