Earn Extra Money By Recycling Used Tires

Learn how Bob Stevenson earns extra cash by picking up recycled tires from gas stations and car dealers and then selling them to retreading shops.

| July/August 1977


Bob Stevenson sorts 14-inch tires from 15 inchers .


You really can earn over $100 a day recycling old tires in almost any populated section of North America," says Washington State's Bob Stevenson. "I've been doing it for years in a number of different cities as far east as Lansing, Michigan and as far north as Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. And, contrary to what you probably believe, you don't need a truck to get into this business, the work is not heavy, and there are plenty of old tires lying around just waiting for you to pick them up!"

I've gotten so many good, practical ideas from MOTHER that I now feel it only fair to tell other readers about my own part-time moneymaker. I pick up old tires for free ... and then sell almost all that I collect for anywhere from $1 to $40 each! What's more, I've been doing this since I was in high school, I've worked this little side business in a number of cities around the U.S. and Canada as I've gone to college and been transferred by the Air Force, and I believe that nearly anyone can do as well as or better than I've done with this grassroots enterprise. It's an especially good venture for a back-to-the-land husband and wife team.

The Business

Quite simply, my part-time enterprise consists of nothing but collecting castoff, used tires from gas stations and tire dealers and then selling them to retreading shops. That may sound too simple to you ... but the idea works for me, it works for hundreds of other people all over the U.S. and Canada, and I don't think you'll find it too difficult to make it work for you.

Pull out the telephone book (or books) for your town, nearest city, and/or other metropolitan centers in your area and make a list of the names and addresses printed under "Tire Retreading" in the Yellow Pages. Then call around to find out which recapping shop within easy driving distance will pay you the most for the tires you collect. I average $1 to $1.50 for every good passenger tire casing I sell and up to $40 (that's forty dollars!) or more for large truck tire casings.

While you're on the phone, ask each shop you talk to if it has any restrictions on the type or number of tires you bring in. Some retreaders, for instance, won't take steelbelted radials ... others simply aren't set up to handle some sizes of casings ... and still other recappers have a definitely limited capacity. (Still, there always seems to be at least one shop in every area that will buy all the tires you can collect. I recently asked a spokesman for one of these companies if his firm would be interested in 1,000 tires and he said, "Bring 'em right in!")

Season for Selling Tires

Late summer and early fall is the busiest time of the year for retreaders. This is the season when they begin working on their winter "snow-caps" and during — say —  August, September, and October, many shops stockpile used casings for this coming business. You may even find that some recappers will pay you a little more per tire during this period.

9/12/2017 6:50:59 PM

GOT ALOT OF TIRES !!! WANNA HELP ME GET RID OF THEM WE BOTH MAKE A LIL EXTRA CASH... I live in southern Alabama n I have a lot of tires to get rid of!!! I'm interested in finding someone that wants to come once or twice a month and pick up a semi load or two or more. I figure if someone can make a dollar or more on these tires I will only charge .50 a tire so we both make money.. we can always talk privately on that.. EMAIL Is rebeccablew@gmail.com

8/22/2017 2:37:12 AM

I live in Superior AZ and I have a ton of tires to get rid of. I will let them go free if anyone is interested. Just E-mail me at ilaferguson@hotmail.com.

8/9/2016 11:52:20 AM

Linh I am in Knoxville Tennessee. I know it is not Texas but we can provide you with alot of scrap tires. If you are interested please contact me at 865-851-8090. Thanks Michelle

8/4/2016 3:29:42 PM

I want to pick up scrap tires in bales from Texas to ship to Vietnam. Where can I pick up it ? Please help me ?

3/18/2016 5:12:15 PM

I have old tires that i need to get rid of. I live in Houston, Texas 77029 If anyone can help me please contact me

3/18/2016 5:07:51 PM

I have old tires that i need to get rid of. I live in Houston, Texas 77029 If anyone can help me please contact me

9/29/2015 1:49:50 AM

and also the recycled tire rubber powder Pulverizer qiliping@vip.163.com

9/29/2015 1:47:15 AM

We can offer: old tire baler, tire recycle to granules machine line tire cutter tire debeader etc with competives prices. If have any interests, feel free to contact me qiliping@vip.163.com

7/7/2015 12:52:08 PM

Hay Dan, I live here in Chicago. How many tires would you like to dispose and how can contact you? You can email me at anthonyeluwa@hotmail.com Thanks Tony

