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Questions & info about the Motor Vehicle Act. Mature discussion only.

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Old 07-24-2013, 10:27 PM   #1
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Question regarding "LAMPS and REFLECTORS"

4.04 (1) Lighting devices required by this Division must be maintained in good working order.
(2) Lamps and reflectors required by this Division
(a) must be securely mounted on the vehicle,
(b) must not have any cracked, broken, missing or incorrectly installed lenses, and a lamp must not have bent or broken rims that allow water to enter the lamp, and
(c) must not be shielded, covered or obscured by any part of the vehicle or load or by dirt or other material.

I got a ticket more than a year ago for having the circled part, an eyelid:


The eyelid itself is NOT blocking ANY lighting source nor reflectors, I don't see any reason for it to be ILLEGAL.

So my question is, when it says LAMPS, does it mean the LIGHT SOURCE AKA projectors/bulbs? or does it mean the ENTIRE headlight housing?

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Old 07-24-2013, 11:22 PM   #2
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they dont differentiate between the source of the light and elsewhere on the housing.
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Old 07-25-2013, 01:01 AM   #3
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I love lamp. Reflectors not so much.
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Old 07-25-2013, 05:47 AM   #4
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If you read further down in that same section you will get your answer..

General lighting requirements

4.02 (1) A vehicle on a highway must only be equipped with and use lamps, reflectors or other illuminating devices authorized by this Division or authorized in writing by the director.

(2) A vehicle on a highway must be equipped with lamps equivalent to those provided by the original manufacturer in accordance with the requirements that applied under the Motor Vehicle Safety Act (Canada), or a predecessor to that Act, at the time of vehicle manufacture.

(3) All lamps, lamp bulbs and reflectors required or permitted by this Division must comply with

(a) the approved standards established by the Motor Vehicle Safety Act (Canada) and the applicable SAE standards,

(b) the conditions of use described in this Division, and

(c) the requirements of Table 1 of the Schedule to this Division


"Lamp" means what you might call the "light"...as it mentions a "lamp & lamp bulb"..or light & light bulb. Your eyebrow obstructed part of the factory "lamp" as it can be seen in your picture.
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Old 07-25-2013, 03:15 PM   #5
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Sigh, I hope they waive this through in court. Literally blocking nothing at all, police thought I was covering reflectors
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Old 07-25-2013, 04:26 PM   #6
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If your eyelid is covering part of the clear plastic - you are, in fact, covering the "lamp".
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Old 07-25-2013, 04:39 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wonton1017 View Post
Sigh, I hope they waive this through in court. Literally blocking nothing at all, police thought I was covering reflectors
Actually it was blocking part of the lamp assembly... so it meets the criteria for a ticket. Looks or not, it ain't legal.

Better to hope the cop doesn't show for court.
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Old 07-26-2013, 10:43 AM   #8
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My $750 ticket (handed me 3 sheets of tickets) with 6 violations became a $240 ticket today in court, learned my lesson to never do that shit again. Officer negotiated that he would drop 2 of the violations if I pleaded guilty to the rest, judge cut the rest by 60%.
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Old 07-26-2013, 10:48 AM   #9
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Aha, so it was more than just the one ticket... now the truth comes out

So what else did you get nailed for?
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:16 AM   #10
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1. Eyelids (told me it was shielding the HOUSING)
2. Taillight tint (slight tint, i'm guessing it looks like you put a 75% window tint on top of it)
3. 85% window tint (it's as clear as it gets, 85% light pass through but blocks off 99% UV rays and reduce temperature and damage to my interior)
4. modified exhaust, he said he could fit his whole head in it so it is illegal
5. didn't notify change of colour IMMEDIATELY (i thought i had 30 days to do so and the car was not fully wrapped yet at the time)
6. license plate was installed with zip ties and not screwed on
7. tennis ball can't roll under side skirts
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:21 AM   #11
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Btw, the exhaust tip diameter is 4.75". He dropped this one because it came from the HKS like that.

He also dropped the taillight tint because he might have felt sorry for me.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:59 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zulutango View Post
"Lamp" means what you might call the "light"...as it mentions a "lamp & lamp bulb"..or light & light bulb. Your eyebrow obstructed part of the factory "lamp" as it can be seen in your picture.
Where is "Lamp" defined in the MVA/MVAR? I don't see it in the definitions.

The photo provided shows the "eyelids" covering the clear plastic cover of the headlamp assembly, but not covering any portion of the assembly that produces and focusses light; nor is it covering any portion of the assembly intended to reflect light.
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Old 07-26-2013, 03:58 PM   #13
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[I]"headlamp" means a lamp, mounted on a motor vehicle, that is capable of displaying white light, the rays of which are projected forward, but does not include a spotlamp, cowl lamp, parking lamp, fog lamp, clearance lamp, auxiliary driving lamp or daytime running lamp; [/I]

General maintenance

4.04 (1) Lighting devices required by this Division must be maintained in good working order.

(2) Lamps and reflectors required by this Division

(a) must be securely mounted on the vehicle,

(b) must not have any cracked, broken, missing or incorrectly installed lenses, and a lamp must not have bent or broken rims that allow water to enter the lamp, and

(c) must not be shielded, covered or obscured by any part of the vehicle or load or by dirt or other material



There is your definition. Lamp is defined. You may call it a light but the act calls it a headlamp
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Old 07-26-2013, 04:11 PM   #14
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You've posted the definition of headlamp.

The section the OP was charged under refers to it as a "lamp". We know these are likely not interchangeable terms as "headlamp" specifically excludes many other types of lamps.

If we're talking "headlamp" (as opposed to "lamp") the definition you posted describes it as a lamp, the rays of which are projected forward.

