Effective storage of tires involves a lot more than just dumping them in the shed or garage. You need to be aware of the dos and don’ts in order to improve the shelf life of your tires, and this WheelZine post has a few essential tips to get you started. Take a look!
Rim or No Rim?
The storage instructions for tires mounted on rims is different from that for tires without rims. For starters, while tires with rims can be safely hung, the same is not recommended for those without rims.
With the advent of different tires for use in different weather conditions, it is pretty common for people to have a set or two of spare tires. This brings up the issue of proper storage, which plays a vital role in preventing damage caused by exposure to sunlight and oxidation. Improper storage can lead to changes in the physical properties of the tires, and affect their appearance and performance for the worse.
One of the key problems to be taken care of during storage is outgassing, i.e., evaporation of lubricating oil from the outer surface of the tires, which causes cracks to develop. So, do you think you’re storing your tires in the right way? Just go through the article to find out.
Useful Tire Storage Tips
Here are a few things that you should take note of, in order to maintain the performance of your tires even after they have been stored for a season or longer.
Protect your tires from exposure to ozone, as the gas can damage rubber. For this, you need to ensure that there are no ozone emitters, such as basement sump pumps, located close to where you store your tires.
Tire totes are another great way to store tires. They are not only effective in providing protection from the elements, but are also easy to carry. However, they are not airtight, but you can counter this problem by securing the tires inside airtight plastic bags before you place them inside the tire totes.
Special care should be exercised while storing whitewall tires and tires with red lines. While stacking these tires or placing them in a row, place them in such a way that no black surface faces a white surface or one that has a red line on it. Wondering why? It’s because the black rubber that borders the white surface or red line has a different composition than that of the black rubber on the other side. This prevents the whitewall from getting stained with oils from the black rubber surrounding it. However, if the white surface comes in contact with the black rubber on the opposite side, it may develop a stubborn stain that is difficult to remove.
Humidity is another factor that you should take into consideration while deciding where and how to store your tires. Atmospheric moisture can damage the rubber used in tires, which makes it essential to store them in a dry place, instead of dumping them in the garage or the shed in your backyard. However, in case you have no option but to store them in a place that is not dry enough, make sure you wrap them securely in airtight plastic bags.
Place the tires in a clean and airtight plastic bag. This protects the tires from being exposed to atmospheric moisture. You can even take a step further and use a vacuum cleaner to suck out air from within the bag, and then seal the mouth of the bag with tape. This will create an airtight environment for the tires and increase their life, by keeping outgassing to a minimum.
When you’ve a car that you do not intend to use for an extended period of time, it is recommended that you remove the tires and store them separately. Otherwise, the weight of the car can damage a specific area of the tire’s surface, which in turn, can lead to premature aging of the rubber. Once the tires have been removed from the vehicle, you can place them on a jack stand till the time you’re required to use them again.
Always store the tires away from direct sunlight, because prolonged exposure to heat and the ultraviolet rays of the Sun can damage the rubber.
Never store tires that have dirt and grime on their surface. Always make sure you clean your tires thoroughly with soap and water, using a tire brush to gently remove the dirt from the areas between the tread patterns. However, abstain the use of acid-based cleaners as they do more harm than good. If you’re storing tires that are mounted on rims, use a wheel brush to remove dirt from the rim surface and wash it with soap and water. Also, ensure that they are completely dry before you store them, because accumulated moisture can adversely affect the rubber, and damage your tires.
Storing Rimmed and Rimless Tires
While the tips given above are the same for all tires, tires mounted on rims have a different set of storage requirements than rimless tires.
- Should not be stacked one above the other
- Should not be hung during storage
- Should be placed next to each other in an upright position
Tires with Rims
- Should not be stored in an upright position
- Can be hung during storage
- Can be stacked one above the other
So, you can see that storing your tires is not as difficult as you might think. Just follow the simple steps given above, and you’ll no longer have to worry about the performance of your tires after you have placed them in storage for a season or even longer.