SMOG EXPRESS

Your Expert Smog Check Test-Only

Expert technicians, superior smog, great customer service

Open 7 days a week

Monday to Saturday 8 am to 6 pm

Sunday 10 am to 4 pm

(510) 231-0900

OPEN DURING COVID RESTRICTIONS WITH ALL NECESSARY PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES

Is my vehicle required to get a Smog Check ?

It depends on your situation:

  • Registration Renewals - Your vehicle needs a Smog Check if it is more than 8 model years old and newer than 1976 (in 2020, model years 1976 – 2012 must be smogged). This does not include motorcycles and two-cylinder engine vehicles.
  • Buying/Selling a vehicle - A Smog Check is needed if it is more than 4 model years old. (In 2020, model year 2016 must be smogged)
  • Out of state vehicles being registered in California require a Smog Check regardless of model year.

What is an “EVAP” Test ?

The Low-Pressure Evaporation test checks for leaks between your engine and the gas tank. It is required by the State of California for vehicles 1995 and prior (some models are exempt). For the official FAQ provided by the State’s Bureau of Automotive Repair, click here.

How about Diesel vehicles ? Hybrids ?

Diesel 1998 and newer, and weighing under 14,500 GVW will need a smog check. Procedures are different, but we do perform diesel smog checks. Hybrids do need a smog check, following the same rules than regular vehicles


My car is perfect. Why do I need a FREE retest ?

While your engine emissions may seem fine, a California smog inspection covers also the computer on board of your vehicle, hoses, and wiring under the hood. If any of these components fail, you will be required to repair them and go through another full smog inspection (State law prohibits partial retests). At Smog Express Richmond, we give you the peace of mind that you can always return to us without being double-charged. Check out our Tips to passing a smog test here.

What are the benefits of the Smog Check Program ?

It has greatly reduced air pollution created by millions of cars in California.

According to the California Air Resources Board, the program removes about 400 tons of smog-forming pollutants from California’s air every day.

What is a Test-Only station ?

A Star certified one?

A test-only licensed Smog Check station is only allowed to test cars. State law prohibits them from making repairs, so you are sure our test is unbiased .

A Star certified station has proven its performance and accuracy to the Bureau of Automotive Repair, and is allowed to smog any vehicle, even gross polluters.

What happens if my vehicle fails a Smog Check ?

To complete your registration, you need to obtain the repairs necessary for it to pass.

With us, your retest is FREE of charge within 1 month after your vehicle failed, giving you the time to repair. You won't get charged twice for the service !

How do I know I need to take my car to a Star certified station ?

You will be notified on the registration renewal notice sent by the California DMV, it's the line in bold at the top portion.

Star stations are required when the vehicle type is potentially a gross polluter

What happens if my vehicle fails a Smog Check ?

To complete your registration, you need to obtain the repairs necessary for it to pass.

With us, your retest is FREE of charge within 1 month after your vehicle failed, giving you the time to repair. You won't get charged twice for the service !

How can I help my vehicle pass a Smog Check ?

Perform proper & regular vehicle maintenance according to your owner’s manual.

Do not tamper with the emissions control equipment.

What is CAP & how do I qualify ?

The Consumer Assistance Program (CAP) provides financial assistance to repair or retire a vehicle that fails a Smog Check.

Repair Assistance — If your DMV renewal notice requires a Smog Check at a Test-Only station, you may qualify for up to $500 in repair assistance once you pay the first $100 in repair costs. You may also qualify, if your income is within certain levels, to a $20 co-pay only

Vehicle retirement — If your car is not worth repairing, the State may buy the car from you for $1,000 and have it scrapped at a local dismantler.

You can download the CAP application (English), Programa de Assistencia al Consumidor (Spanish), or call (800) 952-5210.