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Career profile Tire Builder

Also known as Buffer, Recapper, Retread Associate, Retread Technician, Retreader, Tire Assembler, Tire Builder, Tire Retreader, Tire Technician, Tread Builder Operator

Tire Builder

Also known as Buffer, Recapper, Retread Associate

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Conventional
  • Investigative
Pay Range
$29,860 - $63,030 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Operation and Control
  • Operations Monitoring
  • Active Listening
Knowledge Areas
  • Production and Processing
  • Administration and Management
  • Mechanical
Core tasks
  • Place tires into molds for new tread.
  • Fit inner tubes and final layers of rubber onto tires.
  • Buff tires according to specifications for width and undertread depth.
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What does a Tire Builder do?

Tire Builders operate machines to build tires.

What kind of tasks does a Tire Builder perform regularly?

Tire Builders are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Build semi-raw rubber treads onto buffed tire casings to prepare tires for vulcanization in recapping or retreading processes.
  • Trim excess rubber and imperfections during retreading processes.
  • Fill cuts and holes in tires, using hot rubber.

The above responsibilities are specific to Tire Builders. More generally, Tire Builders are involved in several broader types of activities:

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Handling and Moving Objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
Controlling Machines and Processes
Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Performing General Physical Activities
Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling materials.

What is a Tire Builder salary?

The median salary for a Tire Builder is $46,270, and the average salary is $45,980. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Tire Builder salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Tire Builders earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Tire Builders earn less than $29,860 per year, 25% earn less than $36,100, 75% earn less than $57,070, and 90% earn less than $63,030.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Tire Builders is expected to change by -0.5%, and there should be roughly 2,000 open positions for Tire Builders every year.

Median annual salary
Typical salary range
$29,860 - $63,030
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)

What personality traits are common among Tire Builders?


Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as a Tire Builder are usually higher in their Realistic and Conventional interests.

Tire Builders typically have very strong Realistic interests. Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Also, Tire Builders typically have moderate Conventional interests. Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.


People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as a Tire Builder tend to value Support, Relationships, and Independence.

Most importantly, Tire Builders moderately value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Second, Tire Builders moderately value Relationships. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.

Lastly, Tire Builders moderately value Independence. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Tire Builders must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, dependability, and cooperation.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Tire Builders, ranked by importance:

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.

What education and training do Tire Builders need?

Working as a Tire Builder usually requires a high school diploma.

Tire Builders need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Tire Builders

  • 5.3% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 51.4% completed high school or secondary school
  • 31.7% completed some college coursework
  • 6.7% earned a Associate's degree
  • 4.4% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 0.5% earned a Master's degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Tire Builders

Tire Builders may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as production and processing, administration and management, or mechanical knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Tire Builders might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Production and Processing
Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
Administration and Management
Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Engineering and Technology
Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Public Safety and Security
Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

Important Abilities needed by Tire Builders

Tire Builders must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Tire Builders need abilities such as manual dexterity, arm-hand steadiness, and control precision in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Tire Builders, ranked by their relative importance.

Manual Dexterity
The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Arm-Hand Steadiness
The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
Control Precision
The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
Multilimb Coordination
The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
Finger Dexterity
The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.

Critical Skills needed by Tire Builders

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Tire Builders frequently use skills like operation and control, operations monitoring, and active listening to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Tire Builders, ranked by their relative importance.

Operation and Control
Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
Operations Monitoring
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this information, please send a message.