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Jeremy, Certified Diesel Technician/Electrician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 3320
Experience:  ASE, NATEF Engines and Electrical certified, EPA 608/609
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Ford Mustang: ,I have a 2011 GT Mustang. I recently

Customer Question

I have a 2011 GT Mustang. I recently had a performance exhaust installed on my car. Shortly after, I noticed the check engine light was on. I then took my car into another shop for some body work and to have the engine light inspected. Sure enough, they said there was an issue with the catalytic converters, and that they would need to replace the stock ones to fix the issue, allowing me to pass a state inspection.
Obviously, I am not eager to pay to have stock catalytic converters installed back on my car when I just paid to replace them with, presumably, superior parts. I have read that one way to bypass this issue is to get the check engine light off by disconnecting the battery, and then hoping the light does not come back on as you complete a drive cycle before getting the car inspected.
Please let me know if you have any suggestions on how to get around this problem, preferably without resorting back to stock parts. I know research is my own responsibility, but I certainly wish the shop that installed the new exhaust would have warned me about this possibility. I plan on contacting them, but I do not expect much to come from that.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  Jeremy replied 2 years ago.
Hi! My name is ***** ***** I will do my best to assist you with your concerns.
On the 2011, the stock parts have to be in place in order for the inspection to pass for the parts are now visually checked to see if they are in place.
I'm sorry, but there isn't any way around this anymore with most states that are doing these inspections. The first shop that did the work should have sold you parts that look like the original as well as a kit to bypass the signal for the car to pass as stock.
I know it isn't the news that you want, but it is the laws that the EPA is holding us to. I would demand for the first shop to make the repairs for the vehicle to pass at their cost and then seek an attorney to assist you in the matter if they don't.
EPA is extremely strict and will pass fines to a shop in the amounts of 10-100k for each failure to uphold to the inspections. You can even go after the previous shop for not installing a proper part to pass the required inspections in your state for those installs are highly illegal in nearly all states anymore. If your vehicle rolled into my shop and if it was to pass the inspection, I legally couldn't drive it off the lot or allow the customer to drive it off in that condition. In my state, you would have to tow it off the lot or I would be fined $10k. That is how strict the EPA is for my state.
It sounds like the parts installed on your car are for off-road use only and that is why it didn't pass inspection. Check your contract to make sure there wasn't a waiver signed and if not, make them fix it to pass state inspection or have them take it somewhere to where it will pass.