SMOG CHECK TIPS
HOW TO PASS A SMOG TEST
There are lots of reasons why your vehicle can fail a smog check. Follow these tips below to insure your vehicle passes the first time.
Make sure your vehicle is performing correctly before arriving at the smog check inspection station.
The chances of your vehicle passing a smog inspection are slim to none if your vehicle is not in good working order. If you do decide to have a smog inspection completed on a vehicle with known mechanical problems you will more than likely lose your inspection fee. Save yourself the trouble and get your vehicle repaired prior to having it tested. Also, keep in mind that if your check engine light is on then your vehicle will automatically fail. To investigate the problem, take your vehicle to a repair shop. They will examine your car with a tool that retrieves check engine codes. You can also check with local auto stores to see if this is a service that is available there. For instance, some Pepboys will check your vehicle and give you the engine code for free.
If your vehicle is model year 2000 or newer and you have recently replaced or unplugged your battery, be sure to drive at least 50 to 100 miles before coming in.
The following tips apply to vehicles model year 1999 and below:
1. Warm Your Car Up
To make sure your vehicle is warmed up and running at the optimal level, drive it for 20 minutes prior to arriving at the smog inspection station. Keep in mind that your engine functions by burning fuel – proper combustion needs adequate time to occur. You can accomplish this by simply driving your vehicle for at least 10 to 15 miles.
2. Take Advantage Of Fuel Additives
To lower your vehicle’s emission levels you can add fuel additives to the gas tank when refueling. The additives reduce your vehicle’s emissions by removing carbon deposits within the engine’s intake and exhaust paths. This allows fuel and air to flow more freely and improves the combustion process and overall engine performance. Remember to let your car run through at least one full tank of gas after adding the additives to allow it to take full effect.
3. Check Your Tires
During the emissions test the smog technician might be required to run your vehicle on a dynamometer. If your vehicle’s tires are unevenly worn or improperly inflated then it could cause inaccuracies in the smog test. Verifying your tires are evenly worn and have the correct tire pressure gives your vehicle more stability and produces much greater accuracy during your smog inspection. As a curtousy, we will inspect your tire pressure for your before the test.
4. Change Your Oil
If it’s been awhile since your last oil change, go ahead and change your oil before you get your smog check. If your oil is dirty because of inadequate oil changes then you might fail your emissions inspection because of it. This is due to the fact that the positive crank ventilation system pulls fumes from the oil pan into the engine. If your oil is dirty, so are the fumes.