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Smog tests in California

9 posts in this topic

So there is this deal in California where we have to buy fancy cat converters that cost $250+ on vehicles from 96' and newer, instead of buying cheapo universal cats, because California is full of a bunch of hippies. Or rather, it has something to do with how nice Californian gas is.

Anyway, I was wondering if anyone was able to pass a smog test on a 96+ vehicle with the universal cats in California. I have an 01' F-150 with four cats, and one of them decided to take a shit. Which seems to happen often. I know that the truck will work fine with the Uni cats, but it may not pass smog.

I think I may try it anyway to see what happens.

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You could always do what I do.

Talk to the owner of the smog place, and work out a deal to get your truck to pass.

I have never had any luck with cheap Cats, But then again, I buy the High Flow Performance Cats (HFPC).

I have one car that pass no problem. It is a 2003 Ford Mustang with 04 swap.

Then I have my baby. 1978 280Z that I have to talk to the right people to get it to pass, if you know what I mean.

So I say, Do not go cheap when dealing with Cats.

Just my say.

biosphear

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So I say, Do not go cheap when dealing with Cats.

I have a mazda mx6 that had a bad cat. The cat I had put on it was $80. That's much better then spending triple the cost on one cat alone. I'll bet that the cats are no different save for the fact they cost more.

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well dont know if its good advice but if ur looking for new cats you dont have to go to a store just look for some meth addicts you'll probably get for discount

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Does California throw your car on the dyno and put the detector in your exhaust; or do they just use the diagnostic port. Some cars, you can prevent the obd port from reporting codes with an eprom flash.

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Does California throw your car on the dyno and put the detector in your exhaust; or do they just use the diagnostic port. Some cars, you can prevent the obd port from reporting codes with an eprom flash.

Yeah, where I live they just throw it on the dyno. But there are other places where the system is fancier.

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They also provide a great way to run license plates. or at least they did.

(Props go to Lucky225 & Accident)
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So I say, Do not go cheap when dealing with Cats.

I have a mazda mx6 that had a bad cat. The cat I had put on it was $80. That's much better then spending triple the cost on one cat alone. I'll bet that the cats are no different save for the fact they cost more.

One problem with aftermarket cats is the logic in the ECU that is used to monitor the efficiency of the catalyst is based off the catalyst that the car was produced with at the factory, and I've seen cars with relatively new aftermarket cats come in with a P0420 (catalyst efficiency below threshold). Not saying it will always happen but I've seen it more than once. (I'm a Subaru/Toyota technician)

I don't know how they do the smog tests in California, but up here in Oregon if it's 96 or newer most of the time they do an underhood and sometimes an under car inspection, looking for missing cats, non street legal carburetors, etc... Once that is done they will check to see if the check engine light is on, as well as make sure that it comes on when you turn the key on, but shuts off once it's started (to make sure it hasn't been removed) and then they are supposed to plug a code reader in and make sure there are no codes in the system but they don't always do this. Cars that still have an on board computer, but are not OBD2 compliant (pre-96) will usually have an underhood inspection and a light check, and sometimes an exhaust analysis but at some of the shops this just consists of them putting a 5 gas analyzer in the tailpipe and checking the emissions at idle and at 2500 RPM. (not under load)

Now don't think that you can just clear your codes right before the smog check and hope they don't do an exhaust analysis. The reason for this is the way codes are stored and such. When you are driving your car, the computer is always running component checks. Some of these, such as the misfire monitor, are continuous monitors, meaning the computer is always checking them. If you unplug a spark plug wire on your car, it will throw a code almost immediately. Same goes with most of your sensors, the circuit check portion of the monitor is continuous - if you unplug your oxygen sensor, it will throw a code immediately. Other monitors, such as the evaporative emission control monitor, and the catalyst monitor, only run under certain conditions. These monitors will set a code if a failure is detected, but will only turn on the check engine light on the second failure. Once a code is set, it takes a certain number of trips without a failure to turn the light back off, and I think it takes 40 for the code to go away. It's also stored in the computer which monitors have run, and whether they have passed or failed, and most newer cars will also record the total time since the codes were cleared, so if you go in to the smog check station and your light is off, but none of the monitors have run, and it's been 180 seconds since your codes were cleared, it's going to be an immediate red flag and they'll either tell you to come back later, or run an exhaust test. There are three types of codes, pending, history, and current. Pending codes mean that the monitor has failed, but it's the first time for the failure, and the light is not on. Current codes mean it failed this trip, and a previous trip, and the light is on. History codes mean that the last certain number of trips (varies by code) the monitor passed, but sometime in the last 40 trips the code occured. There is actually a fourth code type, the permanent code, I don't know if this is an all-inclusive, all manufacturer thing, or if it's just Toyota, but certain malfunctions will set a "permanent" code, which will not clear even when clearing the memory with the scan tool. The only way to clear one is to repair the problem and perform a drive cycle, once the cycle is complete and the monitor has run and passed, the code will clear.

I hope this wasn't too long winded for you guys!

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just wait fellas theyre getting you all ramped up on global warming propaganda so they can really stick it in your tail pipe later, carbon tax, mileage tax, gas guzzler tax, flatulance tax on dairy farmers methane emmissions (cow farts) and so on. thank the wonderful obama, al gore, and all the greenie weenie asshats for helping to ram the UN's master plan through. its just the start.

http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?Fus...29-FE59494B48A6

http://www.un.org/ecosocdev/geninfo/afrec/...o4/154finan.htm

http://greeninc.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/...n-tax-increase/

http://news.thomasnet.com/IMT/archives/200...e-heats-up.html

and the list goes on

and as always has nothing to do with helping the earth but about making money for their special interests.

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