For those that ride a bike frequently (and often for those that don’t,) the issue of what to do with old tires and tubes that are no longer functional and/or in suitable condition can be a little perplexing.
After all, at first thought, it’s hard to really think of any good ways to use a big, round piece of rubber, or the smaller rubber that’s inside.
Rubber presents a big enough challenge to the environment as is, especially when it’s taking up space in a landfill. Because of this, it’s good to find ways to actually reuse and repurpose old tires and tubes.
Here are a few ideas to get you going.
The most versatile way to reuse old tires and tubes is to turn them into craft projects.
There are a number of examples on the internet you can find, ranging from a bike tool holder and organizer, to mud fenders from cut up tires, to a mirror for your room or bathroom.
Tire tubes are going to have a lot more uses, as they are a lot more versatile in general due to their size and shape.
Since they are a thin, stretchable form of rubber, you can use them for a wide range of craft uses, or find functional ways to use them instead.
Bike tires are much more limited in their post-biking uses, but if you are resourceful, and comfortable with cutting them down to different sizes when need be, you an likely come up with some new ways to utilize them.
Believe it or not, old tire tubes can actually be among the most effective for patches.
To do this, simply cut your old tube into small squares and store away for later. If you end up with a puncture to your current tube, first find the source of the air leak, and then get out one of your tube patches.
Using a strong adhesive such as Gorilla Glue or super glue, place the adhesive all around the puncture hole, and then lay the tube piece over the hole, waiting for the required period until it’s fully dry. Your former flat tube should now be good to go.
Old tire tubes can be cut down to make shimmies, grips, paint protectors, and more. You can use these pieces in a variety of ways, including on your car’s bike rack.
Donating old tubes and tires is a great way to get materials over to those in need who can still find uses for them on the road and trail. While those old tires may seem worn down and useless to you, those who are less fortunate, or in developing countries can still use them.
The same can be said for tubes. These same organizations take old tubes and patch them up for others to use.
IBike and Bikes Not Bombs are two well known organizations that would love to have your old tubes and tires.
While it may be the end of the road for your old bike tires and tubes, they still have plenty of life left in them. Consider any of the above suggestions for not only helping keep tires and tubes out of landfills, but improving your life, and possibly others as well.
Do you have any tips or suggestions for old tire and tubes? Let us know in the comments below.
This post was last updated on June 5th, 2018 at 02:10 pm
Over the last few years, I’ve taken my love of the outdoors, hiking, skiing, trekking and exploring to the next level by starting this site. I started a bike shop in Denver, CO, and have seen amazing growth over the last few years. Getting paid to do what I love has been a dream come true for me. That’s also what led me to start BikesReviewed.com. In my shop, I spend a large amount of time helping people find the perfect bike for them and the style of biking they’re going to be doing. It only made sense that I expanded my reach and got online, making it possible for me to help people all over the world. If biking and staying fit is your priority, too, you’ve come to the right place.
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