SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Aug. 20, 2014) — The California Legislature has passed legislation that its proponents claim will improve automotive safety, protect consumers from “unscrupulous” tire dealers and increase fuel economy.
Approved with overwhelming bipartisan support, Assembly Bill 1665 is headed to the governor’s desk for his signature.
Enforced by the Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR), AB 1665 requires all tire dealers to be capable of diagnosing and servicing tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS), strengthens state oversight of tire dealer and repair shops and provides new recourse for consumers who’ve been wronged, according to a statement issued by the bill’s sponsors, Assemblyman Brian Jones, R-Santee, and Senator Ted Lieu, D-Redondo Beach.
“This is the most important automotive safety legislation since California’s hands-free while driving law took effect,” Mr. Jones said. “TPMS devices are one of the most significant improvements to ensure proper air pressure, which allows our tires to last longer and improves mileage.
“With passage of this legislation, consumers will also have better assurance that tire dealers are properly trained and certified to service these important warning devices.”
Mr. Lieu added: “The bottom line is properly inflated tires are safer, last longer and give us better fuel economy and cleaner air. For California, these systems are already saving millions of gallons [of fuel] each year.
These fuel savings will only increase as more TPMS vehicles enter our state’s car pool.”
The exact wording of the change to Section 9880.1 of the Business and Professions Code states: “An automotive repair dealer that repairs tires or changes tires shall be capable of diagnosing and servicing a tire pressure monitoring system in accordance with industry standards if the vehicle is manufactured with the device.”
The amended law does not specify how the law's provisions will be enforced or what type of punishment is on tap in the case of non-compliance.
Les Schwab Tire Centers and the California Tire Dealers Association were co-sponsors of A.B. 1665, according to the association’s newsletter, “California Tire Bulletin.”
The bill would generate $560,000 in revenue for the state from licensing fees, assuming an estimated 2,800 tire shops would be licensed as automotive repair dealers under BAR’s regulatory jurisdiction, according to a legislative analysis of the bill. The annual fee for an automotive repair dealer (ARD) license is $200.