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  #1  
Old 02-27-2008, 11:17 AM
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legality in CA of converting a gas car to diesel

When you do an engine swap in CA of a gas engine for another gas engine you have to get the car inspected by a smog ref.

Same thing when you do a diesel to gas swap.

Does anyone know what the process is for a gas to diesel swap?
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Old 02-27-2008, 04:27 PM
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I read that even if you install a 2nd fuel tank on a pickup up truck it is supposed to be inspected because of the plumbing for the emissionsl. So my best guess would be it will need to be inspected by some one. Maybe there is a special "coustom car" type regulation it would fall under.
Check here: http://www.smogcheck.ca.gov/stdhome.asp
on the menu on the left is the Bureau of Automotive repair.
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Old 02-27-2008, 04:37 PM
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This article is on gas engine swapping but it mentions California.
http://www.superstreetonline.com/techarticles/3174_engine_swap/index.html

"Keeping your engine swap legal is very important. Examine your state's vehicle code or contact the DMV to see what's legal and what's not. In California, the law says that an engine must be of the same year or newer as the car and be California emissions-legal. To avoid any hassles, it should also be of the same engine type that was originally available from the factory in that particular body style. Hmm, that's kind of a problem. Besides sidestepping the law (and we would never do anything like that), there are a couple options. The best is to have your entire car certified by the state by going to your local referee station for examination, testing, and BAR Vehicle Identification Label approval. You can call 800/622-7733 for an appointment. The other option (and definitely more work) is to keep the original engine on hand and swap it back in when you have to make a trip for the smog test, but we don't recommend doing it (legal reasons and all)."
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Old 02-27-2008, 04:38 PM
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You no longer need smog testing on cars 1975 or older at this time.
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Old 02-27-2008, 04:43 PM
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Ive swapped gas cars before, my real questions deal with the diesels because there is nothing for them to test.

They can look and see that it has the EGR, but that is the only smog control.
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Old 02-27-2008, 04:54 PM
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As long as the engine you swap in was originally available in that chassis and all the smog equipment present and operating then it should be no problem. Issues arise when swapping an older engine into a newer chassis. Generally as long as the engine is the same year or newer than the chassis and all smog gear is there it would be hard to fault it. RT
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Old 02-27-2008, 05:50 PM
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After much searching I emailed CARB with my phone number, just received a call and was told:

The engine must be out of a road going car that was sold in the US in that year or newer. (or equivalent in that the engine from a 1981 XXX might be functionally identical to the engine in a 1982 XXX, but if there is any way they can tell then no). They go by model years.

They will verify that all emissions equipment (only EGR that I know of on the diesel, maybe evap canister??) for the diesel engine car is present.

They WILL NOT smog check (tailpipe test) the engine, just a visual check to see that the engine was swapped.

Once this is done the car will be smog exempt like all other diesels.

Car should have all original equipment components in place air filter etc etc.
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:54 PM
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When I brought my 99 in from out of state I had to "prove" to DMV it was a diesel. The gal were skeptical.

They didn't want to hear it run, smell the fuel or look at the engine.....they wanted to see the emmision and production stickers.......

You might want to keep those if availabe form the donor vehicle.
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:54 PM
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