S.E. alternatives to DEQ Emissions Testing save time and hassle
On March 17 all DEQ Oregon Clean Air Stations closed, when Governor Brown declared emergency stay-at-home orders for the State of Oregon, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A registration moratorium was put into effect as well, and vehicle registration deadlines were extended to October 1.
When the Governor declared phase one re-opening on May 15th, the State of Oregon re-opened DEQ emissions testing sites, and long lines formed. Reports told of vehicles waiting in line for hours at Clackamas or Sherwood stations.
However, if your vehicle is from 2005 and newer, you should know that there are alternative ways to be tested without that hassle.
Oregon DEQ rolled out a program called "DEQ Too" in early 2020, which offers two options for emissions testing. If the vehicle is new enough to have telematic devices and systems that are capable of transmitting on-board diagnostics (OBD) data to DEQ, the testing can be done at home. To learn more about on-board diagnostics testing, contact your auto mechanic shop or other automotive business.
The second option, for vehicles 2005 and newer but without telematics devices, is to have your vehicle tested at a business located nearer to where you live and work. That is possible because DEQ is partnering with select gas stations, oil change centers, repair service shops, car washes, and auto parts stores, where vehicles can have an emissions test with an appointment. The data is immediately sent online to the DEQ.After leaving the testing location, the registration process can be completed online using a computer or cell phone, and the certificate and updated stickers will be mailed to the motorist's home address or post office box.
"DEQ Too" was created, in part, because as the state's population increases, congestion and air pollution are increasing along Oregon's roadways. This new option will minimize congestion and reduce air pollution. A local business offering testing is much closer than the far-flung state testing sites!
One auto shop that does DEQ testing is Tom Dwyer Automotive Services in Sellwood at 530 S.E. Tenino Street, just south of the east end of the Sellwood Bridge. Dwyer's Marketing Manager Charles Letherwood says it is necessary to make an appointment, and the motorist waits a short time in the shop while the vehicle is tested. The telephone number is 503/230-2300. Fleet Manager Dean Scruton says they cannot test ¾-ton trucks and larger. Hours are Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m,, and Saturdays 10 to 1.
Green Drop Garage on S.E. 28th just south of Steele Street in the Reed neighborhood also provides DEQ testing, and also requires an appointment. The phone number there is 503/567-8344. Hours are Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturdays 9 to 5.
Each participating business may charge a slightly different fee for use of the testing device, but it is usually around $20 to $25. As of June 1, once a vehicle passes inspection, the DEQ Clean Air Certificate fee will then cost an additional $25 for any tested vehicle.
A "DEQ Too" webpage – www.deqtoo.org/locations – lists quite a few other business locations in various areas of Portland where such DEQ testing can be done.
For vehicles older than 2005, for which testing is still required, it is still necessary to go to a state DEQ testing emission station. And, as of July 1, customers interacting with vehicle inspection staff at all stations must wear face coverings and maintain six feet of physical distance.
Motorcycles, mopeds, and cars and trucks dating from 1975 or earlier are exempt from emissions testing in Oregon.
A walk through any neighborhood where numerous cars are currently parked because owners are working from home or laid off during the COVID-19 pandemic, reveals many outdated stickers. However, vehicle owners should be aware that they still have a small amount of time to register and get updated stickers, since the current deadline for emissions testing and renewing registration this year is October 1.
For more information about "DEQ Too" go online – www.deq.state.or.us
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