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Failed Smog Check Questions & Answers - Page 2

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Question: I have Toyota Corolla 1.8 liter.  It was fail with Engine Light on  ( P0401 EGR insufficient flow ).  I took the car to smog check and the 76 Smog check Station did not tell me to fix the car first.  He just tested any way and the car everything Pass but the Engine light function did not Pass. I took over to my friend Smog check station and Replaced a EGR Moduler.  The Engine light off and check Engine status and everything read but except 02 Oxygen not read.  How long do I have to drive until the Engine Status become Green and ready.

Answer: As far as the "Check Engine" system and it's inspection... Depending on the year make and model of vehicle you own, this system is different. If you own a 1996 or newer vehicle you more then likely own a vehicle which is equipped with an On-Board Diagnostics system called OBD II, as opposed to an OBD I system which older vehicles were equipped with. The OBD II Diagnostic system is designed to monitor all aspects of your engine's emission conditions and report this information to a central database within it's computer. This information is processed and checked against the computers pre-determined values for various inputs levels and performance patterns. If any problems are found, the computer will determine whether to alert the driver or not. If a decision has been made to alert the driver of an emissions problem, the "Check Engine" or "Engine Malfunction" light will illuminate on the vehicle's dashboard. In more serious emission conditions the computer may even begin to rapidly flash the "Check Engine/Malfunction" light indicating to the driver, that the vehicle needs immediate diagnosis/repair attention.


Question: I have a question about gas caps.  I just went to get a smog check on my Ford truck in order to pay my registration.  They told me that my gas cap did not pass the test and I had to buy a new gas cap in order of it to pass.  And if I didn't purchase the gas cap then it most like fail the test and still had to pay.  So I ended up buying the gas cap for $25 plus the $45 for the test.  Is this true about a gas cap not passing and failing the smog check. I also need to know if my 2006 Cadillac needs the same gas cap test.

Answer: Your vehicles gas cap and filler neck is inspected during the smog test. They will have to be of proper fit and design. The gas cap must be able to hold pressure at factory specifications and the filler neck must not be altered to accept leaded gases. This test is to insure the vehicle is not polluting fuel tank fumes through the filler neck or using the wrong type of fuel. Most vehicles pass this portion of the test with no problems. If your vehicle's gas cap appears to be lose or broken it may not pass. You will more then likely then have to purchase a new gas cap and smog inspection in order to get your car smog certified. Most local auto parts stores carry gas caps for a variety of vehicles.The state allows a vehicle owner to purchase a new gas cap during the smog test. This allows the smog technician to continue the smog test, without having the fail the vehicle. The vehicle owner has a choice of purchasing a new gas cap at a future date, however this would require the smog technician to fail the vehicle at the time of inspection. After a new cap is purchased a new smog inspection must be performed. As far as your Cadillac... so far it is too new to need a smog check. Once it becomes at least 6 years old, you'll begin smogging it. And yes, it will need a gas cap test as well.


Question (a): My check engine light is on and therefore my 1998 Nissan Pathfinder won't pass. The emissions is fine, just the check engine light.  Is there a cap on the $'s for repair as it is in the 1000's?  Are there other options with this type of problem?

