About Us - Questions & Answers

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  • Is the AirCare program ending?
    program/policytop

    The current testing contract with Envirotest Canada to provide light-duty vehicle emissions testing in this region runs until December 31, 2014. The Province has announced that light-duty vehicles will no longer require emissions testing after this date.

  • If the program is ending do I still have to fix my car?
    repairprogram/policytop

    Yes. All vehicles that fail an AirCare inspection must be repaired to comply with AirCare emissions standards. Vehicle owners have the option of performing the repairs themselves, having repairs performed by a non-certified repair technician or by one of the AirCare Certified Repair Centres. As long as the vehicle passes re-inspection, it doesn’t matter who did the repairs.

  • How much does an AirCare test cost?
    inspectionprogram/policytop

    The inspection fees are being reduced beginning January 1, 2014. The 1991 and older test fee reduction will begin on February 1, 2014. Visa, MasterCard, debit card and cash are accepted.

    2014 Test Fee Table

    MonthInspection fee for
    1992-and-newer
    vehicles
    Inspection fee for
    all other inspections
    and re-inspections
    Jan $36 $23
    Feb $34 $22
    Mar $32 $21
    Apr $30 $20
    May $28 $19
    Jun $26 $18
    Jul $24 $17
    Aug $22 $16
    Sep $20 $15
    Oct $18 $14
    Nov $16 $13
    Dec $14 $12

    NOTE: AirCare inspection fees are designed to pay for the cost of delivering the test and not for a period of AirCare “coverage”. The fee is charged for the service - an emissions inspection - and not for a time period of AirCare validity. AirCare inspection fees are GST exempt.

  • Why is the fee being reduced?
    program/policyinspectiontop

    The provincial government requested a test fee reduction in the final year of the program for 1992 and newer vehicles. However, AirCare has been able to not only reduce the test fee for 1992 and newer vehicles but 1991 and older vehicles as well.

  • Why wasn't the fee reduced sooner?
    program/policyinspectiontop

    The AirCare program is required by legislation to recover the full operating costs. Reducing the fee in 2013 would have resulted in a severe revenue shortfall by the end of the program and was therefore impossible to implement.

    Reducing the inspection fee in 2014 is consistent with the Provincial government’s request for a fee reduction in the final year of the program.

  • Where can I get a test?
    inspectiontop

    Motorists can receive an AirCare inspection at any of the 10 AirCare inspection centres. Inspection centre location maps, hours of operation, and current conditions are available here.

  • What vehicles are exempt from AirCare?
    program/policytop

    The following exemptions are in effect during 2014:

    • 2008 and newer model year vehicles
    • Vehicles with vintage plates
    • Motorcycles, snowmobiles, amphibious vehicles and ATVs
    • Farm fleet and agricultural vehicles
    • Motor homes with a net vehicle weight over 3500 kg.
    • Vehicles with collector plates* (except new applications for collector status)
    • Electric vehicles
    • Hybrid vehicles

    * Collector vehicles are required to pass an AirCare inspection as a one-time condition of application for collector's designation.

  • What is a conditional pass?
    inspectionrepair

    If you have your vehicle repaired at an AirCare Certified Repair Centre and the vehicle still fails its second inspection, your vehicle qualifies for a conditional pass. This will allow you to re-license and insure your vehicle for up to one year. For older vehicles where repair cost limits apply, conditional passes allow motorists to defer the cost of expensive repairs over time instead of all at once, but not to indefinitely allow that vehicle to continue to operate with excess emissions.

    If your vehicle fails its inspection and your repair shop indicated the defects that are not yet repaired, you should have these repairs done as soon as possible.

    If your repair shop did not indicate that further repairs are required, you should return to the shop for a re-evaluation of your vehicle.

    It is always recommended that motorists authorize complete repairs on their vehicle. A vehicle that has its emission system defects fully repaired rarely fails subsequent emissions inspections.

  • What do I need to bring with me when I have my car tested?
    inspectiontop

    You need to bring your vehicle's registration document or ICBC Notice to Renew when you take your vehicle to an AirCare Inspection Centre. You will also need to bring cash, MasterCard, Visa or debit card to pay the test fee. Read more about test fees.

