What Happens to My Tires?

Not only are discarded tires ugly to look at, they also pose a number of health risks. They present a fire hazard that can produce toxic fumes. When left out in the open, they collect water and become a breeding ground for mosquitoes including those carrying West Nile Virus. The good news is, while tires are nasty when they're discarded, they're a valuable source of material that can be turned into new products and new jobs.

Alberta Recycling works closely with municipalities, tire and vehicle dealers, tire shops and registered tire processors across the province to ensure tires are recycled safely and responsibly.

What is recycled?

Almost every type of tire can be recycling in Alberta. The most common are those found on your car or truck. However, Alberta's tire recycling program includes off-road tires and specialty tires that are used on construction and industrial equipment. The six million tires Albertans discard every year are diverted from landfills, made into shred or crumbs and put to good use once again as new products.

How are tires processed

The scrap tires are picked up from tires shops, vehicle dealers, automotive repair shops or municipal collection sites (recycling depots) across the province by the registered tire processors. The tires are run through a shredder, which is the final stage of processing for almost half the scrap tires generated in a year, and the other half of the tires are processed into crumb rubber.

Sidewalk blocks made from recycled tires

What it becomes

Recycled scrap tires are turned into:

  • Drainage material in municipal landfills, replacing expensive washed rock
  • Playground surfaces
  • Sidewalk blocks, matting products and roofing tiles
  • Mulch for landscaping
  • Whatever innovative Albertans will think of next!