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Posts Tagged ‘Roller Brake Tester’

DVSA Suggests More HGV Brake Tests ??

September 11th, 2019 Comments off

aide automotive explains why its portable Bowmonk BrakeCheck solution is a viable alternative to roller brake testers when carrying out a non-MOT brake test.
Regular brake tests are currently being requested by the DVSA on all commercial vehicles of 7.5 tonne and over, as part of an interim safety inspection. At the absolute minimum, the agency is asking for a quarterly voluntary brake test to be carried out in addition to the annual MOT test.

Fortunately, most commercial operators have taken heed of this request and are having their brakes checked more frequently, as it is a means of monitoring braking efficiency more closely. However, in some cases, it would appear that this frequency of testing is still not enough, as the level of deterioration is a cause for concern.

In most cases, the DVSA would prefer this test to be carried out as part of the six-weekly inspection. This would have thebenefit of highlighting a decrease in braking performance considerably sooner than those performed once every three months, and in doing so, afford more effective preventative maintenance opportunities.

Evidently, there are a great number of commercial workshops who are still of the misconception that all of the aforementioned brake tests have to be performed on a roller brake tester. This is not the case! The Traffic Commission has allowed the use of a DVSA-approved brake tester, like Bowmonk’s BrakeCheck, for all non-MOT brake tests.

Aside from the mandatory requirements, there is also the upsell opportunity. Workshops providing a brake overhaul service, where components are in need of replacement, can offer a ‘before and after’ brake test report; an opportunity to show their customers the level of efficiency achieved prior to and following any necessary repair work.

A user guide to BrakeCheck

Position the BrakeCheck unit on a level surface, such as the passenger side foot well. Switch the unit on by pressing and holding the ‘Menu’ button until ‘Sbr’ appears in the display.
Confirm Service Brake choice by pressing ‘Enter’.
When the unit is level enough to start the test, a symbol (pictured left) will be shown on the display. Once the symbol is displayed, press ‘Enter’.
The unit is now ready for the test. When the test area is clear, accelerate the vehicle to an appropriate test speed (e.g. 20 mph).
Once the vehicle is travelling at an appropriate test speed, check for traffic approaching from behind. If safe to do so, apply the footbrake as a controlled emergency stop, without skidding.
Once the vehicle has been brought to a complete stop, the unit will generate and display a braking efficiency value.
Once the Service Brake test is complete, change to Hand Brake mode by pressing the ‘Menu’ button (so that the hand brake test LED is illuminated). As before, confirm this choice by pressing ‘Enter’, which will take you to the levelling display. Press ‘Enter’ when the level indicator is shown.
As before, accelerate the vehicle to the test speed, this time applying the hand brake to stop the vehicle. Note: please check with your vehicle manufacturer if this type of procedure is acceptable.
Once the vehicle has come to a complete stop, the display will show the braking efficiency of the hand brake.
To view the service brake test report, press the ‘Menu’ button until the last test result and service brake test LEDs are illuminated. Then press ‘Enter’ to display the result, which can now be printed using the optional wireless printer.
With the BrakeCheck unit positioned approximately 2 to 3cm in front of the infra-red printer, switch on the printer and press the ‘Print’ button on the BrakeCheck to print the test result.
To view or print the hand brake test, carry out the same procedure, but use the ‘Menu’ button to illuminate the hand brake test and last test result LEDs.

Buy Online Bowmonk BrakeCheck Decelerometer

HGV Brake Tester

Buy Online Bowmonk BrakeCheck Decelerometer

HGV  / Commercial Vehicle Brake Testing 

September 3rd, 2019 Comments off

Although the DVSA states a preference for roller brake testers during safety inspections, it does allow the use of portable decelerometers. What are their advantages and limitations of using portable decelerometers?

