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  • Passing state lines with a modified vehicle.

    I'm going to be heading to Laguna Seca in California to run my car around their track but at the moment, I have a truck to tow my car with an no trailer. I'm confident in my cars ability to make it there, participate, and return without tow but I know how strict California law is about what drives around on their street. For travels sake, the car will be adjusted to stock height level, it does have a muffler and a universal cat. for the street, but if you're looking for carb stickers on anything, I might as well pack up and go home because all my piping is custom made and the car, even with exhaust is not going to be anywhere close to factory sound.

    So the question is:
    Seeing as I'm a resident in the Midwest, the car is titled and registered here, is it ok to pass state lines and I will still be protected under my states law, or once I cross, I need to abide by California law?

    Thanks!
    Last edited by AaronK; 08-28-2008, 06:45 PM.

  • #2
    My understanding is if it's legal in your state its legal in all. Providing you are only passing through or visiting and you don't intend on making it your place of residence. Of course Cali has some of the strictest rules...............
    The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

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    • #3
      Depends .........
      Originally posted by Monkeybomb View Post
      My understanding is if it's legal in your state its legal in all. Providing you are only passing through or visiting and you don't intend on making it your place of residence. Of course Cali has some of the strictest rules...............
      That's a misreading of a U S Supreme Court decision from long ago. The case involved mud flaps on trucks, and one state required something different from all others, seems it was an Illinoise case maybe.

      All states require mufflers, some state's specify a sound level. Virginia law (I know, he won't be going through Va. I post only to give an example) requires mufflers comparable to standard factory equipement. If it allows noise in excess of that emitted by vehicles of standard make, it's not considered to meet the standard here. Leaves a lot of room for interpretation, I'm pretty liberal about it as long as it does in fact have mufflers, but some officers aren't so liberal, and our law applies to any vehicle operated on a Virginia highway ... so when I give an answer to such a question, I try to answer it in a way that's correct for all operators & officers in Va.
      § 46.2-1047. Muffler cutout, etc., illegal.

      It shall be unlawful to sell or offer for sale any (i) muffler without interior baffle plates or other effective muffling device or (ii) gutted muffler, muffler cutout, or straight exhaust. It shall be unlawful for any person to operate on the highways in the Commonwealth a motor vehicle, moped, or motorized skateboard or scooter equipped with a gutted muffler, muffler cutout, or straight exhaust.
      § 46.2-1049. Exhaust system in good working order.

      No person shall drive and no owner of a vehicle shall permit or allow the operation of any such vehicle on a highway unless it is equipped with an exhaust system in good working order and in constant operation to prevent excessive or unusual levels of noise; provided however, that for motor vehicles, such exhaust system shall be of a type installed as standard factory equipment, or comparable to that designed for use on the particular vehicle as standard factory equipment. An exhaust system shall not be deemed to prevent excessive or unusual noise if it permits the escape of noise in excess of that permitted by the standard factory equipment exhaust system of private passenger motor vehicles or trucks of standard make.

      The term "exhaust system," as used in this section, means all the parts of a vehicle through which the exhaust passes after leaving the engine block, including mufflers and other sound dissipative devices.

      Chambered pipes are not an effective muffling device to prevent excessive or unusual noise, and any vehicle equipped with chambered pipes shall be deemed in violation of this section.
      As to opening poster, I'm not saying he will or will not have a problem. Flowmaster series 40s are way loud, they are almost "not" mufflers in my opinion. The cats will help. Conservative driving will help. Staying on open roads and out of downtown tourist districts will help.

      One takes their chances ....

      Last edited by t150vsuptpr; 08-28-2008, 11:17 PM.
      "That's right man, we've got mills here that'll blow that heap of your's right off the road."

      "Beautiful Daughter of the Stars."(it's my home now)

      >>>>> A Time for Choosing <<<<<

      Retired @ 31yr 2mo as of 0000 hrs. 01-01-10. Yeah, all in all, it was good.

      Comment


      • #4
        Calif. has a specific decibel level it allows, so I kinda doubt you're in the clear in that regard. Your equipment may or may not be C.A.R.B. certified & you should've known that when you installed it. Most manufacturers are SEMA members & post the applications on their boxes. You're running in that grey area where, quite frankly, you're taking your chances. I don't know what event you're running but if it's anything like the Copper State Classic in Nev. my GUESS is if you're stopped & tell the officer that he'd let you slide --- I know I would.