  • What are Repair Cost Limits?
    repairtop

    Repair cost limits are designed to ensure that motor vehicle emissions are lowered while limiting the financial burden upon vehicle owners. The cost limits are the maximum amount that is required to be spent to qualify for a conditional pass.

    If necessary emissions repairs are going to cost more than the applicable repair cost limits (see table below), motorists have the choice to either authorize the entire repair or stay within the applicable repair cost limit. Motorists who choose to stay within the cost limit are responsible for all repairs that can be performed under that limit. Please note, only vehicles diagnosed and repaired at AirCare Certified Repair Centres are eligible for repair cost limits and a conditional pass.

    Current Repair Cost Limits

    Model YearNo TamperingTampering *

    * Tampering: Tampering repair cost limits only apply to vehicles with missing and modified catalytic converters.

    It is always recommended that motorists authorize complete repairs on their vehicle. A vehicle that has its emission system defects fully repaired rarely fails subsequent emissions inspections.

    Remember, only vehicles repaired by an AirCare Certified Repair Technician working in an AirCare Certified Repair Centre can qualify for a "conditional pass". Please Note: Vehicles repaired by the vehicle owner or an uncertified repair shop, will require re-inspections until the vehicle passes.

    1980 and Older $300 Advisory
    1981-1987 $400 Advisory
    1988-1991 $500 No Limit
    1992-1998 $600 No Limit
    1999 and Newer No Limit No Limit
  • Why do we have an AirCare program?
    program/policy

    The AirCare program was established to address the ground level ozone problem in the Lower Fraser Valley (LFV). Motor vehicles are the largest single source of air contaminants in the LFV. The AirCare program reduces automobile-generated emissions by identifying vehicles with emission defects and requiring they be repaired prior to re-licensing.

  • How long is my passed AirCare inspection valid for?
    program/policyinspection
    • OBD - 726 days
    • IM240 - 726 days
    • ASM - 363 days
    • Idle test - 363 days
    • Conditional Pass - 90 days

    The AirCare expiry date assigned to a pass result depends upon the type of test the vehicle receives. 1991 and older vehicles that pass an ASM test receive a 363-day expiry date. 1992 and newer vehicles that pass an OBD or IM240 test receive a 726-day expiry date. All vehicles that pass an idle test will be assigned a 363-expiry date.

    All vehicles receive a 90-day expiry date for a conditional pass. If your vehicle receives a conditional pass, you have 90 days to re-license your vehicle (you may purchase up to a full year). Once the 90-day limit expires, your vehicle requires another AirCare inspection before re-licensing. Vehicles that are sold after the 90-day period require another AirCare inspection as a condition to re-licensing.

  • Is my vehicle required to have a catalytic converter?
    inspection

    If your vehicle was manufactured with a catalytic converter, it means it was a necessary component for the vehicle to comply with the new vehicle standards for that model year. Catalytic converters have been used on some vehicles since the mid-1970s. By 1988, all light-duty vehicles manufactured for sale in Canada were equipped with three-way catalytic converters (TWC).

    To find out whether your vehicle was originally equipped with a catalytic converter you should check with the vehicle manufacturer.

    You may be able to determine whether your vehicle was originally equipped with a catalytic converter by referring to the underhood emissions label. On the underhood emissions label, the acronyms OC, ORC, and TWC all refer to types of catalytic converters. Some labels may say "CATALYST" in large type.

    Other signs that a vehicle came with a catalytic converter include "UNLEADED FUEL ONLY" markings on the fuel gauge or the gas filler opening, and the presence of a fuel inlet restrictor. However, these signs are not necessarily conclusive.

    A catalytic converter is necessary for all 1988 and newer vehicles to pass an AirCare inspection. Older vehicles may be able to pass inspection without a catalytic converter.

  • What happens if my vehicle fails the AirCare test?
    inspectionrepair

    If your vehicle does not pass the AirCare inspection, it must be repaired and re-inspected. To be sure of passing an AirCare inspection, it's recommended that you have your vehicle repaired at an AirCare Certified Repair Centre. Be sure to take your AirCare Vehicle Inspection Report to the repair centre.

