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Old 12-05-2012, 06:46 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Any riders from Orange County, CA that can tell me about emissions/noise laws?

Due to a possible job change, we may be moving to Orange County, CA (Irvine possibly) in the next year or so. As the owner of two Harley's that both have V&H exhausts put on and stage 1 & 2 upgrades, I'm concerned about how CA will affect my bikes.

I know CA has the toughest emissions laws of any state. But I'm having trouble determining what the exact laws are. There seem to be some tough requirements, and then a bevy of loopholes. One article I read said that while the laws are tough, that most of the time they are not enforced anyway.

So what is the real deal?

Will I have to change my exhaust or put catalytic converters on? (Gasp). Or I need to actually muffle my pipes? Do I need to avoid police cars or get pulled over?

Any advice now would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:41 PM   #2 (permalink)
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There are no emissions inspections for motorcycles in CA. And the noise laws are generally overlooked unless you're drawing attention to yourself in other ways. Basically, not riding like an idiot will make you largely unnoticed.


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Old 12-06-2012, 02:29 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Cats are only required on new sales. No modifications will be required on your bikes. The only funky law is that you cannot bring a newly purchased vehicle into California for registration/title with less than 7k miles.
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Old 12-06-2012, 05:36 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Just curious what year did new bikes sold in California start requiring cats? I have an 07 Street Glide that is a California bike. Wondering if it's got cats?
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:23 AM   #5 (permalink)
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You'll be fine without a catalytic converter on a used bike. No one checks unless it's new. As far as the noise from your pipes, the only areas that I've ever seen it to be a problem is in Huntington Beach and Laguna Beach. Cops there have been known to stop bikes with loud pipes. But, that's rare. The worst part of having a bike in OC is the traffic and whacks on cell phones. I'd be more concerned about that than the emissions or the noise. But, we do ride 365 days of the year!
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:28 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hijackak View Post
Cats are only required on new sales. No modifications will be required on your bikes. The only funky law is that you cannot bring a newly purchased vehicle into California for registration/title with less than 7k miles.
I thought you were joking about the 7K thing until I looked it up!

Even though my bikes are 2004/2008 respectively, then both have about 3K miles on them. (Seriously). So I'm not sure if this will apply to me or not - technically, I'm moving, so I'm a new resident, and I didn't just buy them. Hopefully I can skirt the law there.
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:00 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toddhd View Post
I thought you were joking about the 7K thing until I looked it up!

Even though my bikes are 2004/2008 respectively, then both have about 3K miles on them. (Seriously). So I'm not sure if this will apply to me or not - technically, I'm moving, so I'm a new resident, and I didn't just buy them. Hopefully I can skirt the law there.
"Technically" that is an emissions-regulation requirement. I've seen DMV folks interperet the law correctly and register low-mileage bikes, but have also seen them refuse to do so. Sadly, it's a crap-shoot. In theory, and by the letter of the law, if your bikes were sent out from the factory meeting the (silly) CA emissions standards, they should be able to be registered here with low mileage.
Good luck.
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Old 12-06-2012, 12:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toddhd View Post
I thought you were joking about the 7K thing until I looked it up!

Even though my bikes are 2004/2008 respectively, then both have about 3K miles on them. (Seriously). So I'm not sure if this will apply to me or not - technically, I'm moving, so I'm a new resident, and I didn't just buy them. Hopefully I can skirt the law there.
You won't be "skirting the law" The law it applies to newly purchased vehicles that have less than 7000 miles. It was written to keep out of state, newly purchased(less than 12 months old) cars without CA emission controls from being sold as "used" with little or no miles on them. Both of your bikes will comply with that law. Ca Dmv does not care if you are moving here or not as far as the registration goes, the vehicles must comply, or no CA registration. I'm sure you will be fine.
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Old 12-06-2012, 12:56 PM   #9 (permalink)
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And let me add, welcome to California. It is getting cold where you are now. Orange County has arguably the best riding weather in the world. Enjoy.
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Old 12-13-2012, 01:23 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Can't speak to emissions, but my scoot has Vance and Hines that are jaw rattling loud and I've yet to have any issues. Knock wood. I also don't ride like an idiot.
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Old 12-13-2012, 02:17 PM   #11 (permalink)
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It seems that a lot of riders around here have begun to realize how expensive hearing aids can be. The trend is toward quieter exhausts. According to my dealer tech friend, more buyers are sticking with stock exhausts nowadays or going with quiet aftermarket.
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Old 12-13-2012, 03:12 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I've ridden for years in So Cal and yes, cops in HB and Laguna will give you the once over twice if you have a beanie / novelty helmet on and/or if you are a throttle blipper with straight pipes. I once got two helmet tickets in one day in OC. Just ride respectfully and don't draw attention to yourself and you'll be fine. I've ridden past and next to cops on bikes and not had a problem, just short shifting and maybe lugging it a bit, trying to keep it quiet. It's all in how you ride, ride like a dick and you'll get tickets.
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Old 12-13-2012, 05:33 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toddhd View Post
I thought you were joking about the 7K thing until I looked it up!

Even though my bikes are 2004/2008 respectively, then both have about 3K miles on them. (Seriously). So I'm not sure if this will apply to me or not - technically, I'm moving, so I'm a new resident, and I didn't just buy them. Hopefully I can skirt the law there.
Quote:
Originally Posted by qtrracer View Post
You won't be "skirting the law" The law it applies to newly purchased vehicles that have less than 7000 miles. It was written to keep out of state, newly purchased(less than 12 months old) cars without CA emission controls from being sold as "used" with little or no miles on them. Both of your bikes will comply with that law. Ca Dmv does not care if you are moving here or not as far as the registration goes, the vehicles must comply, or no CA registration. I'm sure you will be fine.
The mileage requirement applies to any vehicle that does not meet California Emission.
It does not matter what year of the vehicle. If it does not have the required mileage, it can not be register in California.
The only exception is if it has California Emission certification.
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