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AUX8425

Course
AUX8425
Course Title
NCSI/Safety Recertification

Description

This course updates current North Carolina vehicle inspectors on any and all new laws relating to North Carolina law.

Objectives

Upon completion the technician will be current on all laws relating to safety inspection in the state of North Carolina.

Content

North Carolina Department of Transportation Division of Motor Vehicles Enforcement Safety Inspection

  • Certified Inspection Mechanic – A person who has satisfactorily completed the required course(s) and who has passed the written exam.
  • A Certified Inspection Mechanic must be able to successfully demonstrate an inspection to DMV.
  • Inspection Mechanic’s Safety License are valid for 4 years from the date of certification.
  • Stations are responsible for ALL inspection performed at their station.
  • If a mechanic loses their inspection license they must re-take the 8 hour course(s).

 Regulations

  • Stations must display the procedure posters, station license and mechanic’s license in a conspicuous place.
  • Inspections can only be conducted at the station’s place of business.
  • Stations CANNOT require failed vehicles to be repaired at their station.
  • Stations must be open 8 hours per day.
  • Safety Stations MUST be aware of the Emissions Test Requirements.

Procedures:

  • The old sticker remains on the vehicle UNTIL it passes the inspection.
  • Indicate the same month of expiration as what is on the expired sticker.
  • Damaged stickers must be voided and are held for a DMV Inspector or Auditor.
  • The station must maintain the “COPY” of the VIRS for 18 months.
  • Checking a vehicles Emission Control Devices is part of both the Safety and Emissions Inspection on all 1968 and newer vehicles.

Procedures:

  • Prior to performing an inspection, have all occupants exit the vehicle and require the operator to present a valid registration card.
  • If a vehicle fails, complete the VIRS showing what failed, collect the inspection fee only and explain they have 30 calendar days for 1 FREE inspection.
  • On any document you must legibly print the required (customer) information.
  • The Safety Inspection fee is regulated.  The Inspection portio is $8.25, the sticker is $.85 = $9.10.
  • Window tint is an additional $10.00 (Total would then be $19.10)

Inspection Procedure for Safety Equipment

Driving the vehicle forward into the inspection area is required, by the Inspection Mechanic, for a complete and proper inspection to be performed.

Inspection Procedure for Safety Equipment Items

  • Brakes
  • Lights
  • Horn
  • Steering Mechanism
  • Windshield Wipers & Blades
  • Directional Signals
  • Tires
  • Tire Definitions
  • Mirrors
  • Exhaust Emission Controls
  • Emission Control Devices

.0532 Brakes

No vehicle brakes shall be approved for an inspection sticker unless the items indicated in this Rule are inspected and found to meet the minimum requirements established in G.S. 20-124 and this rule. 

.0532 Brakes

G.S. 20-124 states:

Brakes are required to control movement of and to stop vehicles and the brakes shall be maintained in good working order.

  • The “ABS” light does not constitute a failure UNLESS the ABS unit is leaking or damaged.  If there is an electrical malfunction of the ABS system the manufacture is required to use the service brakes as a “back-up plan”.

.0532 Brakes

(1) Footbrakes shall not be approved if:

(a)When applying brakes to the moving vehicle, braking force is not distributed evenly to all wheels originally equipped with brakes by the manufacturer.

.0532 Brakes

(1)(continued):

(b) There is audible indication (metal to metal) that the brake lining is no longer serviceable. (The wheel must be removed and the brake lining examined when this occurs.)

  • Wear Sensors & wear indicators (squealers) constitute a failure.

.0532 Brakes

(1)(continued):

(c) Pedal reserve is less than 1/3 of the total possible travel when the brakes are fully applied, or does not meet the manufacture’s specifications for power brakes or air brakes.

.0532 Brakes

(1)(continued):

(d) The reservoir of the master cylinder is not full.

[Reservoir filled according to manufacture specifications.]

  •  The inspection mechanic must remove the reservoir cap to verify fluid and level.

.0532 Brakes

(1)(continued):

(e) There is visible leakage or audible seepage in hydraulic, vacuum or air lines and cylinders, or visible cracked, chafed, worn or weakened hoses or lines.

  • Pay close attention to 1998 & newer Dodge Dakotas-rear tires rub the brake lines. (Under recall)

.0532 Brakes

(1)(continued):

(f) The vehicle has any part of the brake system removed or disconnected.

 .0532 Brakes

(1)(Continued):

(g) The brake pedal moves slowly toward the floorboard (indicating fluid leakage) while pedal pressure is maintained for one minute.

  • 1985-90 Toyota's and 1994 - newer Ford F150s/F250s with ABS will do this as a normal function.

 .0532 Brakes

(2) Inspection mechanics are not expected to remove wheels in order to inspect the brakes. (Except as provided in sub-item (1)(b) of this Rule.) Inspection mechanic must raise vehicle to get beneath to check underside.

.0532 Brakes

(3) Handbrakes (auxiliary, parking or holding) shall not be approved if:

            (a) There is no lever reserve when the brake is fully applied.

  •  Some Chevrolet Trucks/SUVs will have no lever reserve from the factory.

.0532 Brakes

(3)(continued):

(b) Cables are visible frayed or frozen, there are missing or defective cotter pins, broken or missing retracting springs, or worn rods or couplings.

.0532 Brakes

(3)(continued):

(c) The operating mechanism, when fully applied, fails to hold the brakes in the applied position without manual effort.

  • The lever will not stay set.
  • Some levers are pump to set.

.0532 Brakes

(3)(continued):

(d) When emergency or handbrakes are applied they fail to hold vehicle.

  • The safest way to perform this test is to place the vehicle in neutral and gently rock the car back and forth.

.0532 Brakes

(3)(continued):

(e) Fails to release after being set.

  • Be careful manually releasing the brake.

.0533 Lights

G.S. 20-129(a) states:

Every vehicle upon a highway or public vehicular area within this State shall be equipped with lighted headlamps and rear lamps as required for different classes of vehicles.

