WHAT ARE MY OPTIONS WHEN I FAIL A SMOG CHECK?
1) Find out whether you qualify and apply for the State Repair Assistance Program C.A.P. to have the state pay up to $500 in repair assistance at one of the Star Certified Test and Repair stations listed on this site.
2) Go to a Star Certified Test and Repair Stations listed on this site, have them diagnose, estimate the costs, repair and retest it. If the repairs you approve cost over $650 and you don't want to spend more, apply for a repair cost waiver.
4) Give up on trying to fix it and just reapply to the CAP Program, this time under the vehicle retirement provision and then recycle it in exchange for the check.
CAP PROGRAM REPAIR ASSISTANCE
The State of California will contribute up to $500 in repair assistance to help motorists pass their smog check at a dedicated repair station such as most of the Star Certified Test and Repair Stations listed on this site. You will pay the costs of initial testing and diagnosis of the problem(s) causing the failure. The State contribution goes towards repair parts and labor to install them.
THE VEHICLE RETIREMENT OPTION RECYCLE A VEHICLE FOR $1000-$1500
In an ongoing effort to get the worst polluting vehicles off of California's roads, the State has created a program whereby owners of polluting vehicles who are willing to part ways with their beloved cars in exchange for a check.
It's like winning the lottery in a way. Your car or truck fails an official smog check, you fill out a simple application online or download the form and mail it in. Either way, the folks in the CAP Program office near Sacramento scrutinize it, approve or disapprove your eligibility or request more information. If they approve and have funds in their account, you receive notice of approval and a list of approved dismantlers to contact for an appointment to give them your car to crush into a small cube.
Non low-income motorists may receive $1,000 to retire their vehicle.
Low-income drivers may receive $1,500 to retire their vehicle.
Any qualified driver whose vehicle has failed its most recent Smog Check Inspection may opt to voluntarily exchange the vehicle for $1000-$1500 rather than repair the Smog Check failure, and, any qualified motorist whose vehicle is not due for biennial smog inspection may choose to retire their vehicle at any time.
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