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Smogging a California car after installing a new battery? how many miles to drive before smogging?

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question mostly for Cali owners.
So a few months ago, I discovered that the battery in my "garage queen" Elise, even on a battery tender, was depleted. it was a 6 year old battery so it was time, I was able to replace the battery just fine. But didn't really have an opportunity to drive the car, as I have 2 daily driver cars and it's been cold and wet.etc
However the car is due for registration renewal in the coming weeks, and this is the year I have to get a smog certificate. ugh.
I know from experience that many cars won't immediately pass smog if a battery drains and has to be replaced.
Is that the case with Elises? I'm assuming so?.. and If so, how many miles do you think I'd have to put on it in order to pass smog? 100 miles is the ballpark that I think they say on most cars. I just don't drive my Elise all that much., but still love her.
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
20 minute or so is usually enough. You can check that "readiness is set" via most OBDII apps (torque, for example), and that's all you need.

That said, pay the registration, you can always smog later..
Cool, thanks for the info. I drove the Elise to work today,. spent 20 minutes in some stop-go traffic ..and it'll take 10 minutes to drive home. - and then maybe next week it'll take me about 20 minutes to drive to the smog shop., just to get it taken care of.
 
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20 minute or so is usually enough. You can check that "readiness is set" via most OBDII apps (torque, for example), and that's all you need.

That said, pay the registration, you can always smog later..
Not my experience, you need a current smog cert to renew registration, that's kind of the point.

It has very little to do with the battery and a lot to do with the cats. A long drive will heat them up and burn off the crud.
 

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Not my experience, you need a current smog cert to renew registration, that's kind of the point.

It has very little to do with the battery and a lot to do with the cats. A long drive will heat them up and burn off the crud.
Let me clarify my points, and address some things here:

1- You CAN pay the registration before smogging, but if the date passes, you'll need a moving permit (day pass) from the DMV to take the car to smog. CA encourages you to do this to avoid late penalties. So, get the registration PAID before the due date, even if you can't smog it.

2- as it's an OBDII read, not a pull on a dyno, getting the crud off is less important than having the readiness set in the ECU. With the driving he's done (commute to work, and later driving to the smog shop) he should be fine.
 

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That said, pay the registration, you can always smog later..
This. ^
I got told this by an officer writing me a ticket for expired that I was due to get a smog on in a week or so... AND a DMV person.

Then, NO late fee and once smogged, reg and sticker come fairly quick. Also, I think an officer can see if reg paid, but no smog... "because you were on your way to get it.. ";)
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Not my experience, you need a current smog cert to renew registration, that's kind of the point.

It has very little to do with the battery and a lot to do with the cats. A long drive will heat them up and burn off the crud.
Yes, a smog certificate is indeed require to renew registration, but as mentioned, one can pay the registration in advance to prevent a late fee, and then smog later on. I actually did this with one of my other cars just a few months ago, as the line at the smog station was too long, saw I could pay the registration fee on time and then smog the following week without issues.

and in my experience, which is why I was asking, it has a LOT to do with the battery. I wasn't aware when I took one of my folks cars to get smogged one day, the guy at the test center then said it failed, and inquired "did you just replace the battery?". and he told me to then drive it around 100 miles and come back. (and then he was able to pass it)
a quick google has the answer as well:
"Whenever your car's battery is replaced, disconnected, or subjected to a jump start, there's a chance that the vehicle's internal test monitors will be erased. The smog testing facility needs this monitored information in order for your car to complete and pass a smog test."

also in my recent experiences - the last time they smogged my Elise (and Mazda), they didn't even bother putting them on a dyne or testing what was coming out of the tailpipe, they just connected to my car computer and that was it.
 

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1. Makes sense
2. Mine was on a dyno (and overheated on the dyno). Not sure how long they left it.
Yes, a smog certificate is indeed require to renew registration, but as mentioned, one can pay the registration in advance to prevent a late fee, and then smog later on. I actually did this with one of my other cars just a few months ago, as the line at the smog station was too long, saw I could pay the registration fee on time and then smog the following week without issues.

and in my experience, which is why I was asking, it has a LOT to do with the battery. I wasn't aware when I took one of my folks cars to get smogged one day, the guy at the test center then said it failed, and inquired "did you just replace the battery?". and he told me to then drive it around 100 miles and come back. (and then he was able to pass it)
a quick google has the answer as well:
"Whenever your car's battery is replaced, disconnected, or subjected to a jump start, there's a chance that the vehicle's internal test monitors will be erased. The smog testing facility needs this monitored information in order for your car to complete and pass a smog test."

also in my recent experiences - the last time they smogged my Elise (and Mazda), they didn't even bother putting them on a dyne or testing what was coming out of the tailpipe, they just connected to my car computer and that was it.
OK, I get the battery thing now. When I've replaced batteries I use jumpers to keep the car powered, as so much can get lost.
 

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There are two types of smog tests in California.

The first is BAR 97. Every vehicle pre-2000 must pass the BAR 97 test which is done on a dynamometer. The dyno test is done at 15 MPH and then again at 25 MPH. In addition there is a visual inspection to check for tampered, broken, aftermarket parts, ignition timing and there are a fuel cap test and fuel tank pressure test.

The second test is OIS for vehicles model year 2000 and newer. OIS is done without the dyno, where test equipment is connected to the OBD2 port and pulls data from the vehicle's ECU/BUS. The test will check the function of the Catalytic Converter, Evaporative Emissions, Oxygen Sensor, Oxygen Sensor Heater, Exhaust Gas Recirculation System, Misfire, Secondary Air Injection, and Fuel System.

Kiyoshi
 

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It has very little to do with the battery and a lot to do with the cats. A long drive will heat them up and burn off the crud.
If the battery is replaced w/o something to maintain power to the the ECU, then you will likely have sensors that are not in an incomplete state. This will cause you to immediately fail your SMOG test.

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A cheap OBD2 connector from Amazon plus the free Torque app can help you determine what sensors may be in an incomplete status.

Here is a link on a generic readiness driving parameter that OP will want to at least look at: Air Quality Board - Readiness Q&A
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
One of the reasons it's better to maintain power while switching batteries.
Indeed. I've always tried to keep the power going to my car via the battery tender or charger when changing batteries. Mostly to keep the clock/radio settings intact. But with my Elise I'm not too concerned about those settings.
However in this case, my battery seemed completely depleted..and thought I'd drive the car a bit more prior to registration/smogging.
 
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I have an Ecutek Tune on my Infiniti ..I went to smog for tags and as soon as it was plugged in it failed .shows on result ECU upgraded
SMH!
new law or recent law passed in 2022 that tuned Ecus in California show up on smog scan
 

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I have an Ecutek Tune on my Infiniti ..I went to smog for tags and as soon as it was plugged in it failed .shows on result ECU upgraded
SMH!
new law or recent law passed in 2022 that tuned Ecus in California show up on smog scan
YUP!

Question - are they letting you re-smog at the smog station? Or are you now flagged to go to the a state referee?
 
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