How to Build a Home From Recycled Tires

How to Build a Home From Recycled Tires

Building a home from recycled materials like used tires can be a cost-effective and eco-friendly way to construct a unique and durable home. Recycled tires are an inexpensive and abundant material that can be repurposed in various ways during home construction. With proper planning and technique, it’s possible to build an energy-efficient and long-lasting tire home.

Gathering and Preparing Materials

The first step is sourcing and preparing the main building material – used tires. Here are some tips:

  • Contact local tire shops, junkyards, recycling centers, etc. to find a bulk source of used tires. Make sure they are clean and not damaged.

  • Passenger car tires are best for walls while larger truck tires can be used for foundations.

  • Tires should be uniform in size to allow for stable stacking.

  • Wash and scrub tires to remove dirt and debris. Allow them to dry fully.

  • Fill tires with compacted earth or gravel to provide weight and stability.

  • Stack and arrange filled tires on-site as you would bricks or concrete blocks.

Foundations and Framing

The foundation and framing system needs to be sturdy enough to support stacked tires:

  • Pour a thick concrete slab foundation or use concrete footers and piers.

  • Construct a timber or steel frame to support roof and floors. Use sturdy posts anchored in the ground or foundation.

  • Reinforced concrete bond beams should be incorporated into the tire walls for lateral stability.

  • Interior framing can use standard wood stud walls and floor joists.

Walls and Openings

The tire walls are load-bearing so need to be stacked precisely:

  • Use tire baling wire, strapping or a polyurethane foam adhesive to secure tires together.

  • Offset vertical seams between tires in each successive row for strength.

  • Incorporate tire half sections and curved cuts to form corners and openings.

  • Install lintel beams over windows and doors to support the wall above.

  • Use wood or steel framing around openings for stabilization.

  • Apply concrete stucco over the tire exterior for protection and aesthetics.

Roofing and Insulation

There are several good roofing options for tire homes:

  • A simple pitched roof can use plywood sheathing and asphalt shingles or metal roofing.

  • A living roof system with soil and planted vegetation offers natural insulation.

  • For flat roofs, use concrete, a coated membrane system or install a foam insulation layer.

  • Pack loose fill vermiculite or perlite insulation between tire gaps for an R-value of around R-24.

  • Add rigid foam insulation boards over the exterior and under roofing for better energy efficiency.

Finishing and Details

Some final steps to complete the home:

  • Run electrical wiring and plumbing inside framing before encasing with drywall.

  • Apply wood paneling or drywall over interior framing for desired finish.

  • The circular shape of tires lends itself well to curved interior walls.

  • Paint or stucco the interior walls for an aesthetically pleasing look.

  • Incorporate creative touches like tire planters, decorative walls using tire halves and using tire treads for flooring.

With the right planning and techniques, it is possible to construct an innovative and eco-friendly home from recycled tires. Pay attention to structural stability, insulation and aesthetics to create a comfortable and unique living space. Let your creativity guide you in repurposing used tires into a one-of-a-kind sustainable home.