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        • #5
          For the most part, CA will recognize your home state's registration and driver's license. Any modifications to your vehicle that are approved by your state will also be accorded some leniency; except, excessive noise emitting from the exhaust and unlawful lamps. Here is the decible level approved for CA operation:

          Modification of Exhaust Systems

          27151. (a) No person shall modify the exhaust system of a motor vehicle in a manner which will amplify or increase the noise emitted by the motor of the vehicle so that the vehicle is not in compliance with the provisions of Section 27150 or exceeds the noise limits established for the type of vehicle in Article 2.5 (commencing with Section 27200). No person shall operate a motor vehicle with an exhaust system so modified.

          (b) For the purposes of exhaust systems installed on motor vehicles with a manufacturer's gross vehicle weight rating of less than 6,000 pounds, other than motorcycles, a sound level of 95 dbA or less, when tested in accordance with Society of Automotive Engineers Standard J1169 May 1998, complies with this section. Motor vehicle exhaust systems or parts thereof include, but are not limited to, nonoriginal exhaust equipment.

          Amended Sec. 10, Ch. 92, Stats. 2001. Effective January 1, 2002.
          Pre-1970 Motorcycle Limit

          27201. For the purposes of Section 27200, the noise limit of 92 dbA shall apply to any motorcycle manufactured before 1970.

          Added Ch. 83, Stats. 1975. Effective January 1, 1976
          Motorcycle Limits

          27202. For the purposes of Section 27200, the following noise limits shall apply to any motorcycle, other than a motor-driven cycle, manufactured:


          (1) After 1969, and before 1973 .................................................. .................................................8 8 dba
          (2) After 1972, and before 1975 .................................................. .................................................8 6 dba
          (3) After 1974, and before 1986 .................................................. .................................................8 3 dba
          (4) After 1985 .................................................. .................................................. ...............................80 dba

          Amended Ch. 356, Stats. 1982. Effective January 1, 1983.

          Limits for Vehicles Exceeding 5,999 Pounds Gross Vehicle Weight

          27204. For the purposes of Section 27200, the following noise limits shall apply to any motor vehicle within the specified manufacturer's gross vehicle weight rating and date of manufacture:


          [Noise limits for vehicles with a gross vehicle weight in excess of 5,999 pounds.] * GVWR-Pounds Date of Manufacture Noise Limit -dbA
          Over 6,000 after 1967 and before 1973 88
          Over 6,000 after 1972 and before 1975 86
          Over 6,000 after 1974 and before 1978 83
          Over 8,500 after 1977 and before 1982 83
          Over 6,000 but not over 8,500 after 1977 80
          Over 8,500 but not over 10,000 after 1981 80
          Over 10,000 after 1981 and before 1988 83
          Over 10,000 after 1987 80

          Amended Ch. 274, Stats. 1985. Effective January 1, 1986.
          Limits for Other Vehicles

          27206. For the purposes of Section 27200, the following noise limits shall apply to any other motor vehicle, not specified in this article, manufactured:


          (1) After 1967, and before 1973 .................................................. .........86 dba
          (2) After 1972, and before 1975 .................................................. .........84 dba
          (3) After 1974 .................................................. .........................................80 dba

          Amended and renumbered Ch. 558, Stats. 1977. Effective January 1, 1978.
          Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence!

          [George Washington (1732 - 1799)]

          Comment


          • #6
            Are those noise levels tested at idle? If so, I can probably find somebody with a decibel meter.

            But all in all, it sounds like it all boils down to who I run into, right? But for the most part, just don't do anything stupid to stand out and I wont get pulled over in the first place. It just worries me because you always hear about horror stories from people who live in California.

            But I'm with a club that has the track rented in mid October and I've been looking forward to this for a while. I just figured I would have saved up the money for a trailer by now.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by AaronK View Post
              Are those noise levels tested at idle? If so, I can probably find somebody with a decibel meter.

              But all in all, it sounds like it all boils down to who I run into, right? But for the most part, just don't do anything stupid to stand out and I wont get pulled over in the first place. It just worries me because you always hear about horror stories from people who live in California.

              But I'm with a club that has the track rented in mid October and I've been looking forward to this for a while. I just figured I would have saved up the money for a trailer by now.
              I believe it is tested at REDLINE or 2800 RPM depending on the weight and displacement of the vehicle. I am not a tester and have never tested noise levels. You can find the proper testing procedures by googling the reference from the Society of Automotive Engineers.
              Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence!

              [George Washington (1732 - 1799)]

              Comment

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