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Smog Test: A Necessary Event

smog test 200x166Smog test sign-002To pass a smog test in California the car must not only pass emissions and systems checks. The Check Engine light must work when the key is turned on, and it must not be on with the engine running. Furthermore, the smog test includes scanning your engine computer (ECU) for Readiness Codes. Do not confuse these with the Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTC). Readiness Codes are the results from the 8 emissions related self tests that your car’s computer performs each time you start and drive your car. In order, the Readiness Codes are: Exhaust Gas Recirculation, Oxygen sensor heating, Oxygen sensors, Air Conditioner, Secondary Air Injection, Evaporative Emissions System, Catalytic Converter Heating, and Catalytic Converter Status. These Readiness Codes are seen on our scan tools as a string of 8 bits, or Zeros and Ones. A Zero means the system passed, a One means the system failed. The smog test station wants to see 0000 0000.

There are many more diagnostic tests performed by all the computers that set the Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTC), but these Readiness Codes are checks of the emission systems related to a smog test. Whenever a repair has included clearing DTC’s, the Readiness Codes are all set to 1. The car must be driven for a while until all the driving conditions have been met for to perform the Readiness Tests before it will pass a smog test. Alternatively, our technicians can manually run the Readiness Test procedures to set the Readiness Codes back to 0’s, then the car can pass a smog test.

Smog test sign-005At Karmakanix, we have a good working business relationship with 15 Minute Smog Test at University and San Pablo Ave. We can sublet your car to them for smog test for you while your car is here for service. They do one free retest, and work with us if some problem arises. We do not charge a fee to shuttle your car there and back. We just do it as a service to our customers.

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