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Frequently Asked Questions

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Cars & Trucks

The California Smog Check program is administered by the state Bureau of Automotive Repairs (BAR). They can be reached at:

BAR Consumer Information Center

General questions, complaint information, station and repair facility license verification
(800) 952-5210


All vehicles that comply with California regulations have a "Vehicle Emissions Information" label on a visible location on the vehicle. In addition to listing all equipment used on the vehicle to comply with California requirements, the label lists the vehicles "test group" or Engine family Number. This number can be cross referenced on our website by checking the Executive Order for the year make and Test Group.

New vehicles that have not yet been registered will also have a "Manufacturers Certificate of Origin" that will state the standards that the vehicle complies with and list the manufacturers legal name so that you can cross reference that information with the Executive Order

Vehicles without these required information labels are not legal for sale in California.

Diagram of location of vehicle emissions label
Locating the emissions label


Recreational Vehicles & Watercraft

Per 33 CFR 183.3, the length of a vessel is defined as “the straight line horizontal measurement of the overall length from the foremost part of the boat to the aftermost part of the boat, measured from end to end over the deck excluding sheer, and measured parallel to the centerline. Bow sprits, bumpkins, rudders, outboard motor brackets, handles, and other similar fittings, attachments, and extensions are not included in the measurement.”

No. If the original component Executive Order holder notifies CARB that their certified component will be distributed under other brand names, those distributors may use the original certified component EO number and/or the identifying mark on the label with their company name. If the distributor wants a separate Executive Order that is issued only in their name, the distributor would need to certify the component through the CARB certification process.

Yes. A certification checklist, which serves as a guideline for preparing component applications, can be provided. Please contact CARB SIMW component certification staff for additional details.

Yes, pressure relief valves that also provide vacuum relief may be certified if the valve meets all the same standards as pressure relief valves without vacuum relief. Any portion of the test procedure that requires sealed vacuum settings may be amended, if approved, to accommodate these type of valves. Please contact CARB SIMW component certification staff for additional details.

No, per 13 CCR section 2866, metal tanks are exempt from certification and do not need to obtain a Component Executive Order of Certification.

Yes, per TP-1504, Test Procedures for Determining Permeation Emissions from Installed Marine Fuel Tanks, Marine Fuel Hoses and Marine Fuel Caps, the fuel tank may be tested as long as it has a standardized (representative) geometry that it is made of the same material(s) and appropriate wall thickness.

The fuel tank with the minimum volume to internal surface area ratio may be tested to represent the fuel tank family. Test results for the “worst case” of a fuel tank family may be used to certify all tank sizes in that family.

Yes, all fuel hoses that connect from the watercraft fuel tank to the first attachment point on the marine engine will need to be certified. This rule applies even with outboard marine engines that are installed by someone other than the watercraft manufacturer (dealer, service company, owner, etc.).

According to §2853(a)(16), all fuel hoses from the watercraft fuel tank to the first attachment point on the marine engine must to be certified. Fuel hoses that are installed on the engine itself, such as hoses running from a fuel rail to an individual fuel injector, are not subject to this fuel hose certification requirement.

Yes, a single canister can be used for multiple fuel tanks as long as the canister is designed to control the total volume of fuel stored in those tanks and meet the applicable standard. For example, a canister that is certified for use on tanks up to 50 gallons may also be used on a fuel system that consists of two 24-gallon tanks.

Yes, worst case carbon canisters are defined as the lowest length/diameter (L/D) for the evaporative family. A canister evaporative family is defined as all canisters using the same carbon and same cross section design with the only difference being the length of the carbon bed. The emissions test results can scaled on a carbon volume basis to arrive at tank size ratings for the other carbon canisters in the same canister evaporative family. The canister dimensions and associated maximum fuel tank size for each canister model must be submitted as part of the component certification application package.

Five. The SIMW regulation requires that a component manufacturer must test a minimum of five components according to §2856(a)(3)(D). All five components tested must pass the applicable standard(s) in order to obtain certification.

No, the SIMW regulation requires that all testing must be performed by an independent laboratory according to §2856(a)(3)(D). Independent laboratory is defined per §2853(a)(18). Note that the durability portion of test procedures can be performed in-house, but the test data must be generated by an independent laboratory.

Lawn, Garden & Landscape Equipment

Yes, the same provisions apply to TP-901.

It is the tank with the highest ratio of surface area to tank volume in the fuel tank family.

No. The engine or equipment must simply be operated for 15 minutes prior to hot soak.

The canister should be positioned in a position comparable to where it would normally be found on equipment.

Yes, the engine with complete evaporative emission control system can be tested without the equipment chassis.

Manufacturers may only use a different test fuel if pre-approved by the Executive Officer as part of an alternative test procedure.

Yes, CARB will accept data generated with Indolene Clear as referenced in 40 CFR 1065.710(c).

Any alternative test procedure shall only be used if prior written approval is obtained from the CARB. In order to secure the CARB's approval of alternative test procedures, the applicant is responsible for demonstrating to the CARB's satisfaction that the alternative test procedures are equivalent to the required test procedures. Alternative test procedures may be submitted to the following address:

California Air Resources Board
Monitoring Laboratory Division
P.O. Box 2815
Sacramento, CA 95812
Attn. Division Chief

California Code of Regulations, title 13, section 2766(a) provides an exemption from the requirements of section 2755 for metal tanks, coextruded multilayer tanks, and structurally integrated nylon tanks on SORE equipment with engine displacement less than 80 cc. Section 2755 contains the permeation emissions performance standard for equipment that use engines with displacement less than or equal to 80 cc.

This exemption does not apply to any fuel tank for use on SORE equipment with engine displacement greater than 80 cc. Permeation emissions data or the Executive Order number of a certified fuel tank must be provided in certification applications for equipment using engines with displacement greater than 80 cc meeting the design standards of Cal. Code 11/9/2015 Page 15 of 16 Regs., title 13, section 2754(b) beginnin

Yes. When it comes to using two carbon canisters on a separate two tank system, CARB approves the use of one canister for each separate tank as long as the canister’s working capacity is compatible to the size of the tank.

However, when it comes to using multiple canisters in sequence for one large fuel tank, CARB would require that the canister manufacturer apply for a new component EO under the innovative products program. Canisters in sequence must be tested per TP-902 and the working capacity data should be submitted with the request for a new component EO. As with single carbon canister EOs, the working capacity of the canisters in sequence should determine the maximum fuel tank capacity.

Yes it is acceptable to not use a contrasting color on a component label as long as the label is visible from 46 cm.

Yes it is acceptable for the component label to be obscured by another piece of the equipment as long as the equipment certification label is visible and states that the equipment is certified to California standards.

Manufacturers using a component whose EO has been revoked will be required to stop installing that component on engines or equipment once the 11/9/2015 Page 14 of 16 EO is revoked. If they are unable to substitute another certified component or otherwise meet the requirements set forth in sections 2754 through 2757 of the regulation, they can apply for a variance pursuant to section 2768.

The warranty covers the evaporative emission system components. The EO holder is responsible for all components. (See Cal. Code Regs., title 13, sections 2760(d) and 2764 of the regulation)

This is acceptable; however, the manufacturer applying for certification will ultimately be responsible. In other words, if Company A is the certification holder, but Company B's name is on the warranty statement, ARB will hold Company A responsible.


Have you ever wondered what a baghouse is or what NMOG stands for?