How Can I Prepare For an Emissions Test?

Schedule Brake Pad Replacement
Service Area

$125.02 - $465.01

Price range for all vehicles
Average rating from 11,884 customers who received a Brake Pads Replacement.

Annual emissions testing is required in order to ensure that your car is not producing too much pollution and that your emissions control components are in working order. While not all areas of the US require emissions testing yet, those that don’t are becoming rarer. If your car doesn’t pass the emissions test, you’ll be on the hook for repairs and parts replacement required to get it to pass, or you might face fines, fees or other consequences. How do you prepare for an emissions test?

Check Engine Light

First and foremost, if your Check Engine Light is on, your car won’t pass the test. It’s as simple as that. Have the code pulled, and then make the repairs needed. Chances are good it’s something simple, like a damaged spark plug wire, or maybe a damaged gas cap seal or a failed oxygen sensor. Take care of any Check Engine Light related issues before going for your test. You’ll also need to drive the car for a few days after having the Check Engine Light cleared, as part of the test looks at computer history for the vehicle.

Drive it

One complication that can arise with your test is if your OBD (on-board diagnostics) system is “not ready” for testing. This can happen if the system hasn’t been operated long enough to conduct all of its self-checks. Your car won’t fail, but you’ll be declined and have to retest on another day. The best way around this is to drive your car for at least 20 miles before going to the testing station.

Air filter

Correct airflow into the engine is critical for emissions, and if your air filter is seriously clogged, it can affect your emissions test results. Change your air filter before the test to make sure that your engine has a steady stream of fresh air for combustion.

Don’t turn off the engine

While you’re waiting for the test at the testing station, keep your engine running. Turn off things like your air conditioner or heater, but leave the engine running with the car in park. This will keep the operating temperature in the normal range (your engine can’t be tested if the exhaust system is too cool).

The best advice is to simply have your car tested, and then make any necessary repairs afterwards. The re-test should be free of charge if done within the window allotted by your state government.


Next Step

Schedule Brake Pad Replacement

The most popular service booked by readers of this article is Brake Pad Replacement. Yourmechanic’s technicians bring the dealership to you by performing this job at your home or office 7 days a week between 7AM-9PM. We currently cover over 10k cities and have 100k+ 5-star reviews... LEARN MORE

SEE PRICING & SCHEDULING

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Recent Brake Pad Replacement reviews

Excellent Rating


YourMechanic Brake Pad Replacement Service

Average Rating

4.9/5

Number of Reviews

11,884

Rating Summary
11,350
339
70
35
90
11,350
339
70
35
90

Jose

8 years of experience
33 reviews
Jose
8 years of experience
BMW 325i - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Redwood City, California
I had a few mechanics from YM and _all_ of them arrived late (some even 2 hours late) , but not Jose! He arrived right on time! I gave him the keys and let him do his job. I am a curious person so I asked him a few questions about his techniques and he had no problem answering them all with detailed explanations! He did run into a problem on my car because of stripped bolts, but he literally went above and beyond and found a way to remove it. Best mechanic ever.
Lexus CT200h - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - South San Francisco, California
Jose was on time and did a great job on my brakes. He was friendly and explained the entire process. Would highly recommend.

Augustine

11 years of experience
35 reviews
Augustine
11 years of experience
Chevrolet Equinox - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Rio Rancho, New Mexico
Augustine was amazing. He was the perfect example of customer service all around. While he was working, I was recommending him to my neighbors. Next time I need work, I will be requesting Augustine specifically!!!!! Please give him a raise or bonus!!!
Toyota Corolla - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Albuquerque, New Mexico
Mr. Sanchez showed up on time and finished replacing my rotors and break pads. He was very informative and treats your car like his own. He was very time efficient and communicated very well. I highly recommend Mr. Sanchez’s services!!!!

John

26 years of experience
552 reviews
John
26 years of experience
GMC Yukon XL 1500 - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - League City, Texas
I am so happy John is back. I trust him very much. He is efficient and has a tremendous amount of mechanical knowledge. He is a true asset to Your Mechanic.
Ford F-150 - Brake Pads Replacement (Front, Rear) - Alvin, Texas
I like John because he is very knowledgeable about all my vehicles. In addition he is very organized regarding how he performs his work.

Wesley

8 years of experience
45 reviews
Wesley
8 years of experience
Dodge Nitro - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Peoria, Arizona
Great experience. Very professional, friendly, and knowledgeable. Highly recommended and will continue to use for future work.

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE