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Emissions test stupidity (Maryland)

Triplegreen500

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So yesterday I go to get my new-to-me '06 Wrangler emissions tested. Now, it's been....20 years? Since I had to do an emissions test. For that time, all I've had are motorcycles (exempt), Historic vehicles (20+ years old; exempt), and diesels (exempt).

Things have changed.

Supposedly (key word there), you can use a "24 hour kiosk" to get your "testing" done. I'm thinking "huh?? ok, whatever". Used to be you had to go to the station, they stick a tube on the tailpipe, hold revs at 3k for 30 seconds, yadda yadda. Now, apparently, it's strictly an OBDII hookup and code scan.

So the email I got clearly said "you can go to a kiosk; take your registration card (it has a barcode on it) and form of payment, and perform your own testing process. $10. If you go to the full-service facility, it's $14".

I go to the kiosk and scan my reg card - "testing cannot be performed on this vehicle here; must go to full service center". OK, I just bought the thing, it may be a "first time" thing. Annoying.

I go to the testing place. Sit for nearly an hour waiting. Watching my day off waste away. Finally pull in, tell the guy "I tried to use the kiosk but it won't let me". He said the kiosk won't do it off the registration. I point out the email says it will. He says he knows, the only thing a kiosk will use is the notification letter...which, he says, motor vehicles no longer mails out. It's all done via email now.

Wait...what???

Anyway. Scan my card. $14 down the drain. He plugs in. Looks at his screen. "Do you drive this every day?" Um, no, I don't. "we can't test it, it has too many codes in it, you have to drive it every day for a week, 2 key cycles a day, at least 20 minutes each drive, and bring it back to re-test".

I call bullshit, right to his face. I work in automotive. There are NO CODES set just from a car sitting. Period. No lights on. No errors. Bone-stock Jeep, all OEM sensors. I plug in my Matco scanner and prove it - ZERO CODES. He stands his ground. I say to him "well if I don't drive it enough for it to be able to be tested, I must not drive it enough for it to NEED to be tested, right??" He gave me a blank stare. I left, before I got any more irate.

So if you live in Maryland, and have to get a "secondary" vehicle emissions-tested...make sure you drive it daily for at least a week before you go to get it tested.

Grrr....
 
I never heard of an emission test requirement to drive the car daily for a week for it to work. I’ve heard of people clearing a code and the test not working afterwards, as the vehicle needs to be driven through a full cycle of driving situations before it has the proper data to be accumulated for the OBD test to work.
The Illinois test has got easier over the years. They used to have rollers you had to pull the driving wheels onto, then the guy would put a sniffer in the tailpipe and get in and run your car in gear. They’d also put a mirror under your car to make sure your cat wasn’t remove.
Now you pull in, the guy plugs in his tester, 2 minutes later you‘re done.
Last time I was due, I pulled into the test lane after work on a cold January evening and no one seemed to around. Then some guy who seemed like a special needs type came over and chewed me out for pulling in without being directed in. He made me back out, then as soon as I backed out, he directed me back in. I got out so he could do his test, “Special Ed” chewed me out more for pulling in without being directed in. I didn’t see any point in arguing, in all my years of getting the tests I’d always had to sit in line while cars got directed in, never went there when it was a ghost town!
 
It's the OBD I/M monitors. They must run and complete to pass the smog test. Here is the complete system test for a GM vehicle. Ya, total pain in the ***. Been like this a CA for years.

Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) Complete System Set Procedure

Description
The purpose of the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) complete system set procedure is to satisfy the enable criteria necessary to execute all of the I/M readiness diagnostics and complete the trips for those particular diagnostics. When all I/M monitored diagnostic tests are completed, the I/M System Status indicators are set to YES. Perform the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) Complete System Set Procedure if any I/M System Status indicators are set to NO.
Conditions for Meeting a Cold Start
• The ignition voltage is between 10 and 15V.
• The barometric pressure (BARO) is more than 75 kPa.
• The engine coolant temperature (ECT) at start-up is less than 42°C (108°F).
• The intake air temperature (IAT) is between 2–32°C (36–90°F).
• The engine is OFF for greater than 6 hours or the following conditions must be met:
• The start-up IAT minus start-up ECT are within 12°C (22°F).
• The start-up ECT minus start-up IAT are within 50°C (90°F).
• Fuel level is between 25 and 75%.
Circuit/System Verification
1. Verify that all I/M System Status indicators report YES, and that no I/M Test DTCs are present.
If any I/M Test DTCs are set
Refer to Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) List - Vehicle.
If no I/M Test DTCs are set
2. All OK.
Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System Set Procedure
1. Ensure that the vehicle meets the conditions for a cold start listed above.
• If the EVAP I/M System Status indicator displays NO, perform the EVAP Service bay test if applicable.
2. Turn OFF all of the accessories; HVAC system, other electrical loads, including aftermarket/add-on equipment, etc., and open the cab.
3. Set the vehicle parking brake and ensure the vehicle is in park.
4. Start and idle the engine for 2 min.
Warning: Refer to Road Test Caution.
5. Close the cab, release the parking brake and Accelerate at part throttle to 72–80 km/h (45–50 mph) with this speed maintained until the engine reaches operating temperature, 8–10 min.
6. Continue operation under these conditions for an additional 6 min.
7. Accelerate at part throttle to 90 km/h (55 mph) with this speed maintained for 2 min.
8. Release the accelerator pedal for at least 10s. This will allow the vehicle to enter the decel fuel cut off.
Note: Do NOT touch the accelerator pedal until told to do so. A change in TP Sensor angle or an increase in engine speed may invalidate this portion of the test.
9. Safely stop the vehicle, with the engine in drive for automatic and parking brake applied. Allow the vehicle to idle for 2 min.
10. Shift the vehicle to park. Turn OFF the ignition and exit the vehicle. Do NOT disturb the vehicle for 45 min.
11. Observe the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System Status with a scan tool. All of the I/M System Status indicators should display YES.
• If the EVAP I/M System Status indicator displays NO, turn OFF the ignition, ensure that the vehicle meets the conditions for a cold start, and repeat steps 6-11 three more times, or until the EVAP I/M System Status indicator transitions to YES. If the indicator continues to display NO, refer to the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System DTC Table to identify the DTCs that did not run.
• If any of the I/M System Status indicators display NO, refer to the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System DTC Table for the indicator which did not display YES. The I/M System DTC Table identifies the DTCs associated with each I/M System Status Indicator.
Note: An I/M Test DTC will not be stored or erased from the ECU except at the end of trip processing, which occurs 5 s after ignition OFF.
12. Observe the I/M Test DTC information with a scan tool. Verify there are no I/M Test DTCs present.
• If an I/M Test DTC is set, diagnose the DTC using the Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) List - Vehicle and refer to Inspection/Maintenance System Check.
13. Observe the engine DTC information with a scan tool. Verify no DTCs are present.
• If a DTC is set, diagnose using the Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) List - Vehicle. After repairs, perform the Inspection/Maintenance Complete System Set Procedure to verify no further DTCs are set.
 
So yesterday I go to get my new-to-me '06 Wrangler emissions tested. Now, it's been....20 years? Since I had to do an emissions test. For that time, all I've had are motorcycles (exempt), Historic vehicles (20+ years old; exempt), and diesels (exempt).

Things have changed.

Supposedly (key word there), you can use a "24 hour kiosk" to get your "testing" done. I'm thinking "huh?? ok, whatever". Used to be you had to go to the station, they stick a tube on the tailpipe, hold revs at 3k for 30 seconds, yadda yadda. Now, apparently, it's strictly an OBDII hookup and code scan.

So the email I got clearly said "you can go to a kiosk; take your registration card (it has a barcode on it) and form of payment, and perform your own testing process. $10. If you go to the full-service facility, it's $14".

