How to Store Tires Properly
There are many reasons why you might need to store your tires. Maybe you’re switching to your winter tires to cope with Idaho’s blizzard season, or perhaps you’re looking for a place to keep your old tires until you can sell them.
Whatever the reason, you can just toss them in the corner until you’re ready to deal with them again, right? No, not so fast. There are actually several steps you’ll want to take to help preserve the longevity and lifespan of your tires so that they’re in good shape the next time you want to use them.
To help you prepare, we’ve created this helpful guide to show you the proper way to store your tires. Follow our tips below to discover the best way to store tires to help keep them in tip-top shape, and don’t miss the answers to all your frequently asked questions about tire storage!
Remove Your Tires From the Vehicle
If you’re interested in long-term storage, it’s best to remove the tires from your vehicle. Before doing so, note their position so you can rotate them next time you place them on your car. This can help the tire wear more evenly when you’re driving.
Inflate Your Tires
The next step in figuring out how to store your tires involves inflating them with the manufacturer’s recommended air pressure. This will help keep your tires’ shape when you’re not using them. While you’re inflating them, inspect for any holes, corrosion, or uneven wear.
Clean Your Tires
You’ll want to wash and clean your tires before you store them. Using dish soap, take a tire brush and gently scrub your tires to remove any mud, dirt, gust, and grime. Contrary to popular belief, we recommend not using any gloss or dressing, as it can do more harm than good when placing your tires in storage.
Place Your Tires in Plastic Bags
If you’re wondering how to preserve your tires in storage, place them in airtight plastic bags to keep out moisture and avoid dust or dirt buildup. Once your tires are completely dry, we suggest purchasing specialty tire bags or vacuum-sealable plastic.
If that’s not an option, you can always use thick garbage, lawn, or leaf bags. If you take this route, try to remove as much air from the bags as possible and seal them with durable tape. Another option is to use a tarp and wrap it tightly around your tires.
Decide on a Storage Location
Now, you’ll need to decide what kind of tire storage you have in mind. The best choice is a cool, dry environment that is not exposed to direct sunlight or moisture. This might mean your garage, shed, or basement; if you do choose to store your tires in your home, keep them away from hot pipes or generators, as they can emit heat and ozone, which is harmful for them.
If you don’t have storage space available at your home, storage units are an excellent alternative, and they come in all sizes. Better yet, many come with climate-control features, which maintain a preset temperature and humidity range. Many people choose climate-controlled units because extreme outside temperatures can do a number on your tires. With one of these units, you can enjoy peace of mind instead of worrying about how the weather outside might affect your tires.
Above all, avoid storing your tires outside. Not only are cold and heat no match for your tires, but excess moisture is no good either. If you must store them outside, be sure that they are sealed tightly in plastic wrap and placed in a dry, shaded area.
Determine How to Store Them
Now that you have decided where you want to store your tires, you’ll have to think about how you’ll store them. If you’re wondering, Should tires be stored flat or upright? The answer is, it depends on whether you are storing tires with or without rims.
If you’re storing tires with rims, you should stack them horizontally to equally distribute the weight across the rims. Alternatively, if you’re storing tires without rims, stack them vertically on a rack in an upright position. This will help maintain their shape.
Some people prefer to use hooks to store their tires. If you’re considering this option, only do so if your tires have rims. Never store unmounted tires or tires without rims on hooks because this can distort or warp the tire’s shape.
FAQs About Tire Storage
Now that you have a better idea about how to store your tires, let’s answer some of your frequently asked questions:
How long will my tires last in storage? If you follow the proper way to store your tires, unused tires can last up to roughly six years in storage conditions.
What happens if I store my tires without inflating them? Inflating your tires helps keep their shape; if you don’t properly inflate your tires before storage, you are increasing the chances of distortion and disfiguration.
Will sunlight harm my tires? Yes, direct sunlight and high temperatures can cause cracking in your tires. If your tires are cracked, they are more likely to blow out when you’re driving.
What is tire dry rot? Tire dry rot refers to decay in the tire due to direct UV light and ozone exposure. Dry rot can lead to holes, leaks, and blowouts. If it’s a severe case of dry rot, the tread may detach from the rest of the tire.
How can I keep my tires from dry rot? To avoid dry rot, keep your tires away from direct sunlight and do not store them near ozone-emitting devices, such as generators, electric motors, pumps, and water heaters. Low temperatures can also increase the chances of dry rot. That said, if your tires are especially old, dry rot may be inevitable.
What if I notice cracking or deterioration on my tires before storing them? If your tires are looking somewhat worse for wear, we recommend getting them professionally inspected. A tire expert can tell you whether your tires are worth storing or if you should replace them.
Can I store my tires outside? We do not recommend storing your tires outside because they may be exposed to fluctuating temperatures, UV light, and other environmental factors that could negatively impact your tires’ lifespan.
What is the best place to store my tires? A climate-controlled storage unit is an ideal place to store tires, because these spaces maintain a comfortable, preset temperature range at all times.
Where can I find a storage unit for my tires in Idaho? Stor-It features storage facilities all over the Gem State to accommodate your tire storage needs.
What size storage unit should I rent for my tires? It depends. If you’re looking for a small, compact unit, our 5×5 or 5×10 spaces are a great option. But if you’d like to store your tires with other belongings, we offer a wide range of larger sizes to fit all your items and then some.
Reserve a Storage Unit For Your Tires Today
Here at Stor-It, we believe the best way to store your tires is in a storage unit. And trust us, we know a thing or two about storage. After all, we’re Idaho’s largest and oldest storage unit, meaning we have the knowledge and expertise to accommodate all your storage needs.
Whether you’re looking for short-term or long-term storage, allow us to help. We feature more than 15 convenient storage locations across the Gem State, from Boise and Caldwell to McCall and Nampa. Contact us today to reserve a storage unit near you!