Every safety inspection must assess the braking performance of a vehicle or trailer. It’s a key part of any maintenance regime and demonstrates that operators are running their fleets in a compliant manner and protecting other road users. The DVSA’s Guide to Maintaining Roadworthiness states that using an approved and calibrated decelerometer is acceptable to measure overall brake efficiency values for vehicles as part of the yearly maintenance scheme.

We do hear that testers are “strongly advised” to use a calibrated roller brake tester (RBT) at each safety inspection to measure individual brake performance and overall braking efficiencies for the vehicle or trailer according to the annual test standards.

Why is this? And when should each type be used?

There are two main types of portable decelerometer: digital and mechanical. Both are straightforward to use, although care has to be taken: “To use a decelerometer, the vehicle must be driven on the road, or in a yard with enough space. This should be a good surface, which is suitable in wet or dry conditions, with little traffic.

As the guidance states the use of an RBT or calibrated decelerometer can be used, it is obvious to most that a roller brake tester is far better way of determining brake efficiency. Very true would be an educated response although a combination of Roller Brake Tests and regular decelerometers test is as good a record of brake tests as possibly can be offered.

So is a portable decelerometer vulnerable to mis-testing?, a DVSA spokesman explains: “Anecdotally, the DVSA is aware of potential risks due to user error, although the DVSA has no data on this. Also, roller brake testing provides a more consistent test, whereas decelerometer use may involve some environmental variations such as test speed, road surface, weather, or gradient of the road.”

Speaking about the restriction on using decelerometers with tractor-trailer combinations, the spokesman adds: “Assessing different parts of a tractor and trailer combination can be difficult with only a decelerometer. For this reason, rigid vehicles such as buses and non-articulated lorries are more acceptable uses of decelerometers.”

The DVSA spokesman says that manufacturers provide guidance on the use of decelerometers. Risk assessments need to be in place where decelerometers are being used for brake testing, and the tests must be carried out under controlled and safe conditions.

Another decelerometer supplier is Bowmonk. Its portable brake testing kit, BrakeCheck, is also approved by the DVSA. Bowmonk says RBTs are not more accurate, but are preferred for annual tests because they “provide a means of recording each individual brake performance, whereas a decelerometer records the overall braking performance”. He adds: ”DVSA allows all operators to use a BrakeCheck for all of their interim brake tests that form part of their scheduled safety inspections.”

Bowmonk’s equipment was approved because it was able to demonstrate that the readings of overall braking efficiency and percentage of braking imbalance recorded by the device were within a specified level of tolerance, compared to that of an RBT. “BrakeCheck records the rate of acceleration from vehicle rest to the point where the brakes are applied. At this point it detects the forces being shifted forward, and then records the rate of deceleration to the point where the vehicle comes to a complete stop. From this, BrakeCheck then calculates the stopping distance, test speed and ultimately the braking efficiency.”

Any competent vehicle technician can use a BrakeCheck decelerometer without training, although training can be offered.

Adds Dave Wood, DVSA enforcement policy manager: “Under controlled and limited situations, decelerometer testing still has a place. As electronic braking performance monitoring systems gain popularity, we would like to encourage operators to use such systems as part of their vehicle defect monitoring and maintenance regime.”

FIXED BRAKE TESTERS

DVSA says it strongly advises calibrated RBTs “because this is the method of brake testing used by the MOT and is supported by legislation“.

Steve Coles, head of MOT operations at the Retail Motor Industry Federation, confirms that an RBT measures a greater number of elements of brake performance than a decelerometer. He states: “Performance efficiency, binding, fluctuation, increase and reduction of brake effort can all be measured, whereas a decelerometer can only check efficiency and a very rudimentary check of imbalance, which is subjective rather than measured.”

One reason DVSA prefers RBTs is road safety: “Having vehicles conduct emergency stops on public roads using a decelerometer carries a certain risk to other road users that is alleviated if the vehicle is tested in a workshop using an RBT.”

Approved MOT stations must have a fixed brake tester, either roller brake (pictured above) or plate brake tester. Boston’s Tabor says: “Roller brake testers are the most commonly used, since they require less space. The only exception to a fixed brake tester may be a remote part of the country, for example some Scottish islands, but this is rare, if not now a discontinued practice.”