    After repairs have been completed, be sure the AirCare Certified Repair Technician has given you a copy of the Repair Data Confirmation Form before returning to an Inspection Centre for re-inspection. Once you pass, or conditionally pass, the AirCare inspection, you can return to your Autoplan broker to insure and license your vehicle.

    If you cannot have repairs performed before your vehicle's licence and insurance expire you can purchase a one-time three-month policy. This policy is not a conditional pass. It is simply a three-month extension that allows you to perform the necessary repairs on your vehicle. Once this policy expires you will be unable to insure or license your vehicle until it has passed or conditionally passed an AirCare inspection.

    More info.

  • When do I need an AirCare test?
    inspectionprogram/policytop

    Vehicles require an AirCare inspection prior to re-licensing, if the vehicle's last AirCare inspection has expired. To check whether a vehicle's last inspection has expired, check the inspection history.

    If your vehicle has never had a previous AirCare inspection, and it is not exempt, it will need an AirCare inspection prior to re-licensing.

  • What if my vehicle is not worth repairing?
    repairprogram/policy

    If your vehicle is not worth repairing, you may be interested in exploring your options for removing the vehicle from use.

    The Scrap-It Program is a voluntary vehicle scrappage program in the Lower Fraser Valley that offers valuable transportation alternatives in exchange for your old, worn-out vehicle. For more info on the Scrap-It Program, visit the Scrap-It Program website.

  • Is your vehicle testable? Read this first.
    inspection

    Below are several reasons why AirCare cannot test your vehicle. Please note: vehicles rejected from testing are not eligible for repair cost limits or three month licensing.

    Four or more readiness monitors "Not Ready" (1998 and newer light-duty vehicles)

    An OBD system constantly monitors the engine and emission control system. Readiness monitors determine whether a vehicle's Powertrain Control Module (PCM) has completed all its checks of a specific emission control device. These checks are performed on different components to ensure the vehicle's emission system is functioning normally. If your 1998 and newer light-duty vehicle has four or more readiness monitors "Not Ready" it is not in an acceptable condition to receive an OBD inspection because the information needed to make a pass/fail determination is not yet available.

    Visible exhaust smoke

    If a vehicle is emitting visible exhaust (smoking), you'll need to make the necessary repairs before the vehicle will be accepted for testing.

    Excessive exhaust leak

    If your vehicle's exhaust system has a substantial leak or leaks, AirCare cannot obtain an accurate measurement of the engine’s true emissions. Internal engine problems may also cause "sample dilution". This condition must be corrected prior to testing.

    Inaccessible exhaust opening

    If the vehicle is 5,000 kg. GVW or less, the tailpipe must expel the exhaust beyond the perimeter of the vehicle.

    Tire/wheel problems

    Vehicles with studded tires are not tested between May 1 and September 30. Wheels and tires on the same axle must be the same size. Other unsafe tire conditions that may cause us to reject a vehicle include:

    • cord breaks, air leaks or tread damage
    • missing, loose or defective bolts, nuts or lugs
    • missing, loose or broken spokes

    Lack of steering or brake control

    Vehicles must be capable of being controlled by the driver.

    Engine stall

    During the AirCare inspection, carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon emissions are measured while the engine is idling at normal speed. This simulates a normal driving condition. If the engine has a defect that causes unstable idle speed or stalling, its emissions cannot be accurately evaluated.

    Fuel leaks

    For safety reasons, AirCare cannot test vehicles with fuel leaks.

    Excessive fluid leaks

    To prevent the possibility of engine damage, vehicles identified with transmission fluid leaks should be repaired prior to emissions testing. Any leak of engine coolant, engine oil and transmission oil will result in unsafe conditions to conduct a test.

  • What is OBD? Does my vehicle have it?
    inspection

    The On-Board Diagnostic, or OBD, is a diagnostic system that continuously checks the condition and operation of key emissions control components and emissions-related systems in your vehicle. If the system detects a fault that could cause emissions to exceed one and a half times the vehicle's emissions standard, the Malfunction Indicator Lamp, or MIL, on the dashboard illuminates. The MIL is commonly called the Check Engine Light.

