Air Care Colorado: News Flash

Mon, May 25
Memorial Day

Station & RapidScreen
testing will resume at 
8am, Tues, May 26


Find out WHY your

vehicle received an
was not tested 
because it was
you were given an

for an


Check out the 

CheckEngine_225x225 60 percent.jpg

Is your 
"Check Engine"
light on?

If it's lit,
don't ignore it!



Air Care Colorado: Facts at a Glance


Have a diesel? Diesel vehicles must be tested at independent testing facilities, Air Care stations do not test diesel-powered vehicles. Click here for a list of Independent Diesel Testing Centers.

2015 Program Changes

Air Care Colorado Emission Test

Welcome to AirCare Colorado

Vehicle emissions testing is part of the state of Colorado's overall strategy to improve air quality in and around Denver, Boulder and the North Front Range. Vehicles are one of the largest contributors to harmful air pollution that leads to adverse health effects. The inspection program is designed to reduce those pollutants including harmful ozone emissions. To find the answers to specific questions choose from the menus above, or visit our search our site.

HOURS:       Mon. to Fri. 8 am to 5:30 pm & Sat. 8 am to 1 pm
PAYMENT:  1982 & newer: $25  1981 & older: $15  VIN Verfications: $20
(Please, NO temporary checks or checks with address different from ID.) 

**Hybrid vehicles eight (8) years and older require an On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) test every two years.
** All-Electric vehicles are exempt from testing. 



Is your vehicle "READY" for its Air Care inspection? "Readiness Monitors" Explained

What is a “Readiness Monitor"?

Most light-duty 1998-and-newer model year vehicles are equipped with an electronic emission control monitoring system known as On-Board Diagnostic (OBD). This system continuously monitors, tracks and stores information about the emission control devices and emission-related engine components on a vehicle. These self checks are referred to as "Readiness Monitors."

Most vehicles have between seven and 11 monitors, or self checks, that the computer system performs. The computer looks for specific speeds, temperatures, levels, and pressures from various sensors. When the vehicle’s computer receives the a signal from a particular sensor, it runs the readiness monitor check. Once the vehicle’s computer completes the check of a monitor, the readiness system status is set to “Complete” or “Ready." If the vehicle has not completed the self check, the status is reported by the computer as “Not Complete” or “Not Ready."

When a vehicle's emissions are inspected at an Air Care Colorado emissions inspection station, the vehicle's readiness monitors must be set to "Ready."

What causes a vehicle to be “Not Ready”?

Unset readiness monitors do not necessarily mean that anything is wrong with the vehicle. It simply means that the vehicle has not had a chance to complete all of its self checks to confirm that the vehicle is operating properly. There are several reasons why a vehicle may be “Not Ready." The most common are:

  • Recent vehicle repairs or maintenance in which diagnostic trouble codes have been cleared with an OBD scan tool
  • A recently disconnected or replaced battery
  • Pending problem that has not yet illuminated the "Check Engine" or Malfunction Indicator Light (MIL)

What happens if a vehicle is presented for an inspection and it is "Not Ready"?

If monitors are not "Ready," it is impossible to know if a vehicle is operating properly because the self checks have not been completed.

Vehicles between eight and 11 model years old require an OBD inspection. If a vehicle computer displays "Not Ready" codes during its initial inspection, the vehicle will either:

  • Automatically be inspected with an alternate I/M 240 dynamometer test, or;
  • If the vehicle cannot be tested on a dynamometer, due to size or other restrictions, it will be rejected from testing and sent away until more driving is completed and the monitors are set to "Ready."

If a vehicle returns for a reinspection, after a failed test, and the Readiness Monitors are set to "Not Ready," the vehicle will be sent away until more driving can be completed and the monitors are set to "Ready."

How does a vehicle become "Ready"?

Vehicles perform self checks during normal courses of driving. Vehicle drive cycles differ, but generally driving for a week, give or take a few days, should be sufficient for the computer to conduct all of the necessary self checks. However, to be certain, contact your dealership or repair shop to determine the manufacture's specific drive cycle for your vehicle. 



CheckEngine_225x225 60 percent.jpgThere are some significant changes headed our way in 2015 for the auto emissions inspection program in the Denver-metro area and North Front Range!

Collectively, the January 2015 changes should improve customer convenience for the greatest number of Coloradans in the program area while also protecting air quality.

Among the changes is the extension of the initial model year exemption for newer vehicles from four to seven years. This change reflects improvements in vehicle technology that allow gasoline-powered engines to start out cleaner and stay cleaner longer.

Beginning in the eighth model year, and extending through the eleventh model year, the vehicle inspection process will include an inspection of the On-Board Diagnostics (OBD and OBDII) systems. Instead of a driving test on the dynamometer (the “treadmill” test), vehicles will be “plugged in” to read the codes in their on-board computers.

This means if your “Check Engine” light is on, your vehicle will not pass the inspection. Don’t ignore it, get it checked!

Older gasoline hybrid vehicles (beginning in the eighth model year) will require inspection for the first time, also using the OBD "plug-in" test.

Other improvements to make the inspection process easier include adding more all-wheel drive lanes, offering more inspection options for vehicles that previously could not be inspected on the dynamometer, like vehicles with larger or smaller tires, and finally, we're taking credit cards!

For a good overview of what's on the horizon, visit the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s webpage at for a good overview of what’s on the horizon.


June is Colorado Bike Month, Get Pedaling!

Colorado Bike Month

June is Bike Month. BIKE TO WORK DAY is June 25.

2011 Poster without Cork Background

Colorado is a premiere bicycling state. To celebrate bicycling for transportation, fun and health, Colorado has designated each June as Bike Month. At the same time, Colorado joins a nationwide effort to encourage cycling novices and enthusiasts to experience the fun and freedom of safely riding a bike to work, school, errands and recreation

While there will be many events around the state throughout the month, the highlight of the month is Bike to Work Day when employees leave their cars at home and enjoy bicycling to work. The number of Bike to Work Day participants has risen steadily since 1995, and due to the popularity of bicycling in Colorado that trend is expected to continue this year.

To learn more about the benefits of bicycling to work, school and errands, please click here.