United States                Air and Radiation           EPA420-F-03-003
 Environmental Protection                                April 2003

 Office of Transportation and Air Quality

On June 8, 2001, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
proposed changes to the 1995 Service Information Rule. As a result of
that proposal, amendments to the current Service Information Rule are
being finalized to assure that the aftermarket auto service and repair
industry has the necessary information and diagnostic equipment to
perform emissions-related repairs on vehicles equipped with On-Board
Diagnostics (OBD). All 1996 and newer cars and trucks are equipped
with OBD systems which monitors a vehicle's performance. A "check
engine" light will alert consumers if an emissions control component is
not working properly.
The Final Rule
In order to effectively service OBD-equipped vehicle and trucks, repair
technicians must have access to emissions-related service information
developed by vehicle and engine manufacturers to utilize the OBD
system. EPA is finalizing revisions to the 1995 service information
regulations requiring the availability of emissions-related service infor-
mation for the aftermarket auto service and repair industry. The amend-
ments will improve access to this information by making it publicly
available via the Internet.
                                                 > Printed on Recycled Paper

The amendments are intended to ensure that all aftermarket auto service
and repair facilities have access to the same emission-related service
information, in the same manner as that provided by the manufacturers to
their authorized dealerships. In addition, this final rule will provide
consumers with more choices in where to have their vehicles serviced.
Key Elements of  the Final  Rule
 Make full-text emission-related service and training information
  available via the Internet. With this provision, aftermarket auto service
  providers will have real-time access to the same information available
  to manufacturer dealerships.

 Provide equipment and tool companies with the information that
  allows them to develop equipment with vehicle reprogramming capa-
  bilities. With this provision, aftermarket auto service providers will be
  able to provide reprogramming services to their customers which
  currently are mostly limited to manufacturer dealerships.

 Make enhanced diagnostic information available to the aftermarket
  diagnostic scan tool manufacturers. With this provision, aftermarket
  service providers will have more advanced generic OBD diagnostic
  scan tools available to them at a reasonable cost.

 Make manufacturer-specific diagnostic tools available for sale to
  interested parties. With this provision, aftermarket auto service provid-
  ers who specialize in particular manufacturers will have access to the
  highly specialized  diagnostic equipment.

 Require manufacturers to provide  any supplemental OBD technical
  information necessary to perform emissions-related repairs. With this
  provision, there will be more specific OBD information available to
  aftermarket auto service providers and Inspection/Maintenance Pro-
  grams to more effectively diagnose and repair manufacturer-specific
  OBD problems.

 Require service information from heavy-duty vehicle and engine
  manufacturers. OBD systems will  be  required on heavy-duty vehicles
  and engines up to 14,000 pounds beginning in 2005.  With this provi-
  sion, heavy-duty aftermarket auto  service providers will have in-
  creased access to emissions-related service information as required by
  the Clean Air Act.

Section 202(5) of the Clean Air Act directs EPA to promulgate regula-
tions requiring manufacturers to provide persons repairing or servicing
motor vehicles any and all information needed to make use of the ve-
hicle emission control diagnostic system and other information for
making emission-related diagnoses and repairs. In addition, no informa-
tion may be withheld under section 208(c) if that information is provided
to franchisee! dealers. On August 5,1995, EPA published a final rulemak-
ing (FR 40474) which set forth the Agency's service information regula-
tions. As we implemented the 1995 regulations, EPA learned that service
information providers are still unable to receive the information they
need to perform emission-related repairs on OBD-equipped vehicles.
Additionally, changes in technology for electronic access to information
(i.e., the Internet) make it necessary to revise the current requirements to
improve timely access to emissions-related service information.
For IViore information
You can access the rulemaking documents on EPA's vehicle service
information Web site at:


For further information on this final rulemaking, please contact Holly
Pugliese at:

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
    Office of Transportation & Air Quality
    2000 Traverwood Drive
    Ann Arbor, MI 48105
    E-mail: pugliese.holly@epa.gov