    In addition to illuminating the MIL, the system will also store a fault code that indicates the type of fault that was detected. OBD fault codes are referred to as Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs).

    All 1998 and newer light-duty vehicles come equipped with an OBD system.

    For more details on OBD, check the repair info glossary.

  • How far in advance of my vehicle licence and insurance (Autoplan) renewal date can I have my vehicles inspected?
    program/policy

    You can obtain an emissions inspection at any time, however, we recommend you have your vehicle inspected several weeks before your vehicle licence and insurance renewal date, in case it needs repairs.

  • What vehicles are included in AirCare?
    program/policy

    Unless exempt, all light-duty vehicles, 5,000 kg and under, registered in the Lower Fraser Valley from Furry Creek to Flood require an AirCare inspection prior to re-licensing.

  • I won't have time to have repairs done before my insurance expires. What can I do?
    repairprogram/policy

    If your vehicle fails the AirCare inspection, you can purchase a one-time, three-month Autoplan policy, which will provide you with ample time to complete the necessary repairs. Once the three-month policy lapses, you will be unable to re-license and insure the vehicle until it has passed or conditionally passed an AirCare inspection.

  • What is a Repair Cost Waiver?
    repair

    A repair cost waiver is a type of "conditional pass" that occurs because the motorist has chosen not to have needed emission repairs completed. The needed emission repair has been identified by an AirCare Certified Repair Centre, but the cost of the repair(s) is greater than the applicable repair cost limit and the motorist has chosen not to authorize completion of the repairs.

    As with any conditional pass, this means the vehicle's emission levels will still be higher than they should be, but the vehicle is eligible for licence renewal. See also Qualified Waiver.

  • Why is AirCare not province-wide?
    program/policy

    The AirCare boundaries (from Furry Creek to Flood) were established to address a serious ground-level ozone problem in the Lower Fraser Valley that is caused by the over one million light duty vehicles operating within a confined basin. To date, the AirCare program has not been expanded to other regions of the province because the impact of motor vehicle pollution on air quality is not considered to be as severe. In the future, AirCare-type programs may be implemented in other areas of the province, like Squamish/Whistler, once local officials feel the control of motor vehicle emissions is a necessity to improve their air quality.

  • If I own a 1992-or-newer vehicle, do I have the option of having an annual inspection only?
    program/policyinspection

    The type of test a vehicle receives is based upon the technology class of the vehicle. There is no option for customers as to the type of test their vehicles receive. 1992 and newer vehicles have more advanced emissions control technology and thus receive a more comprehensive emissions inspection.

  • Can I have someone else take my car for an AirCare test?
    inspection

    Yes. Anyone can bring a vehicle for testing provided that the vehicle registration document or ICBC Notice to Renew accompanies the vehicle.

  • Why is the initial inspection fee $45 for an IM240 and OBD test?
    inspectionprogram/policy

    The AirCare program is legislated to operate on a cost-recovery basis. Test fees are the only source of revenue that AirCare has to achieve this mandate. This means that AirCare must charge a test fee that is sufficient to recover the full cost to operate the program without incurring a surplus or deficit.

    The current test fee schedule was determined by distributing the total cost of program delivery over the projected number of vehicles tested. AirCare took into account the changing makeup of this region's vehicle fleet and maintaining the 2 to 1 relationship between the annual and biennial fee. The current test fees will allow AirCare to achieve its cost recovery mandate to the end of the current contract.?

  • What should I do if my vehicle's Check Engine Light or MIL is on before I come in for a test?
    inspection

    If the Check Engine Light or Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) is commanded on by the OBD system, it means that an emissions control component in the vehicle is not operating as designed, and there will be fault codes (DTCs) present that will indicate the nature of the problem. If your MIL is on, you should have a repair technician check the status of your OBD system, and repair any defects found.

