Can tire failure start a fire? The quick and short answer is: Yes, it is possible – but it is also highly unlikely. After reading a statement about RV fires being started by tire fires that were themselves started by a tire failure, I felt compelled to jump in with some facts. While it is true that tires can burn and be difficult to put out once they are on fire, it is also true that it is difficult to start a tire burning. According to Wikipedia : “Tire fires are normally the result of arson or improper manipulation with open fire. Tires are not prone to self-ignition , as a tire must be heated to at least 400° Celsius (750° Fahrenheit) for a period of several minutes prior to ignition.” Now, I can almost hear some saying: “Yeah, but what about a tire blowout?” Well, let’s consider a tire failure. You are driving down the road at 50 mph or more and there is a sudden, loud “BANG”. You are startled but with luck and skill, you can pull off the road to look at the damage. Most likely you find a tire in multiple pieces along with some damage to your RV. What you do not see are pieces of burning rubber strewn along the road. If we consider the process of a tire coming apart, it may be easier to understand why we don’t see burning rubber when we stop because of a tire failure. There […]