Last updated on January 10th, 2024 at 06:54 pm
With seasons change, the need for particular season tires is also raised. So, You can’t just throw tires after driving for a few miles in snow or warm conditions if the tires are in driving conditions. That is when drivers consider how to store tires so they can be driveable if they might need them in the future.
So, if you have come to this article, then you have got to be considering switching your car tires from off-road to all terrains or from summer to winter terrain tires. Whatever the situation is, the main point is you need to know how you should store your tires.
That is why in this article, we will explain methods of storing tires, what location is suited for storing tires, best practices, and maintenance tips to achieve longevity on each tire and stabilize the performance of tires for years of storage.
Table of Contents
Preparation for Storing Tires
Before we start storing tires, some pre-storage rules need to be followed to maximize tire stability in storage. Small things like air pressure, tire cleaning, and inspection could make a big difference.
Cleaning and Inspection
Cleaning tires does not mean you should do it with tire shines or any other chemical products. In fact, you need to take off any chemicals or liquids that have been applied to tires recently due to their impact on tire aging. Instead, clean tires with soap and water so every dust particle and other dirt get off from the tire.
Soap water will also help in analyzing if there is any damage or leak on the tire, which needs to be fixed before storing your tires.
Determining Tire Pressure for Storage
Before storing your tires, make sure the tires have recommended air pressure, especially if you are storing for a longer period. The air pressure keeps the tire in shape. Otherwise, the tire will lose out in shape and might not fit the rims if you mount it after a year or two.
So make sure to put the recommended PSU while also checking for any valve or rubber leaks. Also, check your tires after 6 months, in case the air pressure drops due to weather changes so that you can add it back on the levels.
Special Considerations for Storing Tires With and Without Rims
If tires are mounted on rims, check for the bead connection and if it is seating properly. If some tires are not seated, the rubber might get dysfunctional and might not sit on rims afterward.
If the tires are without rims, then make sure to inside of the tire is maintained. Also, cleaning it properly by removing oils and other chemicals that were used before to reduce the aging of the tire.
Whether you store tires with or without rims, use Tire Covers or bags to avoid any future hurdles. Tire bags protect tires from dust and sunlight. While safeguarding your tires from getting rusted, eaten by mice, or any other unfortunate incidents. Ensure that covers are breathable to prevent moisture buildup, which could impact the tire’s rubber compound.
Storing Tires with Rims:
There are two options when it comes to storing tires with rims. Either you can stack them up on each other or hang them on wall-mounted tire racks. If you have an oversized garage or facility, then you can make a shelf for storing single tires separately. Otherwise, these two options are the most effective and least space-consuming.
Storing Tires without Rims:
Without rims, you can put tires standing side by side with each other. Stacking them up can impact the rubber, and mounting them on walls can also damage tire rubber. So the best way to store tires without rims is by lining them side by side, standing or flat side by side; don’t stake them up.
Best Practices for Storing Tires in a Garage:
- Garage storage is ideal, but avoid areas with extreme temperature fluctuations. Weather changes drastically impact the tire life.
- Keep away from windows and direct sunlight; UV rays provide oxidants, which results in rubber aging.
- Use shelves, tire racks, or pallets to keep tires off the garage floor.
- Install wall-mounted tire racks to save floor space, which is also a safer and more convenient option.
Solutions for Storing Tires Outside:
- Invest in durable, weather-resistant tire covers, which are not easily torn if any unwanted incident occurs.
- Ensure covers are secure to prevent wind damage, waterproof, and UV protectants.
- Use pallets to cover the entire stack with a waterproof tarp if stacking.
- Rotate tires periodically to avoid flat marks.
- Inspect for any signs of damage or deterioration.
Storing Tires in Limited Spaces like Apartments:
- Utilize wall-mounted racks to save floor space.
- Ensure racks are securely attached because loosely attached racks can break the tire rims and damage the rubber if they fall.
- The best place to store tires is under the bed if space allows; just cover them up and put them separately on the floor.
- Consider renting a small storage unit for tire storage. This might cost a little more, but the tire will be safer for longer.
Positioning: Storing Tires on the Side vs. Upright:
- Upright Position:
- Ideal for saving floor space.
- Use tire racks or stack them vertically.
- Uses for rim-mounted tires.
- On Side Position:
- It helps prevent flat spots.
- Rotate periodically if storing for an extended period.
- Uses with dismounted tires.
Choosing the Right Location:
- Opt for a location with a consistent, cool temperature, not too low or not too high, for stable tire storage.