I go to the kiosk and scan my reg card - "testing cannot be performed on this vehicle here; must go to full service center". OK, I just bought the thing, it may be a "first time" thing. Annoying.

I go to the testing place. Sit for nearly an hour waiting. Watching my day off waste away. Finally pull in, tell the guy "I tried to use the kiosk but it won't let me". He said the kiosk won't do it off the registration. I point out the email says it will. He says he knows, the only thing a kiosk will use is the notification letter...which, he says, motor vehicles no longer mails out. It's all done via email now.

Wait...what???

Anyway. Scan my card. $14 down the drain. He plugs in. Looks at his screen. "Do you drive this every day?" Um, no, I don't. "we can't test it, it has too many codes in it, you have to drive it every day for a week, 2 key cycles a day, at least 20 minutes each drive, and bring it back to re-test".

I call bullshit, right to his face. I work in automotive. There are NO CODES set just from a car sitting. Period. No lights on. No errors. Bone-stock Jeep, all OEM sensors. I plug in my Matco scanner and prove it - ZERO CODES. He stands his ground. I say to him "well if I don't drive it enough for it to be able to be tested, I must not drive it enough for it to NEED to be tested, right??" He gave me a blank stare. I left, before I got any more irate.

So if you live in Maryland, and have to get a "secondary" vehicle emissions-tested...make sure you drive it daily for at least a week before you go to get it tested.

Grrr....
I feel your pain. Ohio used to have it, and just when I started looking for a house in KY, the state congress repealed it, so I stayed. Just yet another overreach of government, imho. He cannot see anything in a scan report that tells him how much you drive it unless codes had been cleared and/or adaptives had been cleared at some point recently before you took it in. Only codes that will show up and not illuminate the MIL are non emmissions related codes.
I wish this country would settle down with this hate towards cars.
 
It's the OBD I/M monitors. They must run and complete to pass the smog test. Here is the complete system test for a GM vehicle. Ya, total pain in the ***. Been like this a CA for years.

Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) Complete System Set Procedure

Description
The purpose of the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) complete system set procedure is to satisfy the enable criteria necessary to execute all of the I/M readiness diagnostics and complete the trips for those particular diagnostics. When all I/M monitored diagnostic tests are completed, the I/M System Status indicators are set to YES. Perform the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) Complete System Set Procedure if any I/M System Status indicators are set to NO.
Conditions for Meeting a Cold Start
• The ignition voltage is between 10 and 15V.
• The barometric pressure (BARO) is more than 75 kPa.
• The engine coolant temperature (ECT) at start-up is less than 42°C (108°F).
• The intake air temperature (IAT) is between 2–32°C (36–90°F).
• The engine is OFF for greater than 6 hours or the following conditions must be met:
• The start-up IAT minus start-up ECT are within 12°C (22°F).
• The start-up ECT minus start-up IAT are within 50°C (90°F).
• Fuel level is between 25 and 75%.