    If you bring your 1998 or newer light-duty vehicle in for an AirCare inspection with the MIL commanded on, it will likely fail the test (see exceptions below). Vehicles older than 1998 are not failed based on MIL status, but if the MIL is on, that may be a symptom of an emissions problem that would also cause the vehicle to fail it's test.

    If any of the following circumstances apply, an illuminated MIL would not result in an automatic failure of the AirCare inspection:

    • if the vehicle is older than 1998 model year;
    • if the vehicle is certified as heavy-duty;
    • if the fuel system is operating on an alternate fuel, or;
    • if the MIL isn't actually commanded on by the OBD system (in rare cases, the MIL could be illuminated due to some other vehicle defect).

    However, in any case, it makes sense to have the defect(s) repaired as soon as possible.

  • What is a Qualified Waiver?
    repairprogram/policy

    A qualified waiver is a type of "conditional pass" that occurs because the cause of excess emissions has not been properly identified by an AirCare Certified Repair Centre. As with any conditional pass, this means the vehicle's emission levels will still be higher than they should be, but the vehicle is eligible for licence renewal. However, if the cause of the problem has not been properly identified, you should return to the shop so they can complete the diagnosis. See also Repair Cost Waiver.

  • What must I do to re-license my vehicle?
    repairprogram/policy

    If your vehicle's last AirCare inspection has not expired yet (see the Expiry Date on the AirCare Vehicle Inspection Report or check your inspection history), or if your vehicle is currently exempt, just go to your Autoplan agent to re-license your vehicle.

    If the last AirCare inspection on your vehicle has expired, you will need to have your vehicle inspected at any of the AirCare inspection centres before you will be able to renew your vehicle licence.

    If your vehicle does not pass the AirCare inspection, it must be repaired and re-inspected. Your vehicle will need to pass or conditionally pass the AirCare inspection before you will be able to re-license your vehicle. It is recommended that you have your vehicle repaired at an AirCare Certified Repair Centre as they have the necessary equipment and expertise to effectively diagnose and repair emissions defects.

    After repairs have been completed, ensure the AirCare Certified Repair Technician has given you a copy of the Repair Data Confirmation Form before returning to an Inspection Centre for re-inspection. Once you pass or conditionally pass the AirCare inspection, you can return to your Autoplan broker to insure and license your vehicle.

    If you cannot have repairs performed before your vehicle's licence and insurance expire you can purchase a one-time three-month insurance policy. This policy is not a conditional pass. It is simply a three-month extension that allows you to perform the necessary repairs on your vehicle. Once this policy expires you will be unable to insure or license your vehicle until it has passed or conditionally passed an AirCare inspection.

  • My ABS warning light won't turn off after the test. What should I do?
    inspection

    Your vehicle's Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) warning light may be on after a test. Braking performance will not be affected. The light should go out when the system detects equal front and rear wheel speed signals. If the light does not go out after 24 hours, please call 604-930-5633.

  • How strict are the AirCare emission standards?
    program/policyinspection

    AirCare's emission standards are set to identify vehicles that are emitting significantly higher emissions than a normally functioning vehicle of the same age and design.

    For vehicles receiving a tailpipe test, the emission standards shown on the Vehicle Inspection Report are based upon the vehicle's model year, weight and engine size, plus a significant allowance for normal variations in engine performance. A well-tuned vehicle of any model year with its original emission equipment in place and functioning correctly will easily pass the AirCare standards.

    An average passing reading represents the average emissions level achieved by vehicles in the same age group, type and engine displacement as your vehicle. These are the types of readings that your vehicle is capable of and should be considered the target for a normal operating vehicle. If your vehicle is operating as designed, your vehicle's readings should be close to or better than the average passing reading.

    For vehicles receiving an OBD test, the pass/fail result is based on whether the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) has been commanded on by the OBD system. This condition only occurs when an emissions-related defect has been detected according to the vehicle manufacturer's OBD system design.

