FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
Here you can find questions and answers regarding IMDS content and usage in several categories. To see the content of each category and to read the answer to a question, please click on the category/question to expand the content.
You find OEM-specific IMDS documentation for suppliers in the Help category "OEM Specific Information" (no longer under FAQ).
Legislative Requirements (incl. GDPR and REACH)
Where can I find (Commission Decision) 2003/138/EC establishing component and material coding standards for vehicles pursuant to ELV Directive 2000/53/EC?
The May 2018 General Data Privacy Regulation (GDPR) requires each IMDS Contact Person and User explicitly to authorize the display of their Personal data (name, phone number, email address) to other Users in IMDS. Users can provide authorization at first log-in, and/or in the Administration à Personal Settings. However, Contact Person and User are separate. Because a Contact Person need not be a User, IMDS always treats Contact Person and User as separate roles, and there is no link in IMDS between these two roles. Therefore Contacts must always authorize sharing of Personal data via a Company Administrator initiated email process.
As a Company Administrator:
- Administration for Contact Persons is via the menu, using Administration > Contact Person.
- If a desired Contact Person is shown as inactive, please re-activate the existing Contact Person instead of registering a new Contact Person for the same individual. If you create a new Contact Person for the same individual, the individual may be assigned to new MDSs, but any past MDSs that Contact Person to which that Contact Person was assigned will be “Unknown”, and the Contact Person will need to be reassigned.
- To re-activate a Contact Person, please search your Contact Persons. Use double-click to access the details screen. From that screen, you can cause IMDS to send the Contact Person an email for confirmation. The email will be sent to the email of the Contact. Inform the Contact Person they must not be logged into IMDS when they click the link on the activation email, or their session will be terminated and the activation may not work. The Contact Person must click the link on the activation email to display the Activate page, and then click the “Activate” link. The Contact will be activated within minutes of clicking the Activate link.
- A company administrator may also use a generic group mailbox for a Contact Person, so long as someone can use the Activate link email sent to the group mailbox to complete activation. This is a viable solution if there are no Contact Persons willing to permit sharing of their Personal data.
- If you change the Contact email, the email address owner must authorize being an Active Contact Person.
The process must be followed exactly. Please read in its entirety before starting, and then proceed step-by-step.
As an IMDS Contact Person:
- When a Company Administrator requests that a Contact Person become Active, the Contact Person receives an email at the email address the company administrator specifies. This is not the User email, if one exists.
- If you are an IMDS User, please ensure you are not logged in to IMDS when you click the activate email link. The activation will not work if you are logged in to IMDS. The link in this email is valid for only 30 days.
- Please read the activation email carefully, as the very exacting activation process is described in the mail.
- The activation link should display a custom IMDS Log-In page. Do not log into IMDS as a User! The Contact Person will see information about becoming a Contact in IMDS in the pane on the right side of the screen, where current IMDS News is usually displayed. The buttons to Activate or Cancel your activation are located on the bottom right of the screen. You will be activated as a Contact Person only if you select Activation.
As an IMDS User:
- If you are a new user, or have not logged in since May 25, 2018, at first login you will see a “Data Protection” popup. An authorization explanation popup is displayed. If you agree to allow your personal data to be displayed for Trust User and for MDS Rejections, check the boxes, and click OK.
- If you have logged into IMDS since May 25, 2018, but did not give consent, select Menu Administration > Personal Settings. Scroll the “User Data” left pane to the bottom. Select the help “?” to the right of each option for an explanation of what you are authorizing. To allow the display of your personal data for Trust User and for MDS Rejections, check these boxes, and click OK.
As an IMDS User:
- To revoke previously granted consent, select Menu Administration > Personal Settings. Scroll the “User Data” left pane to the bottom. To revoke the display of your personal data for Trust User, MDS Rejections, or both, clear the corresponding checkbox(es), and click OK.
Why is there now a Conflict Minerals group?
