While not every state requires a vehicle safety inspection annually, it’s important that you maintain the safety of your transportation. Vehicle safety inspections are vital to ensuring your vehicle is safe to operate and it’s particularly important that you have one carried out at least once a year. If you haven’t and you plan to go on a road trip, now would be the right time to have your vehicle looked at. What does a vehicle safety inspection involve, though?
What A Vehicle Safety Inspection Looks Like
- The Lights – all of your lights will be checked, visibility is important for you and other drivers on the road with you.
- The Brakes – the pads, the drums, the brake pedal. All of this will be checked. The drums are prone to wear and tear, as well as cracking. The pads, too, can wear away after time. The pedal shouldn’t feel hard, but it should be firm. The master cylinder will be checked for leaks as well, as will the parking brake.
- The Steering – the power steering system will be checked for leaks, as well as the belt, and alignment.
- The Suspension – suspension bushing and ball joints can cause a real problem to the stability and handling of your vehicle so, there are a number of tests to check this.
- The Fuel System – hoses can crack and cause leaks, and leaks can change your commute from a time of meditation to a real problem.
- Wheels & Tires – it’s important to check the tire tread, as well as to look for cracks or dry rot. The wheels need to be looked over for corrosion.
- The Horn – you might never use it, but it’s important that it works so that when you do need it, it’s there.
- Windows, Windshield, &Doors – all of your windows should be in working order, your windshield should be chip and crack-free, and your doors should also open from both the outside and the inside.
- Wipers & Defroster – it shouldn’t need to be explained how important your defroster and windshield wipers are – it’s all about visibility.
The Larger Components
- The Exhaust – leaks are common, and it’s particularly important that any holes near the manifold are found immediately as carbon monoxide will leak into the cab otherwise.
- Airbags, Seats, & Seat-belts – all seats should be anchored to the floor solidly and intact. Likewise, there should be no fraying or damage to seat-belts. The airbag should be checked for damage.
- The Body & Floor-pan – it’s important to check for holes in the floor-pan, as this can allow exhaust to enter the cab. The body will be checked over for any safety issues.
- The Emissions System – is everything in place and functioning?
- Engine Compartment & Under-car – are there leaks coming from the transmission or oil leaks? When leaks hit the exhaust system components, it’s possible to cause fires.
Why You Need A Vehicle Safety Inspection
It’s simple, it’s to keep you (and your passengers) safe as you travel on the road. It also protects other drivers on the road.