Car Inspection Sticker - Problem with car sensor - cant pass exam

there is nothing creative about fixing the sensor - but since you seem a little on the “frugal side” lets go with the saving money option. when you first start your car and until it warms up it is running in “open loop” mode. what that means is the cpu dumps fuel indiscriminately into the motor to keep the idle up and concequently keep the car running until it warms up. if even one of your sensors is not working there is a strong posibility that the cpu is keeping the car operating in open loop mode and therfore wasting fuel.
also in the future i would suggest you don’t come to a website populated with car people just to find a way around taking care of your car.

Since I’m a “car people” I’d like someone to tell me exactly how to jury rig a sensor (any sensor) on this car. Waitin’ anxiously…

I think this is a duct tape problem. Though the sensor is bad, it may not be the case that the emissions are out of whack. You don’t design a car to purposely pollute when a self test goes bad; you design it to to the best it can without that information. Thus, your car still runs and it does so reasonably smoothly and with reasonably correct fuel mixture and low emissions.

If you buy some black tape and cover over the Check Engine Light, you stand a good chance that, if the emissions are within range, the inspection operator will see that all appears ok and not bother to plug in the engine diagnostic code reader.

I say this from experience since I did this to cover the ABS and Traction Control lights being on on a 97 Q-45 that is otherwise PERFECT. I cut some black plastic tape precisely with scissors, carefully placed it, and voila! It passed. I’m harming no one. Emissions are fine. Many cars do not even have Auto Traction control or ABS brakes. Why should I have to spend a fortune for a mostly bureaucratic reason. That being said, I’d LIKE to have ABS for this coming winter. I just found a junkyard ABS motor for only $250 instead of the Infiniti $1300 plus installation that the dealer wanted!

I know everyone will flame me for the tired old “shoot the oil light” solution.

I also think you should get it fixed, but on your own time and perhaps for performance or economy reasons.

If your car does not pollute though it still has the Check Engine light on, BY ALL MEANS SHOOT OUT THE LIGHT, get a inspection Pass, and drive away with good conscience, happier that you got out under the thumb of “the man”.

By the way, to add more fuel to the fire, I’ll add the following.
If your car passes emissions tests yet it appears that the only inspection operators you can find insist on plugging in an error code reader for purely procedural reasons, if it were mine, I’d go ahead and mangle the error code connector. I don’t think a car must have such a connector in order to pass. If your car otherwise passes, the Engine Check light is not “showing”, and the computer connector has plugged or bent pins, I’m pretty sure you could find a place to pass you, and rightly so. Noli Ilegitimi Carborundum! (Don’t let the bastards grind you down!)

Check to see if the car was recalled for the faulty switch.
You can call the dealer’s service department and they might be honest enough
to see if there was a recall. I believe there is a site to lookup auto recalls.
Best of luck!

P.S. The error code shows something about the exhaust emission (but its wrong)

 That CEL (check engine light) is just a kid in class waving her hand trying to get you attention because she has the answer. You need to have the codes read. Some places will read them for FREE. Try Autozone or Advanced Auto Parts. Get the exact code (like P0123) not just their translation into English and post it back here. 

 It really would be helpful.  Well it would be if you are considering fixing what is wrong with your car.  If not, then just sell it and buy a new one, no code needed for that.

Hey, of course there are space aliens. There are hundreds of millions of stars in a galaxie, each one a solar system. There are hundreds of trillions of galaxies. Most of them are billions of years older than us. The same laws of physics that formed us apply to every galaxy and every star and every planet out there. The universe must be teeming with intelligent life. Too bad there’s none here on earth.

I’ve always loved that argument to prove that Aliens are visiting earth. While I do believe 100% that there MUST be alien life…it’s a HUGH leap for people to say that they are visiting our planet.

