Cars

10 Brilliant Uses For Old Tires

Published On 08/14/2015 Published On 08/14/2015
iStock/davemantel

So you just put brand spanking new tires on your ride, but now you're stuck with four old ones. What do you do? You could call someone to come by and haul them out for a nominal fee, or you could peruse this list and be hailed as a genius by all your friends and family.

If you've got a few old spares laying around, a bit of imagination, and at least a kindergartner's level of craftsmanship, this handy rundown is for you.

Wikicommons/Victor Grigas

1. Build a castle, duh

Ok, technically this is called an "earthship," and it's meant to be an environmentally friendly way to build a house. It brings a whole new meaning to "tire kingdom."

Flickr/Dennis Jarvis

2. Make flip-flops

This is actually a common practice in Vietnam, and today there are several companies that make flip-flops out of old tires as their primary business.

Flickr/greentleaf

3. Start an awesome garden

As you see here, tires make excellent planters and flower pots. Mount one on the wall, and you have a hanging garden. Or, just put a plastic sheet over one side, lay it on the ground, and fill it with water to make your own garden pond. After it's full, use another old tire as a hose caddy.

Flickr/US Air Force

4. Build an obstacle course

Obviously. You've seen this in war movies, and the horizontal version of this in any ol' football movie. You can also rearrange them and make the kind of agility course your dog will never get sick of.

Flickr/Sarah Gould

5. Make furniture

There's really no limit to the diversity of furniture you can make with old tires. Chairs can be stacked tires or made with complex weaves of rubber as shown. You can make an ottoman by stuffing pillows inside a tire, or just glue a couple together, secure some wood on top, and call it a coffee table. It's almost too easy.

Wikicommons/Christopher Chapman

6. Use them to get jacked

Even the smallest tires are generally over 20 pounds, and larger ones can weigh a couple times that. Multiply that by however many tires you have laying around and... you get the idea.

Flickr/Nathan Gibbs

7. Create an outdoor staircase

Essentially, you're using the tire carcass as an architectural element to hold more materials while you're making a staircase out of whatever materials the Earth has given you.

Aaron Miller

8. Construct a wall or barrier

You can fill tires with sand to prevent a flood from wiping out your home, or stack a few zillion alongside a race track to help absorb the impact of an out-of-control car. The brilliant part is you don't even have to stack them in a super-organized manner to be effective. Inertia and the spring-like properties of rubber do the work.

Durable Corporation

9. Make a DIY doormat

Believe it or not, people have been making mats out of recycled tires since the 1920s, when the Durable Corporation first patented the idea. You weave strands of rubber around a wire frame and, assuming you either have a modicum of skill or an up-to-date tetanus shot, you're good to go.

Flickr/Julie Falk

10. Of course there's a tire swing

A tire swinging from a tree is about as classic Americana as you can get, at least in terms of childhood entertainment. Plus, it's an insanely cheap way to entertain the kids. 


Aaron Miller is the Rides editor for Supercompressor, and can be found on Twitter. He currently has no patio furniture and seven tires sitting in his garage that he has absolutely no use for.

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