Tire regrooving is a service that intends to improve vehicle mileage, fuel efficiency, and traction. Truck drivers, construction workers, and farmers often regroove tires to cut costs. It allows them to maximize tire use, eliminating the need for new tires. Regrooving tires involves carving a tire’s grooves to restore tread depth and improve friction.
Car mechanics use either a handheld tool or a regrooving machine to do this. Tire regrooving is resurging because of increased fuel and tire manufacturing costs. But a regroove tire comes with real risks. The result is sometimes a personal injury case that makes it to a courtroom.
How Do Regrooved or Retreaded Tires Work?
Regrooved tires, also known as retreaded tires, are tires that have had their worn-out treads removed and replaced with new tread material. This process extends the life of a tire, allowing it to be used again after it has been worn down.
Regrooving is typically performed on truck tires, as they are subjected to heavy loads and high mileage, making them expensive to replace. By retreading tires, a significant portion of the tire’s original structure is still intact, including the casing, belts, and sidewalls.
The process of regrooving involves removing the worn-out tread down to the tire’s base, which is then inspected for any damage. If the casing is in good condition, a new layer of tread material is applied to the tire and cured, usually through a combination of heat and pressure. The finished product is then ready to be used again, providing a cost-effective alternative to buying a new tire.
What federal laws cover tire regrooving?
Tire regrooving is subject to federal regulations. Specifically, 49 CFR Section 569.3(c) defines a “regroovable tire” as tires that are “designed, and constructed with sufficient material to permit renewal of the tread pattern.” This means tires can only be legally regrooved if they have enough rubber to maintain its original tread pattern. Non-commercial vehicle tires are not regroovable because they are too thin to preserve its tread pattern.