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TDI Conversions Discussions on converting non TDIs into TDIS. More general items can be answered better in other sections. This is ideal for issues that don't have an overlap and are very special to swaping engines.

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Old April 14th, 2008, 20:28   #1
Trailnewt
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Default Diesel conversion in California

Update on registering a diesel conversion in California. As of January 1, 2008 you must take your diesel conversion to the Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) State Referee to have them verify that you have indeed put a diesel motor into your vehicle. This morning I took my Syncro Vanagon 1Z TDI conversion to my appointment with the Referee at a local community college. He looked in the engine compartment, said "Yup, that's a diesel," entered the VIN and some other information into his computer and gave me a slip to take to the DMV where they will change my registration from gas to diesel. He was not interested in the motor numbers, any of the components on the motor, or any of the details of the conversion. He was only interested in verifying that it was now a diesel vehicle. The only question he asked me about the conversion was where I got the motor? Perhaps they want to know that the motor was originally built for the U.S. market.
I hope this information is usefull to any of you in California who are working on conversions. I guess the system could change anytime but right now it's pretty painless. I did a squeaky clean conversion, full electronic with all sensors installed, catalytic converter, egr valve; but didn't get the chance to show off any of it to the referee.
The power band from the 1Z motor sure is sweet after all those years of driving a waterboxer.
Brent
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Old April 15th, 2008, 06:04   #2
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Does that pertain to conversion of gasoline vehicles registered in CA, or also to conversions from anywhere else?
My 97 gasoline GLX is now titled and registered in MA as a diesel. If I were to move to CA (ain't happening), or sell to a CA resident, would the same confirmation be required since the VIN is still indicating a VR6?
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Old April 15th, 2008, 14:47   #3
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I don't know the answer to that question.
Brent
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Old April 29th, 2008, 10:20   #4
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Trailnewt- Thank you for posting I have been looking for confirmation on this new change.
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Old April 29th, 2008, 13:21   #5
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What referee did you visit? I'm in the Bay Area like rallyruss, and I'd like to get in touch with a referee before I go ahead with my swap.
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Old April 29th, 2008, 16:01   #6
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Just a piece of advice, if they ask what year the motor is out of tell them its out of a car from the same year as your vehicle. Rules state it must be same year or newer, however CA is thinking about instituting a smog program for 97 and newer diesels. You want to be able to avoid that if it comes to fruition.

They have no way of verifying the year and will take your word for it when it comes to this.

Also, if you where to have gotten a conversion of a 97 1Z into say your 85 GTI, and you did it by mechanicalizing the pump and getting rid of the computer controls. If you told the smog reps the engine was from a 97 and they ever do institute smog requirments, your car won't pass and you will have to re engineer your car to pass for it to be legal, even if the car passes the tailpipe test (if they create one) they will allmost certainly want to hook the car up to an OBD2 code reader if they think it has OBD2 (all TDI engines) 96 1z from passat might skirt this requirment because it wasn't mandated in diesels till 97.

Last edited by 12MPGHWY; April 29th, 2008 at 16:05.
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Old April 29th, 2008, 17:05   #7
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Good info. Ditto on the referee location the OP used!?
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Old April 29th, 2008, 17:12   #8
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Further to that: OBD II for diesels wasn't mandated until the November 1996 production. OBD II was implemented for 97 TDI built prior to November, but the requirement for OBD II for diesels didn't take effect until November.
That was my saving grace for installing my May 1996 1Z and OBD-D ECU on my June 1996 build date 1997 conversion: The engine and ECU I have are a valid, and CARB certified, combination approved for the VW diesel models built through October of 1996.
MA, a CARB adopting state, didn't seem to care one bit as long as I proved I paid for insurance, and then paid the sales tax, title fee, registration fee, safety inspection fee, emission inspection fee, ....fi-fo-fum-fee...
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If the quantity of carbonic acid increases in geometric progression,
the augmentation of the temperature will increase nearly in arithmetic progression.

Svante Arrhenius 1896

Cogito ergo soy (I think, therefore: Biodiesel)
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Old April 29th, 2008, 18:03   #9
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The documents I have seen (see the emissions section for links I think) don't make the line of demarkation OBD2, but rather the 1997 model year. I'm sure that OBD2 is the reason for this.

