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Old 04-18-2019, 10:05 PM   #1
swaggenwagon93
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Default SMOG REGEREE for wrx in CA

WARNING... Orange County... SPECIFICALLY Seal Beach is now flagging almost any car that looks or sounds modded. I recently got pulled over by a seal beach policeman for aftermarket exhaust and I have the borla hush cat back... one of the quietest aftermarket exhausts!

Before you roast me, yes I'm a newb and I tried searching but didn't have much luck (or didn't search correctly)... so I'm making a post about the smog ref for CA Subies... I have some questions about my own car... wondering... will she pass the ref test with my current modifications?

SO here it goes... my problem is I have an 05 wrx wagon with a..
-gutted downpipe (just replaced it with a stock catted one), sti up-pipe
-bored to a 2.2 stroker with manley pistons and sti rods and cams
-700cc injectors with larger fuel pump
-v48 turbo with cobb CA legal intake and bigger top mount intercooler
-tgv delete (put stock tgvs back on)

Will my car pass the referee with bigger injectors and an sti turbo if I uninstall cobb access port and reinstall stock map/flash the ECU?

I managed to get everything back to stock except the intercooler, turbo, and injectors (I have 700ccs in and 560ccs from my friends 06 wrx). but it keeps running too rich on the stock map

Will the now catted downpipe, stock tgvs, legal cobb intake, borla hush cutback, and the v48 turbo pass the ref with the 560ccs injectors I have?

Or will I have to go all the way down to the 05 stock 440cc injectors? And if I do so will the bigger turbo and fuel pump cause the engine to run too rich still and the ECU to throw a code again?


I get why 700cc injectors are too big but the 560s with the sti turbo should work fine on the stock map and pass the ref inspection no?

I've already put in 3 grand reverting it to this stock from almost 300hp and I'm pissed... do I need EVERYTHING to be stock? Turbo, injectors, etc? and its bored to a 2.2L still?

The only luck I found on forums says that a lot of the college refs are more leniant and so I'm wondering what I can and can't get away with. All this money to revert it to semi stock has me also posting the car for sale... 142,000 mi on the chasis and only 10k on the rebuilt bored motor
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Old 04-18-2019, 10:45 PM   #2
3g rex
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swaggenwagon93 View Post
All this money to revert it to semi stock has me also posting the car for sale... 142,000 mi on the chasis and only 10k on the rebuilt bored motor
If the new owner wants to drive the car on the public street, your car must pass smog before you can legally sell it to the new owner. It's the law in California.
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Old 04-24-2019, 01:38 AM   #3
newforfall
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I wish I knew more about the CA smog laws to help you out. You could try calling a smog shop and asking them if they can help you figure out the extent to which you need to revert your upgrades.

As far as getting pulled over... that's wild. Some of the garbage that rolls around orange county, I am really surprised they would go after someone who's responsibly and professionally modded. But it's the law I guess.
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Old 04-24-2019, 01:59 AM   #4
GlarryHoodDIT
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It just depends on what the State Ref looks at and how much he knows about what your Subaru should look like stock.

Injectors, cams, bored to 2.2, upgraded internals - probably not going to notice something like that.

Aftermarket exhaust, intake, turbo swap, intercooler, TGVs - likely those are going to be noticed if they're not stock.
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Old 04-24-2019, 02:09 AM   #5
willowlee
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As a californian, i can honestly say that we cannot own fast/modded cars. And if you do have one, you fall in one of these categories....

1.) You have too much time on your hands to be switching out parts back and forth to pass smog.

2.) You are a rich mother fawker who pays his way to illegally pass smog.

3.) You know someone who can pass you illegally.

4.) Your car is exempt from smog because it is either too old or still too new.
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Old 04-24-2019, 08:39 AM   #6
Jack
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Moved because nobody outside of CA has to go to football referees to have them judge whether our cars are road worthy.
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Old 04-24-2019, 09:22 AM   #7
ShadowIMg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willowlee View Post
As a californian, i can honestly say that we cannot own fast/modded cars. And if you do have one, you fall in one of these categories....
Yeah, definitely no legal fast cars anywhere in the state of California man. I think you forgot a category. "Bought a car that is actually fast from the factory"

