So you got your tires rotated to either put on or take off those winter tires for the season, but now… what do you do with this pile of tires? Simple answer, please store them in or around your apartment or house. Longer answer, please do so correctly by following these simple guidelines.
First, and perhaps foremost, you must not put tires directly on the floor of your house or balcony, it will stain the flooring permanently and you will be charged to repair this. I cannot stress this enough; putting tires on flooring directly WILL damage the floor. Read on for the best method to avoid this (hint, plastic bags).
First, you should ensure that the tires are ready for storage and are worth storing. Give each tire a visual inspection and ensure that there are, for example;
Next, assuming the tires are good to go we will store them. It is best to keep tires indoors, well away from sources of carbon dioxide and ozone, in a cool dry place. In Japan, it is unlikely you are going to have this option, as space is at a premium. Most people in Japan will store their tires outside, either next to the house or on the balcony. This is fine, if not ideal.
Inside or out, the process is the same. Begin with something to keep the tires out of direct contact with the surface below. Ideally something like a pallet. You can find “futon pallets,” as I would call them in home centers, these would work. Another option is simply two sticks laid on the ground, anything that will keep the tires off the ground in a stable position.
Next, we will put each tire into a plastic bag and seal it up as tight as possible. If you had your tires switched at an official dealer or proper tire shop, sometimes they would return the tires in plastic bags. If an option, vacuum out the air. This helps to prevent oils in the rubber from evaporating, causing drying and cracking. Bags also protect the tire from the stifling Japanese humidity and moisture. Now we can start stacking.
Tires with the rim should be stored horizontally. Place the fist tire on the “pallet like thing,” then place cardboard or something on top of that before placing the next plastic wrapped tire on it. Repeat till all tires are stacked. At this point, it would be best to put a tarp over the stack of tires, as direct sun on the black tires will create intense heat, and that, not to mention the ultraviolet rays, will start to break down the rubber.
Come winter or when you want to switch back to winter tires. Repeat the process for your summer tires. If you follow this process, the tires will last much better and will survive a few extra thousand kilometers, not to mention make the move out from your apartment a far less unpleasant affair!