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Old 08-03-2011, 10:34 AM   #1
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Emissions Test Readiness??? New Engine Saga continues...

I'm sure most of you know about my blowing engines fiasco! Here is my latest issue. My tag was set to expire in June and here in Atlanta, you have to pass an emissions test before you can get your tag renewed. It was May and I had just got the car running again, so I went down for the emissions test and failed. He told me that the computer wasn't "Ready". He said I should drive it a couple of hundred miles and the computer should reset and then I could test again for free. I drove the car a couple of more weeks including a PCA DE, where it did quite nicely, thank you! Took it back to the same place for my free retest.

"Readiness = Fail"

He says, "how much you drive it?"
I say 400 miles like I stole it!
"Well drive it some more" says he!
But my tag expires this week!!!
"Hummmm...you should avoid the Police"

I went back this week for a 3rd test and $25 later the guy informs me that it's still not ready!!! Anybody ever had this before? Is there an easy fix? My Dealer assures me that they can probably diagnose it in under 2 hours and mentioned the Secondary Air System? A buddy of mine suggested O2 Sensors? Any help would be greatly appreciated! I am about to sell the car and didn't want to spend a bunch of money. I guess I could save the money on a tag. And it could sell to someone in the other 9/10's of Georgia and the world that doesn't require an emissions test. But karma would bite me in the ass I am sure!

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Old 08-03-2011, 10:54 AM   #2
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Byron,

I don't know an easy fix but do you have a code reader? I have an actron that will tell me when the various emission systems are ready which takes the guess work out of it.

My CEL came on last month during my renewal time (as it seems to every year) so I reset the light and then drove the car and kept checking it with my code reader.

One of my system never did become ready (coincidentally the once that throws the CEL) but since it being a '99, it fell in the MY range in Georgia that is allowed 2 non-ready or non-passing systems and still pass the test as long as the CEL isn't on.
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Last edited by idheaton; 08-03-2011 at 10:57 AM.
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:00 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron in Atlanta
I'm sure most of you know about my blowing engines fiasco! Here is my latest issue. My tag was set to expire in June and here in Atlanta, you have to pass an emissions test before you can get your tag renewed. It was May and I had just got the car running again, so I went down for the emissions test and failed. He told me that the computer wasn't "Ready". He said I should drive it a couple of hundred miles and the computer should reset and then I could test again for free. I drove the car a couple of more weeks including a PCA DE, where it did quite nicely, thank you! Took it back to the same place for my free retest.

"Readiness = Fail"

He says, "how much you drive it?"
I say 400 miles like I stole it!
"Well drive it some more" says he!
But my tag expires this week!!!
"Hummmm...you should avoid the Police"

I went back this week for a 3rd test and $25 later the guy informs me that it's still not ready!!! Anybody ever had this before? Is there an easy fix? My Dealer assures me that they can probably diagnose it in under 2 hours and mentioned the Secondary Air System? A buddy of mine suggested O2 Sensors? Any help would be greatly appreciated! I am about to sell the car and didn't want to spend a bunch of money. I guess I could save the money on a tag. And it could sell to someone in the other 9/10's of Georgia and the world that doesn't require an emissions test. But karma would bite me in the ass I am sure!
Byron, get the car scanned to see what is "not ready". It should not take that many miles to get the system to reset.
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:17 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by idheaton
Byron,

I don't know an easy fix but do you have a code reader? I have an actron that will tell me when the various emission systems are ready which takes the guess work out of it.

My CEL came on last month during my renewal time (as it seems to every year) so I reset the light and then drove the car and kept checking it with my code reader.

One of my system never did become ready (coincidentally the once that throws the CEL) but since it being a '99, it fell in the MY range in Georgia that is allowed 2 non-ready or non-passing systems and still pass the test as long as the CEL isn't on.
The CEL is not on, and there were no codes pending the last I checked. I will check the codes again tonight and see if I can get the emissions guy to tell me which readiness test failed?
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:41 AM   #5
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Also be aware that I have heard more than once of a state agency not getting good connection when they plug into the OBD II port, resulting in them failing the car when there is nothing wrong. Next time they test it, ask to watch.
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Old 08-03-2011, 12:02 PM   #6
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Easy fix to buy you some time

Byron, a band aid that will allow you pass smog...