To meet DVSA criteria, all equipment used in the test lane – fixed or otherwise – has to be approved by, for example, the Garage Equipment Association (list of approved equipment: ). Explains Tabor: “The reason for this is to make sure that regardless of where the vehicle is tested and on what make of equipment, the result will be the same. To maintain accuracy, fixed brake testers must be calibrated every six months and certificates to prove accuracy are issued to the test station. Decelerometers must meet mandatory standards and also need calibrating every two years. The longer period between calibrations is because they are only there for temporary use.”

FURTHER INFORMATION

For a meaningful brake test, DVSA recommends that the vehicle should be at least 65% loaded, where possible.

BOX: CRIME AND PUNISHMENT

In 2017, the boss of Grittenham Haulage and its mechanic were jailed after one of their tipper trucks crashed, killing four people, due to faulty brakes. The judge at Bristol Crown Court said Matthew Gordon and Peter Wood had a “cavalier“ attitude to vehicle maintenance at their firm before the incident in 2015.

Gordon told the court that he had been unaware brake checks had to be carried out every four months and admitted that he didn’t have a transport manager in place. Gordon was jailed for more than seven years; Wood for more than five.

After the sentencing, DCI Richard Ocone said: “Detailed and complex investigations showed many of the faults on the vehicle were longstanding – highlighted by the fact that the brakes on the lorry at the time of the crash were totally inadequate, having an overall efficiency of just 28%.”

Bowmonk BrakeCheck Purchase Online

Or call 0115 8456471 to discuss your HGV brake maintenance requirement

 

Bowmonk BrakeCheck Decelerometer

BrakeCheck is DVSA (VOSA) accepted & MOT approved.

Commercial Vehicle Brake Testing Up To Standard?

May 18th, 2018 Comments off

Brake performance testing should be a key part of your maintenance

The Governments Moving On Blog recently posted the below press.
Brake performance testing should be a key part of your maintenance regime that needs to happen at every safety inspection.
And, if you find any braking performance problems while the vehicle or trailer is in use, you’ll need to get a measured brake efficiency test before you use the vehicle again.
For most of you, this is standard practice and shows that you’re committed to running your fleet compliantly and protecting other road users.
Tragic consequences
But unfortunately some licence holders don’t meet the minimum standards and the consequences can be devastating.
In 2015, DVSA examiners investigated a road traffic incident involving a 32-tonne tipper vehicle. Four people, including a four-year-old girl, were killed when the vehicle’s brakes failed on a steep hill.
Our investigation found the operator’s brake testing was far below the required standards. The company’s approach to brake testing was nowhere near thorough enough, and on 5 out of 13 safety inspection records, the brake test section had been left blank.
In the other records, the comments were too limited for anyone to understand what they meant.
Successful court convictions
Two individuals from the company were each convicted of four counts of manslaughter at Bristol Crown Court.
The company director was sentenced to 7 years and 6 months in prison and the mechanic was sentenced to 5 years and 3 months in prison.
The Traffic Commissioner revoked the company’s operator’s licence and both the company and its director were disqualified from holding or obtaining another operator’s licence for two years.
Even if nothing this catastrophic happens, our vehicle examiners  will still take your vehicle off the road and can issue you with a fixed penalty if they find dangerous problems with your brakes. This could lead to an investigation and referral to the Traffic Commissioner.
Following best practice
You should carry out routine safety inspections of your vehicles on a regular basis. Annex 4 of the Guide to Maintaining Roadworthiness provides tips for you to work out how often a vehicle needs to be inspected.
A braking test needs to form a part of each safety inspection. If possible, you should always brake test a vehicle or trailer laden. You should also use a calibrated roller brake tester (RBT) to measure:
?    individual brake performance
?    overall braking efficiency
You should undertake brake testing with the vehicle or trailer laden in order to get meaningful results. If this test shows the brakes aren’t working properly, then the vehicle or trailer isn’t roadworthy.
You could also use an approved and calibrated decelerometer to measure overall brake efficiency if you’re testing vehicles without trailers.
And you should always try and obtain a printout of the brake test from either the RBT or decelerometer and make sure it’s attached to the safety inspection record. If you can’t get a printout, the inspector should record the results on the safety inspection report instead.
If you can’t carry out a brake test during a safety inspection, the vehicle’s braking performance must be assessed using a road test.
This needs to be carried out under controlled and safe conditions. The safety inspection record should also say that the brake performance was assessed by a road test.
You can use an Electronic Braking Performance Monitoring System (EBPMS) to assess trailer braking performance using data collected while the vehicle is in use.
aide automotive market decelerometer brake testers for commercial vehicles, the Bowmonk BrakeCheck is a known quality product for the UK’s truck, bus & coach market as well as around the world.
The latest addition to the BrakeCheck range is the BrakeCheck GEO, with a built in GPS receiver this decelerometer will provide a GPS location to each brake test.
Contact aide automotive on 0115 8456471 or email info@aideautomotive.com
Truck Brake Tester