By the looks of the OP's photo, the portion of the headlamp assembly that actually produces and projects the light isn't being covered by the decorative trim.
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Old 07-27-2013, 06:27 AM   #15
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To quote the wording again....

Headlamps

4.05 (1) A motor vehicle must be equipped with either one or 2 headlamps mounted on each side of the front of the vehicle and capable of displaying white light.



]"headlamp" means a lamp,

The MV Act & Regs use the term "LAMP", not the term "LIGHT". Check it for yourself...head LAMP, tail LAMP, licence plate LAMP, daytime running LAMPS, backup LAMPS, side marker LAMPS etc etc etc....


General maintenance

4.04 (1) Lighting devices required by this Division must be maintained in good working order.

(2) Lamps and reflectors required by this Division

((c) must not be shielded, covered or obscured

Last edited by zulutango; 07-27-2013 at 07:16 AM.
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Old 07-27-2013, 10:00 AM   #16
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All that's done is define headlamp as a specific type of lamp.

If you look at his headlamp assembly, the portion thereof that produces, reflects and projects light is entirely unobstructed by his decoration.
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Old 07-27-2013, 02:16 PM   #17
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Re-read my post # 13 & 15.
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Old 07-28-2013, 04:26 PM   #18
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I read them

My opinion remains that the lamp itself remains uncovered and unobstructed by the decoration.

It would be pretty hard to argue that it's covered if the decoration has no measurable impact on the beam pattern or lamp intensity.
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:20 PM   #19
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Sebastian, your point is that the light-emitting areas of the 'lamp' are not obscured, and as a result the lamp is not 'shielded, covered, or obscured'.

Zulu, your point is that the lamp is not divided into discreet 'sections'; which is to say the light-emitting areas and what could be called 'trim' areas are not viewed separately in the eyes of the law. A lamp is a lamp is a lamp, regardless of where the bulb is.


Your two points are not mutually exclusive, however in order to maintain a consistency throughout the reading of the law, I expect that Zulu's point would 'trump' (for lack of a better word) your point of 'but the light-emitting area isn't being affected'. While you might say that it's hard to argue that it's covered when there's no measurable impact, the point is that it is covered. It may not follow the spirit of the law, but it does follow the wording. And if the police issue a ticket and the JP upholds it, then Zulu's point is clearly correct in the legal sense (though possibly not 'in the right' as perceived by everyone).
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:49 PM   #20
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Let's consider why the regulation exists in the first place. The intent of the reg is to prevent people from affixing decorations which could negatively impact the performance or function of the headlights.

The regulation has been on the books since the days of sealed beam headlamps. With sealed beam headlamps, the entire front surface of the headlamp plays a role in the distribution of the light. Putting a decoration of a similar nature on such a headlamp would surely affect the distribution of light from the headlamp and as such would (and should) be considered illegal.

The design of the OP's headlamps has effectively shrunk the sealed beam headlamp and relocated it behind a piece of clear plastic that is much larger than the lamp itself.

The clear plastic cover simply serves as a protective element and is not integral to the function of the lamp.
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Old 07-28-2013, 10:38 PM   #21
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This then begs some questions:

One: should this specific law be changed because lamp technology has changed?
One A: If so, should all laws in the MVA be reviewed to ensure that the laws have not become outdated with modern technology?
One A i: Who should pay for and consult on these reviews?
One A ii: Where there are some laws which would apply only to newer cars and others to older cars, should we then have graduated MVAs? MVA for vehicles 1970 and earlier, from 1971-1989, from 1990 to 2010, from 2010+?
One B: If not, how can we rework or re-word the laws in order to express what reason they have not been changed?


TL;DR: Updating laws is hard.
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Old 07-29-2013, 06:51 AM   #22
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And very slow and requires someone to champion the changes. I was involved behind the scenes in the changing of several regulation sections of the MVA Regs in BC. Several of these dealt with lighting. You should be aware that BC uses the federal standards as the basis of our Provincial MV Act Regs. If you look at MV Regs from province to province and even look at the wording in US Regs you will find they are almost identical. This desire to avoid inconsistant and conflicting Regs is also behind what they do and part of the reason it takes time to change the existing standards.


As far as laws being decided on the strict legal sense..,..that is how laws function. They are by definition strict & legal, otherwise they are useless. The penalty applied to a particular violation can sometimes be varied by the court, withing certain agreed upon guidelines. Fines of anywhere between $1 and $2000 plus 6 months in jail can be applied to a MV Act conviction. The usually accepted penalty is on the ticket you get. There are certain minimum levels for some tickets but all could be increased beyond the ticket face if the JP wishes.

Last edited by zulutango; 07-29-2013 at 06:57 AM.
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Old 07-29-2013, 08:42 AM   #23
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We can look for roadblocks to making changes to the regulations or we can look at the bigger picture of clogged courts, the ramifications of which are far more detrimental to society.
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Old 07-29-2013, 12:47 PM   #24
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So with all that is wrong with society and the legal system today, you want to spend time, money and effort to change legislation to permit people to install unauthorized, untested covers over the headlight assembly? Hmmmmmmmm?
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Old 07-29-2013, 02:46 PM   #25
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The best part is that having an eyelid installed INSIDE of your headlights is perfectly fine. My friend with a BMW E92 made custom gunmetal eyelids inside of his headlights to imitate the new F30/F32 headlights. He told multiple (5+) police officers to look at his headlights and tell him if anything is illegal with it and they all say nope.

That being said, this makes zero sense because if you put it on the OUTSIDE, it is SHIELDING THE HOUSING (which is "illegal" according to the officer). But if you put it on the INSIDE, it is NOT SHIELDING THE HOUSING. But in reality, they are both in the exact same spot except one is on the lens' exterior and the other is on the lens' interior. (millimeters of difference in location)
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