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Roadworthy Certificates

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When can a certificate be issued?

The vehicle must pass a roadworthiness inspection, then a certificate is issued.

What if the vehicle fails the test?

If an item fails to meet the standard, the tester will issue a rejection report. You will be given seven days to repair the item/s rejected and return the vehicle to the tester for a second inspection of the failed items. If more than seven days elapse a complete inspection must again be carried out on the vehicle.

Roadworthy Certificates Melbourne
Roadworthy inspection

What is inspected?

The inspection is a check of the vehicle to ensure that key components have not worn or deteriorated and that the vehicle is safe for normal road use.

A roadworthy inspection only covers the major safety related items, including:

  • wheels and tyres
  • steering, suspension and braking systems
  • seats and seat belts
  • lamps and reflectors
  • windscreen, and windows including front windscreen wipers and washers
  • the structure of the vehicle itself
  • other safety related items on the body, chassis or engine.

The roadworthiness test is not a check of the mechanical reliability or general condition of the vehicle. If you require a comprehensive check on the overall condition and reliability of the vehicle then you should arrange for a separate independent report such as those offered by the RACV or VACC.

The certificate does not mean:

That the vehicle is in top condition without any wear or deterioration

  • non-safety related accessories such as the air conditioner, rear window demister, electric windows and rear-window wipers are working
  • that the items checked during the roadworthy inspection will continue to function after the inspection eg. a brake light can stop functioning at any time after the inspection.

What about the Australian Design Rules?

The roadworthiness test is not a complete assessment of a vehicle’s compliance with the Standards for Registration, which, in most cases, are the Australian Design Rules (ADRs). The ADRs are a set of minimum standards for the construction of motor vehicles and trailers. In most cases compliance with these standards cannot be assessed by inspection alone.

Do you have a problem with the inspection or certificate for your vehicle?

If you believe that your vehicle was not roadworthy when you were given a certificate, then take the following steps:

1. – Check first that the component in question is a roadworthiness inspection item. See: Roadworthiness Requirements [PDF 1,638KB].
2. – Contact the tester who issued the certificate and explain your concerns. In many cases the problem will be resolved.
3. – If you have not resolved the issue, obtain an independent inspection from another licensed tester to support your claim and present a copy of this to the first tester.
4. – If the independent inspection confirms your concerns and the original tester will not cooperate, then contact the VicRoads Roadworthiness Supervisors on 1800 816 727 or send a written complaint with supporting documents to VicRoads, Roadworthiness Section, 60 Denmark Street KEW 3101.

roadworthy certificate costs
roadworthy certificate costs

How much does the test cost?

The cost of obtaining a Certificate of Roadworthiness is not fixed. It may depend on the age, type and condition of the vehicle being examined. You can ask for a quote from the licensed vehicle tester.

How long does a certificate last?

A Certificate of Roadworthiness is current, for the purposes of a transaction, for 30 days from the date of issue.

What are your legal rights?

VicRoads does not have authority to require the tester to make good your vehicle or otherwise compensate you. These are matters for civil action.

You can seek professional legal advice from a solicitor, take your dispute to the Victorian Civil & Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) or through the Magistrates court.
Where a vehicle is purchased through a Licensed Motor Car Trader (LMCT) Consumer Affairs Victoria may be able to resolve the matter through negotiation with the LMCT.

More information
Contact VicRoads Roadworthiness Section on 1800 816 727.

Issue of Certificates

In Victoria a Certificate of Roadworthiness is generally required when a vehicle is sold or if a used vehicle is to be re-registered. This helps minimise the number of poorly maintained vehicles on the road. In some cases a Certificate of Roadworthiness is also required to clear a Vehicle Defect Notice or a Notice of Unroadworthiness.

A Certificate of Roadworthiness can only be issued by a licensed vehicle tester, operating from a nominated garage or service station.

roadworthy certificate costs