Front Range Tire Recycle, Inc., offers tire recycling services and products made from used tires.

Information for Industry & Contractors

A Description of Tire Shreds

Tire shreds are the finished product after a whole scrap tire has been run through a low torque double shaft shear shredder. We have two sizes of tire shreds available. The most common size tire shred is a 2” nominal. We also have the ability to produce a 1 ½” minus tire shred. All of our tire shreds are screened to assure a consistent size of product. Both of our tire shred sizes meet or exceed the American Standards for Testing Materials and have a designation number of ASTM 6270. Tire shreds are a lightweight material, and a lightweight material equals significant savings in freight costs compared to heavier traditional materials. There are a wide array of uses for tire shreds, ranging from alternative fuels, replacement for aggregates, drainage material, insulation, and lightweight fill.

Applications for Tire Shreds

Tire Derived Fuel (TDF)

Tire derived fuel is currently the largest market for tire shreds across the country. Tire shreds are a great alternative fuel because of cost, BTU value, and low emissions. TDF contains 13,000-15,000 BTU’s per pound, compared to 8,000-11,000 BTU’s per pound of coal. The cost of tire shreds is typically lower than coal because shreds are locally produced and cost less to transport. Tire shreds are a much cleaner burning fuel than coal as well. As traditional energy costs soar in price, TDF is being considered more and more for a number of industries such as: cement kilns, pulp and paper boilers, and public utilities.

Civil Engineering Applications

Landfill Construction

  • Leachate Collection Systems
  • Operational Liners
  • Alternative Daily Cover
  • Gas Venting Systems
  • Cap Closures

Tire Derived Aggregate

Septic systems – Tire shreds can be used as an alternative material to aggregate for the leach fields of traditional gravel bed septic systems. The Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment, as well as many Colorado counties, have approved the use of tire shreds in septic systems. Tire shreds create more void space than traditional aggregates, which increases flow rates and percolation rates for septic systems. Tire shreds are a lightweight material, which can equal cost savings in transportation and installation.

Engineered Lightweight Fill – Tire shreds are a great product for a number of highway construction applications and rail line applications. Engineered Lightweight Fill (ELF) is one of the most common uses for tire shreds in highway projects. Engineered lightweight fill can be used for slope failure repair and mitigation, backfill for retaining walls, and fill around foundations and structures. Another use for tire shreds is as a vibration dampening material underneath rail lines that run near structures and bridges. Front Range Tire Recycle, Inc., has been working closely with RTD and the light rail expansion in Colorado. Several thousand tons of tire shreds have already been used. The tire shreds have provided a sound quality material for dampening vibration while being an economical product, saving thousands of dollars in the construction cost.

Retaining Wall Backfill – Tire shreds have been proven to be a superior substitute for gravel or structural fill in backfill applications. When tire shreds are properly placed behind a retaining wall for backfill, the tire shreds will hold back at least 50% of the lateral earth pressure against the wall. Tire shreds are a free-draining material with the same drainage rates as traditional aggregates. The compaction rates of tire shreds are very similar to aggregate as well.

Foundation Drainage / French Drains for Waterproofing – Tire shreds work well for drainage around foundations and as French drains through landscapes or other areas where drainage is required. One advantage for using shreds as foundation drainage material is that tire shreds are lightweight. The lightweight material is much easier to handle and place compared to traditional aggregate. Contractors and installers will see signifcant all-around cost savings in the field from reductions in labor costs and competitive pricing.

Foundation Backfill Structural and Insulation – The insulation value of tire shreds is significant. Tire shreds work well for foundation backfill for two reasons. First, shreds are great backfill because they eliminate at least 50% of the lateral earth pressure against the foundation. Second, tire shreds will provide a layer of insulation around the foundation, helping to conserve energy and cut utility expenses.

A Description of Tire Bales

Tire Bales are a solid compressed block of scrap waste tires. Each tire bale is made up of 89-110 passenger and light truck tires. One tire bale weighs 2,000 lbs., or one ton. The dimensions of the tire bales are: 60” long, 50” wide, and 30” tall. There are five 9-gauge steel wires that hold the tire bale together. Each tire bale can sustain 375,000 lbs of pressure before any failure will occur.

Applications for Tire Bales

Green Home Building

Tire Bales are a great way to construct a house! The earthship home has been around for decades, and tire bales are the new product to make earthship construction easier and cheaper. Tire bales have an insulation value of R186. The bales make for an energy efficient and environmentally friendly home. We have access to engineers and architects to assist in the building and designs.

Windbreaks / Snow Fences

Tire bales make a great windbreak or snow fence for cattle or privacy screening. Tire bales are durable and will be a maintenance-free material. Tire bales are a free-draining material, unlike whole un-processed tires, which eliminates any risk of West Nile disease.

Engineered Lightweight Fill

Tire bales work very well as a lightweight fill material. The bales have been used to construct roads over swampy marsh lands, and as fill material for bridge abutments. Several highway departments have used tire bales for slope mitigation and repair. tire bales have a permeability rate comparable to course aggregate, meaning that the tire bales are a free-draining material.

Noise Mitigation Walls

Tire bales have recently been used as a noise mitigation wall along 6th Avenue in Lakewood, Colorado. Highway departments are discovering that tire bales can deflect and absorb sound better than other traditional materials. The cost of using tire bales for noise mitigation walls is generally less than traditional materials as well.

Retaining Walls

Retaining walls are a great application for tire bales. Tire bales weigh 2,000 lbs each, so they provide a large, stable building block. The tire bales are a free-draining material, so the walls are self-draining.