Emisssions Test Liability



Ever since I had an emissions test at a certified facility in Colorado, the ABS light has been randomly coming on and going off. And I can feel the ABS action on dry roads, when the light is off. My Honda dealer ran a thorough diagnostic and everything checked out. They charged me $100 to reload the ABS software, but that didn’t help. Any ideas on what’s wrong? Can I hold the test facility liable for the damage?


Was your Honda tested on rollers that turned with the drive wheels? If yes I have seen ABS codes come from this type of testing. The ABS computer sees 2 wheels turning but not the others, and sets a code.

The cars I have seen with this type of ABS code did respond to a code clearing


Yes, the drive wheels were spun at a high rate while the rear wheels were held stationary. My Honda dealer saw and cleared error codes from the sensors. When that didn’t help I returned for further diagnosis. That’s when they ran a full diagnostic, talked to engineers in California, and finally decided to reload the software. The next day the ABS light came on again. According to Honda, all sensors are aligned and operating within specification.


The emissions test shop only does what the state requires them to do. They might be liable for a problem IF the car has automatic stability control and Honda provides direction that ASC is to be turned off, or if Honda directs that the antilock braking system fuse be removed before emission testing, AND Honda says that the problem you are experiencing is consistent with a failure to follow that procedure. I’ve not heard of this being required, but I have been out of the business for many years.


What does ABS have to do with emissions.


That was my first thought also, but since the car was put on a dynamometer-type of emissions testing equipment, the spinning of just two wheels over a period of a few minutes could have “confused” the ABS system.