Used Car Safety Checklist-Division 12 Responsibility of Dealer or Other Person Selling Motor Vehicle 24007. (a) (1) No dealer or person holding a retail seller’s permit shall sell a new or used vehicle that is not in compliance with this code and departmental regulations adopted pursuant to this code, unless the vehicle is sold to another dealer, sold for the purpose of being legally wrecked or dismantled, or sold exclusively for off-highway use. 1) Brakes: Must stop within 25 feet at 20 MPH (Passenger vehicles) * Maximum Stopping Distance (feet) (1) Any passenger vehicle 25 (2) Any single motor vehicle with a manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating of less than 10,000 lbs. 30 (3) Any combination of vehicles consisting of a passenger vehicle or any motor vehicle with a manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating of less than 10,000 lbs. in combination with any trailer, semitrailer or trailer coach 40 (4) Any single motor vehicle with a manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating of 10,000 lbs. or more or any bus 40 (5) All other combinations of vehicles 1) Emergency Brakes 26451. The parking brake system of every motor vehicle shall comply with the following requirements: (a) The parking brake shall be adequate to hold the vehicle or combination of vehicles stationary on any grade on which it is operated under all conditions of loading on a surface free from snow, ice or loose material. In any event the parking brake shall be capable of locking the braked wheels to the limit of traction. (b) The parking brake shall be applied either by the driver’s muscular efforts, by spring action, or by other energy which is isolated and used exclusively for the operation of the parking brake or the combination parking brake and emergency stopping system. (c) The parking brake shall be held in the applied position solely by mechanical means. 2) Windshield 26700. (a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), a passenger vehicle, other than a motorcycle, and every bus, motortruck or truck tractor, and every firetruck, fire engine or other fire apparatus, whether publicly or privately owned, shall be equipped with an adequate windshield. (b) Subdivision (a) does not apply to any vehicle issued identification plates pursuant to Section 5004 which was not required to be equipped with a windshield at the time it was first sold or registered under the laws of this state, another state, or foreign jurisdiction. 26710. It is unlawful to operate any motor vehicle upon a highway when the windshield or rear window is in such a defective condition as to impair the driver’s vision either to the front or rear. 3) Mirrors 26709. (a) Every motor vehicle registered in a foreign jurisdiction and every motorcycle subject to registration in this state shall be equipped with a mirror so located as to reflect to the driver a view of the highway for a distance of at least 200 feet to the rear of such vehicle. Every motor vehicle subject to registration in this state, except a motorcycle, shall be equipped with not less than two such mirrors, including one affixed to the left-hand side. (b) The following described types of motor vehicles, of a type subject to registration, shall be equipped with mirrors on both the left-and right-hand sides of the vehicle so located as to reflect to the driver a view of the highway through each mirror for a distance of at least 200 feet to the rear of such vehicle: (1) A motor vehicle so constructed or loaded as to obstruct the driver’s view to the rear. (2) A motor vehicle towing a vehicle and the towed vehicle or load thereon obstructs the driver’s view to the rear. (3) A bus or trolley coach. (c) The provisions of subdivision (b) shall not apply to a passenger vehicle when the load obstructing the driver’s view consists of passengers. 4) Windshield wipers 26706. (a) Every motor vehicle, except motorcycles, equipped with a windshield shall also be equipped with a selfoperating windshield wiper. (b) Every new motor vehicle first registered after December 31, 1949, except motorcycles, shall be equipped with two such windshield wipers, one mounted on the right half and one on the left half of the windshield, except that any motor vehicle may be equipped with a single wiper so long as it meets the wiped area requirements in Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards Governing Windshield Wiping and Washing Systems. (c) This section does not apply to snow removal equipment equipped with adequate manually operated windshield wipers. 26707. Windshield wipers required by this code shall be maintained in good operating condition and shall provide clear vision through the windshield for the driver. Wipers shall be operated under conditions of fog, snow, or rain and shall be capable of effectively clearing the windshield under all ordinary storm or load conditions while the vehicle is in operation. 