What the **** is a robster craw, er, regeree?
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Old 04-24-2019, 11:18 PM   #8
drewbuah
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You need to make sure your car passes all the readiness/monitoring tests before going to get it smogged. It will also need to pass the visual inspection, some places are not as stringent on what they see, others will go over it pretty in depth. The fines that are possibly placed on businesses and the techs performing the smogs are high, and they dont want to risk getting fined and/or losing there smog license. So ask other owners were they have gone, and see what shops they suggest.
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Old 04-24-2019, 11:20 PM   #9
drewbuah
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on a side note: i checked the readiness codes on my WRX last week and all are passed. I have only the usual bolted on bits and cobb OTS 2.5 map installed.
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Old 04-26-2019, 12:03 AM   #10
NutBucket
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Yes, it is well documented that an AP will pass the tests no problem even though some of the CELs are disabled. The state is just checking all the readiness monitors are set I believe.
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Old 04-26-2019, 01:22 AM   #11
anarekist
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there's a rumor refs will check for tunes as well. not sure if this was implemented yet or if it's even true. i heard it last year.
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Old 04-26-2019, 02:43 PM   #12
NutBucket
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I've heard this rumor too, even for normal smog checks. As far as I can tell it's still a rumor.
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Old 05-05-2019, 01:21 PM   #13
subaru_gc8
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you might be okay, I dont know how far they go as far as into the ecu rom but if you dont pass they will tell you why and you can then fix it
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Old 11-21-2019, 05:14 PM   #14
nmtmev
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My smog just happens to be due and what a pain it is. My smog place said that if he plugs in my car with the access port installed it will flag. He said it will have to go to the state ref after that. The suggestion was to completely uninstall the accessport. Then he can see what he can do. If anyone has done smog in the last 2 to 4 months can anyone confirm? I mean it did sound fishy but who knows if it's true. I'm not gonna doubt the guy. I'm just gonna go along with it. December is fast approaching
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Old 11-21-2019, 11:22 PM   #15
fuelMuncher
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nmtmev View Post
My smog just happens to be due and what a pain it is. My smog place said that if he plugs in my car with the access port installed it will flag. He said it will have to go to the state ref after that. The suggestion was to completely uninstall the accessport. Then he can see what he can do. If anyone has done smog in the last 2 to 4 months can anyone confirm? I mean it did sound fishy but who knows if it's true. I'm not gonna doubt the guy. I'm just gonna go along with it. December is fast approaching


I wouldn’t go to get a smog with a tune on it in CA.
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Old 11-23-2019, 12:00 PM   #16
vutony
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I passed last week with stock sti setup and cobb pretune map stage 1 installed
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Old 11-24-2019, 03:19 PM   #17
nmtmev
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vutony View Post
I passed last week with stock sti setup and cobb pretune map stage 1 installed
I'm going on the 7th again. This time to actually test the car. Last time was to risky. Good to know though thank you for that feedback. I'll update this as I go along. It may become useful to some people who may be coming up on the same situation.
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Old 11-25-2019, 03:04 PM   #18
willowlee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vutony View Post
I passed last week with stock sti setup and cobb pretune map stage 1 installed
The key word here is "stock." Tuning has nothing to do with smog unless your car runs like shiet and throws CELS left and right.
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Old 11-25-2019, 08:58 PM   #19
my name is joe
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I passed smog with a ej207 on a 32 bit ecu with an accessport. So you can get a good idea what they actually check. Get rid of the downpipe and hide the tgv plugs. unless you used the stock ones just plug it in so it looks oem. go get reff'd. They arent going to know you're tuned. If it looks stock it probably is. If you pass with your borla hush then keep that and show it to the officers the next time you get pulled over. There are 15+wrx's with a muffler delete that passes ref because its under the dB limit. Its way louder than your borla hush.
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Old 12-09-2019, 04:46 PM   #20
nmtmev
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So just an update. I ended up having to use the stock ECU tune. The OBII passed. As well as the rest of the car. I can confirm that certain vehicles that have a tune on them will pass everything except the ODBII. After that its state ref time. Whether that's from an open source tune a COBB tune, or some other tune is unknown. Just a fair friendly comment. Again I was told this is something recent BAR started checking like within the last few months. Take it with a grain of salt as everything else on the internet. Just speaking from this experience.
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Old 12-09-2019, 10:48 PM   #21
NutBucket
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Appreciate the warning but more info is needed IMHO.
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Old 12-11-2019, 02:13 PM   #22
subaru_gc8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nmtmev View Post
So just an update. I ended up having to use the stock ECU tune. The OBII passed. As well as the rest of the car. I can confirm that certain vehicles that have a tune on them will pass everything except the ODBII. After that its state ref time. Whether that's from an open source tune a COBB tune, or some other tune is unknown. Just a fair friendly comment. Again I was told this is something recent BAR started checking like within the last few months. Take it with a grain of salt as everything else on the internet. Just speaking from this experience.
a buddy of mine thats a smog tech, got a email from the bar that stated they are going to start checkng for tunes.. but I havent heard of anyone getting sent to the ref for it yet though. I would say that if you are going to mess with your car, make sure you keep the stock components
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Old 12-12-2019, 09:57 PM   #23
NutBucket
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Good thing I don't need another check until 2021. Wait and see is definitely the right approach.
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Old 12-12-2019, 11:06 PM   #24
drewbuah
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I wonder how many people will just end up selling there vehicle off at carmax just to avoid the hassle.
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Old 01-13-2020, 07:44 PM   #25
Hagbeard
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I'd be curious how they could check for a tune, are they going to have a database of the checksums of all OEM tunes? We'll have to see. The easy target is tunes that force readiness monitors, THAT they can check. Accessports (at least my old one) don't have the ability to force readiness monitors, but I don't know if that's the case for more recent versions.

Last edited by Hagbeard; 01-13-2020 at 07:54 PM.
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