There seems to be some confusion about the term and meaning of California Emissions. We have customers who tell us they were told that their vehicle comes with California emissions and the catalytic converter must be replaced with a California approved converter. If they do not, they run the risk of doing damage to the vehicle's computer and then the car will not operate properly.
This information is absolutely false and I will try to explain what the commonly used term California Emissions actually means.
First...there is no such thing as California Emissions! Up until the year 2001 car manufacturers had always made two emission platforms...a Federal emission platform and a California emission platform. Then one day some engineer in Detroit and his counterpart in Japan woke up and decided to make just one emission platform that would work for both Federal and California requirements. So basically from 2001 all vehicles have a dual emission platform. Some manufacturers were slower to make the switch but most all vehicles today are dual platform.
This can be verified by checking the vehicle emissions information sticker located under the hood of your vehicle.
It will state either:
1. This vehicle conforms to U.S. EPA regulations applicable to (the vehicle model year).
This sticker information shows a vehicle with Federal only emissions platform.
2. This vehicle conforms to U.S. EPA and state of California regulations
applicable to (the vehicle model year).
This sticker information shows a vehicle with both a Federal and California emission platform.
So when people commonly refer to their vehicle having California emissions, what they actually mean is the vehicle has a dual emission platform encompassing California and Federal requirements. In addition explaining the myth about having to install a California approved converter on a California emission vehicle...this is true only if your vehicle is registered in the state of California. If that's the case then the vehicle falls under the jurisdiction of the California air resources board (CARB) and must adhere to their laws and regulations.
I hope this helps take the mystery out of the phrase California Emissions...but if you still have some questions please give us a call and we will be glad to help. 888-651-0770