Tune in Cali.. Any issues? - Pontiac Solstice Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-01-2018, 10:36 PM Thread Starter
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Tune in Cali.. Any issues?

I have a 07' GXP with ~110k. Having it for about 5 months, I'm starting to trust it as far as dependability being a daily driver. I've gone through a few minor code challenges which this site has helped me out immensely. Thanks to everyone for your time and contributions...

I'm still struggling with a P0455, but I'll get it nailed in time. Smoke test anyone?

Having this aged vehicle and wanting to experience a Tune is on my bucket list. I'm trying to do my due diligence of the affects of doing this. Are there an Cali Tunes out there and what are the steps/pitfalls to get his done? First thing that rings trouble to me is a high flow cat....Cali is infamous for anything that deviates from the Cali norm. Thanks..
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-01-2018, 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by SanDiegoGXP View Post
I have a 07' GXP with ~110k. Having it for about 5 months, I'm starting to trust it as far as dependability being a daily driver. I've gone through a few minor code challenges which this site has helped me out immensely. Thanks to everyone for your time and contributions...

I'm still struggling with a P0455, but I'll get it nailed in time. Smoke test anyone?

Having this aged vehicle and wanting to experience a Tune is on my bucket list. I'm trying to do my due diligence of the affects of doing this. Are there an Cali Tunes out there and what are the steps/pitfalls to get his done? First thing that rings trouble to me is a high flow cat....Cali is infamous for anything that deviates from the Cali norm. Thanks..
The GMPP tune that was available from the dealership was 50-state legal. Solve your trouble codes first, though.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-01-2018, 11:59 PM
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I would only consider the Trifecta Tune, way more ban for your buck, and you spend half the bucks to do it. Had mine for four years and no problems with it at all.

If you have any mods I would suggest Dave Gilbert at Performance Auto Werks. He is finishing up mine. But have had some work done that will support a more aggressive tune. Actually start doing the logging this weekend.

Contact Robotech, he will help you, than Dave to pay for the tune. They will work together to get you where you want to be,
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-02-2018, 05:54 PM
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Sounds good, but are they CARB legal? Will it pass California smog?

If so I'd LOVE to add it!
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-02-2018, 06:08 PM
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Sounds good, but are they CARB legal? Will it pass California smog?

If so I'd LOVE to add it!
GMPP Tune (and replacement MAP sensor) is the only game in town for that.

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-02-2018, 08:15 PM
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Mine passed every year with the trifecta base tune. No problems until this year. Had to remove the charge tubes, intake and the like even though it passed the smog test. No codes.

This year they are requiring the hood be opened and if it doesn't look stock to the tech, you get sent to the ref. Meaning if you have color charge tubes even though they are stock you are testing the water. Mine is good for two years, and will be licensed in Arizona at my uncle Bill's place then.

It is really ridiculous. I have a friend that has a 62 baja bug with ao 2012 Honda engine in it. Engine is built to the hilt, I don't think it would ever pass smog, but it is street legal.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-03-2018, 08:51 AM
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There was a thread here a few years ago where someone who seemed to know what he (or she) was talking about said in California, anything you modify between the air cleaner and the CAT is illegal, I think he (or she) said that was true everywhere, but especially in California where there is a visual inspection. The GMPP tune and sensors (as slab8 mentioned) is my understanding of the only CARB (California Air Resources Board) legal tune for our cars.

I'm open for anything that disputes that!

Also, as long as some California folks are reading, can anyone recommend a good shop for us in southern California, specifically north San Diego or southern Orange county areas?
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-03-2018, 10:26 AM
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Several members have used the shop I go to. They do about everything. Robo uses them and is getting ready to upgrade his engine having Curtis do the work. Pass Auto Center in Banning, 951 849 7878. Ask for Curtis

If you are talking about CAI, I think the GMPP one is the only one legal in California, but only from 2008 on the Redline/GXP. 2007's are not included. As to the tune, Trifecta on the base tune offered you a switch, just set the car back to stock when you take it in. Passes no problem.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-03-2018, 06:31 PM
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Mine passed every year with the trifecta base tune. No problems until this year. Had to remove the charge tubes, intake and the like even though it passed the smog test. No codes.

This year they are requiring the hood be opened and if it doesn't look stock to the tech, you get sent to the ref. Meaning if you have color charge tubes even though they are stock you are testing the water. Mine is good for two years, and will be licensed in Arizona at my uncle Bill's place then.
Visual inspection isn't new. It's been part of the smog test since the beginning, even for OBDII cars.

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It is really ridiculous. I have a friend that has a 62 baja bug with ao 2012 Honda engine in it. Engine is built to the hilt, I don't think it would ever pass smog, but it is street legal.
An officer can send your buddy's bug to the referee if he wanted to (admittedly unlikely,) and it'd fail then. Exemption from biannual testing isn't exemption from the laws, it's just a lack of compliance verification.

