Dear Readers,

Weiboold Academy LogoThis is the third article from our monthly blog series, called “Weibold! Academy”.

The idea behind these articles is to provide our readers and our newsletter subscribers with valuable knowledge about the tire recycling industry.

We started our educational series with the basics and month by month we will together dwell deeper into the world of tires and the ways of recycling them.

We believe that a good knowledge foundation might be beneficial for everyone involved in the industry and each month we will cover different topics, thus providing you with important know-how for the tire recycling industry.

In the second article from our series we started explaining about the recycled rubber output spectrum and we also started covering the topic about Rubber Granulates.

The third article explained about Rubber Granulates, Rubber Powder, Tire Derived Steel and Tire Derived Fiber.

In this part we will cover another interesting topic –  the Tyre Recycling Value Chain.

Tyre Recycling Value Chain

The recycling value chain covers a number of basic steps from the disposal of tires from cars, trucks and other vehicles to the production of derivative products:

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1. Sourcing and sorting: the collection of tires from tire mounting shops and other sources, e.g. landfills. Some portion (5% to 15%, depending on market conditions) have enough tread on the tyre to qualify for re-use, such as:

  1. second hand tires, sold domestically
  2. second hand tires, sold internationally
  3. carcasses for retreading

2. Powder & Granulate Production

  1. Granulate and powder production: tyres are ground into granulates of varying sizes. The technology used for grinding and the iterations employed determine the granulate size mix of the output. Generally, the smaller the size, the higher the value of the product.
  2. Steel and textile is also separated and processed to furnaces for sale.

3. Products Manufacturing

  1. Products manufacturing: the granulates and powders are used to generate a multitude of products, such as mulch, mats, various molded goods, sports surfaces, endless sheets for construction applications, etc. The revenues per ton of material are considerably higher for these products compared to granulate sales.
  2. Powder value adding technology:

4. Distribution and marketing: for an effective stable revenue stream, all materials and products must be distributed through a well-organized sales, distribution and marketing organization.

In general, the more value has been added in the processing chain, the higher the results achieved.


The characterization of ELT derived products through standards is gaining importance worldwide.

Among important worldwide standards counts the ISO Standardization. The International Standardization Organization (ISO) develops and publishes international standards. ISO 14040 and 14044 for example are standards for environmental management, ISO 9000 for quality management. The standard 3310-1 is used with test sieves for technical requirements and testing; especially for the testing of metallic fabrics.

In Europe one finds an ongoing development of quality standards for ELT derived materials at CEN level, CEN TC366. The end of waste status for ELT derived products is achieved throughout Europe with the establishment of standards and the high ELT recycling and recovery performance.

Furthermore, the development of EU standards contributes to a significant increase of the level of quality of tire derived products while opening the market to new applications, promoting technology exchanges and access to know-how and innovation and protecting the environment.

The publication in May 2010 of CEN TS14243 aims at characterizing the different materials derived from end of life tires in terms of dimensions (ELT cuts, shreds, chips, granulates and powders) and impurities (steel & textile) using harmonized methods of sampling and testing.

The next step is to convert CEN PC366 into a fully fledged Technical Committee with an extended business program in order to fully characterize other properties of ELT derived materials.

The European Tyre Recycling Association (ETRA) has been active in promoting EU standards for ELT derived materials since 2000. It is an observer in CEN TC366 (Materials obtained from ELTs) and also in CEN TC217 (Sport surfaces) since April 2011.

Moreover, DIN CEN/TS 15401 is a standard for bulk density, also used in laboratory testing, and DIN EN 15400 for different heating values.