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New York State Vehicle Safety Inspections        



New York State Motorist Fact Sheet

On-Board Diagnostics (OBD II)

A vehicle emission inspection program has been introduced across New York State to decrease the emissions from motor vehicles and to reduce air pollution. The New York Vehicle Inspection Program (NYVIP) is designed to assist New York State in complying with federal Clean Air Act requirements by including a new on-board diagnostic test (OBD II) for most 1996 and newer vehicles (light duty vehicles with a registered weight less than 8,501 pounds). This test will monitor the emissions control systems of applicable vehicles as part of the required annual vehicle inspection. The NYVIP program is a joint venture of the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC).

How does the driver know there is a problem?

If a potential problem is detected, the vehicle’s onboard computer illuminates a dashboard light that states either “Service Engine Soon,” “Check Engine,” or simply a symbol of an engine. This light, also referred to as the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL), informs the driver that a problem has been detected and vehicle service is needed.

How can a vehicle fail the OBDII test?

There are five possible reasons or ways to fail an OBD inspection:

The MIL fails to light when the ignition key is in the on position and the engine is not running. This will be displayed as “Key On Engine Off: FAIL” on the receipt.

The MIL stays on when the ignition key is in the on position and the engine is running. This will be displayed as “Key On Engine Running: FAIL” on the receipt.

The vehicle’s computer has commanded the MIL to light.

The NYVIP testing equipment cannot communicate with the vehicle’s computer. This will be displayed as “OBD Communications Failed” on the receipt.

There are too many Readiness monitors reported as “Not Ready.” The specific monitors that are not ready will be listed on the receipt. Click here for a PDF flier from NY State explaining "Readiness Monitors".

Explanation of the reasons above...

The purpose of the MIL bulb check (when the ignition key is in the on position and the engine is not running) is to see if the MIL can illuminate. If it cannot light, there is no way for the system to alert the operator of the problem.

When the MIL stays on (when the ignition key is in the on position and the engine is running), the onboard computer is indicating a potential emissions-related problem with the vehicle.

The vehicle’s computer has detected a problem and has signaled the Malfunction Indicator Lamp to light to alert the operator.

The OBD portion of the inspection could not be properly completed.

The OBD system has not completed its tests of the various components and systems it monitors to be able to make a determination of their condition.

What you should do if your vehicle failed...

For items 1 through 4, you should consult a qualified, trained service technician equipped with the appropriate diagnostic and repair equipment to perform OBD related service. For item 5, you should refer to your vehicle owner’s manual for OBD/Readiness Driving Procedures or drive your vehicle in a normal fashion both at highway cruising speed and “stop and go” driving for a week before getting the vehicle re-inspection sticker is expired, the testing equipment will issue you a 10-Day Extension. You should plan to get the vehicle re-inspected several days before the expiration of the 10-Day Extension, as it will be only one issued.

You can help your vehicle pass an emissions inspection by keeping it properly maintained. If the vehicle's Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL, or "check engine" light) indicates there may be a malfunction or other problem, have the vehicle properly repaired. A well maintained, functioning vehicle uses less fuel and creates less exhaust emissions.

The emission portion of NY State inspections has caused confusion for consumers. It requires your cars computer to operate properly and be able to properly monitor your cars emissions. If its "monitors" are not ready then the vehicle will fail the inspection. NY State has written a Readiness Failure Fact Sheet to help explain. Click here to view it in a PDF version.

At Pete Kitt's Automotive Sales & Service, we know that your vehicle is important to you. We strive to give fast reliable service, and we provide warranties on every repair. Please call us at (315) 487-2630 today for any automotive service or maintenance need.

Some of the services we provide
  • A/C Service
  • Battery & Charging Systems
  • Brakes
  • Check Engine Lights
  • Clutches & Flywheel
  • Computer Diagnostics
  • Cooling Systems
  • Detailing
  • Drive Lines
  • Electrical
  • Engines & Cylinder Heads
  • Front Ends
  • Fuel Systems
  • Glass
  • Locks & Windows
  • Lube-Oil-Filter
  • NY State Inspections
  • Radiators
  • Rustproofing
  • Routine Maintenance
  • Steering & Front End
  • Suspensions
  • Tires
  • Transmissions
Pete Kitt's Sales & Service home of professional auto repair and quality used cars in Camillus, NY
Pete Kitt's Sales & Service home of professional auto repair and quality used cars in Camillus, NY
Pete Kitt's Sales & Service home of professional auto repair and quality used cars in Camillus, NY
Major credit cards accepted
We honor most extended warranties

Click here to schedule service for your vehicle online

Call us today, (315) 487-2630


  Pete Kitt's Automotive Sales & Service
101 Bennett Rd.
Po Box 416
Camillus, NY 13031-0416
  Used Car Cell/Text: (315) 407-1077
Service: (315) 487-2630
Fax: (315) 488-4521

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Providing Quality Used Cars & Professional Auto Repair to Syracuse NY,
Camillus, and Western Suburbs for Over 50 Years