  • As  a “Rule of Thumb” for lights being inspected… If the light was installed by the manufacturer, it passes.

.0533 Lights

(1) Headlights shall not be approved if:

(a) There are not at least two headlamps (or four on dual headlamp systems) on all self-propelled vehicles except that motorcycles and motor driven cycles need only one.

.0533 Lights

(1)(continued):

(b) The lens produces other than white or yellow light.

  • Xenon lights installed by the manufacturer and Xenon light replacement kits are allowed.

.0533 Lights

(1)(continued):

(c) Any lens is cracked, broken, discolored, missing, or rotated away from the proper position, or any reflector is not clean and bright.

  • The reflector mentioned is the reflectant material inside of the headlight assembly.

.0533 Lights

(1)(continued):

(d) The high beam/low beam switch does not operate properly or the high beam indicator light does not burn on vehicles manufactured after January 1, 1956.

.0533 Lights

(1)(continued):

(e) Lights can be moved easily by hand, due to broken fender or loose support, or if a good ground is not made by the mounting.

.0533 Lights

(1)(continued):

(f) Foreign materials (such as shields, half of lens painted, brush guards, etc.) are placed on the headlamp lens that interferes with the light beam of lamp.

.0533 Lights

(1)(continued):

(g) Lights are improperly aimed using an approved light-testing device.

.0533 Lights

(1)(continued):

(h) Lights project a dazzling or glaring light when on low beam.

  •  Dazzling or glaring is defined as rising above the horizontal plane of the vehicle (higher than 42”,75’ahead of the vehicle).

.0533 Lights

(1)(continued):

(i) Tolerance allowed for headlight aiming:

(1) Mechanical aimers and wall charts is four (4) inches up, down, left or  right.

(2) On board aiming devices is .8 degrees up, down, left or right.

(3) Optical or computerized aiming devices are either “go” or “no go”, “pass” or “fail”.

.0533 Lights

(2) Rear lights shall conform to the requirements of G.S. 20-129(d).  Taillights shall not be approved if:

(a) All original equipped rear lamps or the equivalent are not in working order.

.0533 Lights

(2)(continued):

(b) The lens is cracked, discolored, or of a color other than red.

  • The use of repair tape is not acceptable to pass the safety inspection.

.0533 Lights

(2)(continued):

(c) They do not operate properly or project white light.

  •  Altaza (“fisheye” or “Euro”) lights are acceptable as long as a colored lens is in front of the bulb.

.0533 Lights

(2)(continued):

(d) They are not securely mounted.

  •  No magnetic or “temporary” mounting is acceptable.

 .0533 Lights

(2)(continued):

(e) The lens is clear and the bulb is colored.

 (f) The lens is covered, smoke tinted, or there is lettering or logos placed on the lens.

.0533 Lights

(3) Stoplights shall conform to the requirements of G.S. 20-129(g).  Stoplights shall not be approved if:

(a) The lens is cracked, discolored or of a color other than red or amber.

.0533 Lights

(3)(continued):

(b) They do not come on when pressure is applied to the footbrake.

  •  Proper procedure to check stoplight operation:

            a) Use a pedal lock rod; or

            b) Use an approved mirror or reflecting windows of  bay doors; or

    c) Have someone else depress the brake pedal while you look at  the bulbs.

.0533 Lights

(3)(continued):

(c) They are not securely mounted so as to project light to the rear.

[Includes the third brake light if the vehicle is so equipped.]

  • Pick Up trucks with camper shells are not required to install an auxiliary stoplight on the back of the camper shell.

.0533 Lights

  • A majority of the LED area must be operating on vehicles equipped with spoilers or “fins” using the LED as the 3rd brake light.

.0533 Lights

(4) Vehicles shall have the lights as required by G.S. 20-129 (d).  License plate light must be white in color and illuminate the tag to be read within 50 feet.

.0533 Lights

(5) Parking lights shall conform to the requirements of G.S. 20-134.  A vehicle shall not be approved if parking lights are not working.  Parking lights on the front must be white or amber, on the rear red only.

  •  Vehicles used for letter and/or newspaper delivery shall be equipped and operated with flashing amber lights anytime the vehicle is being used for such deliveries.
  •  European vehicles may be equipped from the manufacturer with rear fog lights or “follow me home” lights.

.0533 Lights

(6) Back-Up Lights. Any motor vehicle may be equipped with not more than two back-up lamps either separately or in combination with other lamps, but any such back-up lamp shall not be lighted while the motor vehicle is in forward motion, nor shall the back-up light emit any color other than white.  A back-up lamp is not a mandatory requirement.

.0533 Lights

  • Back-Up lamps that illuminate with the stoplights constitute a failure.
  • More than two back-up lamps installed by the manufacturer do not constitute a failure.

.0533 Lights

(7) Amber warning lights on wreckers must be visible from all directions from 500 feet.

[Do not disapprove any light if there is condensation on the lens.  Disapprove if there is standing water inside the lens.]

Reflectors are not required equipment on passenger vehicles.

.0534 Horn

G.S. 20-125 states:

Every motor vehicle when operated on a highway or public vehicular area shall be equipped with a horn in good working order capable of emitting sound audible under normal conditions from a distance of not less than 200 feet…

.0534 Horn

  • The horn shall not be approved if:

(a) It will not emit a sound audible for a distance of at least 200 feet, or it emits an unusually loud or harsh sound.  Original equipment in working order will meet these requirements.

.0534 Horn

(1)(continued):

(b) It has frayed, broken, or missing wiring; if wiring harnesses are broken or missing; if horn button is not mounted securely and in a position which is easily accessible to the driver; or if the horn is not securely mounted to the motor vehicle.

.0534 Horn

(1)(continued):

 (c) Operation of the horn interferes with the operation of any other mechanism.

  • Older Ford Products were manufactured with the horn incorporated with the windshield wipers.

