SEMA eNews Vol. 14, No. 38, September 22, 2011

California Governor Vetoes Bill to Clarify Tire Pressure Checks When Servicing Cars

All California automobile service providers are required to check tire pressures for every vehicle maintained or repaired at their facility as of September 2010. The law applies to auto maintenance/repair providers but not to auto-parts distributers/retailers, auto body/paint facilities, auto glass installers or wreckers/dismantlers. California Governor Jerry Brown vetoed a bill to clarify the law. The bill would have required tire pressure gauges to be accurate within 2 psi and would have allowed the service provider to refuse to check the pressure if the tire is “unsafe” (for example, excessive tread wear) or damaged (for example, crack, bulge or ply separation).  

The Governor wanted regulators to have more flexibility in interpreting the law, such as potentially considering tire age as a safety issue. Under the existing law, service providers are required to inflate the tires to the recommended tire pressure rating. The provider must note on the invoice that the tire inflation service was completed and then keep a copy of the service invoice for at least three years. The customer may decline the check if the customer affirms that a check had already been done within the last 30 days, or they will have it checked within the next seven days. The rule applies to all vehicles weighing less than 10,000 lbs.

For more information, contact Steve McDonald at stevem@sema.org.