How frequently does my vehicle have to be examined?
Smog Check Californias are required biennially (every other year) on vehicles over six model-years old. Additionally, a Smog Test is required if you market a vehicle that is over four model-years old and when enrolling an out-of-state vehicle for the first time in California.
How do I assist my vehicle pass a Smog Check California?
Performing routine and proper maintenance depending on your owner’s manual rather than tampering with the emissions-control gear will aid in improving your vehicle’s odds of passing a Smog Check California. If the “Check Engine” light comes on, then take your vehicle to a licensed repair station as soon as possible to have the problem diagnosed-do not wait for the vehicle’s next scheduled Smog Test. A blinking or flashing light signals a malfunction that should be addressed promptly to avoid serious damage to the motor or emission-control systems. Check your owner’s manual for repairs that might be covered under your car or truck maker ‘s emissions warranty.
What are the elements of a Smog Check California?
Smog Check Californias are designed to assess the amount and type of pollutants your motor vehicle is emitting. A Smog Test can include any of the following tests:
- Visual inspection of emission control components and systems
- Tailpipe emissions inspection
What vehicles require a Smog Check California?
Gasoline-powered vehicles, hybrid vehicles, and alternative-fuel vehicles that are model year 1976 and newer require a Smog Check California, with the following exceptions:
- Four model-years and newer do not need a change-of-ownership inspection.
- To ascertain the first year per vehicle is subject to a biennial or change-of-ownership Smog Check California, add six or four, respectively, to the model year of a motor vehicle. For instance, a 2010 model-year vehicle will first be subject to a biennial Smog Evaluation in 2016 (2010 6 = 2016) plus a change-of-ownership Smog Test at 2014 (2010 4 = 2014).
Diesel-powered vehicles 1998 and newer with a gross vehicle weight rating of 14,000 lbs and less require a Smog Test.
Is the Smog Check California Program biased against older automobiles?
No. While California law requires that the Smog Test Program to focus on high-polluting vehicles, the Smog Check California Program also doesn’t demand older vehicles to meet the very same emissions standards as newer vehicles. Smog Test emissions criteria take into consideration the age, make and model of every vehicle, to ensure a vehicle is never held to a standard that applied when the vehicle was originally manufactured.
I have a vehicle that is six model-years older. My DMV registration renewal note states it must have a Smog Check California, but I believed it was exempt from the biennial Smog Test condition.
A gas-powered vehicle is excused from Smog Check California until it’s seven model-years older. Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) computers have been designed to recognize that the exemption and process your renewal consequently. Contact DMV if you think there’s an error. If you cannot solve the problem with DMV, a state Referee facility could have the ability to provide help.
What is an Enhanced Area?
An improved Area is a metropolitan area characterized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rather than being in attainment with federal health standards for ozone. Vehicles enrolled in an improved Area are subject to a treadmill emissions test on a dynamometer and might require testing in a STAR-certified channel.
Have California auto emissions standards changed?
Yes. BAR periodically adjusts some criteria to raise their fairness. Because of this, some criteria become slightly more strict than they were formerly and a few slightly more lenient. California’s emissions criteria consider the model-year, vehicle make and model, and gross weight of the motor vehicle. Older cars have significantly less rigorous criteria than newer ones. No elderly vehicle is held to the very same criteria as a newer, more technologically advanced car or truck. Allowances are made for normal wear and tear at a vehicle’s emissions control system as it ages. Standards are established through a regulatory process and are made available for public comment before they’re adopted. The previous adjustment occurred in 2010.