(2) Vehicles equipped with sirens shall not be approved unless they are within the class listed in G. S. 20-125(b) as being authorized to carry a siren.

(3) Vehicles authorized to carry sirens: Law Enforcement and Fire/Rescue; volunteer chief and assistant chief on personal vehicles.

  • A front license tag and/or wallet card is required by volunteers who install sirens on their personal vehicles.

.0535 Steering Mechanism

G.S. 20-123.1 states:

The steering mechanism of every self-propelled motor vehicle operated on a highway or public vehicular area shall be maintained in good working order, sufficient to enable the operator to control the vehicle’s movements and to maneuver it safely.

.0535 Steering Mechanism

(1) The inspection mechanic must ALWAYS raise vehicle to get beneath vehicle to check the steering mechanism.

.0535 Steering Mechanism

(2) The steering mechanism shall not be approved if:

(a) With front wheels in straight ahead position there is more than 3 inches of free play in steering wheels up to 18 inches in diameter or more than 4 inches of free play in steering wheels over 18 inches in diameter.  If the vehicle is equipped with power steering, the engine must be operating.

.0535 Steering Mechanism

(2)(continued):

(b) Either front or rear springs are noticeably sagging, broken, cut, heated, removed or missing (or portions missing).

  • Vehicles with hydraulic suspension are subject to failure if springs are removed or manipulated.

.0535 Steering Mechanism

(2)(continued):

(c) The front wheels or front end assembly is bent or twisted or bolts, nuts or rivets are loose or missing.

  • To fail a vehicle for missing lug nuts or missing studs is the discretion of the inspection mechanic.

.0535 Steering Mechanism

(2)(continued):

(d) Power steering system shows visible leaks or the power steering belt is loose, worn or missing.

  • Rack-N-Pinion steering mechanisms with “morning sickness” fails ONLY if tightness or slippage occurs during the inspection.

.0535 Steering Mechanism

(2)(continued):

(e) Struts and shocks are part of the steering mechanism inspection.

  • Normal condensation does not constitute a failure, broken disconnected or collapsed constitutes a failure.

.0535 Steering Mechanism

(2)(continued):

(f) CV Joints make a popping or clicking noise when vehicle is driven into the inspection area.

  • A torn or leaking CV Boot does not constitute a failure.

.0536 Windshield Wiper

G.S. 20-127 states:

A vehicle that is operated on a highway or public vehicular area and has a windshield shall have a windshield wiper to clear rain or other substances from the windshield in front of the driver of the vehicle and the windshield wiper shall be in good working order.  If a vehicle has more than one windshield wiper to clear substances from the windshield, all windshield wipers shall be in good working order.

.0536 Windshield Wiper

  • Windshield wipers shall not be approved if:

(a) The vehicle is not equipped with a windshield wiper or wipers (both left and right), provided the vehicle has a windshield.

.0536 Windshield Wiper

(1)(continued):

(b) The wiper or wipers do not operate freely.

(c) The wiper controls are so constructed and located that the driver may operate them.

.0536 Windshield Wiper

(d) The wiper or wipers are not adequate to clean rain, snow and other matter from the windshield.

(e) Parts of the blades or arms are missing or show evidence of damage.

.0536 Windshield Wiper

(f) Windshields that are cracked and impedes wiper blade operation.

  •  Failure is equivalent as wipers.

[Wipers on rear windows are not part of the Safety Inspection.]

.0537 Direction Signals

G.S. 20-125.1 states:

Vehicles that are operated on a highway or public vehicular area must have a mechanical or electrical signal device by which the operator of another vehicle can see his intention to turn the vehicle.

.0537 Direction Signals

  • All vehicles except motorcycles beginning with the 1954 models must be equipped with turn signals.
  • Vehicles required to have signals shall be inspected a disapproved if:

.0537 Direction Signals

(2)(continued):

(a) Signals are not present and of a type approved by the Commissioner.  Original directional signals on vehicles manufactured after July 1, 1953, are considered to be of a type approved by the Commissioner.  Such signals shall be those which will allow the operator of the vehicle to clearly show another operator approaching from a distance of 200 feet from front or rear his intention to turn the vehicle.

.0537 Direction Signals

(2)(continued):

(b) All lights do not operate properly, or if any lenses are broken, missing, or do not fit properly.

(c) Signal lens color is other than red or amber on the rear and other than white or amber on the front.

.0537 Direction Signals

(d) Lamps are not securely mounted or wiring and connections are not in good condition.

.0537 Direction Signals

(e) Signals are not visible from front or rear due to faulty or damaged mounting or due to manner in which they are mounted.

(f) Switch is not so located as to be convenient for the driver to operate and so that its operation does not interfere with operation of other mechanisms.

  • The indicators in the dashboard and the switch must operate without assistance.

[Minor cracks on lenses shall not lead to disapproval unless water is likely to enter lens and lead to bulb failure.]

.0538 Tires

G.S. 20-122.1 states:

Tires fail safety inspection if there are:

  • Cuts that expose the cords;
  • Cracks that expose the cords;
  • Worn areas that expose the cords;
  • Tire and/or tread separation, chunking (separation of tread from carcass);
  • Less than 2/32 inch at 2 or more locations and/or tread wear indicators in contact with the roadway at 2 or more locations…

.0538 Tires

  • Any vehicle shall be disapproved if:

            (a) Any tire has cuts or snags that expose the cords.

  • Nails in tires and dry rotting that constitute failure is to the discretion of the inspection mechanic.

.0538 Tires

(1)(continued):

(b) Any tire has a visible bump, bulge, or knot apparently related to tread or sidewall separation or partial failure of the tire structure including the bead area.

  • Minor cuts or snags that DO NOT expose the cords PASS.

