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Seat Belt problem

Community Veteran
Posts: 16,814
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Seat Belt problem

Got my mot due in a couple of weeks... so got my tame mobile mech to come and give it an oil and filter change... rachet up the handbrake, and give a general look over.....
He says that although the seat belts do retract.. they are slightly sluggish... whilst this is not necessarily a failure, it depends on the "mood" of the guy doing the mot as to whether he will pass them or no...
Anyone got a simple remedy to make them retract  quicker ?
32 REPLIES
PowerLee
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Re: Seat Belt problem

Replace it with a new one would be the easiest & safest solution if it fails the test.
What car is it?
There are several different types of seatbelt reel around, some are just the old fashioned inertia reel type, some have pyrotechnic charges in that wind the reel in during an accident ( the ones on my 206 have these ) other newer ones have electric grabbers built in as well.

Community Veteran
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Re: Seat Belt problem

Had exactly the same problem with mine, If you have air-bags or pre-tensioners don't mess with them, you could set them off.
Bite the bullet and get it/tem replaced professionally. It/they might not work properly in an emergency. Is it worth risking your life?
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.
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Re: Seat Belt problem

Quote from: shutter
Anyone got a simple remedy to make them retract  quicker ?

The only thing I've ever tried is pull them right out and lock them in place with a couple of pegs or similar. Then sponge them off with mildly soapy water. Then a quick wipe with clean water and leave to dry before letting them retract.
It did improve mine a bit.
Community Veteran
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Re: Seat Belt problem

I often fully retract them (slowly) ten to twenty times - this lets them respool and sometimes sorts the problem.
As above - they often also get dirt in them and go a bit stiff which stops them winding properly so a good cleanse can often also help.
Community Veteran
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Re: Seat Belt problem

OK. guys... thanks... they work perfectly well... just that when you leave the car.. they are slow to retract.. so a good clean may well be the answer...
Surely you all know I drive a Skoda Fabia 1.9 SDI.. 2001.. 210, 000 on the clock... and still doing over 65mpg regularly !...  Cheesy
Community Veteran
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Registered: 30-08-2007

Re: Seat Belt problem

Quote from: shutter
they work perfectly well...

Ok I'll ask the obvious question; how do you know that? I can think of only one way to find out. Then in the ambulance on your way to hospital, you'll have plenty of time time to ask yourself "you know, maybe I should have had the seat-belt replaced properly"
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.
Community Veteran
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Re: Seat Belt problem

I know... because I have tested them in an emergency stop situation just recently....  Roll eyes
Community Veteran
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Re: Seat Belt problem

Oh well, good as long as you're happy.
In my case, when the slow retract belt (drivers side) was pulled out to its full extent by a mechanic (with me watching) the last 12 inches or so was quite frayed, this is in spite that in use the belt was almost never pulled out more than half its possible travel. No reason was given for the fraying, indeed I don't think they knew, other than to say they see quite a few like it. They had only two options; replace the belt assembly or fail the MoT. Cheaper to do it there and then and save the cost of a re-test.
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.
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Registered: 11-01-2008

Re: Seat Belt problem

thought retests were free?
Will Moderate For Thanks
Community Veteran
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Re: Seat Belt problem

Good point. Does that only apply if the vehicle is repaired on the premises. If it removed and returned I think a charge is made for a re-test. As long as its tested early in the first place the current MoT will allow you to take the car away legally with a currently valid MoT.
Can a current MoT be invalidated by a test station if a vehicle is failed before the MoT expires?
Don't know, does anyone else?
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.
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Re: Seat Belt problem

Seems there is a limited scope for taking it away and bringing it back https://www.gov.uk/getting-an-mot/retests
I wouldn't have thought they could revoke an existing one
Will Moderate For Thanks
Community Veteran
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Re: Seat Belt problem

So if you wanted to take your car home and fit new discs and pads <surely a common reason for failure> to save costs you would still be charged a retest even if you got it back inside the time limit.
I only picked that example as it wasn't in the list in your link.
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.
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Re: Seat Belt problem

yeah looks like it, if you left there you wouldn't.  seems a bit of a con...
Will Moderate For Thanks
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Re: Seat Belt problem

Yes... If you remove the vehicle from the test station, after they have recommended certain repairs to pass the mot... you are liable for a retest fee, in most cases... SOME garages do not strictly apply this, as a "come to us" instead of next door who will charge you if you fail and take it away...
HOWEVER.. Local Authority transport garages will do MOT with no repairs on site.. i.e. they only do the test... and you HAVE to take the car away to get it repaired... either at another garage or d.i.y.... in which case you will still be liable for a re-test by them....  actually, when you think about it... they are more "honest" about the condition of your car... as they have no "axe to grind" to drum up repair business....