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June 10th, 2011
Those who drive any type of vehicle in Costa Rica must take their vehicle to be examined once every one or two years. This is done at any of thirteen locations throughout the country. This is known as Revisión Técnica or Riteve for short. Not well known is that they also have four mobile units that service remote areas North, Central, South and Los Santos.
How often you must go depends on the age of your vehicle. Newer vehicles must go every two years and those who drive older vehicles must go in ever year. My license plate ends in a six, so June is my month, and I just had it done yesterday.
Cost for a passenger car is just under 10,000 colones or about $20.00 at the current exchange rate.
If this topic interests you (and it should even if you are an old pro because I am including some helpful info, read on!
Making an appointment.
You can, but probably should not, just wander in and try to get seen thinking someone did not show up. Backups are long if you do not make an appointment. Feeling lucky? Give it a try, but the appointment thing is much easier.
Making an appointment is easy. Here is the process:
- Go here -HINT: If Spanish is an issue, download and use the Google Chrome browser which will translate these pages instantly.
- One the right side is a list of stations by name of location. Click the one nearest you.
- The little station icon (picture) will change to orange. Place your mouse over it and a bubble will pop up with a link that says: “Solicitar cita previa en esta estación” Click that.
- Next you get a chart showing open hours (in yellow). Looks like the thing you get when choosing airline seats.
- Click the date and time you want remembering the date format is international and the time is military time.
- Enter your license plate number and your cell phone or other number I suppose.
- You then get a confirmation which you should print out.
What gets checked?
Here is a list:
Seat Belts : You have one for each seat the belts are working properly and have no cuts or wear.
Steering Wheel : It works correctly. Does not have excessive play.
Wipers : are in good condition, operate and clean the windshield.
Polarized visors (if any): Check that the brushes do not touch.
Windshield : No cracks or ‘bull’s eyes”
Mirror : It’s in good condition and secure.
Doors : Open and close properly.
Speedometer : Working.
Fuel cap : Capped and secure.
Front and rear bumper : They’re in good condition and securely attached.
Reflective : They are 2 red and reflect light at night. This is for certain high capacity passenger vehicles like tourist type vans.
Light over License Plate : Lights up and is not loose.
Brake lights : 2 lateral and 1 central, are red, they work and are in good condition.
Rear turn signals : Red, orange, no more than 4, are working and in good condition.
Directional : They’re white or orange, no more than 4, and are working and in good condition.
High and low beams : No more than 4, white or yellow color with no difference between them.Subject and in good condition. The change of high and low light work.
Halogen (if any): They are white or yellow and should not work with high beams.
Decorative lighting products you may have installed and which are prohibited by law.
Mufflers, smoke and any noise : If gasoline engine accelerates and smokes, will not pass RTV. No abnormal noises or have the air filter or carburetor modified. Muffler required.
Tires : They are smooth, no cuts, bulges and with sufficient tread.
Fenders : Secured and in good condition.
Plates : The numbers are easily read match the title.
Title: You MUST have the original title and not a copy.
Fluid levels Must be full. Oil, water, brakes, etc.
You pull in and park then take your original title and reservation info to let them know you are there. They give you a paper which you will give to the inspector. You then drive around to the main entrance area and get in line. Yes there ARE lines, but not too bad. Make sure you are in the line for the type of vehicle you are driving.
An inspector may come out and start testing various things like doors etc. He may also lift the hood and check the engine compartment. I have been told but have not verified that the engine may not be overly dirty. He may check fluid levels too. While we were in line, a young woman made maybe 20 trips with a 12oz water bottle because apparently her car was low on water levels. Washer? Radiator? Who knows, but don’t forget those levels. Clearly she did not want to come back another day.
Basically? that’s it.
My car is a 2009 model, so my next visit will be in June 2013. The rule is five years old or less years old you go every two years. Older then five years requires an annual visit.
When to go?
You can tell when you must go here. It is based on the last number of your license plate.
Why should you not forget this?
The ticket for not having a current reteve is HUGE and can result in the confiscation of your vehicle. Best not to fool around with this. Get it!
Filed under Cost of Living, Costa Rica, Reteve, Revisión Técnica | Comments (16)