.0538 Tires

(2) A tread depth gauge shall measure tire depth, which shall be of a type calibrated in thirty-seconds of an inch. Readings shall be taken in two adjacent tread grooves of the tire around the circumference of the tire.  Readings for a tire with a tread design that does not have two adjacent grooves near the center shall be taken at the center of the tire around the circumference of the tire.  Each tire must be completely lifted from the ground for an inspection to be performed.

.0539 Tire Definitions

  • As used in this and the preceding rule, these terms have the following meaning:

.0539 Tire Definitions

(a) Rim is a metal support for the tire or tire and tube.

.0539 Tire Definitions

(1)(continued):

(b) Bead is that part of the tire which is shaped to fit the rim.  The bead is made of high tensile steel wires wrapped and reinforced by plies.

.0539 Tire Definitions

(1)(continued):

(c) Sidewall is that portion of the tire between tread and bead. 

.0539 Tire Definitions

(1)(continued):

(d) Cord is made of textile, steel wire strands forming the plies or other structure of the tires.

(e) Ply is layers of rubber coated parallel cords forming the tire body.

(f) Rib is the tread section running circumferentially around the tire.

.0539 Tire Definitions

(g) Groove is the space between the two ribs.

A tire shall not be approved if there is less than 2/32 inch of tread at 2 or more locations around the circumference of the tire in 2 adjacent major tread grooves or if the tread wear indicators are in contact with the roadway at 2 or more locations around the circumference of the tire in 2 adjacent major tread grooves.

.0540 Mirrors

G.S. 20-126 (a) states:

Inside rearview mirrors are required on all motor vehicles operated on a public vehicle area or highway, UNLESS the vehicle is so constructed or loaded as to make such mirror ineffective, therefore, an approved type (outside rearview) of mirror must be used.

.0540 Mirrors

(1) Mirrors shall not be approved if:

(a) Loosely mounted,

 (b) Forward vision of the device (vehicle) is obstructed by the mirror assembly,

 (c) They do not provide a clear view of the highway to the rear,

 (d) Cracked, broken, have sharp edges or can not be cleaned such that vision is not obscured,

.0540 Mirrors

(1)(continued):

 (e) They are very difficult to adjust or they will not maintain a set adjustment.

 (f) Bus, truck or truck-tractor with a GVWR of 10,001 pounds or more is not equipped with a rear view vision mirror on each side.

 (g) Vehicles that are 1966 or newer are not equipped with an outside rear view mirror on the driver’s side.

.0540 Mirrors

(1)(continued):

 (h) All vehicles must have a driver’s side outside rearview mirror and an inside (center) rearview mirror, with the exception of a pick up truck.  A pick up truck must have both the driver’s side and passenger’s side outside rearview mirror or the driver’s side outside rearview mirror and the inside (center) rearview mirror.

  •  The passenger’s outside rearview mirror is not required equipment on passenger vehicles.

.0541 Exhaust Emission Controls

1)  An exhaust emission shall not be approved if the vehicle is a 1968 year model or newer and any of the visible emission control devices placed thereon by the manufacturer are missing, disconnected, made inoperative or have been altered without approval of the Department of Environmental, Health and Natural Resources.

  • This is true for ALL INSPECTIONS on 1968 and newer vehicles.

.0541 Exhaust Emission Controls

(2) If the unleaded gas restrictor on a vehicle manufactured after 1967 has been altered or removed, a new or reconditioned catalytic converter and unleaded gas restructure must replaced before the vehicle passes inspection.

  • When an unleaded fuel restrictor is tampered with, it is alleged that leaded fuel has be used.  Once leaded fuel is burned through the engine and exhausted the lead particles destroy the catalyst components of the catalytic converter.

.0541 Exhaust Emission Controls

(3) An exhaust system shall not be approved if:

(a) The vehicle has no muffler.

(b) The muffler, exhaust or tail pipes have leaking joints.

(c) The exhaust or tailpipes have holes, leaking seems or leaking patches on muffler.

(d) The tailpipe end is pinched.

(e) The exhaust system is equipped with muffler cut-out or muffler by-pass.

(f) Any part of the system passes through the passenger compartment.

  • Older VW Beetles had a gas operated heater and the exhaust came through the passenger compartment at the rear seat.

.0541 Exhaust Emission Controls

[Many mufflers are manufactured with a seep hole.  The presence of this hole does not constitute failure.]

  •  Regardless the size of the leak it is a failure.

 .0542 Emission Control Devices

  • The purpose of the emission control system is just that; it controls the emissions and exhaust from a vehicle.  The idea is to turn the toxic gases emitted from a vehicle into harmless gases that will not ruin the environment.

.0542 Emission Control Devices

A civil penalty shall be assessed against individuals who instruct or allow a person to remove, disconnect, tamper with, or render inoperable any emission control device equipped by the manufacturer of any motor vehicle as described in G.S. 20-183.3.

(1) These devices include: 

.0542 Emission Control Devices

(1)(continued):

(a) Catalytic Converter,

  • A new exhaust system installed without a catalytic converter fails for a “tampered” converter.
  • Not all 1968 & newer vehicles will have a Catalytic Converter.

.0542 Emission Control Devices

(1)(continued):

(b) Unleaded Gas Restrictor,

  • The reduced opening in side the fuel filler neck.
  • Lexus’, Hondas, Saabs, Toyotas and High Line Asian Vehicles no longer install a unleaded fuel restrictor.

.0542 Emission Control Devices

(1)(continued):

(c) Air pump system,

  • There are 2 types of Air Pump Systems;

–The pump type is either electrical or belt driven.  A missing air or smog pump belt is a failure of the Air Pump System.

–P.A.I.R does not require a pump and uses the normal pulsing from the exhaust valves opening and closing.

.0542 Emission Control Devices

(d) EGR (Exhaust Gas Recirculation) Valve,

  • EGR Valves are either vacuum operated or, electrically operated.

 .0542 Emission Control Devices

(e) PCV (Positive Crankcase Ventilation) Valve,

  • Not all 1968 and newer vehicles will have a PCV Valve.
  • A missing oil filler cap fails the PCV system.

