About 30 million units of used tyres are sold in the United States annually. This figure represents about 10 percent of the 2.5 billion units sold worldwide. Outside of the United States, used tyres are also a hit. In Nigeria there are many myths surrounding the ‘used tyre industry’ that make buying it appealing to people.
Here are some of the myths and the truths you should know:
Myth 1: Used tyres are the best for Nigerian roads.
Also Read: Getting the best tyre for your car
Truth: No. Used tyres are not the best for any road. Used tyres are often unable to withstand as much stress as the new ones. So, used tyres are prone to blowing out more often than the new ones under similar stress conditions created by challenging roads.
Myth 2: People in developed world don’t really use tyres before disposing them.
Truth: As soon as tyres are mounted on the vehicle, they start depreciating. Tyres are discarded and sold as used tyres for many reasons which make them less safe. While many used tyres may not show any physical signs of wear and tear, climatic elements such as heat, sunlight, humidity, etc. and how the tyres are stored can cause invisible chemical damage to the tyre over time.
Myth 3: There is regulation in the US and European used-tyre markets, so their laws ensure that only tyres of the highest quality can be exported.
Truth: Sadly, the answer is no. Used tyres are not subjected to any legal safety standards. There is also no standard minimum requirement or official regulation guiding the process of collecting used tyres and reintroducing them into the market. So, the quality of the tyres cannot be guaranteed.
Myth 4: Badly used tyres can be easily spotted.
Truth: Some tyres look good even when they are defective and seriously unsafe. Many tyre manufacturers warn against using tyres that are over six years old, because at that point, the tyres’ materials can start breaking down and it is hard to spot via physical inspection. Loose cords caused by underinflation and carefully-camouflaged puncture wounds are also risk factors in this case too.
Myth 5: They are cheap.
Truth: Yes, used tyres are cheap. However, it does not last as long as new tyres would. While new tyres may last up to four years, used tyres may become unusable after just three to six months. If safety issues often associated with used tyres are factored into the picture, the price becomes unquantifiable.
While the cheapness of the used tyre is very appealing, it should never be used as alternative to new tyres. In fact, except it is unavoidable, used tyres are not recommended. It is not worth the price.