Although the emissions check program for Washington state is ending in 2020, for now, some vehicles still require a check to be driven. Emission standards were created to help protect the planet from harmful chemicals released into the air with your vehicle’s exhaust. The United States Environmental Protection Agency implemented emissions testing, including those on GHG, or greenhouse gas, to make vehicles more environmentally friendly.

These tests are carried out at an Applus Test Station or an authorized test facility. Some garages have also been given authority to run these tests. Prices vary depending on which testing site you visit. AA Auto Kirkland is lucky enough to be one of the certified emissions facilities in Kirkland, Washington.

Why Emissions Testing?

In 1982, when Washington began the program, air quality was at an all-time low. Emissions testing was developed to monitor the pollution being pumped into Washington air. While most of this testing was aimed at older cars which built with lower standards for emissions in mind – some of the newer vehicles were also causing problems due to failing engines, broken mufflers, and more.

In 2005, the government implemented a plan to reduce pollution and improve air quality enough that these tests would no longer be required as of 2020. Now, every community in Washington state meets federal air standards, and the program will be phased out. However, those vehicles still requiring renewed tabs for 2019 must have vehicles tested to continue road use.

Your vehicle is tested based on its model year and the year your license is being renewed. If you drive a motorcycle, vehicle made in 2009 or later, a Honda Insight, or a Toyota Prius, you don’t ever require an emissions check. According to Washington Vehicle Emission Test Program, in 2019, models needing emissions tests include 1995, 1996, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, and 2008.

If your model fits into one of these categories, AA Auto Kirkland can help get your licensed renewed for the year. Our certified emissions testing is quick, affordable, and informative. We can tell you whether you meet current standards or what could be holding you back. If you fail an emissions test, retesting can be completed later following repairs and upgrades. Some vehicles need a little help to pass, while others could need to be replaced altogether.

Getting Ready for the Test

It’s been recommended that vehicles which have batteries replaced should wait a minimum of 1-week before attempting testing. This allows the battery to settle in and regulate itself in the system. Batteries which are brand new and overproducing may cause a rise in emissions caused by intense ignition sparking and similar issues.

While there’s no way to ensure your vehicle will pass the test, there are ways to prepare your vehicle for optimum testing. Before visiting a test site, drive your car for a minimum of 15-minutes on the freeway. This helps warm up the engine and makes it easier to detect emissions issues.

While you wait for the test, you might be instructed to leave your vehicle running. This ensures that the flow coming from your exhaust is regulated. Your air conditioning unit, internal lights, radio, and anything else that requires electrical power, should be turned off.

Why Choose AA Auto Kirkland

At AA Auto Kirkland, we take the environment seriously, and we take cars even more seriously. It’s important to us that our clients be able to drive their vehicles safely and effectively. Our team of certified mechanics are experienced in the field of fuel emissions and know what the government is looking for in terms of preserving air quality.

It’s our pleasure to help our clients achieve emissions testing standards and drive certified. If you’re concerned that your vehicle might not be up to snuff – contact us today. We’re happy to inspect your vehicle and advise on why it isn’t meeting expectations. As a certified emission test facility, we can help get your license renewed for 2019 and have you back on the roads in no time.

AA Auto Kirkland is a family run business in Kirkland, Washington. We call Kirkland home, and are a proud supporting member of our community. We work hard to ensure that our friends, family, and neighbors have access to safe and reliable vehicles. We know better than most, the importance of having a dependable vehicle in Kirkland.

Contact us to learn more about our certified emissions testing, and other automobile services. We’re always happy to hear from new and long-standing customers. Follow us on Facebook @pricebrothersgarage.