.0542 Emission Control Devices

(f) Thermostatic Air Cleaner,

  • Verify that all vacuum hoses, the preheat tube, PCV System hoses are connected and that the lid is securely attached.
  • Only 2 things can be missing from the TAC; the snorkel hose and the air filter.

.0542 Emission Control Devices

(g) Evaporative Emission Systems,

  • The Evaporative Emission System consists of the charcoal canister, the purge system, the fuel tank and cap, vacuum lines and fuel return and supply lines.
  • Disconnected charcoal canister purge vacuum lines fail the Evaporative Emission System.

.0542 Emission Control Devices

(h) Oxygen Sensor,

  • Meters the amount of oxygen in the exhaust gases.
  • Most manufactures install more than one oxygen sensor; the inspection mechanic is required to visually inspect all that are included.

.0542 Emission Control Devices

  • 1968 to present model vehicles are required to have emission control devices as installed by the manufacturer to be present, connected and in a visually operative condition.
  • The Emission Control System Applications Manual, Mitchell on Demand and All Data are examples of sources to determine what the manufacturer installed on most vehicles.
  • 1996 & newer vehicles registered/based in an Emissions County receives an OBD Inspection.
  • 1995 & older (25 years) registered/based in 1 of the 9 initial Emissions Counties receives an Exhaust Emissions (tailpipe) Inspection.

Inspection Procedure for Motorcycles

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(1)  Motorcycle brakes shall fail inspection if:

(a) When applying brakes to the moving vehicle, there is insufficient force to stop the vehicle.

(b) Brakes are worn in such an manner that there is an uneven braking force.

(c) There is an audible or visual indication that the brake lining is worn to the extent it is no longer serviceable.

(d) There is less than one-third reserve in either footbrake or handbrake total possible travel when the brake are fully applied.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(1)(continued):

(e) Reservoirs of braking cylinders are not full. [Within manufacturers specifications.]

(f) There is a visible leakage of fluid from any brake line or brake component.

(g) Handbrake cables are frayed, broken, or frozen or linkage is defective.

(h)Motorcycles are required to be equipped with one brake.  (Hand or foot brake).

  • That is 1 front or rear brake operated by hand or foot.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

  • A removed front brake set (1 of 2), usually for racing does not constitute a failure since motorcycles are required to have only 1 front or rear brake operated by hand or foot.
  • The Inspection Mechanic is also required to remove the master cylinder cap to verify brake fluid levels, be careful removing the cap because the screws have a tendency to strip or round out.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(2) Motorcycle headlamps shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) Headlamp(s) does not operate properly.

(b) There is more than two headlamps connected on a single switch.

(c) Headlamp is cracked or has holes which allow entry of water.

(d) There is standing water in the headlamp.

(e) Headlamp is out of proper aim.

(f) Motorcycles must have a minimum of one, and a maximum of 2 headlamps.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

  • Harleys, Hondas and some Kawasakis have what appears to be 3 headlamps.  The 2 outer lamps are not headlamps they are driving lamps and do not constitute a failure.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(3) Motorcycle rear lamps shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) They do not operate.

(b) Light is a color other than red.

(c) Light is cracked, discolored or broken and allows entry of water.

(d) There is standing water in the lens.

(e) Lamp is not securely mounted.

(f) Wiring is broken or frayed.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

  • The use of rear light integrators is allowed (signal on while brake is applied-one side flashes)
  • Imported Yamahas may be equipped with clear lenses and colored bulbs, as a “Rule of Thumb” if the light was installed by the manufacturer it is allowed to pass.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(4) A motorcycle stop lamp shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) Lamp does not operate when brakes are applied.

(b) Light is a color other than red or amber.

(c) Light is cracked, discolored or broken and allows entry of water.

(d) There is standing water in the lens.

(e) Lamp is not securely mounted.

(f) Wiring is broken or frayed.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(5) A motorcycle license plate light shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) Light does not operate.

(b) Light does not illuminate the license plate.

(c) Light is a color other than white.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(6) A motorcycle horn shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) The horn does not operate.

(b) The sound emitted is not audible at 200 feet.

(c) The horn is not securely mounted.

(d) The button is mounted so that it cannot be easily operated by the driver.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(7) Motorcycle tires shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) There is less than 2/32 inch of tread at two or more locations around the circumference of the tire in two adjacent major tread grooves, or if the tread wear indicators are in contact with the roadway at two or more locations around the circumference of the tire.

(b) Cords are exposed at any location on the tire.

(c) Sidewall is cut, bulging, damaged or is severely cracked due to dry rotting.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(8) Motorcycle rear view mirrors shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) The mirrors are missing, broken or cracked.

(b) The mirrors are not securely mounted.

(c) The mirrors will not hold a setting while the vehicle is in operation.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(9) A motorcycle exhaust shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) The motorcycle has no muffler.

(b) The muffler, exhaust, or tailpipe have holes, leaking joints, seams or patches.

(c) The tailpipe end is pinched.

(d) The exhaust system is equipped with a muffler cut-out or bypass.

(e) The muffler baffles have been removed or damaged to create a straight pipe.

.0544 Safety Inspection of Motorcycles

(10) A motorcycle steering mechanism shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) Front shocks are sagging or broken.

(b) Front end assembly is bent or there are damaged or twisted bolts.

(c) Front end nuts, or rivets are loose or missing.

Additional Lighting Required on Certain Vehicles

In addition to other equipment required by G.S. 20-129.1, the following vehicles shall be equipped as follows:

  • Trailers weighing more than 4,000 GVWR must be equipped with stoplights.

Additional Lighting Requirements

  • On every bus or truck, whatever its size, there shall be the following:

(a) On the rear, 2 reflectors, 1 at each side, and 1 stoplight.

  • On every bus or truck 80 inches or more in overall width, in addition to the requirements in paragraph  (1):

(a) On the front, 2 clearance lamps, 1 at each side.

