Rubber mulch costs 65% less than wood mulch over a nominal five-year performance period.
Rubber mulch reduces the need to cut and harvest trees for use as a ground cover.
Processing starts with shredding the tire, a primary reduction step that reduces the volume of tires and creates a material that is easily handled. Tire shredders typically shear tires with two counter rotating shafts, producing 2-inch pieces. To further break down scrap tires, Liberty Tire Recycling uses one of two systems – mechanical or cryogenic.
Mechanical systems shred and grind scrap tires into chips or small particles using the ambient process. In an ambient system, the shred – at ambient temperature – is fed into one or more granulators fitted with screens that determine the size of the product.
Cryogenic systems freeze tires at extremely low temperatures, easily shattering to create a variety of chip sizes. Tire shreds – or in some cases, whole tires – are super-cooled using liquid nitrogen. The cold rubber, now extremely brittle, is processed through a hammer mill that shatters the rubber into small particles.
Recycling as much of the tire as possible, Liberty Tire then removes and collects scrap steel with magnets and separates fiber components with air classifiers. The result is clean recycled rubber of various sizes with broad-based market potential.