The Challenges of Tire Recycling in the OTR Sector
World and Machinery

The Challenges of Tire Recycling in the OTR Sector

Reading time (minutes):4

Everyone is on their own mission to make the world a better and greener place. But that doesn't guarantee that this task is a straightforward one. There are a lot of challenges that are faced in striving for more sustainable practices. This can also be seen in the OTR sector with the recycling of tires. This article helps us understand the challenges of tire recycling in the OTR sector.

Complex Composition of OTR Tires 

OTR tires are significantly different from their tire counterparts for cars, SUVs etc, primarily due to their size, construction, and composition. These tires are designed to withstand extreme conditions, including high loads, rough terrains, and abrasive environments. The complex composition of OTR tires, including multiple layers of rubber, steel belts, and fabric, makes recycling a tedious  and expensive process. The presence of steel in OTR tires poses a significant challenge for recycling specifically. Steel is a valuable material, and its extraction and separation from the rubber requires advanced technologies. The high costs associated with these technologies make the recycling process economically challenging.


Limited Availability of Recycling Infrastructure 

Another obstacle associated with OTR tire recycling is the lack of sufficient infrastructure. Compared to car tires, the number of OTR tires generated is relatively low. As a result, many recycling facilities and equipment manufacturers focus their efforts on car tires, leaving the OTR sector with limited recycling options. The transportation and handling of large OTR tires present logistical difficulties, as they require specialized equipment and facilities. Additionally, the limited number of recycling centers that can accommodate OTR tires often leads to increased transportation distances and costs, further hindering the recycling process.


Environmental Concerns 

OTR tires pose unique environmental challenges due to their large size and complex composition. Improper disposal and hoarding of OTR tires in landfills can lead to environmental hazards, such as the release of toxic chemicals and the risk of fire. Moreover, OTR tires are not easily biodegradable, contributing to long-lasting environmental pollution. Burning is sometimes used as an alternative to landfilling, but it raises concerns about air pollution due to the release of harmful emissions. While energy recovery through burning can be beneficial, it is not a sustainable long-term solution for tire recycling.


High Costs Associated with OTR Recycling 

The economic strain of OTR tire recycling is a major challenge. The high costs associated with collection, transportation, and processing, coupled with the low demand for recycled OTR tire products, make it difficult to establish a profitable business model in this sector. Recycled rubber from OTR tires can be used for various applications, such as civil engineering projects and sports surfaces. However, the limited market demand and lower prices for recycled rubber compared to virgin rubber present financial barriers for the OTR tire recycling industry. 

The challenges of tire recycling in the OTR sector require collaborative efforts from stakeholders, including tire manufacturers, recycling facilities, government bodies, and end-users. Investing in research and development of innovative recycling technologies and creating market demand for recycled OTR tire products are crucial steps to overcome these challenges. By addressing these obstacles, we can promote a circular economy and achieve sustainable management of OTR tire waste, minimizing environmental impact and maximizing resource utilization.


BKT OTR Tire Recommendations:

Mine Star is ideal for heavy-duty underground mining activities. It has a strong cut/chip and puncture resistance, which increases operational efficiency.  

Earthmax SR 47  is designed for construction and mining applications and is designed to provide excellent durability. 

Earthmax SR 57 This tire is designed for the most demanding off-road applications and provides long wear life and traction. 


Check out our other advanced tire collections here.

Be the first to know about news in your industry!
Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date with the BKT Universe, including exclusive news, product launches and events.
Find your tire