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Old 11-28-2011, 07:05 AM   #1
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Tires - how old is too old?

I do not much care for the used tires I purchased for the hiccup truck. My father-in-law gave me a set of two light truck tires that he had bought for his van. They have been in storage in his garage. I took them to a local shop to have them mounted, and they refused to do it. As it turns out, the tires are 11 years old. They have no dry-rot, and they have never been mounted.

Should I give them up, or should I try to have them mounted elsewhere?
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Old 11-28-2011, 10:02 AM   #2
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Re: Tires - how old is too old?

Experience has made me skeptical about the industry's claims and motivations regarding tire aging.

According to http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tirete...jsp?techid=138
Quote:
It is important to take into account Original Equipment tires are mounted on wheels and put into service right after being received by vehicle manufacturers, so their calendar age begins immediately. However the same cannot be said of tires properly stored in a tire manufacturers' warehouse or in Tire Rack distribution centers before they go into service. Properly stored tires that are protected from the elements and not mounted on a wheel age very slowly before they are mounted and put into service.
Tirerack proceeds to defend their aged tires more vigorously in this one:
http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tirete...jsp?techid=183

Consumer Reports gives a nod to aged tires before the article goes into the longer CYA section:
http://news.consumerreports.org/cars...ed-on-age.html
Quote:
At a recent tire conference, an engineer from a major tire company was remarking on tire aging and the fact that tire age restrictions apply to tires in-service. That caught my attention, because some automobile and tire manufactures say unused tires six years or older should not be put into service. What did he mean by that?

The key words were “in-service” refer to any tire mounted on a wheel and inflated.
Nobody wants to be the one to get sued when someone's old tires fail and a crash results, so of course everybody will cover their behind, but there's a couple examples of "ok, let's not overreact here".

In my opinion and experience, any reasonable age with no visible rot or even minimal surface cracking is fine for the way hypermilers use tires - always properly inflated or even overinflated, rarely at excessive speed. I wouldn't hesitate to use those 11 year old, nicely stored, non-rotted tires. I suspect that most shops wouldn't even notice the age and would just mount them.
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Old 11-28-2011, 02:52 PM   #3
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Re: Tires - how old is too old?

Thanks. I was thinking that there is no reason that tires should be destroyed when stored in a garage. The conditions are no worse than that of the spare tire sitting in the trunks of most cars, and they will often never be replaced.
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Old 11-28-2011, 05:30 PM   #4
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Re: Tires - how old is too old?

Good post HC.

I don't buy into this namby-pamby crappe about old tires at all. In fact I take pride in extracting the last mile outta those suckers by either running them 'til the cords are hanging out, or they blow, whichever comes first. I just make sure I have a good spare, jack, and tire wrench on board; it only takes minutes to change them out, and I've never had a blowout ever be even close to dangerous- at the most, it's inconvenient. For about 10 minutes.

Anyway I have a similar situation in that 11 years ago I bought wide whites for my '59 used, as they are tremendously expensive new. Who knows how long they sat in the seller's garage before I got them? It is safe to assume (can't go look for date codes now) they are 15-20 years old, if not more. The tread looks fantastic and the sidewalls show minor cracking on close inspection now. They too will be run until they blow.
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:42 PM   #5
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Re: Tires - how old is too old?

yea same here, its a buncha hoopla some lawyer dreamed up so noone can sue the tire comapny...

my 95 truck had 2 of the origional tigerpaws on it when i got it in 2006, used them till they were bald.

chevette had some brand that hasnt been made since the 90's on them when i got that car in 2007. our 81 trailer still has its origional tires on it. boat trailer's are from the early 90's.

i actually used the origional 1980 spare tire on the chevette 2 years ago and worked fine.

so yes id look for a different shop, just tell them you took them off of old rims yourself and want them put back on your current car. find like a chain place or small town garage...
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Old 11-29-2011, 04:06 AM   #6
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Re: Tires - how old is too old?

The tires on Rusty... Well lest just say I bought them at Montgomery Ward. They're Michelin tires with good tread left, and there's no checking in the tires either. The truck rarely goes over 45 on trips to the hardware store or the landfill anyway.
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Old 11-29-2011, 04:19 AM   #7
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Re: Tires - how old is too old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fetch View Post
I do not much care for the used tires I purchased for the hiccup truck. My father-in-law gave me a set of two light truck tires that he had bought for his van. They have been in storage in his garage. I took them to a local shop to have them mounted, and they refused to do it. As it turns out, the tires are 11 years old. They have no dry-rot, and they have never been mounted.

Should I give them up, or should I try to have them mounted elsewhere?
I disagree with HC.

There are chemical changes taking place in the rubber that are temperature related. Obviously there is a limit with even unused tires where the amount of change would cause a problem. But defining this is difficult.

To complicate matters, cracking - commonly called "dry rot" - is not only dependent on the material properties, but also the amount of flexing that takes place. Even tires without visible cracking COULD be deteriorated to the point where the rubber can not stand up.

It's these kind of facts that lead folks to take a conservative approach when discussing this issue.

Without further knowledge about a tire's earlier life, it is going to be difficult to make a judgement about where a tire stands in the life cycle.
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Old 11-29-2011, 05:35 AM   #8
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Re: Tires - how old is too old?

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Originally Posted by CapriRacer View Post
I disagree with HC.
Thank you. I was getting scared when there were so many posts without a single one disagreeing. Seriously. It's tough to consider this a complete discussion without some kind of counterpoint, especially when safety is involved.
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Old 11-29-2011, 08:19 AM   #9
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Re: Tires - how old is too old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CapriRacer View Post
I disagree with HC.

There are chemical changes taking place in the rubber that are temperature related. Obviously there is a limit with even unused tires where the amount of change would cause a problem. But defining this is difficult.

To complicate matters, cracking - commonly called "dry rot" - is not only dependent on the material properties, but also the amount of flexing that takes place. Even tires without visible cracking COULD be deteriorated to the point where the rubber can not stand up.

It's these kind of facts that lead folks to take a conservative approach when discussing this issue.

Without further knowledge about a tire's earlier life, it is going to be difficult to make a judgement about where a tire stands in the life cycle.
These particular tires were in a garage, and were never mounted on anything. I will try them out, but I'll keep the newer, but halfway worn tires that are on the truck now. The tire store guy said they were fine, but I do not like them. They are absolutely terrible in the rain, with my V6-powered full size Chevy with a humble 3.08 rear end (no posi) spinning the tires at every stoplight and drifting the butt end around far too many corners.
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:42 AM   #10
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Re: Tires - how old is too old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fetch View Post
They are absolutely terrible in the rain, with my V6-powered full size Chevy with a humble 3.08 rear end (no posi) spinning the tires at every stoplight and drifting the butt end around far too many corners.
How much inflation?

The rears on my truck can't handle as much inflation as the fronts unless I put a decent amount of weight in the bed...otherwise the result is just like you described.
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