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Many states have gotten away from tailpipe sniffer inspections (more expensive and less convenient) and gone to visual and car ECU inspections (hook up the scanner, if there are no emission related codes and the car reports “ready”, you’re good).



> visual and car ECU inspections

The rideshare driver I mentioned elsewhere in this thread[0] also told me that he knows people who tune engine firmware for diesels, and that they do disable error codes related to their tuning and the missing filter - and that it's important to be aware of this when getting the car repaired for unrelated issues, because the tuning hacks may mask problems in diagnostics and confuse the repair people.

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[0] - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20235002


That definitely happens. My prior car was ECU modded by the prior owner to eliminate EGR which was a maintenance hog on the turbo diesels. Many aftermarket ECU flash programs can be undone if diagnostics are required.


And you're spending most of your money fixing all the expensive computers and sensors in your car instead of cleaning dirty fuel injectors and the like.


Maybe, though the total amount I've spent in the last decade across two daily drivers on sensors/computers was $12 for a knock sensor, $9 for a can of MAP sensor cleaner, and $78 for an O2 sensor, so it's far from prohibitive and that computerization of fuel and ignition makes the cars much more efficient, powerful, and easier to start as compared to the carbureted or pure mechanically injected predecessors.




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