With the tank nearly empty (w/about two gallons left), add two gallons of racing methanol to the tank and go for the test station, you will pass the test, but try not to to lug down the engine because it will be running lean (and will rev up easily).

Right afterwards, drive to burn as much fuel as possible (methanol is highly corrosive) add more fuel, burn it again, then you can fill it up and forget about it.

This will give you some time to sort out the reason why your car is failing.

This is every other year's ritual to help pass a temperamental Alfa Milano
.
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Old 08-03-2011, 02:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gilles
With the tank nearly empty (w/about two gallons left), add two gallons of racing methanol to the tank and go for the test station, you will pass the test...
.






Ummmm.....
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Old 08-03-2011, 03:08 PM   #8
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I had the same computer not ready issue. I ended up driving about 700 miles then the cel came on. Its in the shop right now for several issues including needing a maf. Good luck I feel your pain.
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Old 08-03-2011, 03:26 PM   #9
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ok...got home and hooked up the obd tester.....still no codes, or pending codes. Checked emissions and these are the two items out of eight that show " inc" (inconclusive?) cat monitor & evap system. Also checked the report from the emissions place. Just says "Readiness = Fail" , KOEO = PASS, DLC = PASS , MIL CMD = PASS
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Old 08-03-2011, 03:28 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gilles
Byron, a band aid that will allow you pass smog...

With the tank nearly empty (w/about two gallons left), add two gallons of racing methanol to the tank and go for the test station, you will pass the test, but try not to to lug down the engine because it will be running lean (and will rev up easily).

Right afterwards, drive to burn as much fuel as possible (methanol is highly corrosive) add more fuel, burn it again, then you can fill it up and forget about it.

This will give you some time to sort out the reason why your car is failing.

This is every other year's ritual to help pass a temperamental Alfa Milano
.

I recall reading about this as well, although I've heard some mention that they used Ethanol, instead of Methanol.

Do you know if it makes much of a difference between using methanol versus ethanol?
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Old 08-03-2011, 04:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron in Atlanta
ok...got home and hooked up the obd tester.....still no codes, or pending codes. Checked emissions and these are the two items out of eight that show " inc" (inconclusive?) cat monitor & evap system. Also checked the report from the emissions place. Just says "Readiness = Fail" , KOEO = PASS, DLC = PASS , MIL CMD = PASS
This was my exact issue. I kept being told the last two "emission sensors" hadnt reset when checked with an obd reader and also the emission computer. I tried three or four times with the same result. I drove a couple weeks then decide to try again. The morning I planned on going again the cel came one. Pulled the codes and they were both banks codes ending 28 and 30 if I remember correctly. I had a bad seal that was replaced that was thought to be the problem the first time I had a cel and emission issue. Now I need a maf. Its been a real pain.
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Old 08-04-2011, 09:39 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron in Atlanta
ok...got home and hooked up the obd tester.....still no codes, or pending codes. Checked emissions and these are the two items out of eight that show " inc" (inconclusive?) cat monitor & evap system. Also checked the report from the emissions place. Just says "Readiness = Fail" , KOEO = PASS, DLC = PASS , MIL CMD = PASS

The emission printout lumps all of the systems into the one 'Readiness' category so if your reader is telling you only two systems are inconclusive which I am guessing means 'not ready', then you may be fine. Ask the emissions tech how many system you are allowed to fail and still pass the test for your MY.

Since you are in Atl, if you want to we can meet up somewhere and you can use my code reader to see if it is reporting similar system readiness as your reader. I am in Smyrna.
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Old 08-04-2011, 12:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chaudanova
I recall reading about this as well, although I've heard some mention that they used Ethanol, instead of Methanol.

Do you know if it makes much of a difference between using methanol versus ethanol?
Hello Chaudanova,

I am sorry, but I had only used racing methanol (usually VP brand),
it cost about $22 for a 5 gallon pail

.
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Old 08-04-2011, 12:06 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chaudanova
I recall reading about this as well, although I've heard some mention that they used Ethanol, instead of Methanol.

Do you know if it makes much of a difference between using methanol versus ethanol?
This works great for a sniffer test. Not so much for an OBD2 plug-in readiness check. Usually most people use a mix of E85 and pump gas. I had a Turbo MR2 with no cats that could pass doing this on a stock ECU.

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