5) Headlights/Tail lights/Stop lights/Turn signals 24400. (a) A motor vehicle, other than a motorcycle, shall be equipped with at least two headlamps, with at least one on each side of the front of the vehicle, and, except as to vehicles registered prior to January 1, 1930, they shall be located directly above or in advance of the front axle of the vehicle. The headlamps and every light source in any headlamp unit shall be located at a height of not more than 54 inches nor less than 22 inches. (b) A motor vehicle, other than a motorcycle, shall be operated during darkness, or inclement weather, or both, with at least two lighted headlamps that comply with subdivision (a). (c) As used in subdivision (b), “inclement weather” is a weather condition that is either of the following: (1) A condition that prevents a driver of a motor vehicle from clearly discerning a person or another motor vehicle on the highway from a distance of 1,000 feet. (2) A condition requiring the windshield wipers to be in continuous use due to rain, mist, snow, fog, or other precipitation or atmospheric moisture. 6) Lighting (General) 24252. (a) All lighting equipment of a required type installed on a vehicle shall at all times be maintained in good working order. Lamps shall be equipped with bulbs of the correct voltage rating corresponding to the nominal voltage at the lamp socket. 6) Horn 27000. (a) A motor vehicle, when operated upon a highway, shall be equipped with a horn in good working order and capable of emitting sound audible under normal conditions from a distance of not less than 200 feet, but no horn shall emit an unreasonably loud or harsh sound. An authorized emergency vehicle may be equipped with, and use in conjunction with the siren on that vehicle, an air horn that emits sounds that do not comply with the requirements of this section. 7) Odometer 28050. It is unlawful for any person to advertise for sale, to sell, to use, or to install on any part of a motor vehicle or on an odometer in a motor vehicle any device which causes the odometer to register any mileage other than the true mileage driven. For the purposes of this section the true mileage driven is that mileage driven by the car as registered by the odometer within the manufacturer’s designed tolerance. 28050.5. It is unlawful for any person with the intent to defraud to operate a motor vehicle on any street or highway knowing that the odometer of such vehicle is disconnected or nonfunctional. 28051. It is unlawful for any person to disconnect, turn back, advance, or reset the odometer of any motor vehicle with the intent to alter the number of miles indicated on the odometer gauge. 28051.5. It is unlawful for any person to advertise for sale, to sell, or to use, any device designed primarily for the purpose of turning back or resetting the odometer of any motor vehicle to reduce the number of miles indicated on the odometer gauge. 28052. If a manufacturer, distributor, or dealer of a new motor vehicle makes any warranty to the purchaser of, and with respect to, a new motor vehicle which is based on the amount of miles that the motor vehicle is driven, only those miles which the motor vehicle has been driven on and after the date that the motor vehicle has first been sold as new to the purchaser shall be considered for purposes of the warranty. The mileage indicated upon the odometer of the motor vehicle on the date that the motor vehicle is first sold as new to the purchaser shall, for purposes of the warranty, be the mileage upon which the warranty shall commence. Nothing in this section shall be construed to relieve any person of any criminal punishment to which he would otherwise be subject under Section 28051. The provisions of this section shall apply only to motor vehicles which are sold on or after the effective date of this section. 28053. (a) Nothing in this article prevents the service, repair, or replacement of an odometer, if the mileage indicated thereon remains the same as before the service, repair, or replacement. If the odometer is incapable of registering the same mileage as before the service, repair, or replacement, the odometer shall be adjusted to read zero and a notice in writing shall be attached to the left doorframe of the vehicle by the person performing the service, repair, or replacement specifying the mileage prior to the service, repair or replacement of the odometer and the date on which it was serviced, repaired, or replaced. (b) No person shall fail to adjust an odometer or affix a notice regarding the adjustment as required by subdivision (a). (c) No person shall, with intent to defraud, remove or alter any notice affixed to a vehicle pursuant to subdivision (a). 7) Bumpers 28071. Every passenger vehicle registered in this state shall be equipped with a front bumper and with a rear bumper. As used in this section, “bumper” means any device designed and intended by a manufacturer to prevent the front or rear of the body of the vehicle from coming into contact with any other motor vehicle. This section shall not apply to any passenger vehicle that is required to be equipped with an energy absorption system pursuant to either state or federal law, or to any passenger vehicle which was not equipped with a front or rear bumper, or both, at the time that it was first sold and registered under the laws of this or any other state or foreign jurisdiction. 