40 CFR 205.160-2 - Test sample selection and preparation.
(a) Vehicles comprising the sample which are required to be tested under a test request in accordance with this subpart must be selected consecutively as they are produced. Before the official test, the test vehicle must not be prepared, tested, modified, adjusted, or maintained in any manner unless such preparation, tests, modifications, adjustments or maintenance are part of the manufacturer's prescribed manufacturing and inspection procedures, and are documented in the manufacturer's internal vehicle assembly and inspection procedures, are required or permitted under this subpart, or are approved in advance by the Administrator. For purposes of this section, prescribed manufacturing and inspection procedures include quality control testing and assembly procedures normally performed by the manufacturer on like products during early production if the resulting testing is not biased by this procedure. In the case of imported products, the manufacturer may perform adjustments, preparations, modification or tests normally performed at the port of entry by the manufacturer to prepare the vehicle for delivery to a dealer or customer.
(1) Equipment or fixtures necessary to conduct the test may be installed on the vehicle if such equipment or fixtures have no effect on the noise emissions of the vehicle, as determined by the measurement methodology.
(2) In the event of a vehicle malfunction (i.e., failure to start, etc.) the manufacturer may perform the maintenance that is necessary to enable the vehicle to operate in a normal manner. This maintenance must be documented and reported in the SEA report.
(3) No quality control, quality assurance testing, assembly or selection procedures may be used on the test vehicle or any portion of the test vehicle including parts and subassemblies, unless such quality control, quality assurance testing, assembly or selection procedures are used normally during the production and assembly of all other vehicles of this configuration which will be distributed in commerce, are required or permitted under this subpart or are approved in advance by the Administrator.
(4) If a vehicle is unable to complete the noise tests, the manufacturer may replace the vehicle. Any replacement vehicle must be a production vehicle of the same configuration as the replaced vehicle or a noisier configuration and will be subject to all the provisions of these regulations. Any replacement must be reported in the SEA report.
(b) The Acceptable Quality Level (AQL) is 10 percent. The appropriate sampling plans associated with the designated AQL are contained in Appendix II or the test request.
(c) The vehicles of the category, configuration or configuration subgroup selected for testing must be assembled by the manufacturer for distribution in commerce using the manufacturer's normal production process.
(d) Unless otherwise indicated in the test request, the manufacturer must initiate testing with the vehicles of the category, configuration or configuration subgroup specified in the test request which are next scheduled for production after receipt of the test request.
(e) The manufacturer must keep on hand all products in the test sample until the sample is accepted or rejected in accordance with § 205.160-6; except that vehicles actually tested and found to be in conformance with this regulation need not be kept.