And if the car has OBDII and requires a smog then they are going to hook it up to a scanner.

Model year is how they draw the line.

Example, they draw the line at 1975 for smog in CA cars, the real reason for this is that by 75 virtually all cars had converters, and 75 was the major change year for emissions regulations.

However some 74's and 73's meet the 75 emission regulations, and yet they are still smog exempt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lug_Nut
Further to that: OBD II for diesels wasn't mandated until the November 1996 production. OBD II was implemented for 97 TDI built prior to November, but the requirement for OBD II for diesels didn't take effect until November.
That was my saving grace for installing my May 1996 1Z and OBD-D ECU on my June 1996 build date 1997 conversion: The engine and ECU I have are a valid, and CARB certified, combination approved for the VW diesel models built through October of 1996.
MA, a CARB adopting state, didn't seem to care one bit as long as I proved I paid for insurance, and then paid the sales tax, title fee, registration fee, safety inspection fee, emission inspection fee, ....fi-fo-fum-fee...

Last edited by 12MPGHWY; April 29th, 2008 at 18:07.
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Old April 30th, 2008, 02:04   #10
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Registering my tdi volvo was just a trip to the dmv. They looked under the hood "yep, that looks like a diesel to me" and I was on my way.
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Old April 30th, 2008, 20:08   #11
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I asked here in vermont and they said just bring it on down and we can change your title for you. thats for color and engine changes. LOL got to love vermont! we dont even need a title for anything 95 and older...
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Old May 1st, 2008, 06:37   #12
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Fuel Economy: Which VW diesel? There have been Twelve of them. Now 13!
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There are two separate differentiations of ECU and 1Z TDI engines listed in the Bentley service manual: Those with the "BK" OBD-D ECU from August 1995, and those with "FA" OBD II ECU from November 1996.
The crux is the federal certification sticker statement that the vehicle meets all applicable safety, bumper, anti-theft and emissions regulations IN EFFECT ON DATE OF MANUFACTURE (emphasis mine). My 1997 has a date of manufacture in June of 1996, at least 4 months before the date for requirement of diesel OBD II compliance.
The 'smoke fix' "GQ" ECU, because that was produced after November of 1996, has to be OBD II compliant, but the original BK is "grandfathered" and legal for use on Passat TDI built through October 1996.
This is not the first time VW bumped output in advance of tightening limits. The 2006 Jetta TDI output was ramped up from September through December of 2005 to 'beat' the toughened emissions limits for new cars manufactured in calendar year 2006.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 12MPGHWY
The documents I have seen (see the emissions section for links I think) don't make the line of demarkation OBD2, but rather the 1997 model year. I'm sure that OBD2 is the reason for this.
And if the car has OBDII and requires a smog then they are going to hook it up to a scanner.
Model year is how they draw the line.
Example, they draw the line at 1975 for smog in CA cars, the real reason for this is that by 75 virtually all cars had converters, and 75 was the major change year for emissions regulations.
However some 74's and 73's meet the 75 emission regulations, and yet they are still smog exempt.
__________________
If the quantity of carbonic acid increases in geometric progression,
the augmentation of the temperature will increase nearly in arithmetic progression.

Svante Arrhenius 1896

Cogito ergo soy (I think, therefore: Biodiesel)
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Old May 1st, 2008, 11:04   #13
gamblinfool
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(pardon the total noob question; I'm just getting my feet wet here) A friend of mine said he remembered seeing something in the DMV regs that said an originally non-diesel car cannot be legally converted to a diesel.

The information in this thread obviously contradicts that. Does anyone have a DMV reference that supports this?

thx, JT (currently on a quest to convert a mk1 Scirocco to TDi or mTDi)
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Old May 1st, 2008, 11:19   #14
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That very well could be true in your state, these are state requirments, check with your dmv.

It is legal in CA and most other states

Quote:
Originally Posted by gamblinfool
(pardon the total noob question; I'm just getting my feet wet here) A friend of mine said he remembered seeing something in the DMV regs that said an originally non-diesel car cannot be legally converted to a diesel.

The information in this thread obviously contradicts that. Does anyone have a DMV reference that supports this?

thx, JT (currently on a quest to convert a mk1 Scirocco to TDi or mTDi)
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Old May 1st, 2008, 12:05   #15
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I guess I should update my location (which is Belmont, CA )
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