The world of retreading looks a lot like the rest of the U.S. tire industry. Customer demand is strong, but the supply side of the equation has been problematic. One issue is tread rubber. As one retreader puts it, his business is focusing “on maintaining customers, while our rubber supplier hurts us with terrible fill rates.”
McCarthy Tire Service Co. Inc. is expanding its footprint in the Southeast with the acquisition of Piedmont Truck Tires Inc., a commercial tire dealership with 10 service locations and two retread plants in the Carolinas and Tennessee.
It’s difficult to find a topic most people agree on, but among retreaders, concern over low-cost Chinese tires is one of them. “We are constantly looking for ways to cut cost out of the retread process so that we can be competitive,” says Chris Chase, president of Donald B. Rice Tire Co. Inc., which goes to market as Rice Retreading Inc.
Retreaders endured an uneasy 2020, but they pushed forward with investments in facilities and technology as they remained focused on the future. Here's a look at the domestic retread tire market in 2021, and some of the people making things happen.