  • How do I qualify for a conditional pass?
    program/policyrepair

    Follow these procedures to qualify for a conditional pass:

    1. Have your vehicle diagnosed and repaired at an AirCare Certified Repair Centre. Depending on the extent of required repairs, you may choose to complete all recommended repairs or remain within the repair cost limit.
    2. Ensure that the AirCare Certified Repair Centre has given you a copy of the Repair Data Confirmation sheet. This confirms that an AirCare Certified Repair Technician has submitted a Repair Data Form for your vehicle.
    3. Take your vehicle back to AirCare for a re-inspection. If your vehicle fails, it receives a conditional pass.
  • What is AirCare doing about smoky vehicles?
    program/policy

    The AirCare program's mandate is to inspect vehicles for unacceptable levels of carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons and oxides of nitrogen. AirCare does not have the authority to address vehicles with visible exhaust. However, it is AirCare's policy to refuse to test smoky vehicles because they represent a health hazard for AirCare inspectors and our customers. Vehicles rejected for visible exhaust do not receive a fail result or qualify for repair cost limits, a conditional pass or a 3-month policy extension. They must be completely fixed before they receive their initial emissions test. This policy rejects approximately 6,000 vehicles a year.

    The BC Ministry of Transportation operates the AirCare ON-ROAD Program using roadside tests to identify heavy-duty diesel vehicles with excessive smoke emissions.

    If you have seen an excessively smoking vehicle and you wish to report it, please call 604-435-SMOG (7664) or send us a note.

  • Why do I have to pay for a second test?
    program/policy

    The AirCare program has to charge for all re-inspections to cover costs. If the program did not charge a fee for a second test, the fee for initial inspections would have to be increased to cover re-inspection costs. This would mean the vehicle owners whose vehicles pass the initial inspection (the vast majority) would have to subsidize the cost of re-inspecting vehicles that have failed.

  • What if my vehicles emission results are worse upon re-inspection?
    inspectionrepair

    Emissions readings that vary significantly are a symptom of a vehicle needing repairs. Should this happen, please discuss your AirCare results with your AirCare Certified Repair Technician. Further repairs can be performed to improve your emissions readings.

    Remember, if repairs were performed by an AirCare Certified Repair Centre, and you have received a conditional pass after re-inspection - you may proceed with your licence and insurance renewal requirements.

    Note: Vehicles repaired by the vehicle owner or an uncertified repair shop are not eligible for a conditional pass. They will have to fully pass a re-inspection prior to re-licensing.

  • How long can I wait to insure my vehicle after receiving a conditional pass?
    program/policy

    If your vehicle receives a conditional pass, you have 90 days to purchase vehicle licence and insurance (you may still purchase up to a full year of insurance). Once the 90-day limit expires, your vehicle requires another inspection before re-licensing.

  • Can emission readings vary when no work has been done on the engine?
    inspection

    Yes. The emissions produced by an automobile can vary significantly if the vehicle has an emissions defect. In fact, the closer a vehicle comes to exceeding the "maximum allowable" limit, the further it is from operating as it was designed.

    If your vehicle has failed an AirCare inspection and then passed without any repair being done, or if it has failed again in a different area or with much different readings, you have witnessed the effects of variability. Although it is common to believe that variation in emission readings is the fault of the test equipment, it is the vehicle emissions output that is varying, not the exhaust gas analyzers.

    No vehicle will produce exactly the same emission readings on back-to-back tests. However, if a vehicle's engine is in good mechanical condition, at its normal operating temperature, and has all of its original emission control equipment in place and operating properly, it will consistently produce readings within a narrow range well under the AirCare "maximum allowable" emissions standards.

    Engine temperature can also affect emissions levels. You should ensure that your vehicle is at normal operating temperature when you arrive at the inspection centre.

  • How is the OBD test performed?
    inspection

    During the OBD inspection, the inspector will connect a cable to the Diagnostic Link Connector (DLC) located inside your vehicle. The test system will first communicate with the vehicle's Powertrain Control Module to verify that it has completed all checks of applicable systems and is in a testable state. When the OBD system runs its check on a particular group of components, it signifies this by setting a flag called a Readiness Monitor to Ready or Complete. The more readiness monitors that are Not Ready, the less reliable the results of the OBD scan.

