Vehicle Smog Testing - Car And Truck Smog Check

What is smog testing and why do I need it for my car or truck? Smog testing allows California roads to be filled with approved cars which do not release as many harmful emissions into the area.

Smog testing also known as Emissions Testing also known as another way to charge you money to live in California is just a part of life in the land of Schwarzenegger. You HAVE to get a smog test every other year that you own your car (if it's 6 years or older), unless you buy new and then you might be able to bypass this nuisance. But what is smog testing? And why is it needed in the first place? While the answers might not make this any less of a pain, at least you can see the logic behind smog testing.

What is Smog Testing?

Smog testing is basically a test where a mechanic runs your car on a ramp with a hose attached to the exhaust pipe. They are making sure your car isn't emitting too many toxic substances that can add to the smog problem in the state. If your car is okay, then you can drive your car around California worry-free. But if your car doesn't pass this test, you need to get the car fixed so that it does.

You can get your car tested up to 90 days before your license is about to expire or be reinstated from a suspension. The test is filed in the DMV's system and they can then check up on you.

Why Do I Need Smog Testing for my Car or Truck?

Conspiracy theorists believe the California DMV and the Smog Test stations are just looking to make an extra buck. But the party line right now is that by keeping cars which emit too many toxic fumes and emissions off the road, the environment will be supported as opposed to damaged. With cars on the road that aren't producing toxic gases, the word can be a better place (cue the violin music).

In addition, the emissions tests are trying to limit the air pollution and days when it's difficult to breathe.

Oh, and you need it because it's the law. And you have to.

Choose Your State

Q:Do you have to get a smog check every year?

A:Smog checks need to be conducted every other year. However, this requirement may vary slightly from state to state. This test has been made mandatory to make sure all cars are in perfect running order and the chemical emissions are within a safe range. To find out more about smog certifications and checks, browse through our pages.