Circuit/System Verification
1. Verify that all I/M System Status indicators report YES, and that no I/M Test DTCs are present.
If any I/M Test DTCs are set
Refer to Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) List - Vehicle.
If no I/M Test DTCs are set
2. All OK.
Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System Set Procedure
1. Ensure that the vehicle meets the conditions for a cold start listed above.
• If the EVAP I/M System Status indicator displays NO, perform the EVAP Service bay test if applicable.
2. Turn OFF all of the accessories; HVAC system, other electrical loads, including aftermarket/add-on equipment, etc., and open the cab.
3. Set the vehicle parking brake and ensure the vehicle is in park.
4. Start and idle the engine for 2 min.
Warning: Refer to Road Test Caution.
5. Close the cab, release the parking brake and Accelerate at part throttle to 72–80 km/h (45–50 mph) with this speed maintained until the engine reaches operating temperature, 8–10 min.
6. Continue operation under these conditions for an additional 6 min.
7. Accelerate at part throttle to 90 km/h (55 mph) with this speed maintained for 2 min.
8. Release the accelerator pedal for at least 10s. This will allow the vehicle to enter the decel fuel cut off.
Note: Do NOT touch the accelerator pedal until told to do so. A change in TP Sensor angle or an increase in engine speed may invalidate this portion of the test.
9. Safely stop the vehicle, with the engine in drive for automatic and parking brake applied. Allow the vehicle to idle for 2 min.
10. Shift the vehicle to park. Turn OFF the ignition and exit the vehicle. Do NOT disturb the vehicle for 45 min.
11. Observe the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System Status with a scan tool. All of the I/M System Status indicators should display YES.
• If the EVAP I/M System Status indicator displays NO, turn OFF the ignition, ensure that the vehicle meets the conditions for a cold start, and repeat steps 6-11 three more times, or until the EVAP I/M System Status indicator transitions to YES. If the indicator continues to display NO, refer to the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System DTC Table to identify the DTCs that did not run.
• If any of the I/M System Status indicators display NO, refer to the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System DTC Table for the indicator which did not display YES. The I/M System DTC Table identifies the DTCs associated with each I/M System Status Indicator.
Note: An I/M Test DTC will not be stored or erased from the ECU except at the end of trip processing, which occurs 5 s after ignition OFF.
12. Observe the I/M Test DTC information with a scan tool. Verify there are no I/M Test DTCs present.
• If an I/M Test DTC is set, diagnose the DTC using the Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) List - Vehicle and refer to Inspection/Maintenance System Check.
13. Observe the engine DTC information with a scan tool. Verify no DTCs are present.
• If a DTC is set, diagnose using the Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) List - Vehicle. After repairs, perform the Inspection/Maintenance Complete System Set Procedure to verify no further DTCs are set.
If the car is a used car, all those monitors should have been fulfilled unless someone reset the adaptives and memory.
 
