Archive for the ‘tyres’ Category

Dangerous tyres once again.

I’m often amazed at the lack of awareness of some drivers.  A Peugeot 307  brought in for mot had an obviously noisy exhaust blow,  the vehicle presenter was surprised when the boss said it was unlikely to pass the test with it blowing as it was.  However we  proceeded to carry out the Mot, before it had even been logged onto the system it was obviously going to be one of those vehicles, just a quick glance before getting into the drivers seat and it was labelled as dangerous to drive.
delaminated-tyre It started poorly and then went from bad to worse, as a glance at the 2 page vt30 shows

The front suspension arm bushes very badly worn and knocking, a rear brake binding, front brakes pulling severely to the right (into the path of oncoming traffic). Never before have I had to issue a VT30 with more than a couple of “dangerous to drive”   items.  Just manoeuvring the vehicle on our forecourt was enough to frighten me, clunking from the suspension, dragging from a rear wheel and then seeing the presence of a child seat in the car was a little worrying too.


Suspension Components

A number of suspension component failures have cropped up recently, beginning with a Nissan Micra 09 reg rear shock absorber, the wording of the Rfr is “serious fluid leak”. As can be seen in the image the dirt and dust on the whole shock absorber body and lower bush area has a damp wet look whilst the other components in the vicinity have a uniform dry dusty look to them, a sure sign the fluid is coming from the shock.

Surprisingly Nissan claim that this is fair wear and tear, so their 3 yr warranty doesn’t apply to this item. On an under 3yrs and under 24,000 ml vehicle ??

We also had a VW  Passat with a split cv boot for repair, the owner of the vehicle had looked under the vehicle and hadn’t been able to see the split, I took this image during the repair, because on these vehicles it is difficult to see the split in situ.

A customer brought in a 02 Renault Laguna complaining of a rubbing sound and smell of burning rubber, we put the vehicle on the ramp, and a quick look revealed the source of the noise and smell. The darker black ring is caused by the spring rubbing on the tyre.

A broken coil spring rubbing on the inside sidewall of the tyre and also touching the wheel rim.

The polished area of the spring is where it was rubbing on the tyre,

As a matter of course we also checked on the other side of the same axle and this revealed a crack in the base of the other coil spring, not easily seen, as the lower end of the spring is encased in a rubber sleeve, however the broken section moved easily when wiggled by hand and is slightly out of position.

A final coil spring on the rear of a Peugeot 207, 07 reg, the rubber spring seat out of position a sure sign that the lower section of coil is missing.

Illegal tyres and penalties

This week we had a vehicle in with the tyre below fitted, before commencng the test it was noticed that the tyre was underinflated and had a split in it.

A view of the tread pattern shows severe wear at both edges of the tyre usually a sign that the tyre is being run underinflated

Normally the tread covers the whole tyre width as the image below shows along with the position of wear indicator bars

Also on the vehicle was a bald rear tyre.

We’d previously had the vehicle in 3 months ago for other work and had advised the owner about the 2 tyres and that he needed to rectify the problem before they got worse.

Had he been stopped by the police for a routine check he could have been facing a fine up to £2500 and 3 points on his licence for each tyre, quite apart from the risk with his and other peoples lives he was running.
For tyre advice a number of links are below

steering, brakes and suspension

We’ve had a number of items crop up this week, the first was on a ‘w’ reg Ford Ka, quite a bit  of corrosion reared it’s ugly head, not really surprising bearing in mind it’s age, but we also found a steering issue

the universal joint at the bottom of the steering column was excessively worn, allowing ecess free play at the sterring wheel, approx 30mm rather than the allowable 13mm. As it was a vehicle with power steering the joint was not available as a separate item, necessitating a replacement steering column, fortunately we were able to source a second unit rather than having to pay the main dealer price 0f £300+ for a new unit.

Friday afternoon we had a rather worried young lady in as her brakes were making a funny noise, a visual check through the wheels revealed one of the pads  breaking up, once the parts were ordered and on their way a stripdown revealed 3 of the 4 pads friction material had separated from the backing plate.

The pads were about 2/3rds worn but the vehicle had been relatively unused for a month or two .

Saturday brought a different problem in. An 06 Astra  for test had a badly worn tyre showing the cords.

  Once I began to check the steering and suspension on the ramp the reason for the inner edge wearing so badly became apparent.

The ball joint in suspension arm was badly worn, when it was driven into the brake tester to check the brakes a loud clunk from the front suspension was heard, had the vehicle come into the workshop when the clunk was 1st apparent the tyre may have lasted a few months more.

Say no to 4-2-2

The current government are still considering a change to the mot scheme by extending the period between mot tests, even though the previous government decided against it after examining the options.

Should this happen we could find vehicles in a dangerous condition for a further 12 months compared to now.

Some examples.

A tyre badly worn through to the cords,
The following example of corrosion found on a Subaru Justy had an advisory notice issued 12 months ago, regarding the corrosion now bad enough to fail.

The pale blue you see in the centre of the image above  is the inside of the chassis above the rear subframe mount, heavy braking could well have caused the subframe to break away causing serious loss of control. I was unable to complete the test and abandoned the test as I could not complete a brake efficiency test.

On to  another vehicle, approx 3 months ago an advisory notice was issued with regard to the rear brake pads wearing thin. Returned to us this last week to have the brake pads replaced.
As you can see from the above image one of the pads has had the metal backing worn to half of it’s original thickness, it must have been grinding away warning the driver of the problem for at least 500 miles.

It seems that the advisory notice is totally ignored, the necessary repairs aren’t done because of cost constraints, but how much more expensive is replacing the car after an accident, or even a fatality?

Many drivers seem to be of the opinion that as the vehicle has passed it’s MOT it is good for another 12 mths without any maintenance.

The MOT is only a check that certain components met a minimum laid down standard at the time of the test 

If 4-2-2 testing becomes a reality we could see a lot more vehicles in this condition on the road.

Sign the  petition at and voice your opposition to the proposed change.

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