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Garages - Servicing Vehicles

What should I do when servicing vehicles?

  • Look completely around and under vehicle and check for brake pedal pressure before moving the vehicle.
  • Have all bystanders stay in a safe area until the driver has stopped the vehicle.
  • Move vehicles at a low speed and in low gear – especially up and down ramps.
  • Use a guide when moving the vehicle in reverse, near blind corners or narrow areas.
  • Park on a level, hard surface to make repairs.
  • Chock and block the wheels to prevent movement during servicing.
  • Disconnect battery and discharge any capacitors before starting to work on vehicle.
  • Secure the trunk and hood to prevent them from falling on you when you are working underneath them.
  • Inspect a running engine with extreme caution. Avoid contact with fan blades and belts.
  • Only do work or repairs on a cool engine. Hot metal and fluids will cause burns.
  • Avoid working around hot equipment such as exhaust pipes and manifolds. If such work is absolutely necessary, cover the hot equipment with some insulating protection to prevent getting burned.
  • Always wear eye protection when working on a vehicle or when using power tools.
  • Store the keys in a secure place when the vehicle is not in use or not attended.
  • Check safety data sheets (SDSs) before working with products for safe handling and storage information, and for recommendations regarding PPE (gloves, respirator, etc.).
  • Be aware that some brake and clutch pads may still contain asbestos. Asbestos can cause serious lung disease. Special regulations may apply so consult with your jurisdiction for more information.

What are some things I should avoid while servicing vehicles?

  • Do not use tools or service equipment without proper training.
  • Do not allow smoking, open flames, or other sources of ignition in areas used for fueling or servicing fuel systems. Warn others before servicing a fuel system.
  • Do not wear loose clothing or jewellery near moving parts or machinery (engine, tools, etc.). Tie long hair back.
  • Do not walk between a moving vehicle and a stationary object such as another vehicle or a wall.
  • Do not hold open a fuel nozzle with fuel caps or other objects. Use only approved latches supplied by the nozzle manufacturer to hold open an automatic nozzle.
  • Do not stretch or pull on a hose with small loops in it. The hose can kink and break.
  • Do not rely on jacks, hoists or hydraulic cylinders to hold the vehicle. Support equipment on proper size blocks or stands.
  • Do not use compressed air to remove dust from equipment, work surfaces, or from clothing.
  • Do not put hands near the cooling fan. Even when the ignition is off, many vehicles will still engage the fan until the coolant is cold.

Document last updated on January 25, 2017

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Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy, currency and completeness of the information, CCOHS does not guarantee, warrant, represent or undertake that the information provided is correct, accurate or current. CCOHS is not liable for any loss, claim, or demand arising directly or indirectly from any use or reliance upon the information.