8) Muffler and Exhaust System 27150. (a) Every motor vehicle subject to registration shall at all times be equipped with an adequate muffler in constant operation and properly maintained to prevent any excessive or unusual noise, and no muffler or exhaust system shall be equipped with a cutout, bypass, or similar device. (b) Except as provided in Division 16.5 (commencing with Section 38000) with respect to off-highway motor vehicles subject to identification, every passenger vehicle operated off the highways shall at all times be equipped with an adequate muffler in constant operation and properly maintained so as to meet the requirements of Article 2.5 (commencing with Section 27200), and no muffler or exhaust system shall be equipped with a cutout, bypass, or similar device. 9) (c) The provisions of subdivision (b) shall not be applicable to passenger vehicles being operated off the highways in an organized racing or competitive event conducted under the auspices of a recognized sanctioning body or by permit issued by the local governmental authority having jurisdiction. 10) Condition of tires 27465. (a) No dealer or person holding a retail seller’s permit shall sell, offer for sale, expose for sale, or install on a vehicle axle for use on a highway, a pneumatic tire when the tire has less than the tread depth specified in subdivision (b). This subdivision does not apply to any person who installs on a vehicle, as part of an emergency service rendered to a disabled vehicle upon a highway, a spare tire with which the disabled vehicle was equipped. (b) No person shall use on a highway a pneumatic tire on a vehicle axle when the tire has less than the following tread depth, except when temporarily installed on a disabled vehicle as specified in subdivision (a): (1) One thirty-second (1/32) of an inch tread depth in any two adjacent grooves at any location of the tire, except as provided in paragraphs (2) and (3). (2) Four thirty-second (4/32) of an inch tread depth at all points in all major grooves on a tire on the steering axle of any motor vehicle specified in Section 34500, and two thirty-second of an inch tread depth at all points in all major grooves on all other tires on the axles of these vehicles. (3) Six thirty-second (6/32) of an inch tread depth at all points in all major grooves on snow tires used in lieu of tire traction devices in posted traction device control areas. (c) The measurement of tread depth shall not be made where tie bars, humps, or fillets are located. (d) The requirements of this section shall not apply to implements of husbandry. (e) The department, if it determines that such action is appropriate and in keeping with reasonable safety requirements, may adopt regulations establishing more stringent tread depth requirements than those specified in this section for those vehicles defined in Sections 322 and 545, and may adopt regulations establishing tread depth requirements different from those specified in this section for those vehicles listed in Section 34500. 11) Safety belts 27314. (a) No dealer shall sell or offer for sale any used passenger vehicle that was manufactured on or after January 1, 1962, other than a motorcycle, unless it is equipped with at least two seatbelts which are installed for the use of persons in the front seat of the vehicle. (b) No dealer shall sell or offer for sale any used passenger vehicle manufactured on or after January 1, 1968, other than a motorcycle, unless it is equipped with seatbelts for each seating position. (c) Seatbelts required in subdivisions (a) and (b) shall comply with regulations established by the department. (d) The requirements of this section shall not apply to sales to dealers, automobile dismantlers, or junk dealers. 12) Smog inspection/certification A valid smog certification is normally required for a transfer of a vehicle 1976 model year and newer, and through five model years old. a. The smog certification must have been obtained within the last 90 days for an individual, or two years for a dealer if the vehicle has been in dealer inventory. b. Car dealers must ensure that the smog inspection requirements are satisfied prior to delivering a vehicle to a purchaser. c. Newer vehicles (4 model years old or less) do not need a new smog certification; however, a Smog Transfer fee will be required. 13) Air bags 27317. A person who installs, reinstalls, rewires, tampers with, alters, or modifies for compensation, a vehicle’s computer system or supplemental restraint system, including, but not limited to, the supplemental restraint system’s onboard system performance indicators, so that it falsely indicates the supplemental restraint system is in proper working order, or who knowingly distributes or sells a previously deployed air bag or previously deployed air bag component that will no longer meet the original equipment manufacturing form or function for proper operation, is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to five thousand dollars ($5,000) or by imprisonment in a county jail for up to one year, or by both the fine and imprisonment. 14) Heater/Defroster 26712. Every passenger vehicle used or maintained for the transportation of persons for hire, compensation, or profit shall be equipped with a defrosting device which is adequate to remove snow, ice, frost, fog, or internal moisture from the windshield.