If you've been unfortunate enough to sustain accident damage to your car and have a mandatory inspection coming up in the foreseeable future, you need to consider your options. Did you know that any vehicle repairs will have to comply with stringent federal design laws before you'll be able to pass the inspection? What are the major requirements you need to consider before deciding whether to proceed?
What Are the Rules
Whenever a vehicle is repaired after a significant crash, it's important not to contravene one of the dozens of design rules put in place by the government. In particular, the processes and materials used in the repair are heavily regulated, as it is deemed that poor techniques or inadequate materials may render the vehicle unsafe.
What Is Permitted
Principally, you're not allowed to carry out significant repairs yourself unless you are a qualified trade person. When replacing a section of the vehicle, the piece that is renewed must be either brand-new and sourced from the vehicle manufacturer or may come from an undamaged host vehicle of the same type and model. This section must be no older than your vehicle and have had no previous structural repairs. This means that you cannot use donor parts from a vehicle that may have been written off due to flooding, for example.
It's not permissible to use a different type of fabrication technique compared to that used when the vehicle was originally constructed. The engineer must keep a repair diary with photographs to give evidence that the work was carried out in accordance with the regulations.
There are also stringent requirements when it comes to how individual pieces can be cut and joined together and the specific type of welding process allowable. Before the job is finally completed any sections that have been subject to significant repair like this have to be left unfinished until the work can be inspected by a territory or state inspector or designate first.
What to Do Next
As regulations may vary to a degree from one location to another it's always best to contact a qualified vehicle repair shop. You will be able to determine the extent of the damage and what needs to be done in order to conform with these requirements. It may not be possible to resurrect the vehicle depending on the extent of the damages, and no attempt should be made to conduct DIY repairs. This may render the vehicle unsafe and may cause it to fail inspection at the next test anyway.