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19th January, 2022

Commercial Vehicle Inspection Requirements: Answering Your Questions

There is an enormous amount of variety when it comes to vehicles, and that means that each type has its own role, its own design, and its own needs when it comes to maintenance. So, if you’re newly entering an industry that requires the use of commercial vehicles, it’s natural to not know quite where to begin when taking care of them. That’s why, at S.S.C Mechanics, we’re here to help.

As one of the most trusted mechanics in Melbourne, the team at S.S.C Mechanics has decades of experience with all kinds of vehicles, from fleets to European sports cars. In that time, we have assisted in an innumerable number of commercial vehicle inspections, and have therefore had to answer a lot of questions about what legal obligations people have when it comes to the frequency and specifics of commercial vehicle care. So, what should you know when caring for your commercial vehicle, and what do you need to do to ensure that your business is legally compliant?

What is Considered a Commercial Vehicle?

The surprise for many people learning about commercial vehicle maintenance is often how blurry the line can end up being between a commercial and non-commercial vehicle. For our purposes, a commercial vehicle is one that is designed or used to transport goods, workers, or paying passengers in a commercial context. Therefore, while a metro bus may be considered a commercial vehicle, a vehicle used for carpooling purposes is not due to the nature of the agreement.

What Goes Into a Commercial Vehicle Inspection Checklist?

This will be different from state to state and vehicle to vehicle, as the specifics and requirements will be dependent on an array of factors. However, if you are trying to prepare for a commercial vehicle inspection, consider the following hypothetical requirements list:

A driver inspection may include:

  • Your daily log and tracked service hours
  • Your driver’s license
  • Any qualifications for managing and utilising the vehicle in question

A vehicle inspection may include:

  • Tyres
  • Tail Lamps
  • Seat Belts
  • Brakes
  • Exhaust
  • Fuel Systems
  • Frame and Structural Integrity
  • Steering
  • Wheels/Hubcaps
  • Windshield Wipers
  • Suspension
  • Cargo Capacities, Such as Loading and Securement of Cargo
  • Any Cracks in the Windshield or Windows

This is not an exhaustive list, but merely a starting point for those who wish to prepare for an upcoming inspection. For more information, you can read our blog on vehicle safety checks.

How Often Do Commercial Vehicles Need to Be Inspected?

How often commercial vehicles need to be inspected in Australia will be determined by a variety of factors. For example, whilst in most states, a commercial vehicle is required to receive an inspection before it’s registered, including after a lapse in preexisting registration and transfer to another state’s registration, Western Australia’s rules stipulate that interstate changes in registration will not require additional inspections as long as the vehicle is with the same owner who has owned the vehicle less than 12 months.

As a general rule, however, commercial vehicles need to be inspected annually. It is also recommended that basic vehicle safety checks be done more frequently to ensure that any faults or issues are quickly addressed before they have time to become bigger problems.

How Long is a Vehicle Inspection Good For?

As previously mentioned, all vehicles in the commercial sector will need to be checked annually in order to maintain their roadworthiness. Under these vehicle registration conditions, other checks will also be required to comply with legal requirements. For example, Victorian commercial passenger vehicles must have a current Certificate of Roadworthiness or other evidence that the vehicle has gone through the CPVV-approved inspection process. They will also be required to produce that evidence when requested.


While the above will serve if you’re looking for a quick introduction to commercial vehicle inspections in Australia, this can be a complicated subject based on shifting laws from state to state and country to country. So, if you’d like to learn more about what’s involved and what you can expect, contact S.S.C Mechanics today, and speak with one of our experienced mechanics about how to prepare. Alternatively, if you’re ready to take on your next vehicle inspection, you can book an appointment through our simple online form to get the process started.


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