Yeah for Arkansas - we don’t test or inspect a damn thing.
 
More info on the system.

Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System Check
Description
Several states require that a vehicle pass on-board diagnostic (OBD) system tests and Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) emission inspections in order to renew license plates. This is accomplished by viewing the Inspection/Maintenance System Status or Data display on a scan tool. Using a scan tool, the technician can observe the I/M status in order to verify that the vehicle meets the criteria that complies with the local area requirements.
While testing in the I/M System Status mode, some DTCs may occur that are called I/M Test DTCs. An I/M Test DTC is defined as a fault code that is currently commanding the malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) ON, and is stored in non-volatile memory. The intended use of this data is to prevent vehicles from passing I/M inspection without proper repair to the vehicle. These fault codes are not erasable from any scan tool command or by disconnecting power to the controller. I/M Test DTCs are supported by all emissions related electronic control units (ECUs), such as engine control modules (ECMs), transmission control modules (TCMs), fuel pump control modules (FPCMs), etc. An I/M Test DTC will not be stored or erased from the ECU except at the end of trip processing which occurs 5s after ignition OFF.
Conditions for Updating the I/M System Status
Note: New vehicles may not report an Inspection/Maintenance System Check pass or fail status for certain post catalyst oxygen sensor or heated oxygen sensor 2 diagnostics prior to 700 miles. After replacing a catalytic converter on a vehicle with greater than 700 miles, it may require up to an additional 700 miles to prevent a false failure status.
Each system requires at least one, and sometimes several, diagnostic tests. The results of these tests are reported by a DTC. A system monitor is complete when either all of the DTCs comprising the monitor have Run and Passed, or any one of the DTCs comprising the monitor have illuminated the MIL. Once all of the tests are completed, the Inspection/Maintenance System Status or Data will indicate YES in the Completed or Value column.
For example, when the HO2S Heater Status indicates YES, either all of the oxygen sensor heater tests have passed or one of the tests has illuminated the MIL. If the vehicle has four heated oxygen sensors, either all four heater circuit tests have passed or one of the heater circuit tests has illuminated the MIL. The Inspection/Maintenance System Status or Data will indicate NO under the Completed or Value column when any of the required tests for that system have not run. The following is a list of conditions that would set the Inspection/Maintenance System Status or Data indicator to NO:
• The vehicle is new from the factory and has not yet been driven through the necessary drive conditions to complete the tests.
The battery has been disconnected or discharged below operating voltage.
• The control module power or ground has been interrupted.
• The control module has been reprogrammed.
• The control module DTCs have been cleared as part of a service procedure.
Conditions for Clearing I/M Test DTCs
1. Only the OBD II System can erase I/M Test DTCs. The OBD II system must determine that the malfunction that caused the I/M Test DTC to be stored is no longer present and is not commanding the MIL. Each of the following represents ways to clear an I/M Test DTC:
o If the MIL goes off due to 3 passing drive cycles, and the scan tool code clear is not used, the I/M Test DTC is erased at power down of the last drive cycle.
o If a scan tool code clear is used to turn OFF the MIL, the I/M Test DTC is not erased, therefore the DTC must PASS and not FAIL during the drive cycle. The I/M Test DTC is erased at power down of the drive cycle.
o If the controller is reflashed/reprogrammed, all I/M Test DTCs are erased.
2. For the OBD II System to run a single drive cycle for clearing an I/M Test DTC, all of the following conditions must occur:
o Cumulative time of engine run time greater than 600 s.
o Cumulative vehicle operation above 41 km/h (25 mph) over 300 s.
o Continuous vehicle idle greater than 30 s.
o Ignition OFF for 5s to allow the code to clear.
Monitored Emission Control Systems
The OBD II system monitors all emission control systems that are on-board, but not all vehicles need every possible emission control system. For example, a vehicle may not be equipped with secondary air injection (AIR) or exhaust gas recirculation (EGR). The OBD II regulations require monitoring of the following; if equipped:
• The air conditioning system
• The catalytic converter efficiency
• Comprehensive component monitoring-Emission related inputs and outputs
• The evaporative emission (EVAP) system
• The fuel delivery system
• Heated catalyst monitoring
• Misfire monitoring
• The oxygen sensor system (O2S or HO2S)
• The oxygen sensor heater system (HO2S heater)
For the specific DTCs required for each system, refer to the Inspection/Maintenance (I/M) System DTC Table. Systems such as misfire and comprehensive components may not be listed in a system status list. These tests run continuously and do not require an I/M System Status indicator.
 
Had that happen here in Pa. You can disconnect the battery and reset “codes” but apparently they are still there even though no lights on in dash. It has to go through multiple heat cycles to erase the recent codes… drove it 2 days and took it back and it passed…
 
Waste of my time (and money). And, I'm trying not to drive it too much at the moment because the trans has a bearing whine in it (6 speed manual), and a metric ****-ton of shavings on the magnet when I serviced it. I haven't gotten a rebuild kit or a replacement yet, so I don't want it to pop on me without a backup in place. I have till end of May, though, so I can hopefully source a rebuild/replacement by then and install it...I just went to get the test so it was out of the way. Oh well.

Good info on the monitor stuff; although, I don't consider those 'codes' in the general definition.

It is a "used car"; I've had it about 2 months, put close to 1,000 miles on it since purchase; unhooked the battery one time while doing some electrical work, but that was probably 400-500 miles ago. Whatever. It's all a pain in the ***, just made worse by the layers of stupidity during my trip yesterday.

They're calling for a nor'easter Sunday-Tuesday now, so it may get a few days of use this coming week....if it behaves I may just make that "the week" and still just get it over with. Depends how loud the bearing noise gets during that time...
 
