Tyres (Used) and waste

Avoidance

Several activities can be undertaken to reduced wear and tear on tyres including:

  • Ensuring correct tyre pressure is maintained for the road conditions on which a vehicle operates
  • Conducting periodic wheel alignments to support even tyre wear
  • Attending to a vehicle’s suspension and brakes when it is serviced
  • Choosing a type of tyre that is appropriate for a vehicle’s operating conditions and amount of use.

Businesses can assist purchasers of tyre products and associated services, by informing them that vehicle safety and whole of life vehicle costs may be improved when unnecessary wear and tear on tyres is avoided, while reduced tyre wear can also reduce used tyre waste.

Businesses involved in tyre retail and associated services can support used tyre waste avoidance by offering a free or discounted wheel alignment and tyre pressure adjustment several months after a tyre sale to extend the life of tyres.

Also brand owners could support activities to reduce tyre wear and tear by partnering with tyre businesses through promotional discounts on maintenance services.

Re-use

Apart from producing retreads from used tyres, which has an existing market (especially for mining equipment and larger vehicles), re-use includes:

  • Marine applications, such as jetty guards
  • Uses in drainage structures
  • Use of tyres in civil engineering applications
  • Equestrian applications, where tyres are used for guards.

Anyone attempting any significant re-use of used tyres (normally when more than 100 used tyres exist at a single premises), should firstly seek advice from the Department of Environment Regulation to confirm the intended re-use application is appropriate and is not used tyre storage, which is controlled under Western Australian legislation.

For more information on legislation see the tyres legislation page.

Recycling

Tyre recycling re-uses the component parts of a tyre to produce new products such as:

  • Ground rubber for playground surfaces
  • Reconstituted rubber tiles for flooring
  • Steel within tyres has a multitude of potential uses.

At present there is limited potential to recycle the increasing numbers of used tyres being generated in Western Australia, as local recyclers are operating close to capacity. In the interim period, any used tyres that are not being managed by existing tyre recyclers are either being stored in dedicated tyre storage facilities or are disposed of in certain specific landfills.

However, with the likely introduction of an Australia wide product stewardship scheme for used tyres in the near future, longer term recycling capacity should increase, as the scheme aims to provide a means to support more tyre recycling across Australia. As new information about the scheme becomes available it will be linked on this site to the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population & Communities.

Businesses involved in the motor trades should contact the Motor Trades Association for information about emerging additional tyre recycling options.

Please note: the transport of used tyres for disposal or recycling is controlled under Western Australian legislation.

Recovery

Energy recovery from used tyres in applications such as cement kilns and brick works has been employed elsewhere, but no examples currently exist in Western Australia.

Disposal

Disposal of used tyres is partially restricted in Western Australia, as there is a Tyre Landfill Exclusion Zone in and around the Perth Metropolitan Area. However, licensed used tyre carriers (controlled waste carriers) have commercial arrangements with appropriate tyre disposal and recycling providers and the cost of managing the material may be built into the carrier’s contract price. Also, Western Australian legislation requires that licensed carriers must be used to transport used tyres when relating to commercial activities and quantities.

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