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HGV Brake Testing Essential

April 13th, 2017 Comments off

Truck, Bus & Coach Brake Testing

Following The Bath Tipper Incident Inquiry HGV Brake Testing Essential

Following the Bath Tipper Incident inquiry one would make a educated judgement to make sure all brakes and testing of brakes on HGV or Commercial vehicles are examined, maintained and tested with the appropriate recorded paper work.
The inquiry showed the Bath tipper truck to have been poorly maintained which resulted when tested to have a very poor brake efficiency.
aide automotive recommend the use of roller brake testers and decelerometers within a 12 month maintenance and testing policy.
Regular testing on RBT’s and then an in-between decelerometer test like BrakeCheck will offer printed brake reports for service or inspection sheets to complete a maintenance policy for any heavy vehicle operator.
You can dear more of he DVSA’s Heavy vehicle brake test: best practice online.
In the near future aide automotive will be offering On Site Roller Brake Testing, we will visit, test and report on truck, Bus, Coach or Trailer brakes using a calibrated RBT with print out facility.
Contact aide automotive to discuss the use of decelerometers or Roller Brake Testers – 0115 8456471
Decelerometer For HGV's

BrakeCheck Conducts DVSA HGV Brake Tests

DVSA Recommend 4 Truck, Bus & Coach Brake Tests Per Year

December 8th, 2016 Comments off

No more inspection sheets with “Brakes OK, On Road Test”

Since April 2014 the DVSA have been recommending commercial vehicles undertake 4PSV or  Truck brake tests per year!

Many operators have moved with the guidance but still over 2 years passed many commercial vehicle operators are unaware of the guidance.

The guidance states:

Document :Guide to maintaining road worthiness
Commercial goods and passenger carrying vehicles (Revised 2014)

Section 5: Safety inspection and repair facilities

Extract –
“Therefore it is normally expected that the vehicle or trailer should complete at least three successful brake efficiency tests spread throughout year in addition to the annual MOT test.”

An operator can take the decision to carry out brake tests using roller brake tests or a decelerometer like BrakeCheck.

Many bus & coach companies use a decelerometer, here at aide automotive we have sold many brake testers recently with feedback from one customer saying:

“A necessary piece of kit in today’s transport, does the job perfectly – Inwood Logistics”

BrakeCheck is portable brake tester that works from the principle of measuring deceleration or Brake Efficiency, BrakeCheck is cost effective for any commercial vehicle workshop costing as low as £470 for a PC Downloading Kit & £572 for a printer kit, BrakeCheck is ideal!

To discuss BrakeCheck options and requirements please do not hesitate to contact aide automotive on 0115 8456471

 

Truck Inspection Brake Tester

MOT Test Station in the area to be able to offer testing for HGVs and PSVs