Question (b): I'm planning on getting my 2001 Kia smogged soon, and I've heard that California enacted a law that caps the amount a repair station can charge you for repairs related to a smog check.  I was told this was law was enacted because some repair shops took advantage of customers and inflated their repair costs.  Is this 'maximum amount' true or is it an 'urban legend'?
Answer: Unfortunately there is no limit on bringing a car to passing emissions. However, California can help you repair your vehicle. You may receive up to $500.00 dollars in FREE smog diagnosis and repairs through the Consumer Assistance Program (CAP). The CAP Repair Assistance program is designed to help consumers bring their vehicles into compliance with California emission standards. Through the CAP program the State will pay the CAP repair shop you choose up to $500.00 dollars for repair work performed on your vehicle. You may contact the BAR at (800) 952-5210 for an application.Economic Hardship Extension: a vehicle owner may be eligible for if they have spent at least $450.00 at a Certified Smog Repair station and their vehicle is still failing OR if the vehicle requires emissions related repairs over $250.00 and the vehicle owner is low-income and can not afford the repair/s. Eligible consumers will receive a two-year extension to complete necessary emissions-related repairs. The State of California will allow Income Eligible applicants the opportunity to register their vehicles through the DMV and receive registration tags/stickers for two consecutive years, WITHOUT passing the smog inspection. This program is designed to allow Income Eligible applicants ample time to repair their failing vehicles. To qualify for the Economic Hardship Extension:
-Your vehicle must have been registered in California for at least the last two years.
-You must have failed a "biennial" Smog Check Inspection.
-Your must not have a tampered emissions-control system.
-You must not be in the process of selling the vehicle or registering it in the State of California for the first time.
-Your vehicle must require emission related repairs in the amount of $250.00 or greater. A written estimate/diagnosis from a certified smog repair shop will be required.
More information can be obtained by calling the Bureau of Automotive Repairs (BAR) Referee center at 1-800-622-7733. Applications for this program can only be issued by the Bureau of Automotive Repairs. 


Question (a): I have some white smoke that comes out of my SUV's (Toyota) exhaust if I idle more than 6 minutes but when I drive its all gone. Its white and not black. If that is seen is that an automatic failure.

Question (b): I am having problems with both by Ford F-150 and Acura Integra smoking. A lot of black smoke comes out the tailpipe. A repair shop said they need a ring jobs, would this be considered an emission problem?

Answer: Vehicles subject to a smog check require a visual inspection for excessive black or white smoke being emitted from the exhaust, and ultimately, the tailpipe. This test is in addition to the tailpipe emissions test. If your vehicle is emitting visible smoke, you will need to have it repaired before it can pass the smog check. Vehicles with severe damage may be emitting smoke from the engine comportment (under the hood). This too will cause a Visible Smoke Test failure. Black Smoke may indicate one of two things. 1. The engine is not burning fuel properly, leaving behind high amounts of Carbon Monoxide (CO), resulting in excessive black smoke being emitted from the tailpipe. These vehicles will experience increased fuel consumption as well. 2. Engine oil is seeping into the combustion chambers. Oil is mixing with the fuel & air mixture, leaving behind high amounts of carbon, seen as excessive black smoke being emitted from the tailpipe. Oil seepage may occur due to defective piston rings, valve seals, or Positive Crank Ventilation (PCV) System. White Smoke may indicate a burned or blown head gasket. Excessive white smoke (steam) is caused by water seepage into the combustion chambers, which on a running engine, operate around 2500f. Water has an opportunity to enter the combustion chambers through the head gasket, at the junction of an engine's valve head and block. This will typically cause overheating and white smoke coming out of the exhaust.


Question: Hi we just bought a used 1991 Honda from a private seller here in California. We have to go get it smogged but are now seeing the transmission light blinking sometimes while we are driving. I ran some diagnostics on the car & both the 'check engine' and transmission light produced codes pertaining to the 'VEHICLE SPEED SENSOR' needing replacement. The check engine light doesn't come on at all when we drive, this was just while testing. So since the 'check engine' light isn't on steady, is it still possible for the car to pass smog, or no chance whatsoever if the car is registering codes?

Answer: If the light is OFF during the test, and the vehicle produces emissions below the state's cut score, your vehicle will pass the test. If the light however, even flickers during any point of the inspection, the technician will have to fail the vehicle, and you will need to seek repairs.
Question: I have a 2001 Chrysler town & country V6 3.8 liter engine. I recently replaced the axle on the driver’s side and ever since then the ABS light stays on. Will this affect the smog outcome on my vehicle? I know that this has nothing to do with the emissions, but you never know.
Answer: If in fact the only light that's illuminated is the ABS light... no problem. The smog check does not included inspection of the ABS system. However, something to consider; if the trouble with the ABS system is effecting the vehicle emissions system, it may trigger an emissions "trouble code" to be set within the ECU (Engine Control Unit), which will cause a smog failure. I mention this, but I don't want you to worry. Your vehicle will not fail the test because of the ABS light alone.
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