Age isn't the issue when it comes to casing integrity, say retreaders

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The question was straight to the point: "Is there an age limit on tires you will retread?"

The five panelists discussing "Casing age and retread performance" at the recent Commercial Tire, Retread & Recycling Conference in Tampa, Fla., were almost unanimous in their answers.

"We do not have an age limit on the tire," said Guy Walenga of Bridgestone Firestone North American Tire LLC. "Age isn't the issue."

"We don't have an age limit on casings," said Rick Thomas of Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. "We look at the integrity of the casing through the inspection process that we have."

"We don't have any age limit... and wouldn't recommend one," said Pat Keating of Hankook Tire America Corp. Care and use are "better indications of a casing's soundness than chronology."

"We don't have an age limit on casings," said Randy Patterson of Bandag Inc. "Most fleets have criteria on casings they will buy, and that dictates what the dealer will buy."

Only Michelin had age limits in place for retreading its tires. "We recommend up to seven years for long-haul, up to 10 years for severe service and pickup and delivery," said Jan Lahmann of Michelin Retread Technologies Inc.

However, the four tire manufacturers on the panel, including Michelin, agreed that based on available data, tire casings can last more than 10 years. Application and proper casing inspection are the keys, said Walenga.

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