    For initial inspections, if the vehicle has no more than one readiness monitor Not Ready the OBD test will proceed. If there are 2-3 readiness monitors Not Ready the vehicle will receive a tailpipe test. In any case, 4 or more readiness monitors Not Ready will result in the vehicle being rejected from testing.

    However, if your vehicle is being re-inspected after previously failing the OBD test, and you have not had repair data submitted by an AirCare Certified Repair Centre, the vehicle will be rejected from testing if 2 or more readiness monitors are Not Ready.

    If the vehicle's Malfunction Indicator Lamp is commanded on by the OBD system (see MIL Command Status), the test system will download and record the faults stored by the vehicle's OBD system. This information will be printed on your Vehicle Inspection Report and the vehicle will receive a fail result.

    If your vehicle's OBD system has completed all of its system checks (no more than one readiness monitor Not Ready) and the MIL is not commanded on, the vehicle will pass the OBD inspection.

    Learn more.

  • Why is the expiry date for a conditional pass only 90 days?
    program/policy

    Conditional passes are only valid for 90 days to ensure motorists address their emissions system defects within one year. The 90-day expiry date does not prevent the motorist from re-licensing the vehicle for a full year. Motorists are still able to re-license for 12 months. However, in cases where the vehicle is sold, or some other major change is made to the Autoplan policy mid-term, the 90-day expiry date reduces the opportunity to extend the licensing beyond 12 months.

    If a vehicle receives a conditional pass, the owner has 90 days to purchase vehicle licence and insurance. Once the 90-day limit expires, the vehicle will require another AirCare inspection before re-licensing.

    If a vehicle is sold after the conditional pass expires, the vehicle will need to have an AirCare inspection prior to licensing the vehicle.

  • What type of emissions test will my vehicle receive?
    inspection
    • ASM 25/25 - 1991 and older vehicles receive an emissions inspection known as ASM 25/25. The vehicle is driven on a dynamometer at a steady-state speed of 40 km/hr for up to 90 seconds. The ASM inspection is effective at identifying the highest emitting vehicles in the 1991 and older fleet. More info.
    • IM240 - 1992 and newer vehicles receive an enhanced emission inspection known as IM240. Vehicles are driven on a dynamometer at various speeds (accelerations, decelerations, cruise or idle) up to 90 km/hr to simulate real world driving conditions. The IM240 inspection may last for up to 240 seconds. The IM240 inspection is the most advanced dynamometer inspection in the emissions testing industry. More info.
    • OBD (On-Board Diagnostic) Test - The On-Board Diagnostic Test, or OBD test, is an emissions test that utilizes a vehicle's built-in On-Board Diagnostic (OBD) System which continuously checks the condition and operation of key emissions control components and emissions-related systems. All 1998 and newer light-duty vehicles come equipped with an OBD system. If the vehicle's Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) is on, the test system will download and record the faults stored by the vehicle’s OBD system. This information will be printed on your Vehicle Inspection Report and the vehicle will receive a fail result. If your vehicle's OBD system has completed all of its system checks (no more than one readiness monitor Not Ready) and the MIL is not commanded on, the vehicle will pass the OBD inspection. More info.
    • D147 - Diesel-fueled vehicles receive a unique emission inspection known as D147. Vehicles are driven on a dynamometer at various speeds (accelerations, decelerations, cruise or idle) up to 90 km/hr to simulate real world driving conditions while the exhaust opacity is measured. The D147 inspection may last for up to 147 seconds. More info.
    • Pressurized Gas Cap Test - Vehicles manufactured between 1975 and 1997 receive a gas cap test to ensure that harmful vapours from the fuel tank are prevented from escaping into our atmosphere.
  • What is a readiness monitor?
    inspection

    1998 and newer light-duty vehicles have built-in monitoring systems that can detect when emissions control systems have a fault that may cause excess emissions. These monitoring systems perform various checks under certain operating conditions and also give an indication of whether those checks have been performed or not. These indicators are called readiness monitors.

    If any of the readiness monitors are Not Ready, that means that the system cannot provide a complete picture of the vehicle's emissions control system health. Resolving this situation requires that the vehicle be operated under the circumstances prescribed by the manufacturer that will allow all of the necessary self–diagnostic checks to complete. See your repair centre for more specific information.

