PMVIC Testing Center

There are many things to take note of and into consideration when you are talking about the Motor Vehicle Inspection System (MVIS) or Motor Vehicle inspection Centers (MVICs). The LTO and DOTr have worked hard to bring forth a battery of new tests and certification processes from other countries to the Philippines. 

However, what is the tests? Here’s a list of all the tests that you can expect while having your vehicle inspected at any of the MVICs once full implementation will happen. In the MVIS, there are a total of 8 tests that will be conducted each with its own minimum requirements for passing. 

For the first test, the inspector will look at the exterior and interior of your car to see if everything is in working order. Without using any machine, they will check your vehicle’s bodywork, the wheels, and the controls and peripherals among many other things. This test is separated into parts, namely the above-carriage and the undercarriage inspections. 

Conducting this test is fairly straightforward. The inspector will visually inspect all of your vehicle's nooks and crannies to spot any anomalies. The inspector also has a checklist and a set of guidelines that will be observed when conducting this set of tests. 

This test will check if your vehicle’s wheel alignment is correct. It will also check if your car is running the correct and acceptable toe-in and toe-out adjustment of the front and rear suspension. Your suspension’s toe adjustment determines how far outward or inward your front or rear tires are pointing away from each other or towards each other. Toe-in means that your wheels and tires are facing inward, while toe-out means that your wheels and tires are pointing outward. 

The test is conducted by driving the vehicle forward to the sideslip sensor plate, then from there, the machine will measure the slip movement of the vehicle as it passes through the first switch. The test concludes once the vehicle has passed through the last switch of the machine. 

In this test, your suspension components will be actuated and weighted down to see the effectivity of your shock absorbers and springs on each wheel of your vehicle. Each corner of your vehicle will be tested, and the inspector will check the absolute damping levels of each shock and compare them to the relative damping balance between the left and right sides of each damper. The EUSAMA principle, or its recognized equivalent, will be used to determine a pass or a fail. Ideally, you want all of your car’s shock absorbers to be in good condition, damping at the same rate on all sides, also left to right. 

As for the testing, the vehicle’s axles and wheels will be placed on shaker plates, and then once in position, each plate has a sensor that will measure the axle weight of the vehicle. After that, the plates will oscillate and move to test the dampers of the suspension system. The computer will then process and cross-reference the results with a database to determine a pass or a fail. 

In the roller brake test, the vehicle’s braking system will be the main subject of scrutiny. A rolling road will be used to get the vehicle up to speed and to measure the braking force that each wheel can generate. On top of that, the parking brake will also be put to the test to see if it will be able to hold the car on an incline or a simulated incline. 

To test this, the vehicle is brought on top of the rolling road and brought up to a speed of 40 km/h. Afterward, the brakes are applied to bring the car to a stop. A passing mark will be issued if the car comes to a complete stop and if the parking brake can hold the vehicle on a simulated incline. 

Please note in this test that you have to indicate whether your vehicle is front-wheel, rear-wheel, four-wheel, or all-wheel drive. This step is crucial to setting up your vehicle to be properly tested. 

This test will also involve the rolling road. The vehicle’s speedometer is checked for accuracy. The vehicle must accelerate to 40 km/h and then the vehicle must decelerate to a stop. If the reading is within a variance of +/- 10 km/h of what is being displayed by the testing machine, then it gets a pass. 

Please note in this test that you have to indicate whether your vehicle is front-wheel, rear-wheel, four-wheel, or all-wheel drive. This step is crucial to setting up your vehicle to be properly tested. 

For the headlight test, the front light arrays will be examined, and then a photo-sensitive device will measure the luminous intensity and photometric axis or optical axis of deviation of your vehicle’s headlights. 

To conduct this test, your vehicle will be parked at a pre-determined distance with the headlights on and aimed at the machine. Headlights that do not meet the standard output or the minimum output set, will not pass the test. 

Similar to the current process of emissions testing in the Philippines, the PMVICs will use emissions testing machine to test how much carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon emissions are coming out of the exhaust pipes of the vehicle at idle. 

Testing procedures will vary depending on the fuel that your car uses. For gasoline engines, your vehicle must remain in its neutral gear with the handbrake engaged and holding the car in place. The Vehicle must be brought up to operating temperatures or at least 70 degrees Celcius or even higher, in order for the catalysts in the catalytic converters to be activated. The inspectors will then probe the exhaust pipes of the vehicle at least 30cm into the tailpipe. 

For diesel engines, on the other hand, the test will be slightly different. Instead of simply probing the exhaust pipe, the main concern is to measure the opacity of the smoke coming out of the exhaust pipe. Like gasoline cars, the vehicle must also remain in neutral, stay at idle, and must be up to its operating temperature. The engine must then be revved two to three times to allow for proper exhaust sampling by removing the soot and the other carbon deposits from the tailpipe of the vehicle. Then while the engine idles, the inspector will probe and test the car for its emissions. 

A pass will be issued to the vehicle if the exhaust fumes coming from the car contain the legal limit of emissions. An amount over will result in a fail. 

At the same time as the exhaust test, a sound test will be conducted by the inspectors and will determine if the car is too loud for use on public roads. The legal limit to pass this test is 99 decibels, which means that any vehicle that has an exhaust that is higher than 99 dB will receive a failing mark in the inspection. 

This test will be conducted using a sonometer that will be held at a 45-degree angle, 0.5 meters away from the exhaust of your vehicle. The motor must then be revved or idle at 2,500 rpm. Passing this test will mean that your car’s muffler is still working, or that your modified exhaust system isn’t too loud for public use. 

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