Mr. Matt Miller
P.O. Box 299
Hamel, MN 55304-0299
Dear Mr. Miller:
This responds to your letter asking whether DMJ Corporation (DMJ) would be considered a brake hose assembly manufacturer subject to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 106, Brake Hoses (49 CFR 571.106), if it assembles brake hose and end fittings for its own use. The answer is no.
In your letter, you explain that DMJ owns trucks and trailers. You wish to know whether, when the brake hoses on those vehicles must be replaced, they can be replaced by brake hose assemblies manufactured by DMJ itself. You plan to take rubber hose and end fittings manufactured by other companies and completing them into brake hose assemblies for use on your vehicles. You provided printouts (from what appears to be www.Gates.com) of air brake hose and air brake end fittings that you are considering using.
By way of background information, NHTSA is authorized by the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act (Safety Act) to issue and enforce the FMVSSs for new motor vehicles and new items of motor vehicle equipment. NHTSA does not provide approvals of motor vehicles or motor vehicle equipment. Instead, manufacturers are required to certify that their vehicles and equipment meet applicable standards. NHTSA also investigates safety-related defects.
NHTSA has issued FMVSS No. 106 specifying labeling and performance requirements for motor vehicle brake hose, brake hose assemblies, and brake hose end fittings. In response to your question, brake hose assembly is defined in S3 of FMVSS No. 106 as follows:
Brake hose assembly means a brake hose, with or without armor, equipped with end fittings for use in a brake system, but does not include an air or vacuum assembly prepared by the owner or operator of a used vehicle, by his employee, or by a repair facility, for installation in that used vehicle.
Based on the information you provided, we understand that DMJ will be preparing air brake hose assemblies for installation in its used vehicles. You have advised us that you are making the air brake hose assemblies only to replace hose on trucks and trailers owned by DMJ.
Thus, the definition of brake hose assembly would not include DMJs assemblage of the hose and end fitting. DMJ would thus not be considered a brake hose assembler and would not have to meet FMVSS No. 106 requirements for air brake hose assemblies at S7.2.3.
Note that the assemblies you manufacture are considered motor vehicle equipment under the Safety Act. Manufacturers of motor vehicles and motor vehicle equipment must ensure that their products are free of safety-related defects.
In addition, if DMJs trucks and trailers are commercial motor vehicles, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and appropriate State Department of Transportation agencies may have requirements for your brake hose assemblies. For information about FMCSA requirements, please contact that agency at: 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC, 20590, telephone 1-800-832-5660, www.fmcsa.dot.gov.
I hope this information is helpful. If you have any questions, please contact Ms. Dorothy Nakama of my staff at (202) 366-2992.
O. Kevin Vincent