On July 15, 2010 the US Congress passed the Wall Street reform bill that included a provision on conflict minerals. The language in the bill requires companies that use tin, tungsten, tantalum, or gold in their products or production of their product and report to the US Securities and Exchange Commission to file an annual disclosure report with the Securities and Exchange Commission detailing whether these materials originated in the Congo or its adjoining countries. The bill requires companies to audit these reports to assure whether they are sourcing from conflict mines or not.
Several OEMs are cascading an information letter through the supply chain making suppliers aware of this new requirement. In the letter they ask suppliers to:
- Determine what components use conflict minerals or their derivatives.
- Work with suppliers to map supply chains of those components.
- Require suppliers to identify smelters used or verify that the origin of conflict minerals is scrap or recycled material.
In order to facilitate the first step, we have introduced the Conflict Minerals group that can be used for analysis.
What are Conflict Minerals?
The definition of conflict mineral in the legislation is (http://www.dodd-frank-act.us/Dodd_Frank_Act_Text_Section_1502.html):
(A) columbite-tantalite (coltan), cassiterite, gold, wolframite, or their derivatives; or
(B) any other mineral or its derivatives determined by the Secretary of State to be financing conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or an adjoining country.
In other words, it is not just where the mineral comes from that makes it a conflict mineral.
Are the substances in the Conflict Minerals group a complete list of substances I need to be concerned about?
No. The substances in this IMDS group are substances that are found in the IMDS Basic Substance list. These substances are commonly found in hard parts. There are many other compounds that are used in manufacturing (necessary to the production of the part) that are not found in final parts.
How can I use the Conflict Minerals group?
To examine the structure of an individual MDS, you may use the pull down and conflict minerals will be highlighted in the tree similar to GADSL substances or Process Chemicals. You may also use this group in Analysis > Certificate of Expenditure > Basic Substance List to determine which parts contain Conflict Minerals so you can determine which suppliers you may need further information from.
For the legislation, do I only need to look at my parts and materials in IMDS?
No. The legislation (New Section 13(p)) requires reporting annually whether Conflict Minerals that are necessary to the functionality or production of a product originated in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) or an adjoining country (such countries are referred to in this memorandum as the DRC Countries).
While the final guidelines from the SEC are not published at this time, we are expecting that this means all tooling, catalysts, etc., are also included in the reporting requirement. Only parts on a vehicle as sold are reported in IMDS.
After I find my parts and suppliers, what do I have to do next?
That is really up to you and your customer requirements. Some of your customers may require a formal report asking for information on the source of the Conflict Minerals. Communications with your suppliers on this topic will need to be done outside of IMDS. IMDS is only a starting point on this journey.
If your company reports to the US SEC, you may be asked to contribute to such a report.
What do I do if I use IMDS Committee materials with these substances in them?
As it says in Recommendation 001, that even if you use IMDS Committee materials, you are required to collect information to ensure that the IMDS Committee material is representative of the material being used. You will need to use that information to contact your suppliers for information if it is required.
Where can I find more information?
- US Securities and Exchange Commission site: http://www.sec.gov/spotlight/dodd-frank.shtml
- The actual bill: http://www.sec.gov/about/laws/wallstreetreform-cpa.pdf (it’s 848 pages)
- The relevant section: http://www.dodd-frank-act.us/Dodd_Frank_Act_Text_Section_1502.html
- The Automotive Industry Action Group has a working group on Conflict Minerals (www.aiag.org).
- You may use a search engine such as Google to search on the term: Conflict Minerals.
The IMDS Steering Committee summarizes how to handle organic tin compounds in this document.
Declaration of Biocides in IMDSIntroduction:
In August 2014 GADSL contains for the first time biocidal active substances according to EC 528/2012 "Biocidal Product Regulation" (Regulation (EU) No 528/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 May 2012 concerning the making available on the market and use of biocidal products).
As the regulations concerning biocides are extremely complex, it is recommended that you do NOT reject data sheets without following the guidance in this FAQ.
