“STAR CERTIFIED” SMOG CHECK INSPECTIONS EXPLAINED

FIND “STAR CERTIFIED SMOG CHECK STATIONS” HERE 

 

THE CALIFORNIA DMV DIRECTS SOME SPECIFIC VEHICLES TO A SPECIAL TYPE OF SMOG CHECK STATION CALLED “STAR STATION SMOG CHECK” STATIONS” WHEN IT’S TIME TO RENEW THE VEHICLE’S BIENNIAL REGISTRATION

  THE VEHICLES THAT THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA REFERS TO “STAR CERTIFIED” SMOG CHECK STATIONS TEND TO BE VEHICLES WHICH HAVE HAD DIFFICULTY PASSING AN OFFICIAL SMOG CHECK AT SOME POINT IN THE PAST

  ALTHOUGH THE ACTUAL INSPECTION PROCEDURE IS THE SAME AS IS CONDUCTED AT A “REGULAR STAR SMOG CHECK STATION” THE MAIN DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE TWO TYPES OF STATIONS IS THAT THE “STAR CERTIFIED TEST ONLY” TYPE OF STATION IS NOT PERMITTED BY LAW TO MAKE ANY REPAIRS TO THE EMISSION SYSTEMS OF A FAILED VEHICLE

  THE TECHNICIAN MAY  HOWEVER  REPLACE A FAILING GAS CAP AND/OR RE-ATTACH VACUUM HOSES WHICH HAVE COME LOOSE DURING NORMAL OPERATION OF THE VEHICLE. THIS SHOULD BE DONE BEFORE CONDUCTING THE DYNO TESTING

  ALSO, THE TECHNICIAN MAY NOT ADJUST IGNITION TIMING, REPLACE SMOG PUMP BELTS OR RE-ROUTE VACUUM HOSES TO THEIR CORRECT LOCATIONS

  ON THE OTHER HAND, A “STAR CERTIFIED” TEST AND REPAIR STATION” CONDUCTS TESTING AS WELL AS COMPREHENSIVE REPAIRS OF FAILED VEHICLES

  THE IDEA WAS TO SEPARATE THE TESTING ASPECT FROM THE REPAIR SIDE OF THE INDUSTRY IN ORDER TO PROMOTE FAIRNESS

THE ACTIVITIES OF BOTH TYPES OF STATIONS ARE MONITORED BY THE CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS THROUGH THEIR DIVISION KNOWN AS THE BUREAU OF AUTOMOTIVE REPAIR

   “STAR CERTIFIED SMOG CHECK STATIONS”, EITHER TEST ONLY OR TEST AND REPAIR, ARE SCRUTINIZED MORE THOROUGHLY

  IF A “STAR” STATION FAILS TO UPHOLD A SET OF STANDARDS CREATED BY THE BUREAU OF AUTOMOTIVE REPAIR, THE STATIONS’ “STAR” CERTIFICATION MAY BE REMOVED. SINCE MOST STATIONS RELY ON THE INCOME PROVIDED BY “DIRECTED” VEHICLES WHICH HAVE BEEN DIRECTED TO THEIR TYPE OF STATION BY THE DMV, TO LOSE THE PRIVILEGE TO TEST THESE VEHICLES CAN SPELL ECONOMIC DISASTER

  THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA OFFERS A REPAIR ASSISTANCE PROGRAM FOR LOW-INCOME OWNERS OF VEHICLES WHICH HAVE FAILED A BIANNUAL SMOG CHECK INSPECTION NEEDED TO RENEW THEIR VEHICLE REGISTRATION

 THIS ASSISTANCE PROGRAM IS CALLED THE CAP PROGRAM. THIS PROVIDES UP TO $500 TO FIX THE EMISSION CONTROL FAILURE WHILE THE CONSUMER GENERALLY PAYS BETWEEN $100-$150 CO-PAYMENT FOR THE INITIAL TEST AND DIAGNOSIS

 ANOTHER OPTION AVAILABLE TO MOTORISTS UNDER THE PROGRAM IS CALLED “VOLUNTARY VEHICLE RETIREMENT” AND PROVIDES BETWEEN $1000 AND $1500 TO MOTORISTS WILLING TO HAVE THEIR VEHICLES SCRAPPED, DEPENDING UPON CERTAIN INCOME LEVELS ALTHOUGH IT APPEARS THAT THE “VEHICLE RETIREMENT”  HAS TEMPORARILY EXPENDED THEIR BUDGET AS OF 5/18. FUNDS ARE USUALLY REPLENISHED ON JULY 1.

 IF YOU DO CHOOSE TO USE THE BENEFITS OF THE STATE SPONSORED PROGRAM MENTIONED ABOVE, IT IS VERY LIKELY THAT YOUR VEHICLES FUEL ECONOMY WILL IMPROVE AND YOUR CHANCES OF EASILY PASSING FUTURE INSPECTIONS WILL BE ASSURED

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