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What is the minimum standard for automotive component traceability?

Jim R

What is the minimum standard for automotive component traceability? For example, an axle manufacturer pin stamps a shift, line, julian date and part number, but does not put a part unique serial number on the part. This makes containing suspect parts much more difficult than it has to be. My question is, is a part unique number a regulatory requirement for critical components?


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That depends. Can your unique part number allow you to trace the part all the way back to the raw material? I don't think that it is a regulatory requirement, but traceability back through the entire supply chain is. What specifically does your CSR's say about traceability requirements for critical components?

The goal of traceability is being able to track a part all the way back through the supply chain to the raw material. From your example, if your customer contacted you with a material related failure, could you take the stamped information and track it back to a specific batch/heat of steel? If you can't do that, then the amount of potential risk the company can be exposed to increases substantially - especially if there is a recall situation. How confident is the company, that should there be a problem, the raw material can be identified and then followed back up through the chain to identify any other possible suspect finished goods?

Hope this helps!

Jim R

Thank you for taking the time to answer me. I didn't have my standards with me yesterday and I thought that I could get a quick answer through here. I have since found out it is in IATF The standard states (paraphrased) that safety critical components must at a minimum have a part unique lot trace number. A serial number is only required if it is a CSR.
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