It is also recommended that you review the information and guidance on treated articles, available on the ECHA webpage: http://echa.europa.eu/regulations/biocidal-products-regulation/treated-articles
Following the former Biocidal Product Directive (DIRECTIVE 98/8/EC OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 16 February 1998 concerning the placing of biocidal products on the market) active substances are assigned to 22 so called product-types. The producer had to notify the substance and the use.
Product-type 7: Film preservatives
Product-type 8: Wood preservatives
Product-type 9: Fibre, leather, rubber and polymerised materials preservatives
More strictly than in the former regulation, the legislator now restricts the use of biocides. In a review program the known biocides are evaluated again and are either listed as included, under approval or are delisted.
To fulfill regulatory duties within the EU as producer or importer, only active substances that are approved for the relevant product-type, or are in the approval process for the relevant product-type, may be used. The use of delisted substances is not allowed at all. In each case the assigned product-type has to be taken into account.
The selected active substances are listed under "Biocidal coatings / biocidal additives, selected". In the column "Source" the assigned allowed (D) or restricted (P) product-types are shown. Several substances are not legally classified as allowed or prohibited for all product-types. As a use as biocide is only allowed when authorized for the respective use, they have the GADSL entry "Authorisation as biocide needed for product-type". E.g.:
Biocidal coatings / biocidal additives, selected
Reg. (EU) No 528/2012 This list is derived from the following product-types believed to be relevant to the GADSL criteria: product-type 7: Film preservatives; product-type 8: Wood preservatives and product-type 9: Fibre, leather, rubber and polymerised materials preservatives.
P: Forbidden use as biocide in product-type : 7
Authorisation as biocide needed for product-type 7
Biocides with the GADSL classification D will be identified in blue. Biocide substances with the GADSL classification P or D/P will be identified in red, as they are not permitted in certain "Product-Types".
Just because a biocidal substance is reported in your material, does not mean that it is subject to the Biocidal Product Regulations – if this substance is added for non-biocidal reasons (e.g. if it is a vulcanizing agent, heat stabilizer, catalyst etc) then the provisions of the BPR do NOT apply and the data sheet should NOT BE REJECTED.
Please follow the recommended steps in the IMDS process:
1. Gather data on these active substances in IMDS.
2. For substances identified as red, you will need to review the IMDS data against the Biocidal additives listing in GADSL (see www.GADSL.org).
3. The following guidelines will help to determine if a use is acceptable.
3a. If the IMDS Material Category is not 6.1 or 9.7, then this material is UNLIKELY to be product-type 7. Closer inspection of the datasheet should reveal if this is a film, or a larger polymer substrate. If only product-type 7 is prohibited, and your material is clearly NOT a film, you can be confident that your material is OK.
3b. If the IMDS Material Category is not 7.1 or 9.7, then this material is NOT product-type 8, therefore if only product-type 8 is prohibited, you can be confident that your material is OK.
3c. If the IMDS Material Category is 5.x, 6.1, 9.7, then there is a good chance that this material IS product-type 9, therefore if product-type 9 is prohibited, there is a strong possibility that your material is NOT OK.
3d. If the material category is 7.1 - it is most likely a wood product or a leather product. Please look in more detail at the name to see if it is a wood (PT 8 restrictions will apply) or leather (PT 9 restrictions will apply).
In the near future, IMDS will be modified to provide additional functionality to determine if the biocidal substance has in fact been added for its biocidal properties and to identify which product-type it is used in. It will be the responsibility of the Material MDS creator to provide this information.
Below are some examples to help you interpret these requirements.
1. Zinc oxide (CAS 1314-13-2) is now listed as P for product-type 8 (wood preservative).
If it is reported in IMDS as an elastomer (with material category 5.2) then it has NOT been added as a wood preservative and its use in IMDS is ACCEPTABLE.
