Too Much Exhaust Smoke

image of car emitting excessive exhaust smokeBeing caught in traffic behind a vehicle that is belching clouds of foul smelling smoke from the exhaust is not a pleasant experience. Clean air should be everyone's worry, will your vehicle make the grade?

Exhaust Emissions - Light Vehicles

Police inspecting vehicles are guided by the standards for the approval of a motor vehicle contained in division 7 of the Motor Vehicle Act Regulations.

It is simply a matter of visually comparing the exhaust emissions to similar vehicles. If your vehicle smokes more, it is non-compliant.

The vehicle inspection standards don't speak about emissions but do require vehicles that were built with a catalytic converter must still be equipped with one.

Exhaust Emissions - Heavy Vehicles

Heavy vehicles are regulated by Division 40 MVAR but these rules only specify a particulate reduction device that decreases emissions by at least 20%.


If your vehicle emits unreasonable amounts of smoke you can be directed to make repairs, issued an inspection order or fined. In addition, a citizen may make a driving complaint concerning your vehicle in the same manner that they would for any other traffic violation.

Change on the Horizon

The inspection standards that the designated inspection facilities use are expected to change in late 2024 or early 2025 to more closely mirror the federal vehicle emission standards. This will provide more explicit guidelines to inspectors and allow them to reject vehicles that are not in compliance.

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