Category Archives: General

Failed Emission Tests – How Emissions Testing Is Done and How to Make Sure Your Car Takes the Test Successfully the Second Time Over

A failed emissions test may come as a surprise to many car owners who take their takes to a testing facility to get their registration renewed. However, the failure can be easily avoided – here are a few words about what these tests are and how to prepare your car to pass.


What is an Emissions Test?

The ultimate objective of emissions testing is to improve air quality by not allowing cars that emit too much noxious gas to be used. In case of failed emissions tests, vehicle owners are required to fix the issues found and then take the test again.

How Are Emissions Tests Done?

The actual test is preceded by a preliminary inspection to check whether any of the following issues is present:

  • Missing gas cap,
  • Missing catalytic unit,
  • Faults or problems of the vehicle’s on-board computer that might prevent accurate emissions testing,
  • Problems of the fuel filler.

If any of these problems are detected, you will be given a pre-test rejection form and you will be asked to come back for testing after the issues are corrected.

If none of the above issues are found, the emissions testing can start. If your car was made after 1996, the test is done by connecting a testing device to the on-board computer of your car to read and analyze the data stored in your computer and to determine whether your car’s emission levels meet the standards. If the car was made before 1996 or does not have an on-board computer, a tailpipe test is done to determine emissions levels.

What to Do in the Case of a Failed Emissions Test

There are several components in a car that can lead to failing the emissions test, the most frequent culprits being the exhaust, the catalytic converter and the oxygen sensor. If your car fails the test, you should take it to a mechanic right away – he will check and test your car and he will also determine whether the fault can be remedied by repairing the faulty part or you need to buy a new part. Mechanics can also order and mount the replacement parts for you, so you will be able to take your car back to the testing facility for a re-sit within a few days.

How to Prevent Failing the Test

Proper maintenance and attention to how your car works are the best way to avoid failure. The parts that alter your car’s emissions values do not break down suddenly – they produce signs such as diminished performance, increased fuel consumption, difficult start that you should address instantly when you notice them. The sooner you take your car to a qualified mechanic, the easier to remedy the problem and the lower the repair costs, so listening to what your car wants to tell you is definitely worth it.

A Failed emissions test might be a nuisance, but it’s not the end of the world – the faults that lead to the failure can be easily fixed, all you need is a good mechanic.

Starting Your Own Lakewood CO Auto Repair Business

Auto repair shops are doing quite well these days, considering that the market experiences significant profit gains and the need for auto mechanics is growing.

Owning your own auto repair shop is a good idea if you are a specialist in this business, but you must first design a business plan and make room for all your preferences and initiatives.

  • Write down your ideas and make the preliminary estimates

Start with defining the scope of your business. How big it will be your repair shop and how many cars will be serviced daily? Will you offer only auto repairs or a more comprehensive range of services? Also, do you plan to buy an existing auto repair shop or start one from the scratch? Will you hire more technicians? Do you plan to run an independent shop or become a part of a franchise? Think well about the pros and the cons of each option and estimate the costs to see what you can actually afford.

  • Planning the location

When it comes to Lakewood auto repair shops, location matters quite a lot. Do not choose an isolated place or an area with difficult access, because customers will most likely not bother finding you. Choose instead a place near main road access. Also, determine which option is right for you: leasing an existing shop or building a new one. The first option is less expensive, but the second one comes with the advantage that you can build the place exactly as you wish.

  • Estimate your equipment needs

Equipment necessary in auto repair shops is expensive today when mechanic tools are not enough anymore and you must also purchase computers, diagnostic machines, lifts with installations etc. All these will probably constitute the most expensive part of your investment.

  • Consider getting proper insurance and detail the sources of funding and any loans you plan to apply for in order to build and start your business

Estimate all the costs: insurance, rent, monthly payment for your technicians, equipment, monthly expenses etc.

  • Think about offering something unique to your customers, so they pick you over other competitors

Your unique selling point may consist in lower prices, specialized services in niche fields like antique cars restoration, eco-friendly services, going mobile and offering roadside assistance etc.

  • Obtain your license for operating your auto repair shop

License requirements are different in every state, but basically hey involve filling out an application, providing the required documents and paying some fees

  • Hire an accountant and put in place a financial system
  • Make your own marketing strategy, define your brand’s values, think about having a loyalty program and, not least, consider doing some advertising, at least in the beginning.
  • Hire good technicians and encourage all of them to get certified
  • Approach dealers and try to make working partnerships. For example, you can offer to advertise them if they send you customers

In time, you can open more branches and get more certification for your business, improving its credibility. Your shop can become specialized in different areas: collision repairs, trucking equipment etc.