I think it’s at least worth a try to reset the code by disconnecting a battery terminal for 5 minutes. Though the vehicle will not be fully ready to give up ALL its onboard diagnostic information, it might just still pass if only ONE sensor still needs more driving before it comes online.
From the Mass RMV inspection procedures:
“If a model year 1996 through 2000 vehicle is being tested, it can pass its state inspection with as many as two OBDII monitors ?not ready.? If the vehicle is model year 2001 or newer, no more than one monitor may be ?not ready? for it to pass.”

Not of you believe in worm holes.

Personally, I find the theory of space bending in on itself a little much, but it’s really only a theory after all. Theoretical mathematics is, after all, a strange science.

I’m sure that plugging into the diag port is part of the state inspection and is not optional. If its a case like North Carolina, the tech plugs in the shop computer which is connected to DMV and that system issues the PASS certificate. In fact, if the tech doesn’t see the CEL light on when it is commanded on, the car fails.

Not of you believe in worm holes.

I think there are worm holes in space…just that there doesn’t seem to be a way of SAFELY going through one.

I am very interested to see the document that has those statements. Can you post a link?

Benzman, I buy most of what you say, but not WRT OBDII.

In my state, cars more than 10y.o. DON’T have to be subjected to emissions–as if they’re tacitly conceding “yes, your car’s prolly an oil-burning heap”–but still have to pass the OBDII! For this, one can see the isue isn’t clean air; it’s COMPLIANCE.

Additionally, your car can fail in a SPECTACULAR way, and an exemption will be granted, if you show $500 in repairs to “attempt to remedy.” So, I wouldn’t feel terribly bad about jobbing the system here.

So, if OP were to use his car “for off-road use only,” he could figure out what the sensor does: often it sends out an electric current within a certain range. If OP were very lucky, a jury-rigged fix might just be a resistor designed to return a volt value in the middle of an acceptable range.

Also, I wonder how many cars have been junked because of the difficulty and expense of hunting down an OBDII fault: might make the air marginally cleaner, but at the expense more resources used to bulid new cars that otherwise wouldn’t have been built.

We visited the Moon and will be visiting the planets someday. If aliens visited us they may be running the place. Can you think of a better reason why the world is run this way? It certainly is not for the benefit of mankind.

Here’s the link, but Oops I think it may be obsolete.

I’m inclined to now agree with the North Carolina guy above.
I think they’ve tightened things up and REQUIRE computer connection.

My lights were not CheckEngine, but rather ABS and ATC failure lights.
Maybe thats why my tape worked.

Thanks for posting back!

I’ve been all over the MA pages and never ran across that document. It appears to be dated back to 2004. It might not be up to date anymore as you mentioned. I find it curious that they don’t specify which monitors they would allow to be not ready since, IMO, some are more concerning wrt emissions than others.

It does state in other current web pages that they must be able to communicate with the OBD computer in order to pass inspection. This is the primary inspection means now.

I ran across at least one reference to ABS lights not being cause for failure unless the brake warning light was also illuminated.

NH only performs OBD II check, no tail pipe sniffing in my locale. They physically connect the tester to the vehicle. The results are recorded and sent to DMV. No way around any of this in my state.

They might be. We may be aliens. There is a viable theory that we evolved from microbes on meteorites. Nobody knows for certain.

Did you try a higher octane rating gas? The reason I ask, I was driving a 1975 GMC C3500 (no check engine light at all). I bought a 1997 Ford F350 to replace it. I had to go from Michigan to North Carolina to pick up the new truck. The tanks were full of gas, so after driving around Greensboro a day or so, I left. There was no check engine light coming on. I was getting around the hills in the west, and needed gas. I filled it up with regular. Shortly after filling up the check engine light came on. Somewhere in Tennessee or Kentucky I filled up again, but filled with midrange. The check engine light stayed off. The check engine light stayed off for several months until I started using the air conditioning. The truck liked premium better when running air conditioning. Try running it a while with a higher octane gasoline.

If you really wanted answers, you could go to this EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) page and read for yourself:
ONE non-continuous MONITOR may be un-set (incomplete, not run) on 2001 to present light duty vehicles. For 1996 through 2000, two non-continuous monitors may be un-set.
The authority is the EPA (as empowered by the U. S. Congress).