T.J. Tennent Turns His Passion Into Unending Tire Forensics Opportunities

T.J. Tennent Turns His Passion Into Unending Tire Forensics Opportunities

Law enforcement officers across the world know T.J. Tennent and his cherry red Ferrari well, with many of them working to track him down even now, as you read these words. That said, you won’t find any “Wanted” posters of him at any police stations – or if you do, it’s simply a sign that officers will try anything to learn even a smidgeon of his niche tire forensics knowledge.

“If there’s a tire that fails and causes an accident, my phone will ring. My phone rings every single day, it rings nonstop,” he says. “I teach law enforcement what to look for, when to take the tire off, what to document… right now, to this day, we’re the only company [Tennent and Associates] in the world that teaches that.”

T.J., aka “The Tyre Guy,” cut his teeth in the tire industry in the early 2000s working as a field engineer at Bridgestone Americas. As a hobby (which remains to this day in true tire enthusiast fashion), T.J. would go to new car lots and inspect the tires, snapping pictures of anomalies that caught his eye and sending them to the Bridgestone corporate office. This behavior caught the attention of a Bridgestone executive in Japan, Katsu Kajimoto, who convinced T.J. to move to the Land of the Rising Sun to take on what became a variety of roles, including those in motorcycle and kart tire R&D and engineering management with Firestone’s light truck products.

Eventually, T.J. landed in Firestone’s consumer and government product division, and that’s when he started becoming the go-to guy for police organizations looking for answers when a tire blew out.

“In their report, they would say ‘well, the tire just blew out.’ I thought it was a better idea to train them to know why it blew out. What was the root cause analysis? What were other causes and evidence that you saw on the tire?” he says. “And, that just took off. I mean, that just got ridiculous.”

So ridiculous, in fact, that T.J. ended up retiring from Bridgestone to start what he referred to as his “essentially real-life-NCIS” tire investigation consultant business in 2018. In addition, T.J. has also built a bit of an empire out of divulging his vast tire analysis and forensics wisdom to not just law enforcement officers, but also tire dealers, technicians, courtroom lawyers and anyone else who wants to learn his secrets, via classes he calls “productions.”

“Let me explain: I love tires. If you ever see me teach a class, I’m literally running around. I’m in a sweat at the end of the day,” he says. “I’ll tell jokes because the humorous spin keeps people’s attention, and I don’t just teach the technical stuff. I teach about success in life.”

T.J. says he doesn’t run his business just to make money; simply knowing others are absorbing his knowledge is the true prize, so he also produces custom videos that show off his personality and tire intelligence for his “T J Tennent” YouTube channel (look up his video “The Tyre Guy (Motorcycle Tire)” for two-and-half minutes well spent).

“Let’s take electric vehicles and hybrid vehicles. Those require a green tire, especially, meaning they have low rolling resistance, and they’re designed for fuel-efficient vehicles. If you put a conventional tire on a hybrid or an electric vehicle, you will actually hurt the performance of that vehicle,” he says. “You don’t have to go back with the same tire as what came on the vehicle, but you need to purchase a tire designed for a fuel-efficient vehicle. Every tire manufacturer makes a green tire.”

You May Also Like

Business Acumen Sends Joe Miles to Top Industry Groups

Treating the customer right goes beyond free tire rotation or doing a flat repair whether you bought a tire from Kaiser Tire or not.

When Joe Miles worked with his service-technician father at dealerships, he realized one thing: he was not a very good technician. This realization pushed Joe to become an automotive service writer for PG Tire Pros in Buckner, Kentucky - which ignited his career. Not long after starting that position, he met someone he would later call one of his biggest influences, Ken Towery. Towery owned and operated Ken Towery’s Tire and AutoCare, which now has over 34 locations between Kentucky and Illinois. Joe was offered a job in management that day - he accepted.

Stephanie Morey Has Carved Her Way Into the Tire Industry

There appears to be no challenge that Stephanie Morey can’t overcome. From being a leader in data management in the ever-changing tire industry to building a shop in her backyard when her woodturning passion was put on hold due to the pandemic, she is up to the test. Related Articles – Sherri Wolford Prioritizes Positivity

Sherri Wolford Prioritizes Positivity in The Fast-Paced Tire Industry

After only two years in the tire service industry, Sherri Wolford’s can-do spirit and values have already had a positive impact on the distribution segment of Myers Industries. Related Articles – Courtney Cannon’s Passion for Sustainability Resonates at Bridgestone – Jeff Perry: Relationships Key to Success in the Tire Industry – Mike Evans Takes Tire

Scott Blair Creates Opportunities in the Tire Industry With Training

Scott Blair, the founder of T.R.A.C.K. Auto Training & Network, is no stranger to creating solutions to issues facing the tire industry. He just can’t help himself – if he identifies an obstacle affecting his peers, through hell or high water, he’ll find a solution to it. Related Articles – Nokian Tyres Pierre Zupancic Enjoys the

Yokohama’s Heather Adelman: Grow People to Grow the Business

As a former college athlete, Heather Adelman is competitive by nature. She’s always striving to get to the next level, adding to her skillset and isn’t afraid to pick up the work when things need to get done. But she won’t tell you that–she lets her actions speak for themselves. Related Articles – Esmeralda Bernal

Other Posts

Hankook Tire’s Rob Williams on leveraging momentum for global expansion

The company’s North America president tells all regarding product philosophy, dealer growth strategy, and what responding to the tire market means in 2024.

K&M Tire’s president discusses her vision for progressive tire dealers in 2024

We dig into K&M Tire’s 2024 goals, expansion expectations and the details of the company’s latest partnerships.

Cutting corners on brake jobs can cost customers down the road

Spending more on brake services can help customers understand the importance of quality repairs.

Reading what you can’t see: TPMS sensor signals

TPMS sensor signals are low power and low frequency, with most sensors transmitting at 315MHz or 433MHz.