[ba] Decent Smog Shop ... San Jose area

Buchholz, Steven Steven.Buchholz at kla-tencor.com
Tue Sep 5 02:36:11 EDT 2006

I had to get V8 #2 smogged ... test only of course ... but I don't want to get started down that road ... :-)

I found a smog station on Blossom Hill (near 85) which said they wanted $50 for the test ... I went back and found it was now $60 ... what the hey ... an hour later and the tech's machine can't get a reliable RPM signal to complete the test ... even using the inductive sensor that clips around a spark plug wire!

There's a gas station at the corner of Capitol Expressway and Senter Road which has a test only operation ... I had been there before and had a good experience ... it was just that they wanted $80 for the test.  I called back Saturday and they said they had a $30 off phone coupon if I mentioned it when I went in.  They are open 7 days a week.  Early Sunday morning I warmed the engine up on the freeway then went in ... I was the only one there, so the car got hooked up right away.  The smog tech got a stable RPM signal right away ... and he left the car running at 2500 RPM without the probe in the tail pipe to let everything warm up properly before the test.  The car passed the test first time without problems.  Until yesterday it seemed that all my Audis miss the specs on the first test cycle, which then means they need to run for 3 minutes at 2500RPM unloaded before retesting ... at which point they pass.  It was great to see this guy knew enough to minimize the extra engine stress.  

All in all they seemed to know more than just how to operate the equipment ... even though they aren't allowed to make repairs ... 

So, if anyone in the south bay is looking for a smog tech, I'd recommend Capitol & Senter Smog (408) 227-0500.  They are a mile or so west of the Capitol Expressway offramp from 101 in south San José.  

Steve B
San José, CA (USA)

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