- Avoid areas with extreme temperature fluctuations; fluctuations in temperature can damage tire wear and compounds.
- Choose a dry environment to prevent moisture-related issues.
- Store tires away from direct sunlight to avoid accelerated aging.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Storage Location:
- Ensure proper ventilation to prevent the buildup of gases and odors; also, make sure there are no drainage or pipeline issues. Usually, you find storage places with these issues.
- Choose a location that allows easy access for inspections and rotations; rotating tire spots save them from flat marks.
- Make sure there is no chance of any animal or pet entrance; they might damage the tire or covers.
- If you plan to store a lot of tires, find a place with a high roof to hang multiple layers of tires and properly utilize ground space.
Ideal Conditions for Tire Storage:
- Aim for a storage temperature between 32°F (0°C) and 80°F (27°C).
- Maintain a stable environment to minimize stress on the tires; fluctuation in temperature severely impacts stored tires.
- Rain and ice-proof facility so that tires won’t get damaged if a storm suddenly occurs.
- Storage should not be closed to some factories or heavy manufacturing facilities because they also reduce rubber and tread life.
Where to Store Tires in Winter:
- Store tires indoors, whether in a garage or home, to protect them from harsh winter conditions.
- If storing in a garage, elevate tires off cold garage floors. Building a tire rack or wall mounts for effectively utilizing space.
- In winter, you can also store tires in your car trunk. Just make sure the heat does not hold up in the car, and drop down any mirror a little to avoid this problem.
- Avoid storing tires in the open, especially if the weather is too cold. Colder weather impacts tread life and rubber components of the tire.
Avoiding Harmful Environmental Conditions:
- Keep tires away from electric motors, generators, and welding equipment. Also, avoid storing tires in an industrial area, where heavy machinery is involved in daily routine.
- Store tires away from solvents and petroleum-based substances. E.g., Gas cans, motor oil, gas pipelines, or any type of chemicals.
Storing Tires in Warm Conditions
- Employ tire covers to shield tires from sunlight and heat.
- Rotate tires regularly to ensure even exposure to environmental conditions.
- Make sure to wash tires periodically; if the temperature is too hot, it will cool down the rubber and help winter tires stay calmer for a longer period. However, heat won’t affect that much because normally tire can handle 195°F while driving.
Special Considerations for White Rubber and Specialty Tires:
- Provide additional protection for white rubber or specialty tires, and store them facing each other’s white sidewall characters to avoid damaging letters.
- Use covers specifically designed to cover the special tires, especially if the tire sidewalls are white or if there are identifying characters.
Long-term Storage Considerations:
If you plan to store tires for more than six months, you should keep a check and balance on tires after every six-month interval. Biannually checking tire condition helps you discover any problem or damage before it impacts too much.
Also, rotate the tire location and change tire levels if the tires are stacked on top of each other. It will avoid any flat marks, and reshuffling it will distribute the amount of force, however, it is not that much important. Just rotate tires, clean them, and check for air pressure and leaks, and then you can forget about them for a month again. Your tires will be exactly the same if you follow all the instructions.
How Long Can Tires Be Safely Stored?
Tires can be safely stored for up to six years if stored under proper conditions, which is why manufacturers give a warranty for only six years. Beyond six years, more frequent inspections are recommended. Instead of six-month intervals, you need to inspect and rotate after three months.
Safety and Maintenance Checks Post-Storage:
|Visual inspection for leaks and damages
|Test drive and brake inspection
|Check alignment and balancing
|Tire Bead and seating adjustments
|Valve stem, caps, and lug nut inspection
|Offsets and profile check
|Tire Air Pressure and leaks
|Tire Tread Depth Check:
Properly check all of these things after you install stored tires. If any of these things are unsatisfactory, make sure to fix them before you hit the road. For better understanding and guidance, check your vehicle manufacturer’s manual to set up your tires according to recommendations.
Storing tires is sometimes more important than driving in unfavorable conditions. If a tire drives in conditions other than its preferred conditions, it could wear off earlier and perform below levels, so storing the tire makes more sense.
However, it won’t be as effective if you keep it without considering factors that could damage the tire even in storage; that is why it is rather more important to store tires with proper consideration of their safety and life so they can stay in the same conditions after you install them after several years.
By following the guidelines in this article, you will be able to keep your tire life intact for a longer period. If the season changes or you visit different terrains, those sets of tires sit in proper condition to take any challenge that road may offer.