Tyres from cars and bikes should never be put in your household recycling bin. They can be recycled, but only when dropped off at designated collection points or through an accredited Tyre Stewardship Australia mechanic, retailer, or dealership when you’re having your old tyres replaced with new ones.
Tyres - Passenger Vehicles
How to recycle tyres
Recycling spare tyres – use the directory on this page to find a recycler or community centre in your area that accepts spare tyres. Call in advance to make sure they are accepted.
Recycling the tyres on your vehicle – when changing the tyres on your vehicle, to ensure the old ones are managed responsibly, you need to make sure your mechanic, retailer or dealership is accredited through Tyre Stewardship Australia (TSA).
Use TSA’s directory of tyre retailers to find businesses that are accredited through the stewardship scheme.
You can also use TSA’s directory of tyre recyclers and collectors to find accredited businesses that recycle tyres.
How to recycle large quantities of tyres
Why should I recycle my tyres?
According to TSA, each year in Australia the equivalent of 56 million passenger tyres reach their end of life. Putting old tyres in landfill is unsustainable, so we must find new ways to reuse, repurpose, and recycle the materials.
Recycling old tyres:
- protects our environment from hazardous waste,
- lessens the strain on our natural resources, and
- reduces greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the demand for new resources.
While most tyre retailers are doing the right thing, 20% of old automotive tyres are dumped, buried, stockpiled, sent to landfill, or hidden in warehouses, on industrial sites, unsuspecting landowners' properties, and even national parks. Dumping used tyres illegally or in landfill is a waste of resources.
Tyres must be managed responsibly, as they are a highly flammable material that can pose a risk to the community and surrounding environment.
What happens to the tyres when I recycle them?
Old tyres are a potentially valuable resource with reuse, recycling, and waste-to-energy options. They can be recycled in multiple ways including shredding the tyres into smaller pieces. The recovered materials can be used in new products, providing flexible, durable, or noise-reducing qualities.
When you choose a TSA accredited mechanic, retailer, or dealership, the tyres will be collected by a trusted recycler. They will either be reused (after re-treading or repair) or processed into new products such as athletic surfaces, gym flooring, rubber matting, and in road construction as barriers and permeable pavement. Old tyres can also be turned into an alternative fuel source for producers of energy and cement.
What is Tyre Stewardship Australia?
TSA is a non-commercial organisation created to implement the national Tyre Product Stewardship Scheme. The aim of the scheme is to improve outcomes for end-of-life tyres by increasing both the recovery rate of tyres in Australia and the use of recycled tyres (tyre-derived material) in Australian products.
The scheme is funded by the industry, but it is not compulsory, which is why it’s so important for consumers to be informed. In 2023, the 13 tyre importers funding the scheme represented approximately 57% of the market. You can use your purchasing power to support retailers and manufacturers that are taking responsibility for their products.
When it’s time to change the tyres on your vehicle, choose brands that contribute to the stewardship scheme. Search TSA’s MyTyres MyChoice directory to find tyre and auto brands that contribute 25c per equivalent passenger tyre to Australia’s product stewardship scheme.
If you are using a tyre retailer that you think is doing the right thing but isn’t accredited, encourage them to contact TSA. The scheme is free for retailers to join.
Discover how to extend the life of your tyres by following these easy tyre care tips.