I was driving home from work on a recent day when I saw a car maintenance log that read, “MOTORCYCLE PULLING OFF THE DUMP” and I immediately knew it was time to do some work.
But what I didn’t expect was to find out it was all part of the National Geographic project to find the most important things to check in the vehicle maintenance area.
The log is the result of more than 10 years of research that led me to an amazing database of things to do in the vehicles maintenance area, which has been built over time to give the general public an even better view of what’s going on in their vehicle.
As the vehicle ages, the logs become increasingly important.
For example, I used the National Transportation Safety Board data to show me what cars were inspected most frequently and most frequently.
But it was a great time to check the logs to see what was happening to older cars, too.
You might not notice, but you could be a potential cause of damage in a vehicle with a lot of wear and tear.
The vehicles maintenance areas are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so check the vehicle every couple of days.
The logs are available in different formats: A spreadsheet, for example, can be accessed by clicking the “My Documents” tab and then clicking the file icon next to the name of the vehicle.
Or, if you want to save the logs as a PDF file, click the “File” button in the lower right corner of the screen.
You can download the vehicle log files by visiting the National Resources Center (NRC) Vehicle Maintenance Log Archive.
It can also be downloaded directly from the NRC Vehicle Maintenance page.
I hope you’ll take a minute to check out the log for yourself.
This is what I’ve found: • All vehicles, except those that were used for a race, are subject to annual inspections, including annual inspections for a vehicle that is part of a race.
• Some vehicles are more subject to yearly inspections than others.
• The maintenance log for older vehicles is updated each year.
• In some cases, the vehicle’s age is listed as an issue, such as a broken windshield or damaged windshield wiper blades.
• All vehicle logs are displayed as separate documents.
• Most vehicles have a maintenance date.
• A maintenance log is typically available in one of the following formats: • Excel format, which allows for Excel spreadsheet editing.
• PDF format, a text file format.
• CSV format, an Excel spreadsheet format.
In Excel format and PDF format files, each column in the table is numbered.
• Columns are ordered alphabetically by date.
For a full list of vehicle logs, visit the Vehicle Maintenance log Archive.
For more information on the vehicles that are subject of annual inspections and maintenance, visit Vehicle Maintenance.
• You can see a summary of the vehicles’ maintenance logs at the National Resource Center Vehicle Maintenance Site.
For vehicles with a different maintenance date, you can access the log file by clicking on the “View Vehicle Logs” tab.
If you have any questions about the vehicles logs, contact the NTC Vehicle Maintenance Officer at 1-800-932-7166.
• Please contact the National Capital Transportation Authority Vehicle Maintenance Team if you have questions about maintenance of vehicles or if you would like to report a problem.
• I would like you to be able to view the log files on your own, not just for National Geographic.
Visit the Vehicle maintenance site.
You will find the files on a spreadsheet.
To view the vehicle logs on your smartphone, use your mobile phone app or a web browser, such for Google Chrome, Apple Safari, or Internet Explorer.
The website includes a handy map, which shows the maintenance areas for your location.
The National Resource and Maintenance Center has several other tools to help you view the logs, including: • A tool to download and open the vehicle and maintenance logs, called the Vehicle Management Analyzer.
This tool allows you to view vehicle logs from various years.
• An online vehicle maintenance tool, called Vehicle Management Analysis, which can help you see the current status of your vehicle.
You’ll need to log in using your vehicle registration, tag number, and vehicle title.
The tool also can help see the vehicle title, vehicle number, odometer reading, and other information.
• If you need help with any of the tools, contact National Resources and Maintenance Officer John J. Stewart, National Resources & Maintenance, at 1-(800) 434-3633 or [email protected]
• This website is not a substitute for professional inspection and maintenance service, which is provided by the National Engineering and Safety Services (NESSS) Division of Vehicle Inspection and Maintenance.
You should consult with your insurance company or independent mechanic.
For assistance with your vehicle, visit your local National Resource & Maintenance Office.