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Ontario Vehicle Safety Inspection and Drive Clean.

I get asked  often what do I have to do when selling my vehicle or buying a vehicle? Depending on how you want to buy or sell it varies. Most common is to sell the vehicle or purchase the vehicle certified and Drive Clean tested. Certified meaninng a Ontario College of trades registered technican has completed a specific inspection to ensure the vehicle complies with the necessary qualifications for the certificate form. A repair facility that is MOT approved should have the manual always present for reference.

If the vehicle passes both the Safety Inspection and Drive Clean then you're good for a transfer of ownership. Use this link to access the governments site for more details.

As for Drive Clean, it's fairly simple.  Peform the test and if it's a FULL PASS then you're good. If it fails, or has a Conditional Pass then it can not be transferred easily.   There are people who do sell their vehicle "as is" meaning no safety inspection and without a drive clean. Very risky and not advisable. As well you'll get variations. People will sell vehicles with Drive Clean showing a Pass, but failing a safety inspection, or vice versa. Passing a Safety and Failing drive clean.

At the end of the day watch out and be sure to ask lots of questions.

Here's the link for Drive Clean. You can see if the car is due for an emission test, see if one was done already and get all sorts of information.

I always suggest when you're serious about the car your going to purchase get a complete Comprehensive Vehicle Inspection. This inspection covers all the Safety Standard items, but as well all non safety inspection items like; fluids, belts, hoses, charging system etc. These areas are "not safety" related issues but are an issue when you're looking to buy a vehicle. Ask us about our CAA Approved Inspection.

There lots of tips on the internet for buying used vehicles. Budgeting, road test etc. Here my tips for the above transactions.

1. Have a certied technican  complete a comprehensive vehicle inspection before purchase.

2. Ask for maintenance records. In my opion over the years,  If they have a very organized stack from one facility it shows great care in the vehicle. If they have no history watch out, they may not be that good with vehicle care. You could ask where did they service it,  if they say " always at the dealer or Joes Garage" and then call the dealer or Joes garage and find out. If they have invoices from everyone from quick lubes, to repair shops, to 1/2 dozen other places, they may be looking alway for the "deal" to fix the car.  Cheapest car repair doesn't always mean quality.   A perfect sitaution is like when one of our customers sells a vehicle.  The buyer can call me and ask all about the car and it's history, as well get all prinouts.  This is valuable!

3. When selling your car - have all your history together, as far back as you can go. Again value presentation to the buyer!

4. Get a Used Vehicle Information Package.

5. Watch if the wrong season tires are on the car. Winters tires on in the summer months usually means the summers are no good, but it can still pass a Safety Inspection with them on. Money to spend!

6. RUST RUST AND RUST - Have to watch older cars. The doors, bumpers and panels may look nice but underneath the car may have seen the wrath of our salty roads over the years. Have to watch, rusty brakes lines, gas lines, fuel tanks, floors and under hood conditions.  A vehicle "rust sprayed" is a good thing and sign of vehicle care. Rust Spraying should be done annually by most companies out there. I suggest Krown Rust Spray.

7. If the seller does not wish you to have the vehicle inspected  be prepared to walk away! If they're hiding nothing then there should be no worries. Having the buyer and selling both present during the inspection is not a bad idea.

Hope this helps.

Carlo Sabucco

Sils Complete Auto Care Centre


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