    If all readiness monitors are set to Ready, that means that the various emissions control systems have been tested and the OBD system can provide a complete picture of the overall emissions control system health.

  • What if my vehicle failed the pollution control equipment inspection?
    inspection

    1988-and-newer vehicles are inspected for the presence of a catalytic converter . Vehicles manufactured from 1975 to 1997 will be subject to a functional gas cap test.

    If a vehicle failed for a missing or modified catalytic converter, a new one must be installed prior to re-inspection. If a gas cap fails to meet the approved standards, it must be replaced and re-inspected. 1987-and-older vehicles will receive an advisory only for a missing or modified catalytic converter.

    Replacement fuel caps and catalytic converters are available at repair facilities or automotive after-market parts outlets.

  • Where can my vehicle be repaired?
    repair

    If a repair facility displays the official AirCare logo, that indicates it has been certified to perform emission related repairs by the AirCare Program. AirCare Certified Repair Centres have the equipment and necessary training to properly diagnosis and repair your vehicle so it meets AirCare emission standards. Only vehicles repaired at AirCare Certified Repair Centres and returned for re-inspection with a completed Repair Data Form are eligible for a conditional pass.

    If you are unsure if a repair shop is AirCare-certified, have a look at their official Code of Practice before having the repairs done. It should be displayed in a prominent location.

    Anyone, including the vehicle owner, may perform repairs. However, to be eligible for a conditional pass, a vehicle must be repaired at an AirCare Certified Repair Centre by an AirCare Certified Technician.

    Locate an AirCare Certified Repair Centre in your area.

  • Why should I be concerned about carbon monoxide (CO), hydrocarbons (HC) and oxides of nitrogen (NOx)?
    program/policy

    CO is a toxic gas that is colourless and odourless. HC and NOx emissions are invisible pollutants that combine with sunshine to form ground-level ozone (the main ingredient in "smog"), which is harmful to our health and the environment.

  • Does AirCare work?
    program/policy

    Yes! Since the program began in 1992, AirCare has tested 2.7 million vehicles of which 35% or 952,000 vehicles failed at least once. Approximately 98% of these vehicles were either repaired or removed from use.

    AirCare related repairs are directly responsible for reducing vehicle emissions by 31% since 1992.

    Read more about program benefits.

  • Is AirCare responsible for air quality management in this region?
    program/policy

    No. Under provincial legislation, Metro Vancouver (formerly known as the Greater Vancouver Regional District or GVRD) is responsible for managing our region's air quality. As part of this responsibility, Metro Vancouver monitors air quality, controls the industrial, commercial and some residential sources of air pollution, creates long-term plans and inventories emissions. The AirCare program is one initiative within Metro Vancouver's Integrated Air Quality and Greenhouse Gas Management Plan (IAQGGMP).

  • Why doesn't AirCare test other sources of pollution?
    program/policy

    Although other sources of emissions have an effect on local air quality, AirCare is only mandated to address smog-forming emissions from light duty vehicles. Emissions from planes, trains, industry, etc. are within the authority of municipal and federal governments.

  • What pollutants does AirCare test for?
    inspectionprogram/policy

    The AirCare program inspects vehicles for acceptable levels of hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and oxides of nitrogen. Emission readings over AirCare standards indicate that a problem exists with a vehicle's engine or emission control system.

  • What payment methods are accepted at the inspection centres?
    inspection

    Visa, MasterCard, debit card and cash are accepted at the AirCare inspection centres.

    View inspection fee table.

  • How long does the test take?
    inspection

    The inspection will usually take around 7 minutes to complete. The actual time may vary, depending on what type of test procedure is appropriate for your vehicle, but 7 minutes is the average. The average wait time for an inspection is around 8 minutes.

  • I am importing a vehicle from outside BC - will it need an AirCare inspection?
    inspectionprogram/policy

    An AirCare inspection is not required to import a vehicle into BC. After the initial registration in BC, unless the vehicle is otherwise exempt, an AirCare inspection will be required at the first licence renewal, or transfer of ownership.