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Maintenance of commercial vehicle, DIY?
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PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2011 1:48 am 
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Is there a requirement for commercial vehicles to be maintained only by licensed mechanics (e.g., oil changes, tire rotations)? I'm working with Habitat for Humanity and we are looking into a cargo van for the ReStore; I'm more than capable of doing maintenance but I'm not sure if it is legal because I am not a licensed mechanic.

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Re: Maintenance of commercial vehicle, DIY?
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2011 4:22 pm 
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If you are just referring to work that needs to be done on a vehicle when it breaks or regular maintenance, there is nothing in the HTA that says the work has to be done by a licenced mechanic. However, if the work were done improperly because the person who did it wasn't licenced, that could potentially open the company up to civil liability, since the company is required to do what is "reasonable" is the maintenance of its vehicles and a court could find that having work done by an unlicenced individual is not "reasonable". For a definitive answer on that you should consult a civil lawyer.

That being said, there are still some things that a commercial vehicle requires that only a mechanic can do.

For example: annual inspections. Also, don't forget about all the other commercial vehicle requirements: CVOR, pretrip, schedule 1, log books, etc.

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Re: Maintenance of commercial vehicle, DIY?
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2011 5:39 pm 
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I've already told them that I won't be doing anything, basically, that might end up with a wheel falling off or losing brakes on the highway - they can pay for that stuff to be done. But I can save them labour costs in engine/transmission maintenance, electrical repairs, and other stuff that would otherwise need a mechanic to fix. I wasn't sure if that would affect the CVOR or annual inspection, if they might ask for invoices or work order numbers from an "MTO approved shop" or something.

It's tricky in that the majority of our "workforce" are volunteers; we try to pay for only what we absolutely have to. I want as much money as possible going into our builds instead of having to bring the truck into a shop for every little thing.

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Re: Maintenance of commercial vehicle, DIY?
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2011 6:12 pm 
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I understand what you're saying, but I don't think that there's anything in law that says that repairs have to be done by a licenced mechanic for a commercial vehicle. I think the real thing to consider is possible civil liability.

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Re: Maintenance of commercial vehicle, DIY?
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2011 6:20 pm 
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Yup, that's the answer I was hoping for, thanks. I'll be making sure that anything I do won't be linked to loss of control on the highway.

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Re: Maintenance of commercial vehicle, DIY?
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2011 8:40 pm 
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might want to call a MTO TIS (Truck Inspections Station) and ask to speak with an "Auditor". They are regular MTO officers that only go directly to businesses and look over the "books" etc. I remember awhile back that when a defect/problem is noted on the inspection report, that the company has to have bill/receipt for the repair, now I don't know if that is simple as showing a bulb bought from C'dn Tire or one bill with labour etc added onto it. That's good thing to check with the auditor

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Re: Maintenance of commercial vehicle, DIY?
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2011 11:15 pm 
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It's true that under s. 107(1) you are required to establish a system for the periodic inspection and maintenance of commercial vehicles and under s. 107(2) you are required to carry out inspection and maintenance in accordance with that system. That system is what the MTO auditors check on. I guess the question is whether that system requires a mechanic to be involved in all maintenance...

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