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There was a thread here a few years ago where someone who seemed to know what he (or she) was talking about said in California, anything you modify between the air cleaner and the CAT is illegal, I think he (or she) said that was true everywhere, but especially in California where there is a visual inspection. The GMPP tune and sensors (as slab8 mentioned) is my understanding of the only CARB (California Air Resources Board) legal tune for our cars.

I'm open for anything that disputes that!

Also, as long as some California folks are reading, can anyone recommend a good shop for us in southern California, specifically north San Diego or southern Orange county areas?
So long as the readiness monitors report as passed, the ECM reports the correct VIN and powertrain, and the car doesn't sound off, probably any tune can get through the OBD-II plugin test. Visual is up to the individual tech's level of attention to the job. The GMPP tune is the only legal option. It's not the only one that can get through the test, even though the other options are not legal. If the plug-in test starts verifying checksums/versioning info of the calibration (I don't believe that happens currently,) then alternative tunes will become a problem for passing a plug-in only test.

EPA defines anything that changes the emissions equipment on a car as 'tampering'. Aftermarket parts get around that by claiming "for offroad use only", even when the primary market is street-driven cars. EPA has actually cracked down on that a bit: https://www.epa.gov/enforcement/harl...act-settlement Harley got busted for selling tuners to street motorcycle buyers over the counter at dealer parts departments. https://www.epa.gov/sites/production...stuningllc.pdf here's a settlement against a shop selling Diablosport tuners, Hondata, AEM ECMs, COBB tuning boxes, "test pipes", etc. Here's the list of enforcement actions for 2018: https://www.epa.gov/enforcement/2018...se-resolutions

EPA generally only takes action against commercial entities, not individual car owners. So while it's true that you're not likely to get into any trouble in parts of the country where there isn't emissions testing or enforcement, the parts are still breaking the law when used on public roads. The difference is that California and some other states actually check that regular people haven't tampered (and also that they keep their vehicles in good working order with respect to emissions equipment.

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If you are talking about CAI, I think the GMPP one is the only one legal in California, but only from 2008 on the Redline/GXP. 2007's are not included. As to the tune, Trifecta on the base tune offered you a switch, just set the car back to stock when you take it in. Passes no problem.
Importantly, the CA-legal parts MUST have a decal with the CARB E.O.# number on it. Don't buy a used one missing the decal, cause it'll fail just as bad as a no-name part. This is because it's not realistic to have the smog tech validate that a part (of millions of aftermarket parts) is the correct certified one. They check for the decal (and optionally pull the EO to see details which might be relevant to the legality of the part.) If the trifecta tune can't pass an OBDII scan-only smog test, that's really baffling, unless it actively disables emissions equipment, as what comes out the tailpipe isn't checked.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-03-2018, 10:54 PM
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That is good information, I will have my graphics guy make me duplicates for both. I know the 2007 is illegal, but I put the sticker on anyway. The green one is totally legal, but have been told powder coating the cam cover and the charge tubes will most likely be a problem anywhere else it goes.

I have no idea if the tune will pass when it is turned on. Was told to turn it off, and it passed with no problems. I have ran the tune for almost four years and have never seen a code thrown. I am normally on the tune. My car is still under warranty or was, and wanted the stock tune in it for that reason. I only have a few months of warranty left and have decided I am no longer worried about it. There fore had the water pump replaced and put the big wheel turbo on after the smog check. Gives me two years with no problems. As stated it will be registered in Arizona the next time. I don't drive it a lot and it stays in a storage facility so it won't draw any attention. I don't drive it hard so not to concerned about getting stopped.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-03-2018, 11:33 PM Thread Starter
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Geez, one would think this is the cartel trying to smuggle a Tune via. a drone. Thanks for everyone's input on this. I think I'm gonna bring the sol south and bring it back over the wall so it has rights... just sayin.... drop the mike.
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-04-2018, 08:47 AM
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Checking in to see if we can help the gentleman who just purchased Charity Sol #5, a white GXP with RPM Stage 3 package. He may have to return some things to oem. Curious if anyone knows a good shop near San Jose with Solstice tuning experience and smog issues.

Thanks much,
Scott
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-04-2018, 06:47 PM
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sker mentioned his shop contact info above. Start there

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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-04-2018, 07:42 PM
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I have no idea what RPM stage three involves, but does not sound near stock.

Unless everythng is Carb legal, and has the numbers it is not going to pass. Charge tubes will fail it instantly, other than a GMPP CAI, it fails. It will be much tougher coming in from out of state. California does have a law that sellor is responsible for the car passing smog. Doubt that covers out of state sales though.

My shop is about 400 miles away Rob, too far to go I think. They are coming down harder on local shops, so if the shop does not know you, every single thing that could be done is done. I had to take my car completely back to stock to get by smog in March. Wasn't a big deal because I was involved in upgrading the turbo, so it was apart or coming apart anyway. They are really after the street racers, tuner cars are normally the target.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-06-2018, 08:39 AM
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Yes, looking for a shop near San Jose with some experience. This guy paid a nice sum for the hospital and I will make sure he is happy - I will send him oem intake, pipes, cat and re-tune if needed.
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