It happens all the time. People want to purchase cars and they end up moving forward to getting a used vehicle. But when they go to register it and get a license plate, they are rejected. Why?
One of the rules of the road today is that every single auto has to pass emission testing. That’s right, without a passed smog test, or emissions test, you cannot legally drive on most roads.
That’s something that has gotten even stricter in modern times.
Why So Strict?
Every state and region is different. However, car makers are manufacturing options in a very certain manner. They are reducing the amount of exhaust that is coming out of engines, they are making hybrids, and even electrical solutions.
Some options have 0 emissions, and others have a reduction that makes it seem like there’s nothing coming out. There are even some cars that are now being touted as being clean diesel. Why did this become so strict?
The main reason why this is getting more and more strict is because of pollution. Pollution is a real problem, and since the 1970s, legislatures have been pressuring auto makers to change their ways, as well as pressuring the general public in regards to what cars they purchase.
That has all made cars more economic, easier to maintain, and even smaller. Compare the vehicle models from the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s for a moment. You’ll see that the changes are all over the map, including size, shape of engine, and price tag.
Today, the efficiently element is tied together with emissions, mileage, and engine speed. While there are still some high-powered solutions, the exhaust that they have is a lot different than the cars of the past.
Passing Emissions Today Is Simple For Most
For the most part, a vehicle that has been made after 1981 is going to pass any major smog test with ease. That is if it’s properly maintained. There are two major types of tests that mechanics use, and each one measures the gasses that are coming out of the exhaust.
Passing the test is a simple thing, but there are caveats. If a car isn’t maintained properly, if there’s wear and tear, or if there’s any sort of sludge, exhaust issues, or more, then the gasses will compound and passing is going to be very difficult. For those vehicles that fail, there are several problems that can come into the frame.
Most often, people have to deal with the consequences of failure, including spending a great deal of money on repairs. Even so, there are some automobiles that will never pass these tests. Things get even more complex there. There are a few things that can be done, however, so don’t assume that this is the end of the line.
Get Diagnostics Ran
If you have a modern car that is not passing emissions testing, then diagnostics can be used to figure out what is going on. On board diagnostic testing can be done fast. This involves a mechanic putting a small device into the car, and measuring error codes.
The car’s onboard computer will tell you whether or not something is wrong, and those codes will allow you to get a fix fast. In the past, a mechanic would have to look into trial and error, listen to sounds, and figure out what was wrong based on guessing and experience.
Now, modern cars tell the mechanic what is wrong through error codes and devices that plug directly into the dash.
Once diagnostics are run, and a mechanic fixes the problem, chances are passing is going to be easy.
Second Round Failure
Let’s assume that you spend $500 or more on fixing your car’s issues. A mechanic has diagnosed the issue, and they have gone through and fixed everything. Let’s assume that everything seems ok, but the testing just doesn’t allow for a pass. Don’t panic.
In most areas you can still get moving forward with the right elements. What you’ll have to do is simple, you’ll have to get a waiver.
Many people aren’t aware that there are some states that will give out waivers in regards to emissions testing, which are limited.
These waivers are only given out if you prove that you’ve spent a certain dollar amount on trying to fix the issues that your vehicle has.
In most cases, the bottom line price is $450.
Avoiding The Issues
If you’re purchasing a car today, and it has passed all the tests required for registration, that’s a good thing. However, you’re going to need to focus on something else in this regards.
You’re going to have to look into maintaining your car over time.
Experts suggest that every 2 years, testing is redone.
Furthermore, you should work with the owner’s manual of your vehicle to ensure that you are moving forward with fixing the right elements overall.
This includes getting oil changes, rotating tires, pressure, filling fluids, and looking for stress points. Sometimes a small stress point is going to indicate that there is something that is going to cause problems down the line.
Avoiding the issues can be as simple as minor maintenance throughout the life of the vehicle you decide to purchase.
At the end of the day, you shouldn’t panic if you don’t pass emissions tests. If your vehicle is not passing, make sure that you get a helping hand from a good mechanic.
A good mechanic will not only tell you what’s wrong, they’ll be able to ensure that you pass with some other elements assisting the bigger picture.
There’s no reason to throw in the towel if you fail a couple of times. If you fail, and you apply fixes, go to your local department of motor vehicles and discuss the issue.
You’ll be surprised about what protocols are in place to help motorists with this issue. While most cars come off the lot prepared to pass tests, sometimes, you will need to work on several things to make them a bit better overall, it’s that simple.