Basics of Smog Checks And How to Prepare For It

Vehicles are emitting obnoxious gases making them one major cause of air pollution. Just imagine every household owning one. With the drive to protect the earth from further destruction, environmental laws are passed mandating people to take time and have their cars checked for smog emissions. Smog check has been imposed to most states in the US to ensure safety of the people from hazardous air pollutants while making steps to earth conservation. A way to inform the people of its importance was providing smog check advertisement.

A smog check is a type of test conducted on the exhaust system of a vehicle to measure the amount and type of pollutants the vehicle is emitting each time it runs. The check also assesses the other vehicle parts to ensure each are working properly especially giving attention to emissions control.

The requirements vary from each state as some states follow a yearly testing and other have biannual smog check programs. Exemption of vehicles also varies, as most states exempt certain type of vehicles. Generally, all vehicles should go through the smog test except for the following:

” Diesel-powered vehicles manufactured before 1998,

” Diesel-powered vehicles with GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight) of more than 14,000lbs,

” Electric, natural gas-powered vehicles over 14,000lbs,

” 1975 and older gasoline powered vehicles,

” Motorcycles,

” Trailers, and

” Hybrids.

Requirements and Procedures

Vehicles registered in places with biannual smog certification program should submit evidence of a certification every two-renewal period. Six or less model years old vehicle owners are required to pay smog abatement fee to cover the first six registration years instead of providing a biannual smog certification. The department will then send a registration renewal notice indicating if a smog check is required. If it turns out to be required and you haven’t undergone an inspection yet, you can still pay your registration fees however, the year sticker will not be issued until the smog information has been received.

Smog Tests Options

1. If the smog requirement section only requires a certificate then it is a regular check. All smog stations can perform this check.

2. The two types – Test Only and Gold Shield- can be obtained from any station.

” Smog Test Only centers can only perform tests and inspections but are not allowed to make repairs.

” Gold Shield Smog Stations are authorized to perform Test Only inspections as well as certify and repair all vehicles.

Things to Keep You Geared Up For the Test

1. Prepare for the inspection by asking your local auto service center on which company provides complete engine tune-ups information for your vehicle.

2. Check the cost. There is smog check advertisement, which offers bottom dollar rates and special offers like Smog coupons. This will save you money as you save the environment.

3. Make sure it is licensed. With many companies playing fraud, verify the center’s certification. Check if they have the right equipment and their experience of service.

4. Take ample amount of cash. With no idea of passing the test, it is best to be prepared for the worse. In case you failed, you are ready to pay for revamping and fixing your vehicle.

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