6. SMOG CHECK PROGRAM - PART 2
SMOG CHECK ENHANCED AREAS, TEST ONLY AND GOLD SHIELD STATIONS, GROSS POLLUTIONS, AND HARDSHIP WAIVERS
"BASIC" VERSUS "ENHANCED" AREAS: The "Basic Area" smog test involves testing your vehicle standing still in Park/Neutral.
The "Enhanced Area" test involves placing vehicle on a "dynamometer" to simulate driving conditions and is harder to pass. Your vehicle's
registration Zip Code determines which test must be used. It is illegal for a licensed smog station to use the "basic" test when
the "enhanced" area test is required.
TEST ONLY/GOLD SHIELD STATIONS: You must bring your vehicle to a "test only" station if your registration renewal notice so indicates.
Currently two percent (2%) of vehicles (picked at random) must be tested at a "test only" station. A "test only" station is prohibited
from performing repairs. Statistics obtained from "test only" stations are compared against statistics from "test and repair" stations.
Gold Shield Stations operate as "test only" stations AND are permitted to performs repairs as well.
Gold Shield Stations must meet additional licensing requirements and are audited more often.
GROSS POLLUTERS/"PRE-TESTS": "Gross-Polluters" are vehicles who emissions fail the smog check by an excessive level for that particular year/make/
model. If your vehicle is flagged as a "gross-polluter" the is no upper repair cost limit and they may only be passed at a "test only"/"gold shield"
station. You may request a "pre-test" in order to prevent your vehicle from being flagged as a gross polluter. The station must perform a
complete smog inspection (unless you authorize otherwise) but the results (including passing) are not considered "official"
REPAIR COST WAIVER/ECONOMIC HARDSHIP EXTENSION: A customer must spend a minimum of $450.00 in smog repairs to be eligible for a one-time-only
cost waiver. Low income families can qualify for reduced economic hardship extension of $250.00. The is no cost limit for gross polluters or vehicles
that have tampered emission controls.