Something really stupid and maddening happened with the tests in IL a few years ago. Due to chronic budget problems in this totally misrun mess of a state, the state decided to save some money by not sending out the post card to inform car owners their cars were due for testing before they could renew their plates. Most people didn't figure out they were due until they tried to renew their plates toward the end of the month, and were not allowed to renew their plates without the emissions test.
So thousands scrambled to try to get their tests at the same time at the end of the month, and cars were lined up for miles at each testing site, with people waiting hours to get their test.
The state geniuses started sending out cards again the following year.
My plates expire next month, and I think my car is due for its biannual test. I have not received a card though, it typically comes in January for my April new plate renewal date. I'm debating whether to just stop in and tell them I think I'm due and take a risk of getting chewed out by "Special Ed" for coming in when I am not due, or should I go online and try to renew my plates and see if it won't let me. Even trying that might prove difficult, as I haven't received notices for either that car, or my truck which is too new to need a test, but also gets renewed in April, and last time I tried to renew when I hadn't got the notice, I had a bunch of problems because renewing requires a code that they give you on the renewal notice, and if you don't have the renewal notice, you don't have the code.
Why do I live here, why does anyone live here.... :mad:
 
I've been in that situation. Someone probably cleared the codes and reset the computer before you bought it. Chances are the codes will pop back up after drive cycling it as the computer will ignore codes until the drive cycle is complete. I don't know about MD, but in AZ 2 of the 3 systems have to be "ready" in order for it to be tested. Usually the hardest system to drive cycle is the emission system. I use to drive around with the code scanner hooked up and as soon as 2 of the 3 systems showed ready, high tailed to the testing facility.
 
:rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:
You choose to live where you live, so live with the painful consequences of your choice! That's why I chose a place where I don't have to worry about Govt. oversite of what I can and can't do!
 
The Illinois test has got easier over the years. They used to have rollers you had to pull the driving wheels onto, then the guy would put a sniffer in the tailpipe and get in and run your car in gear. They’d also put a mirror under your car to make sure your cat wasn’t remove.
Texas used to do the dyno run too on 95 and older vehicles. 96 (OBDII) use the plug in and when the 95's hit 25 everybody got rid of that damn dyno. None of the testing places liked them and were expensive as hello to fix when they broke down. My 95 used to be high on the NOx and especially so in the summer time and really high when the engine was hot. So, worked my way into testing during the winter and bingo. It would also post lower numbers with the air filter removed from the filter can.
 
Nearly 1,000 miles since I bought it isn't enough???
More than enough, however, it requires key cycles with a certain length of time before another start and run cycle. So, if you jump on the expressway and drove for 10 hours straight, it wouldn't satusfy the monitor's criteria. I have to put up with all this bs on a daily basis. It sucks when government gets involved in vehicle manufacturing and emmissions.
 
All it is is a revenue maker.

I lived in Md when they first started pollution testing. They actually contracted an outfit from California. Tailpipe testing. Then they started the treadmill testing on the older vehicles and OBD on newer ones.

I had a '87 Dodge 1/2 ton with /6 and three on the tree. I told them not to do the treadmill test because of the non synchronized transmission. They insisted the operator knew what he was doing. I said I'm holding you liable it you break it. Sure enough they locked it up. I went ape on them.

Heck Maryland even tried a sound decibel device to catch loud vehicles. That didn't last long. I got caught up in that debacle too with my motorcycle. Judge threw it out along with every other ticket that was issued.

Only certain counties in Pa have pollution testing and it's only OBD. No tailpipe or treadmill. It's done with the yearly safety inspection. You can get a waiver on it if you haven't driven over 5k miles.
 
It can take a lot of drive cycles to make the computer happy with all the systems.
Mainly the gas tank vacuum tests.
Best thing is to try to adhere to the long drawn out test as posted above.
 
Pa testing might not be the same as Maryland but last year I took my '03 4.7 Dakota to be inspected. The tech said it may not pass the scan because the vehicle hasn't been driven enough. The truck had sat for over a year, I had replaced the timing chains, installed new heads and other items to get it road worthy. I only drove it about three miles to the shop that did the inspection. To his amazement it passed the scan. First that I had heard of this when testing.
 
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