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February 27, 2014

Another tire aging report, another scathing attack

Tire aging is an easy attention grabber for local television news stations, especially during sweeps month.

ABC affiliate Channel 5 in Cleveland, Ohio, ran a piece on Feb. 26, 2014, that followed true to similar reports ABC has been running across the country for years. The report sensationalized the issue.

Modern Tire Dealer Editor Bob Ulrich wants to set the record straight -- or at least straighter. In his latest blog, he explains some of the problems with taking the easy road. "Dumping on the tires and tire manufacturers is a short cut," he says. "There is more to the story than 'Old tire blows, driver dies.' Is it tragic? Absolutely. Is the cause and effect accurate? Not necessarily."

To read Ulrich's point-counterpoint with the report, check out "Tire aging: 6 years? 10 years? It's time to make a decision."

Have you ever had any problems with an old tire? Do we need an expiration date? If so, how long should a tire be allowed in service?

Let us know what you think by leaving a comment!

Related Topics: ABC, B.O.B., Tire aging

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  1. Brooks | February 27, 2014 at 09:43AM
    6 years after installation
    4 years shelf life then the 6 years running after installation
    10 years total

    Actual outside exposure really starts deterioration so the first 4 years self life is not as critical

  2. Brooks | February 27, 2014 at 09:45AM
    Included incorrect email

    Brooks Harris

  3. Mitch | February 28, 2014 at 08:21AM
    If you think that the aging tire is a problem with 5 years 10 years.

    I worked for a major USA tire company in the Middle East. Most of you may not know the aging issue in the Middle East. It all started with the Firestone fiasco. The Middle East incorporated a 2 year policy anything over 2 years of production date must be replaced.(This was for the Gulf States and then spread throughout the Middle East and now beyond.) This policy stood for several years until the consumer started asking for tires to be within 12 months of the production DOT dates. Now the consumer is asking within the calendar year. Some have the nerve to ask tires within 6 months of the calendar year after the 6 months production date. This has developed in to a major issue for the tire manufacturers. Whatever stock has been left over from the previous year are discounted heavily. The loses are tremendous for the tire manufacturers. But the worst to come has been the post dating from certain Asian manufacturers. The tires are delivered during November and December with the postdated DOTs for the following year. Having a jump in to the market very early on in January. While every other tire manufacturer suffers from this dilemma until they can allocate production with in the 1st quarter and beyond.

  4. Dennis | February 28, 2014 at 10:05AM
    for those that don't live in hotter areas of the country may not relate to well to old tires and failures. I live in Yuma Arizona where we can say we have some of the highest failure rates in the country. first question is why tires age and what factors contribute to failure due to age. so here is the short story.

    it takes about 300 degress and 30 minutes to take a gummy uncured tire (green) tire into the highly durable tires on the road today. what you don't know is the curing process does not stop. tire rubber compounds continue to harden and change with age. these compounds will deteriorate or degrade based on use and environment. in a word "heat" heat is what turned green rubber into durable rubber of a modern tire. in the use category its broken up into slow speed stop and go and high speed constant driving and combinations of them. high speed driving allows the tire to reach maximum operating temperatures based on load and speed. rubber compounds will "cure" or harden faster in those conditions as they heat soak and remain at those temperatures for long periods. add to that environmental conditions like 140 degree road surface temperatures and casing life diminishes rather rapidly. to compound the situation is the hardening of the rubber itself. as it hardens it looses some of its flexibility or an increase in resistance to flexing which leads to higher operating temps which leads to faster degradation of materials and bonding properties till air pressure wins. when looking at a tire statically, not moving, it has tremendous amounts of pressure trying to force the flat steel belts into a round form. in other words it is only the bonding of the rubber to steel that maintains the flat shape of a modern steel belted radial tire. air pressure is trying to make it round. when the bonding breaks down where air pressure wins we see a tire failure. tread all over a vehicle or on the side of the road. trying to store tires is just as bad as the curing process continue

  5. Jon | February 28, 2014 at 10:55AM
    Ever since this contoversy has existed I have had a one man campaign to have people use their spare in place of buying a new tie 1 instead of 2 or 3 instead of 4. If they don't use their real spare they will lose it if they don't use it because the clock is always ticking on the unused spare.

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