Wednesday, 22 February 2012

IVA Re-Test Passed!

Had the re-test this morning and the car passed!  Very pleased indeed.

The first part of the test went very quickly, just checking the previous fail points: fog light switch, exhaust clamp and rear brake show inspection holes.

Here I am up on the ramp while the tester checks the rear brake inspection holes.

All of these points passed easily.  It was the next part that I was very apprehensive about - the five point brake test.  I understand this is a relatively new test in the IVA and basically checks what the braking force is on each axle at five points up to the point where the wheels slip on the rollers.  Then these figures are put into a calculation, which I believe takes into account the centre of gravity of the car, and the result is a comparison of the brake distribution ratio vs the weight distribution ratio for each of the five braking points.

How these are measured is quite neat.  With the car on the rollers the tester straps a pressure sensor to the sole of his right shoe.  This sensor is wired in to the remote control for the rollers.  Then the rollers are run many times to take the required readings.  During these the system is measuring what braking force is exerted by the car for a particular pedal pressure.

Half way through the tester decided that the brakes needed warming up.  I assumed that the readings were not coming out as expected.  The car had been in the garage for a week and a half and there was some surface rust on the front discs.  To warm the brakes the tester drove the car twice around the test centre with the brake pedal applied.  He appeared much happier with the second set of measurements.

Then I was told to put the car back on the trailer, while the tester went to do the paperwork.  There was no indication at this point of the test result.  It was clear that the door was closed on any re-run of the brake test.

I waited anxiously in the waiting room for what seemed like an eternity.  Maternity wards sprang to mind.  Then finally I spotted my tester coming out of the office, having done the required brake calculations.  I was delighted to see an IVA certificate in his hand instead of the refusal notice delivered last time.  Time to take the car home, whilst wearing a big cheesy grin.  Next its off to the local DVLA office to make the application for the registration plate.

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