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A 58-Point Checklist: Comprehensive Vehicle Inspections

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A 58-Point Checklist: Comprehensive Vehicle Inspections

Maryland’s 58-point vehicle inspection procedure is one of the most thorough in the country, according to Tim Nester, manager of the Bay Area Tire & Service Center in Severna Park, Md.

Used light vehicles from the 1977 model year on are required by Maryland law to undergo a safety inspection prior to their sale or transfer.

The Maryland State Police department has licensed approximately 1,600 facilities to perform vehicle inspections. That includes five Bay Area Tire stores in Maryland.

Here is the Maryland checklist. With spring just around the corner, it can be used as a benchmark for your own inspections, whether mandated or not.

Vehicle Inspection Procedure: Obtain vehicle identification number and odometer reading.

Inspect Steering for:

(a) Steering wheel condition

(b) Steering column condition

(c) Lash

(d) Travel for jamming or binding

(e) Linkage for excessive free play

(f) Power steering condition

(g) Vehicle must be road tested

Inspect Wheel Alignment for:

(a) Toe reading

(b) Caster and camber only if road test indicates

(c) Rear wheel alignment & axle

Inspect Suspension for:

(a) Ball joint wear

(b) King pin or spindle bolt condition

(c) Wheel bearing condition

(d) Springs and torsion bar condition

(e) Shock absorber or strut condition

Inspect Fuel System for:

(a) Fuel tank condition and system leaks

(b) Choke, hand throttle and accelerator operation

Inspect Brake Systems for:

(a) Stopping distance, either road test or decelerometer

(b) Hydraulic system condition

(c) Drum and disc condition

(d) Lining and pad condition 2/32 general minimum

(e) Condition of mechanical linkage

(f) Vacuum or hydraulic booster system condition

(g) Parking brake function

Inspect Tires & Wheels for:

(a) Condition of tires, size, type and tread depth

(b) Condition of wheels, nuts, studs, or lugs

Inspect Fuel System for:

(a) Fuel tank condition and system leaks

(b) Choke, hand throttle and accelerator operation

Inspect Exhaust System for:

(a) Condition of manifold, all piping, muffler, resonator and the tall piping. To include leaks and proper mounting

Inspect Bumpers for:

(a) Condition of bumpers including height and proper mounting

Inspect Fenders for:

(a) Condition of fenders to include mounting and coverage of wheels and tires

Inspect Lighting for:

(a) Condition and function of all original equipment lighting and whatever added lights are authorized

(b) Inspect head lights for condition, candle power output and aim

(c) Inspect auxiliary or fog lamps for aim and proper mounting

Inspect Mirrors for:

(a) Condition of mirrors to include unobstructed view of both inside and outside mirrors when required

Inspect Vehicle Glazing for:

(a) Proper materials used for specific locations

(b) Operation of driver window

(c) Damage that exceeds allowable limits

(d) Tinting not incorporated into the glazing except as noted in the procedures

Inspect Windshield Wipers for:

(a) Satisfactory operation and condition of arms and blades

Inspect Doors, Handles and Latches for:

(a) Condition and proper function of all doors, latches, hinges and handles

Inspect Floor and Trunk for:

(a) Holes or rusted out and weakened conditions in floor or trunk pans

Inspect Hood/Catches for:

(a) Condition and proper operation of hood for full closure

Inspect Speedometer and Odometer for:

(a) Operation and legibility

(b) Register in MPH or kilometers

Inspect Electrical System for:

(a) Proper condition and function of horn

(b) Condition of wiring and switches

(c) Neutral safety switch in automatic transmissions only

(d) Condition of battery cables and hold-down

Inspect Drivers Seat for:

(a) Presence, condition, and mounting

Inspect Safety Belts for:

(a) Presence, condition and operation and mounting

Inspect Motor Mounts:

(a) If originally manufactured with: Check presence and condition

Inspect Gear Selection Indicator for:

(a) Proper indication of correct position

Inspect Universal Joints/Constant Velocity Joints for:

(a) Attachment and worn, damaged, or loose joints

(b) Torn or damaged CV joint boots

Inspect Emissions Equipment for Presence and Proper Connection:

(a) Catalytic Converter

(b) Positive Crankcase ventilation

(c) Air Injection System

(d) Exhaust Gas Recirculation System,

(e) Evaporative Emissions System

Bay Area Tire charges $74.95 for the inspection. The fee is higher for vehicles “that are either 4-wheel drive, full floating axles, over 10,000 GVWR with front and rear brakes, or have more than two axles.”   ■

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