5/30/2015 5:03:21 PM

hi my name is Dan Remillard and im looking to get rid of a bunch of car tires for free. please help

7/10/2014 4:04:58 PM

I pick up junk/used tires. I do not take any low pro tires. They have to be 11 R22.5 11 R24.5 and the single axle tires. If u have any of these that u would like to get rid of please email me. And i will get back to u as soon as i can. Just tell me in email what state ur in and a number to call u. thanks

3/15/2014 11:39:20 AM

hi.i have a use tire export company when i buy a container of tires 20% of the tires side walls an thread are good i have to pay a lote of morney for evry time i dispose my tire throw the county which is the way we all know.i will like to know a retreade company or a company that can pickup my tire for free contact me on my email address at contehalusine@ymail.com .

12/5/2013 7:37:43 PM

I would like to know a place near Geneva, Ohio that would take my tires for free. Any takers. Thanks

10/12/2013 10:29:04 AM

This article was written in 1977!!! Anyone reading this in 2013-14 or more should do additional research before trying to earn money this way. Since then, many shops already have a recycler visiting them. ALAS, too late.

9/24/2013 10:34:22 PM

I live in alabama and i was wondering if anybody could tell me were i can take my old tires and get money for them.

8/18/2012 9:37:38 PM

Thank you so much for the info; and your right, I have had my eyes opened to the reality of tire disposal and all the restrictions. I want to further investigate why my company is buying tires without the supplier not charging them a disposal fee and my company not taking advantage of the very thing they may already be paying for. Thats the illion dollar question. i'm under the thought that when you purchase tires from a supplier, they automatically charge you a disposal fee thats tied up in the cost of the new ones. Everywhere else a private citizen goes to purchase tires theres always a fee charged for disposal. Could be different with a large company but why would there be ? Again, thank you.

neil larkins
8/17/2012 8:42:48 PM

Since you are in Texas, Aaron, you probably already know about the tough laws regarding the handling of used tires. I tried it back in 1991-1992 shortly after these laws had been passed. I can assure you that anyone who attempts to repurpose tires in Texas is in for a real education on what can be done and what can't. The laws are very specific and the "little guy" is not going to be able to participate due to the cost involved to be compliant and the even bigger cost to not be. This is why, Aaron, that no one is going to take your tires free of charge. If they do, they're probably trying to fly under the state radar. Don't take the chance. I found out the hard way what happens when you do. Please don't ask me to be specific. A warning to whoever reads these articles from past Mothers: No matter where you are, the laws and regulations concerning whatever enterprise you are considering have likely changed and considerably so. Check all the local ordinances and state laws before you begin doing anything.

aaron lopez
8/17/2012 4:53:43 PM

I'm currently in search of anyone or company that will take our used tires free of charge. This is a business that utilizes several vehicle types such as Cushman Scooter Tires, Pick-up Truck Tires, Tractor trailer tires and some are also foamed filled tires. This business is located in the Dallas,Texas location. For information please e-mail.

8/7/2011 6:33:15 AM

I am in South Africa in Eastern Cape in Mount Frere, I have more then 800 tons of waste tires and I can get more for you this collection of waste was made in a month time. I am looking for a long term deal pls don't waste time let's us make good deal.

percilla rivera
11/23/2010 1:09:49 PM

WOW!! This really seems like a really good niche' to get into. I was just looking for information on if you could make money on recycling tires on behalf of my husband; but, I didn't realize the advantages of making and creating things out of used tires. I want in and I want to learn more about products to be reproduced using worn out tires. I know this will not take off right of way, because it will take money to make money. I just need to keep researching and figuring what products could I invent or reinvent. Let me know what you know and maybe when the time is right I would like to invest in enviromental saving product. Thanks for all the information posted it was very informative and more than helpful. Hope to hear from you soon.

ladon larson_6
12/7/2009 5:25:29 PM

Hello there- Yes there is a company that still makes the equipment for making mats out of tires. We purchased our set 4 years ago and have made alot of mats since then. The related article about Ken Winans is about his company, started in the "70's, which is still making them today. The company is now called Winans & Sadecki Inc. out of Hallstead, PA.. You are welcome to contact me for more information if you prefer. Our family company, ReTIREd Mats, has enjoyed making these mats as a family. We started out by helping an older gentleman with making the same type of mats. He had been making these mats for over 15 years at that time. We started our own mat making business upon moving to Colorado, and have since moved to Ohio. These mats are very easy to make and they "sell themself" Thank You, LaDon Larson ReTIREd Mats

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