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Thread: Will I Pass Smog With Headers?

  1. #1
    Registered User Pennyman's Avatar
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    Default Will I Pass Smog With Headers?

    I have a 1976 280z, and CA recently repealed the rolling smog exemption legislation. Since then, I've had a set of headers put on the car. It does have the smog fitting, which has a tube running from the header to the EGR valve.

    I'm not too worried about the visual inspection, it looks pretty darn clean with that heat sheild hiding most of the header anyway.

    I'm running a test pipe right now, and I have a brand new cat sitting in my room to swap in on smog day. You think this puts me in good shape?

    There might be a small leak in the bottom of the header, could this affect my pass/fail status you think?

    BTW, I'm so pissed my car missed the exemption by no more than 5 months. So stupid. There should be some sort of exemption waiver for people with historically significant cars!

  2. #2
    Still Learning aldersonr's Avatar
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    Depending on how strict the shop is I would fix the leak. Some techs have a great ear and can tell if you have an exhaust leak. As for the car go ahead with the cat and make sure it's tuned up. To be sure drive it around a little before the test to make sure the cat is up to temp. It works better when hot. Other than that you should have no problems but just in case you'll have 2 weeks to get it up to par and most shops can tell you whats wrong and where to look. Good luck!
    Robert

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    HS130-150591 4/79 zbane's Avatar
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    You might also want to have your car tested, but not reported, just to see where you stand. Some shops are more lenient than others, one of your freinds may know of one.

    I just noticed you're in Santa Cruz, shoot on over to Sand City to Alisal (I think that is the road)-there is a shop that deals with Hondas/Acuras down there, it's across from all the dealerships-they're good people and may be willing to "help" with your test.
    Other than that, Salinas has some "sketchy" shops that might look the other way...
    And just to be sure-You do know, don't you, that Laguna Seca is just forty minutes away from you. You best get over there on an open track day and post some photos!
    zbane (formerly of Big Sur)
    Last edited by zbane; 07-18-2006 at 02:58 AM.
    David
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    2001 Infiniti I 30

  4. #4
    Registered User Pennyman's Avatar
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    Yes, I am well aware I live 40 min away from Laguna Seca! I like to go there and watch SCCA regional events. Mostly because they're free to watch, and because there are usually 2 or 3 Z's running.

    I'll have to get out there with my car one of these days. Track fees are a little pricy for Laguna though, But I will soon!

    About the smog stuff. Thanks for the advice. I'll try and have it checked but not reported. As far as I know, the AFM is properly tuned and the emmisions stuff works. Just sucks I was so close to never having to smog it again...No performance cam for me, thank you Sac-town, CA!

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    Get a smog PRE-TEST!!! If you get a test and the car fails too badly or for the wrong reasons they can deem it a gross polluter, then you have to smog every year after that.

    If your header isn't approved for use in CA then you will fail regardless of what it blows out the tailpipe.

  6. #6
    Registered User Pennyman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pennyman
    I'll try and have it checked but not reported.
    Right. I got that part.

    What deems a header approved or not? Are MSA's headers "CA approved"? Mine is a 6-2-1 type like that sold by MSA, but I found it in a junkyard, haha!!

  7. #7
    Z Club of San Diego Montezuma's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pennyman
    Right. I got that part.

    What deems a header approved or not? Are MSA's headers "CA approved"? Mine is a 6-2-1 type like that sold by MSA, but I found it in a junkyard, haha!!
    Approved means that they are certified with a CARB Number from the California Air Resources Board.

    Here is the website:http://www.arb.ca.gov/homepage.htm

    MSA headers do not have a CARB approval # so they will not pass the visual test. I do not believe there are any L Series headers that are CARB approved. You might need to go to your local Pick Your Part and find a good exhaust manifold in order to pass.

  8. #8
    Do it in a Z Mat M's Avatar
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    This might seem sacrilegious, but you can reinstall your stock exhaust manifold for the test, and after you pass, reinstall your header.
    Mat
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    Registered User Pennyman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mat M
    This might seem sacrilegious, but you can reinstall your stock exhaust manifold for the test, and after you pass, reinstall your header.
    Well, that sucks...

    I don't want to put on my stock stuff to pass...It took me 2 days just to do the swap with the tools I had...

    Maybe I'll have to find someone whos into older cars...I'll ask around...The shop my girlfriend went to passed her 240sx and she has a softball-sized hole in her resonator. I might check that out.

    Might also have to go to that place in Sand City. Zbane, do you know the name of the shop?
    Last edited by Pennyman; 07-19-2006 at 02:18 PM.

  10. #10
    HS130-150591 4/79 zbane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pennyman

    Maybe I'll have to find someone whos into older cars...I'll ask around...The shop my girlfriend went to passed her 240sx and she has a softball-sized hole in her resonator. I might check that out.
    I would start where your GF went, sounds less likely to fail you (pre-check first, discuss options with UNDERPAID tech)
    About the shop-
    It's on Del Monte, near the dealership section of town, like right across the street, I think. Can't find the business card. I tried googleing it, can't find it. May be out of business, but there are alot of good shops on that road, some specialize in classics.
    If you (or a freind) speak spanish, shoot over to Salinas. Some of the shops there are worthless, so be careful. Others will be more than happy to assist you.

    the shop might be this one, no guarantees:
    K & H Auto Repair
    1636 Del Monte Blvd, Seaside, CA
    831-899-4152
    Last edited by zbane; 07-20-2006 at 01:01 AM.
    David
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    HS130-150591, April, 1979-280zx
    2001 Infiniti I 30

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    Supporting Member =Enigma='s Avatar
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    Hence the one of the primary reasons I bought a 73'...... But who knows what good old Arnold will do to us enthusiasts next. Hopefully Jay Lenno slapped him hard enough last time to knock some sense into his steroid damaged brain.
    =Enigma=
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  12. #12
    Registered User Pennyman's Avatar
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    Either it will be repealed or reduced in severity in the future, or mechanics are gonna get tired of fixing faulty smog equipment and be more willing to help us pass visual tests, and if not, there will surely be more 76-78 z cars in the junkyard.

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