(b) On the rear, 2 clearance lamps, 1 at each side.

(c) On each side, 2 side marker lamps, 1 at or near the front, and 1 at or near the rear.

(d) On each side, 2 reflectors, 1 at or near the front and 1 at or near the rear.

Additional Lighting Requirements

(3) On every truck tractor:

(a) On the front, 2 clearance lamps, 1 at each side.

(b) On the rear, 1 stoplight.

(4) On every trailer or semi-trailer having a gross weight in excess of 4,000 pounds:

(a) On the front, 2 clearance lamps, 1 at each side.

(b) On each side, 2 marker lamps, 1 at or near the front and 1 at or near the rear.

(c) On each side, 2 reflectors, 1 at or near the front and 1 at or near the rear.

(d) On the rear, 2 clearance lamps, 1 at each side also; 2 reflectors, 1 at each side, and 1 stoplight.

Additional Lighting Requirements

(5) One every pole trailer in excess of 4,000 pounds gross weight:

(a) On each side, 1 side marker lamp and 1 clearance lamp which may be in combination, to show to the front, side and rear.

(b) On the rear of the pole trailer or load, 2 reflectors, 1 at each side.

(6) On every trailer, semi-trailer or pole trailer weighing 4,000 pounds gross or less:

(a) On the rear, 2 reflectors, 1 on each side.  If any trailer or semi-trailer is so loaded or is of such dimensions as to obscure the stoplight on the towing vehicle, then such trailer shall also be equipped with 1 stoplight.

Additional Lighting Requirements

(b) Front clearance lamps and those marker lamps and reflectors mounted on the front or on the side near the front of a vehicle shall display or reflect an amber color.

(c) Rear clearance lamps and those marker lamps and reflectors mounted on the rear or on the sides near the rear of a vehicle shall display or reflect a red color.

(7) Brake lights (and/or brake reflectors) on the rear of a motor vehicle shall be red.  The light illuminating the license plate shall be white.  All other lights shall be white, amber, yellow, clear or red.

.0545 Investigations/Audits/Safety or Emissions Inspection Stations

  • Gas Audit Inspection.  Not Covered
  • OBD Scan Tool Inspection.  Not Covered

(These pertain to stations the perform emissions inspections only.)

  •  Safety Only Stations are Audited more than 1 time per year.

.0545 Investigations/Audits/Safety or Exhaust Emissions Inspection Stations

(3) Complaints To Be Investigated. All bona fide complaints received by the Commissioner about any inspection station shall be investigated for the purpose of determining whether there has been a violation of the inspection laws.

.0545 Investigations/Audits/Safety or Exhaust Emissions Inspection Stations

(4) Appropriate Action To Be Taken: When it appears from any investigation that the inspection law, has been violated by any inspection station or its agents or employees, or by a self-inspector, the Commissioner shall take the appropriate action which may include but is not limited to suspension or revocation of the station’s license and inspector certifications.  When any such license is suspended or revoked, the owner of the station shall return the license, all unused inspection stickers, required records and reports, forms and supplies on hand to the Commissioner.

.0545 Investigations/Audits/Safety or Exhaust Emissions Inspection Stations

(5) Report of Undercover Investigation.  Periodic checks shall be made by undercover officers of the Division of Motor Vehicles routinely and upon receipt of complaints to determine compliance with inspection laws.  If violations are detected, administrative action shall be taken by the Division of Motor Vehicles against the licensed station and the inspection mechanic.

.0545 Investigations/Audits/Safety or Exhaust Emissions Inspection Stations

(6) Revocation, Suspension or Denial: A person or station whose license is suspended or revoked, who is assessed a civil penalty, or receives a warning letter may obtain an administrative review of the action by the Commissioner by filing with the Division a written request for a hearing before the Commissioner.  A request for a hearing must be filed within ten (10) days after the person receives the written notice of the action for which a hearing is requested.  If the action involves an emission station the Commissioner must hold a hearing within three (3) days of receiving the request.  If the hearing is not related to an emission violation the Commissioner must hold a hearing within ninety (90) days after the request.

.0545 Investigations/Audits/Safety or Exhaust Emissions Inspection Stations

(7) When an authorized agent of the Division of Motor Vehicles, Enforcement Section, detects a violation, he shall serve the ENF 356 within five (5) working days after the completion of the investigation that resulted in the discovery of the violation.

Windshield Replacement

.0546 License To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

A windshield replacement facility must fill out an application to replace stickers through DMV.

.0547 Denial/Suspension or Revocation of Registered Windshield Replacement Business

(1) : A windshield replacement facility will not be approved unless/if:

(a) Permanent  established place of business accessible to the Division of Motor Vehicles for audit of record,

(b) In the business of replacing windshields,

(c) Not currently under suspension or revocation as either a safety equipment or a safety equipment emission station.

.0547 Denial/Suspension or Revocation of Registered Windshield Replacement Business

(2) A windshield replacement facility must comply with the North Carolina General Statutes or these Rules governing the issuing of replacement inspection stickers and the required reporting procedure.

(3) Upon suspension or revocation of a registration, such business shall surrender all unused inspection stickers to the Division of Motor Vehicles.

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

  • The business may include a charge to its customers for a replaced windshield sticker of the actual amount paid to the Local Tag Agency for such sticker.

 .0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(2) Inspection Stickers.

 (a) Acquisition:

 (i) Inspection stickers are purchased at the Local Tag Agency.  Inspection stickers are purchased in units of 50.

(ii) Inspection stickers are purchased by authorized persons who have been approved and entered into the DMV database.  Upon approval of person(s) it takes a minimum of twenty-four (24) hours to update the database.  An authorization form will be furnished by the DMV Inspector.

(iii) All business authorized to replace windshield inspection stickers shall keep a supply of inspection stickers on hand at all times.

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(b) Application of Sticker: The same month and year as what was on the sticker attached to the broken windshield is required.  The person placing this sticker on the new windshield shall enter on the sticker in the appropriate spaces the same date of the inspection, odometer mileage and inspection station’s license number as that shown on the sticker attached to the windshield removed. At the space marked “Inspected By” the registration  number assigned to the business replacing the windshield and the initials of the person affixing the sticker shall be entered.

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(b)(continued):

This information shall be entered on the sticker with a ball point pen or a laundry marking pen. Glass/plastic windshields require a platform to prevent damage to the windshield.  When the sticker is removed it shall be self-voiding.

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(c) Control:

(i) All windshield replacement facilities are accountable for inspection stickers in their possession.  Any such business losing or not accounting for any inspection stickers shall be subject to revocation or suspension of their registration.  Stickers shall be locked in a safe place to guard against loss or theft.

(ii) Upon discovery of loss or theft of any inspection stickers the person registered must as soon as practicable report the loss or theft to their Local Law Enforcement Agency and their DMV Enforcement Inspector.

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(iii) Businesses registered to replace windshield inspection stickers shall not furnish, give, loan or sell inspection stickers to any other registered business, inspection station, self-inspector or any other person.

(iv) Inspection stickers shall not be transferred or reissued.  They may only be affixed to the vehicle as designated on the inspection report sheet and only when the windshield has been replaced by the person registered.

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(v) Each registered business shall protect from larceny or damage and no refund shall be allowed for stolen, soiled, lost or torn stickers and the count of the Division for returned stickers shall be accepted as final.  An account must be made for all unused stickers.  Refunds shall be made for unused stickers upon termination of license of such place of business.

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(vi) All inspection supplies, unused stickers, copies of receipts and statements pertaining to the issuance of stickers, all bulletins and all forms issued by the Division of Motor Vehicles pursuant to the carrying out of this program are the property of the Division of Motor Vehicles and must be treated as such by the person registered. 

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

Upon suspension or revocation of any registration issued to a business to replace windshield inspection stickers or whenever any person registered voluntarily surrenders such registration or ceases to do business, all items held by such person registered in carrying out this program shall be surrendered to the Division of Motor Vehicles.  Such items shall be inventoried by the designated agent of the Division of Motor Vehicles and shall be receipted upon surrender.

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(d) Requirements and Records.

(i) Monthly Report Forms.  Each registered windshield replacement stations shall maintain at the station a monthly report sheet listing the beginning and ending numbers for each series of stickers placed on windshields upon forms furnished by the Division.  This report shall be completed in duplicated and the original forwarded to the Enforcement Section, NCDMV, every four months on or before the 10th of the month following the month for which it was completed.  The station shall retain the second copy for a period of at least 18 months.  Reports are due January, May, and September. 

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(ii) Registered businesses that replaces windshield inspection stickers shall furnish the operator of each vehicle in which they have replaced the windshield and affixed an inspection sticker an authorized “Receipt and Statement”.  This form shall be made in duplicate, upon forms furnished by the Division of Motor Vehicles and a copy shall be retained by the person registered for a period of at least 18 months following the date the sticker is placed on the windshield.

.0548 Operation To Replace Windshield Inspection Stickers

(d)(continued):

(iii) Records Available.  Each windshield replacements station shall maintain records required and such records shall be made available for inspection by any law enforcement officer, upon demand, during normal business hours.

.0549 Approval and Disapproval of Vehicles

Vehicles shall not be disapproved for any reason other than those specified in G.S. 20-183.5.

  • Windshield replacement stations do not perform inspections, they a only replacing the inspection sticker that was on the broken windshield they removed.

Waivers

Waivers From Safety Test Requirements

A waiver may be obtained when a vehicle fails a safety inspection because of missing emission control devices by contacting a local DMV Enforcement Officer of the Division.

  • The consumer will have to show proof that the part needed to pass inspection is no longer manufactured.

Window Tinting

.0551 Window Tinting

  • All stations performing window tinting inspections shall have a photometer which has been properly tested and approved by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles.  Stations which do not have an approved meter shall not inspect vehicles with applications of after-factory window tinting.  Stations are not required to purchase a photometer in order to perform safety inspections on vehicles without after-factory window tinting. 
  • Window tint must be tested EVERY YEAR.

.0551 Window Tinting

 (a) The mechanic shall determine if the vehicle has after-factory window tinting prior to beginning the inspection.  The mechanic may use an automotive film check card or knowledge of window tinting techniques to determine if a vehicle has after-factory tint applied to any window of the vehicle.

.0551 Window Tinting

(1)(continued):

(b) If the station determines a vehicle has after-factory window tinting, but does not have an approved light meter, the mechanic must inform the customer he in unable to perform the inspection.  The station may not charge for any portion of the inspection.

  • Vehicles that are moving into NC must comply with NC Tint Laws.

.0551 Window Tinting

(2) All windows with applications of after-factory window tinting shall be inspected with an approved photometer which is properly calibrated and functioning.

.0551 Window Tinting

(3) Prior to performing a test on a vehicle, the mechanic shall test the photometer for accuracy by checking the calibration against a reference sample of glass provided by the manufacturer.  If the photometer indicates the device exceeds the net light transmission by + or – three (3) percentage points, the unit shall be considered out of calibration and may not be used until properly calibrated.

.0551 Window Tinting

(a) The reference sample must be clean and free of dirt prior to performing the calibration check.

(b) If the reference sample has been broken or is missing, the test shall not be performed and the mechanic shall inform the customer he is unable to perform the inspection.

(c) The windows to be tested shall be clean and free of dirt or moisture.

.0551 Window Tinting

(4) The test shall be performed according to the photometer manufacturer’s recommendations.

.0551 Window Tinting

(5) Window tint shall fail safety inspection if:

(a) Any window on the vehicle with after-factory tint has a light transmission of less than thirty-two percent (32%)

  • 35% TINT IS THE LEGAL LIMIT (+/-3%=32%)

(b) The tint (tinted film or another material used to tint the window) on any window is red, yellow or amber.

