Understanding Environmental Concerns

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What You Need To Know About Smog Testing

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In recent years, many states, due to a growing concern for the environment and its overall health, have started requiring certain vehicles in certain circumstances to undergo smog testing. Through smog testing, these states hope to reduce the number of vehicles that emit large amounts of harmful materials into the air through smog. If your state requires smog testing, you may have questions and concerns about if and how your vehicle will be affected. Your best point of reference for these concerns is your local department of motor vehicles; however, there is some general information that can benefit any people who think they may need to undergo smog testing.

Wait for Notification

To start off with, you should never just assume that you will be required to undergo smog testing. You will always be notified in some official way if you are required to submit your vehicle for smog testing.

The most common method of notification is through your registration renewal notification. When your car comes up for its registration renewal, your notice will typically include further instructions if your vehicle is required to undergo smog testing. If you do not receive any kind of notification, then you will not be required to undergo smog testing at the given time and have nothing to worry about.

Selling Your Vehicle

If you are planning to sell a vehicle in your state, then you may be required to have it undergo and pass a smog test before you will legally be allowed to sell it. Thus, if you are considering selling a vehicle, check with your local department of motor vehicles to determine if you need to get a smog certificate in order to do so.

If you are required to get a smog certificate and do not, the sale will not be full, complete, and legal until you do, so be sure to check up on this requirement to see if it pertains to your vehicle.


If you do have bring your vehicle in for a smog check, you may be curious about how long it will take to get the results back. While this will vary from one technician to the next, in most cases, you will know whether or not your vehicle has passed the smog check immediately via a readout on the equipment used to perform the smog test.

If your vehicle does not pass the smog test, your technician, such as at West Coast Smog, can tell you your options for getting your vehicle up to "smog code."

Since smog testing is relatively new, it is normal to have questions and concerns about it, but if you can follow these tips, you and your vehicle should be well taken care of in this aspect.