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Beginner’s Guide to Motor Vehicle Inspections

Motor vehicle inspections (MVIs) are mandatory for driver safety and legal compliance. In this beginner’s guide, we explain what’s involved in different types of MVIs, what you need, and how to find trusted local providers.

What’s Involved in A Motor Vehicle Inspection?

Motor vehicle inspections involve looking at different components to make sure they’re running correctly, and to determine when repairs or replacements are needed.

There are 3 basic types of vehicle inspections:

  • Courtesy Inspections—this quick visual inspection looks for obvious problems in common components, such as tires with low air, frayed wiper blades, corroded battery terminals, or dirty air filters.
  • Insurance Inspection—insurance inspections become mandatory when insurance companies receive requests for coverage relating to newly purchased vehicles, or whenever vehicles change carriers. They’re also required in most provinces when insuring any vehicle that is 10 years or older. The technician will check out your brakes, suspension, exhaust, and more.
  • 20-point Inspection—the 20-point motor vehicle inspection is the most thorough option available. We inspect your oil life, tire wear, wheel balance and alignment, belt/hose condition, fluid levels, shocks and struts, brakes, battery, timing belt, cabin filter, and more.

Are Motor Vehicle Inspections Needed For Emission Control Systems in 2020?

The answer depends on where you’re located, but most likely yes!

In Ontario, Drive Clean testing was first introduced by the Progressive Conservative government in 1999 as a means of targeting emissions related to smog and other environmental problems, but as of April 1, 2019, the Ministry of Transportation eliminated the annual emissions testing requirement for light passenger vehicle owners. This decision reduces the burden on residents and families who own vehicles—it’s estimated to save taxpayers over $40-million in unnecessary testing every year—while refocusing emission-control efforts on heavy-duty vehicles, such as heavy diesel commercial vehicles and older vehicles.

However, emission control systems are still required to be present and operating in light passenger vehicles. For instance, in Ontario, all light passenger vehicles must meet the standards laid out in the Environmental Protection Act and Ontario Regulation 457/19 (Vehicle Emissions). If your vehicle isn’t up to these standards, any provincial officer can stop and inspect your vehicle at any given time. And if your vehicle is emitting excessive exhaust or any emission control equipment has been tampered with or removed, you could be subject to enforcement action, including orders and/or fines.

Any vehicle that is at least seven model years old must have the emissions control system tested upon renewing your registration.

Not sure about the state of your emission control system? We can help. Along with standard MVI’s, provincial or insurance inspections, and safety checks, your local TIRECRAFT experts offer full emissions tests.

How Do I Find Quality Motor Vehicle Inspections Near Me?

TIRECRAFT offers multiple MVI services for almost all vehicle types, including:

  • Courtesy inspections with most tire and auto repair service
  • Insurance inspections
  • 20-point inspections
  • Provincial regulated car inspections
  • MVIs to meet specific provincial regulations
  • Safety checks
  • Emission control system inspections, and more

Visit our website and use the Find a TIRECRAFT tool to locate one of our 220+ locations across the country.

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