California Proposing Regulating Oil Change Shops as “Repair Dealers”
Bill Would Require Recommendation of OE-Specified Change Intervals
The state of California is known for many things, including its miles of beaches, breathtaking natural beauty, famously mild weather, wine, and In-N-Out Burgers. Unfortunately, it’s also known for its liberal activist state government, suffocating regulation and red tape, and high taxes. The Golden State’s notorious tendency to micro-manage businesses is rearing its ugly head once again in the form of California Senate Bill 778. The bill, which passed the state’s upper house by a 22-12 vote in January, is now before the state Assembly Committee on Privacy and Consumer Protection, according to Tire Business, an affiliate publication of Automotive News.
As currently written, the bill would require oil change shops to register as automotive repair dealers with the state’s Bureau of Automotive Repair. It would also require the oil change shops to recommend the factory-recommended oil change intervals. The OE-recommended oil change intervals can be as high as 10,000-15,000 miles on newer models, compared to the typical 3,000-mile change interval recommended by oil change shops. Some of the proponents of the bill claim oil change shops are being predatory and self-serving by recommending shortened change intervals.
Opponents of the bill claim that most vehicles in California qualify for the manufacturer-recommended “severe” service schedule due to the stop-and-go driving that typifies freeways in many parts of the state, which specify shorter service intervals. Additionally, opponents say most drivers do not follow so-called “home” maintenance recommendations such as checking oil levels at each fuel fill-up. Opponents say it’s “irresponsible” for the legislature to mandate maximum intervals when the service requirements for each vehicle will vary by use and specific situations. What do you think? Is this law common sense, or just more bureaucratic meddling and irrational imposition of rules upon small businesses?
Source: Automotive News