2. I add a biocide to my ECOAT bath to prevent algal growth. Do I need to declare this in IMDS?
No – The biocide added to the ecoat is not designed to impart any biocidal property on to the painted article itself, therefore it does not need to be declared in IMDS. However, the biocide does need to be approved for Product-Type 7 (or in the process of being approved) and you need to be working within the approval conditions in your manufacturing facility.
Please consult www.acea.be/reach, there you can find "REACH: Automotive Industry Guideline" as well as other useful sources and links.
The registration of a REACH contact is not mandatory for the IMDS system. It was implemented to facilitate the communication between companies. Even if no REACH contact is registered for your own company, the users can send and receive MDSs. However, please ask your customer or supplier whether it is necessary to register at least one REACH contact.
Here you can download a Recommendation of the VDA and the ACEA on a common interpretation of the exemptions listed in the ELV Directive, Annex II.
Here you can additionally find an IMDS Steering Committee document on the application changes for your support (Version: October 2013).
Where can I find (Commission Decision) 2003/138/EC
establishing component and material coding standards
for vehicles pursuant to ELV Directive 2000/53/EC?
Here you can download the Commission Decision of 27 February 2003 establishing component and material coding standards for vehicles pursuant to Directive 2000/53/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council on end-of-life vehicles.
The continuous evaluation of the REACH Candidate List (at least 2 updates per year) is automatically triggering the process to update the Global Automotive Declarable Substance List (GADSL). Thus, to support REACH compliance the list also contains vehicle related substances newly placed on the REACH Candidate List for authorisation.
All new changes in GADSL are highlighted under www.gadsl.org.
REACH Article 33 is requiring manufacturers of articles to automatically inform their customers on substances listed on the candidate list if this substance is contained in the article in an amount > 0.1% w/w. Ignoring this legal obligation may cause penalties by the national authorities.
To fulfil these legal obligations, suppliers can use the IMDS system but have to follow the IMDS-Recommendations, especially of IMDS Rec. 001:
- It is prohibited to hide GADSL-substances in wildcards
- After a GADSL-update, ALL active MDS have to be checked for ALL new GADSL-substances, potentially hidden in a wildcard.
- If new GADSL substances are hidden in wildcards, the supplier has to re-work and re-submit the affected MDS to his customer immediately.
For Renault suppliers: In case of an update of the Renault list you have to follow the same rules.
To avoid such checks and re-submission in the future, the IMDS Steering Committee recommends to avoid the usage of any wildcard and instead, without losing your company knowledge, to use the “confidential substance”-functionality.
To see the link between REACH, IMDS and GADSL and the process how the responsible groups are working together please see Annex N of the Automotive Industry Guideline on REACH under www.acea.be/publications/article/reach-automotive-industry-guideline.
Having the IMDS, the automotive Industry is considered to be in an advantageous position compared to other sectors and able to comply with several REACH obligations immediately e.g. Art. 33.1 communication without developing new tools or processes.
The Automotive Industry Guideline on REACH includes the recommendation that the IMDS should be used to collect information about substances of very high concern in articles. Minor modifications to the system have been implemented to optimise this process:
- IMDS provides an additional REACH contact field, on company and not material data sheet level, to support better REACH communication throughout the supply chain. Please note that use of this function will not replace your obligation to provide the contact information by the direct customer-specific communication requirements.
- Candidate List substance flagging & filter.
- Authorisation List (REACH Annex XIV) substance flagging & filter.
- Analysis of products for automotive industry relevant substances from REACH Annex XVII.
- Analysis of material data sheets for SVHCs.
It is important to remember that in order to ensure compliance to the REACH Regulation, material data sheets may need to be re-submitted for each active part number to include any candidate list substance that has been added to the GADSL. This specifically applies to substances that up till now were hidden by a wild card or considered confidential.
Please find the answer in this document.
Where can I find the European ELV Directive and the latest version of Annex II?
Here you can download the EU ELV Directive 2000/53/EC and the latest version of the Annex II (Version: Nov 2017).
Here you can additionally find an IMDS Steering Committee document on the application changes for your support (Version: June 2016).