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Old 10-19-2003, 08:52 PM   #1
Enkidu
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Member#: 40340
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: NoCal
Vehicle:
2004 WRX Wagon
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Default Newb questions for Cali owners.

So, I just bought a 2004 WRX and am impatiently driving through my 1000 mile break-in period. I have been following the mod-community for some time now and I have a few questions. With so many restrictions and laws in California about what you can't do to your car, what do you do to get by? I know the Smog test doesn't need to happen for four years, but any tinkering with any part of the exhaust system is illegal. Should I keep my OEM parts and re-install them when the inspection comes around? What about run-ins with the police about exhaust noise or anything else they want to ticket you for? Thanks.
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Old 10-19-2003, 09:01 PM   #2
mexicanpizza
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Chapter/Region: SCIC
Location: Oceanside, CA
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2008 God's Gift to
Turbo Wagons (MS3)

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So...most folks try to keep one cat around here...and definitely save the stock parts if you've got the storage space (for either smog time in 4 years, or if you get nailed by the man). Exhaust noise is probably the only reason they'd catch on to you having modified the emissions system....and they recently changed the law from "measured to be too loud" to "officer's discretion".

For perspective...I've gotten so sick of being paranoid (and I got a tint ticket), that I took my tint off, put my front license plate back on, and have started to look for quieter/stock-looking turbobacks.
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Old 10-19-2003, 09:03 PM   #3
mexicanpizza
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Location: Oceanside, CA
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One more thing...and ECU reflash should be at the top of your list (once they are released for the '04's). Undetectable to a cop.

The bad mods to get for detection would be an intake and a BOV...easy for a novice cop to lift your hood, point at and say TICKET TIME! Plus they don't help performance anyway.
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Old 10-19-2003, 10:25 PM   #4
ScoobyBoy
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Quote:
....and they recently changed the law from "measured to be too loud" to "officer's discretion"
dude are you serious? thats such bs!!!
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Old 10-19-2003, 10:37 PM   #5
mexicanpizza
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Unfortunately yes...

Quote:
From http://www.chp.ca.gov/html/streetlegal.html

Exhaust systems which meet smog requirements but are still too loud. Exhaust equipment that states it is, "Legal in all 50 states," refers to smog, not noise.

Note: New law (27150.2 VC) does not require law enforcement to use sound level meters to test for excessive noise. Citation is based on officer's judgment. Cited violators may have testing done at smog referee stations or may be directed by the court to have testing done. Vehicles in violation must be brought into compliance. A fine may also be imposed.
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Old 10-19-2003, 10:41 PM   #6
ScoobyBoy
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damn you!!!


luckily my exhaust isnt modded...but there goes my plans to get a ss muffler.
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Old 10-20-2003, 09:28 AM   #7
Enkidu
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2004 WRX Wagon
Silver

Default Thanks for the information.

Thanks for the input. I was thinking about the ECU reflash from Cobb or Vishnu. Vishnu is much closer and more expenisve, anyone have an opinion? I have also read that running higher boosts with a stock up-pipe can eventually cause the pre-catalytic converter to throw chunks into the turbo. I guess that means I am going to need a new up-pipe or I guess I can just gut the factory one.

Last edited by Enkidu; 10-20-2003 at 11:25 AM.
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