.0551 Window Tinting

(5)(continued):   

(c) The tint on the windshield extends more than five (5) inches below the top of the windshield or is below the AS1 line of the windshield, which ever measurement is longer.

.0551 Window Tinting

(d) The light reflectance of a tinted window is not twenty percent (20%) or less.

  • NO REFLECTIVE TINT

.0551 Window Tinting

(6) Vehicles with after-factory window tint shall not be inspected if the vehicle is exempt from the window tinting restrictions under G.S. 20-127(c).

G.S. 20-127(c) Tinting Exceptions.  The window tinting restrictions in subsection (b) of this section (percentage, color and reflectant) apply without exception to the windshield of a vehicle.  The window tinting restrictions in subdivisions (b)(1) and (b)(2) of this section (percentage and color only) do not apply to any of the following vehicle windows:

.0551 Window Tinting

            (1) A window of an excursion passenger vehicle.  (Club Van)

            (2) A window of a for-hire passenger vehicle.

            (NO TAXIS)

            (3) A window of a common carrier of passengers.  (Buses)

            (4) A window of a motor home.

.0551 Window Tinting

            (5) A window of an ambulance.

            (6) The rear window of a property-hauling vehicle.  (Trucks/Trailers)

            (7) A window of a limousine.

            (8) A window of a law enforcement vehicle.

            (9) A window of multipurpose vehicle.

            (SUVs, Minivans, Pick Up Trucks)

.0551 Window Tinting

            (10) A window of a vehicle that is registered in another state and meets the requirements of the state in which it is registered.  (Rental Vehicle)

            (11) A window of a vehicle for which the Division has issued a medical waiver exception permit under subsection (f) of this section.   (A written form is required)

Window Tint Medical Exceptions

  • People who suffer from a medical condition that makes them sensitive to visible light are eligible
  • They must apply to the Drivers Medical Evaluation Program
  • Their doctor must complete the medical evaluation form
  • The permit is valid for 5 years unless directed otherwise by the Drivers Medical Evaluation Program
  • A renewal requires a medical recertification
  • They cannot have more than 2 permits at any one time
  • The permit must specify the vehicle to which the tint is applied, the windows to be tinted and the allowed levels of tinting
  • The written permit shall be carried in the vehicle at all times
  • A sticker shall be placed on the bottom left side of the rear window between the glass and the tint
  • The sticker is to notify prospective purchasers of the vehicle the tint is not legal without a permit
  • The Division has the right to adopt rules for the permits
  • Failure to display the sticker is subject to a $200.00 fine

.0551 Window Tinting

(7) The mechanic shall collect the fee as specified in G.S. 20-183.7(a) for performing the inspection.

  •  The $10.00 window tint fee charge DURING an inspection is regulated.
  • There is no regulation of charges outside of an Official Inspection.

Penalty Schedule for Licensed Safety/Emission and Safety/Emissions/OBD Inspection Stations G.S. 20-183.8

Violations are categorized into 3 types:

            Type I: Most Severe (Intentional Manipulation)

            Type II: Less Severe (Accident or Careless Mistake)

            Type III: Even Less Severe (Administrative/Clerical Mistakes)

Infractions and Criminal Offenses for Violations of Inspection Requirements

Infractions and Criminal Offenses for Violations of Inspection Requirements

(1) Infractions:  A person who does any of the following commits an infraction and, if found responsible, is liable for a penalty of up to $250.00:

  • Operates a motor vehicle that is subject to inspection under this part, on a highway or public vehicular area, in the State when the vehicle has not been inspected in accordance with this part, as evidence by the vehicles lack of current inspection sticker or otherwise.
  • Allows an inspection sticker to be put on a vehicle owned or operated by that person, knowing the vehicle was not inspected before the sticker was attached or was not inspected properly.

Infractions and Criminal Offenses for Violations of Inspection Requirements

(c) Puts an inspection sticker on a vehicle, knowing or having reasonable grounds to know an inspection of the vehicle was not performed or was performed improperly.  A person who is citied for a civil penalty under G.S. 20-183.8B for an emissions violation involving the inspection of a vehicle may not be charged with an infraction under this subdivision based on the same vehicle.

Infractions and Criminal Offenses for Violations of Inspection Requirements

(2) Defenses to Infractions:  Any of the following is a defense to a violation of subsection (a) of this section:

(a) The vehicle was continuously out of the State for at least the 30 days preceding the date the inspection sticker expired and a current inspection sticker was obtained within 10 days after the vehicle came back to the State.

(b) The vehicle displays a dealer license plate or transporter plate, the dealer repossessed the vehicle or otherwise acquired the vehicle within the last 10 days, and the vehicle is being driven from its place of acquisition to the dealers place of business or to an inspection station.

Infractions and Criminal Offenses for Violations of Inspection Requirements

(c) Repealed by Session Laws 1997-29, s.5.

(d) The charge infraction is described in subdivision (a)(1) of this section, the vehicle is subject to a safety only inspection, and the vehicle owner established in court that the vehicle was inspected after the citation was issued and within 30 days of the expiration date of the inspection sticker that was on the vehicle when the citation was issued.

Infractions and Criminal Offenses for Violations of Inspection Requirements

(3) Felony: A person who does any of the following commits a Class I Felony:

(a) Forges an inspection sticker.

(b) Buys, sells or possess a forged inspection sticker.

(c) Buys, sells or possess an inspection sticker other than as a result of either of the following:

(i) Having a license as an inspection station, self inspector, or an inspection mechanic and obtaining the inspection sticker from the Division in the course of business.

OBD Rollout Schedule

 

Prerequisites

  • None

Method of Instruction

Lecture, small group discussion, video use, overhead use, role-plays

Evaluation

Exam:  Yes, with a score of 80 or better

Demonstration of Skills:  Yes

Class Participation:  No