Car owners who maintain up-to-date and consistent maintenance on their vehicles will most likely pass a smog inspection, according to Philip Reed of Edmunds. Some additional tips to help drivers improve the condition of their vehicles include keeping tires properly inflated, changing the oil often enough to clear dirty oil from the crankcase and using fuel additives to clear possible clogs in the fuel injector.
Reed advises that drivers consider paying for a tune-up at least a couple of weeks in advance of a scheduled smog inspection. It takes about two weeks for a car's onboard computer to reset after the battery has been disconnected by a technician during maintenance. A pre-inspection may be offered at some smog inspection locations at a low cost. These assessments are not recorded, so potentially damaging information found during the checkup does not reach the attention of the state's registry of motor vehicles, and drivers have an opportunity to make repairs prior to the official inspection.
Reed says that driving a vehicle on highway roads for two weeks prior to an inspection may help clear gas and oil residues from an engine through the heat generated by the catalytic converter. It is also important that any issues related to a flashing check engine light are analyzed and repaired.