Emissions Testing

What is Drive Clean Emission Testing?

Drive clean, is Ontario’s mandatory vehicle emissions inspection program on all vehicles over 7 years old which plays an important role in keeping our air clean. Poor air quality is a public health concern, particularly for children and the elderly who have problems that often lead to poor performance, high emissions and poor fuel economy. It is faster than the old tailpipe test and is 20 per cent more effective in reducing pollutants than the previous test, by better identifying vehicle emissions problems and making repairs more accurate and effective respiratory challenges.

 As of January 1 2013, Drive clean has implemented a new test called the OBD test (on board diagnostic test) which reads the emissions information of your vehicle’s internal computer.  It can detect

When your car drives as cleanly as it was designed to, it’s good for our environment and it’s also good for you! Your vehicle will get better gas mileage, improved performance and an extended engine life.

Here at Good Guys Automotive in Port Credit, Mississauga ON, we can do emission testing on all light duty vehicles (under 4500 KG), heavy duty vehicles (over 4501 KG), as well as both gasoline, propane, natural gas and diesel vehicles.

Initial Emission Test fee is FREE & Re-Tests are $17.50(re-tests done at a different facility are $30) +HST **MAKE SURE THERE IS AT LEAST 1/4 TANK OF FUEL BEFORE YOU COME FOR THE TEST. Also it is MANDATORY that the vehicle owner bring the registration/sticker renewal form mailed to them.

Please click link at the bottom of this page to check if you’re eligible for a free emission test. Our drive clean staff cannot tell you whether a test is free or not, the ontario test unit comes to this conclusion.
Transferring of a vehicle, as of April 1st does not require an emissions test. Unless the vehicle falls in its 2 year testing period. Vehicle Buyers can also request a drive clean test from the seller as a condition of the sale, which the seller will be charged $29.95.

Pre-test check

Before performing the emissions test, the inspector will do a visual check at no cost.

If the inspector finds any of the following issues, it must be corrected before the emissions test can continue, as it could lead to injury and/or the test equipment may not work properly:

  • missing catalytic converter and/or gas cap
  • defective MIL or Check Engine Light with key on engine off
  • defects in the fuel filler pipe
  • problems with the on-board computer system that would prevent the vehicle from being tested
  • visible smoke coming from the tailpipe
  • any problems the inspector believes would prevent the vehicle from being tested safely

You will receive a pre-test check rejection form, if the vehicle cannot be tested. You will need to return for the test, once any required repairs are made.

My Vehicle didn’t pass the Drive Clean test, What happens now? 

Your vehicle will need to pass the emission test before you can renew your licence plates.

A diagnostic will need to be performed on your vehicle in order to figure out the cause(s) of the failure.

Why Did my vehicle fail the test?

Vehicles usually fail the Drive Clean test because:

  • the vehicle’s emissions exceed standards
  • the vehicle isn’t ready. The information in the vehicles built in computer is not readable and the test cannot be completed.

Is your “check engine” light on?

A vehicle with a “check engine” light on will likely fail the test.

The “check engine” or “malfunction indicator” light means there is something wrong with your vehicle’s emissions control system. If you ignore the warning, you could be causing further damage that wastes fuel, shortens the engine life and may create excessive exhaust pollution.

A Drive Clean technician will need to go over your test report and explain the results. The technician will then need to perform a diagnostic for the possible causes of the failed items. Feel free to ask Drive Clean staff about the report or repairs.

What if my vehicle failed because it was not ready?

The drive clean test reads information from all built-in computer in all 1998 and newer vehicles.

If your vehicle was recently repaired, or if the battery was disconnected, the information in the computer might not be readable, and your vehicle will fail the test. As a result, you’ll have to re-take the test.

A day or two of combined city driving and highway driving should reset your vehicle and your vehicle’s computer.

You can also take your vehicle through a generic drive cycle. See Below:

Step 1. Make sure the vehicle has been parked for 8 hours without a start.

Step 2. Start the engine and let it idle in DRIVE for two-and-a-half minutes with the air conditioning and rear defroster on.

Step3. Turn the Air Conditioning and rear defroster off. Drive the vehicle for 10 mins at highway speeds.

Step 4. Drive the vehicle for 20 minutes in stop-and-go traffic.

Step 5. Your drive cycle is complete. You can now go in for your test.

NOTE: Some vehicles may require different steps to reset the computer. The drive cycle is a term referred to the readiness state of the vehicle’s monitors. Monitors that have completed their checks while you drive typically stay ‘Ready’ and do not become ‘Not Ready’ on their own.
Typically the most common cause(s) to prevent a monitor(s) from becoming ready after a long period of driving, would be an actual problem with the vehicle’s emission control system. This usually prevents the monitor from ever running even if proper drive cycles are followed, which in case a drive clean technician will have to identify issues to be corrected. Feel free to ask staff at Good Guys Auto about the best way to get your vehicle ready.

BE AWARE ALSO: A vehicle is “not ready” when it doesn’t have the information needed for the test. Once you get your vehicle ready with the information needed by driving it and resetting the information in your vehicle’s on-board computer, your vehicle still needs to pass the re-test by meeting emissions standards.

Where Can I get my vehicle fixed if it fails the emission test? 

You can take your vehicle to an accredited Drive Clean repair facility or to a garage of your choice.

Good Guys Automotive is an accredited testing and repair facility. 

If your vehicle fails the emission test we are equipped with the most advanced tools to test and find out why and perform the necessary repairs.

What is a Conditional Pass??

Owners whose vehicles require extensive emission-related repairs can obtain a Conditional Pass.

As of April 1st 2017 to receive a conditional pass, you must have had your emissions-related repairs done at an accredited Drive Clean facility and spent up to the Repair Cost Limit of $460 plus diagnostic fees, readiness drive cycle fees, taxes and tests. A Re-test must be done within 120 days of the initial failed emission inspection and within 60 days of the completed repairs.

A Conditional Pass will only be issued once for a vehicle. As vehicles are tested every two years, that two year time frame must be used to repair issues with the vehicle causing it to fail. A Conditional Pass is only used to renew your licence plates. It cannot be used to transfer ownership of a vehicle.

Note: Conditional pass does not apply to any heavy duty vehicles. (vehicles over 4501 Kg) These vehicles MUST pass.

Be sure to talk to the staff at Good Guys Automotive for more details 

What do I do after repairs??

Once repairs have been done your vehicle must now be re-tested at a Drive Clean Facility and must receive a PASS or CONDITIONAL PASS before you can renew your licence plate sticker.

How much does a re-test Cost?

A re-test costs $17.50 provided you return with 120 days to the facility that did the first test.

I passed the re-test. What do I do now?

You will receive a second vehicle inspection report showing that your vehicle has passed. You may now go transfer the ownership or renew your licence plate sticker.

Lost your Drive Clean Certificate??

Drive Clean Certificate is valid for 1 year from the date of test. Misplaced your document? Reprint here.


For more information on Ontario’s Drive Clean please visit www.driveclean.com