Readiness Monitors and Drive Cycles Explained? (Question)

  • What are readiness monitors and drive cycles? If you want to get your vehicle inspected, your car’s readiness monitors must be in the “ready” state in order to pass the test. And that means you must complete a drive cycle.

How long do you have to drive to complete a drive cycle?

Preparation for it will take eight hours but, all in all, a basic drive cycle test should take around 30 minutes to complete, with about 20 minutes of actual driving.

How long does it take OBD monitors to be ready?

About one week of combined city and highway driving is usually enough to allow the monitors to reach complete status.

What is considered a driving cycle?

The road test of a typical drive cycle involves a highway and two road driving sessions. Once the road test has been completed, pull into a parking spot, let the engine idle for a few minutes, and then shut off the engine.

How many drive cycles does it take to turn off a mil?

The PCM can perform this test once during the drive cycle. As I discussed earlier, most emissions-related DTCs take at least two drive cycles to set, so it stands to reason it will take at least two passes to turn off the MIL. Keep in mind the second drive cycle will not be complete until you turn off the ignition.

How many miles do you have to drive to reset your car computer?

So why is the light still on? Here’s something you probably don’t know: after clearing the car’s computer you will need to drive for about 50 to 100 miles. As you drive your car the computer will monitor all the sensors and register the results.

What is a drive cycle in Obdii?

OBD Drive Cycles In order for the PCM to properly execute all the readiness monitors on a particular vehicle, an OBD II drive cycle needs to be driven to achieve the enabling conditions for each monitor. The following generic drive cycle can be used as a guideline if a specific drive cycle is not known.

What does OBD II monitors not ready mean?

A “not ready” result means your vehicle’s computer has not had a chance to check all of the parts of the emissions control system for problems – so it cannot determine if everything is working as designed. Until the vehicle is “ready” to complete the checks, the OBD inspection cannot complete.

How do I pass OBD II emissions?

Tips & Tricks for Passing an Emissions Test

  1. Warm up your engine.
  2. Make sure your car is up-to-date on routine service.
  3. Fix any known engine-related problems.
  4. Make sure the “Check Engine” light is off.
  5. Bring your vehicle to a smog test location that retests for free.
  6. Make sure the “Check Engine” light is off.

How do I test my monitor readiness?

To check if the readiness codes are set, turn the ignition switch to the ON (II) position, without starting the engine. The MIL will come on for 20 seconds. If it then goes off, the readiness monitors are set. If it blinks five times, the readiness monitors are not set.

What does Readiness mean on emissions?

Readiness monitors are programs that monitor the performance of a vehicle’s emissions control devices while the vehicle is being driven. During an emissions test, the emissions testing analyzer checks the status of the readiness monitors. The status of a completed readiness monitor will be “ready”.

Does check engine light turn off after drive cycle?

If you plan to do an emissions test, the check engine light must remain off, and the “drive cycle” must register as ready. Typically 50-100 miles of driving will take care of drive cycle readiness, but it’s best to check with your dealership or mechanic concerning your specific vehicle application.

Why is my EVAP system not ready?

As a rule, the EVAP monitor only runs when certain conditions have been met. If these conditions have not been met since the last time the monitor ran, or since the last time the battery was disconnected, or since the last time fault codes were cleared from the PCM memory, the EVAP monitor will NOT be ready.

How do you run a drive cycle?

General Motors Drive Cycle For Smog Check

  1. Start the vehicle from a cold start.
  2. Let the engine run on idle.
  3. Accelerate to 55 mph.
  4. Hold a steady speed of 55 mph for 3 minutes.
  5. Let go of the accelerator and coast until the vehicle hits 20mph.
  6. Accelerate again until 60 mph.
  7. Hold steady for 5 minutes at 60mph for 5 minutes.

Does clearing codes reset readiness?

Clearing the codes will completely reset your readiness flags. It will take a few drive cycles before you would be able to pass an OBDII emissions inspection.

OBD2 Readiness Monitors Explained

Editor’s note: This item was updated in March 2020 to reflect the most recent facts and to ensure accuracy. OBD2 Readiness Monitors are self-check procedures that are both easy and effective. They send information to the car’s self-diagnostics system and help it to function more efficiently. This post will go into further depth about what the readiness monitors are and how they work. Designed to self-test the vehicle’s pollution control systems, readiness monitors are installed in vehicles. The monitors are often referred to as Emissions Monitoring Systems.

Vehicles are capable of performing up to 11 system tests or routines.

Readiness Monitor types

Continuous readiness monitors and non-continuous readiness monitors are the two types of readiness monitors available. Continuous monitors are designed in a different way than non-continuous monitors are. While the engine is running, the continuous monitors are being examined and assessed on a continuous basis. Before a test may be conducted on the non-continuous monitors, certain requirements must be satisfied. The circumstances required to perform the non-continuous self-diagnostic tests differ from one another.

Some engines require two driving cycles due to the necessity for cooling and warming up intervals in between each cycle.

The OBD2 standard (SAE J1979) formerly classified each designated monitor as either one of two categories.

As a result, OBD Auto Doctor does not adhere to the classification system any more.

Continuous or Non-continuous Monitors

There are two types of monitors that may be used here. It is entirely up to the manufacturer to make this decision.

Non-Continuous Monitors

Non-continuous monitoring for spark ignition automobiles (with gasoline engines) and compression ignition cars (with diesel engines) are different (diesel engines).

Spark ignition vehicles (Gas)
  • Engine components include a catalytic converter (CAT), a heated catalyst, an evaporative air purification system (EVAP), a secondary air purification system, an oxygen sensor (O2), an oxygen sensor heater, an EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) and/or a variable valve timing system (VVT).
Compression ignition vehicles (Diesel)
  • Exhaust Gas Sensor, PM Filter, EGR and/or VVT System, NMHC Catalyst, NOx/SCR Aftertreatment, Boost Pressure,

Using Windows, OBD readiness monitors may be read.

Monitoring cycles

Since the diagnostic issue codes had been removed, the only monitor status that was displayed was the current state. All OBD2 compliant cars are required to have this readiness monitor status displayed. It will display the long-term condition of the vehicle once the check engine light has been reset and the DTCs have been cleared. As the OBD2 standard has matured, newer cars may now communicate the status of their emission monitors for the present driving cycle as well.

Every time the monitoring cycle begins, these monitors begin from the beginning of the previous cycle. This function may not be available in older vehicles. In that situation, OBD Auto Doctor will indicate that it is NA, which stands for Not Available.

Monitor status

The outcome of the readiness monitor test reveals the state of the monitor. Each readiness monitor will have a unique output status that will be shown. The completion state can be any of the following:

  • The term “completeor ready” refers to the fact that the exam has been completed. It indicates that the OBD-II system has examined and found the emissions control system to be functional, and that it has passed the test. This is shown by a green check mark on the OBD Auto Doctor
  • Incomplete or not ready indicates that the test has not been finished. It indicates that the OBD2 system was either unable to conduct this procedure or that the routine had failed. This is shown by a red exclamation point on the OBD Auto Doctor screen. Deactivated indicates that the test has been disabled for the remainder of the current monitoring period. When there is no simple way for the driver to operate the vehicle in order to allow the monitor to work, the monitor might be deactivated. For example, the temperature of the surrounding air may be either too low or too high.

OBD Auto Doctor displays a list of all the monitors that have been defined in the software. However, the real status may only be given for the ones that the automobile is also capable of supporting. It is not necessary for an automobile to be able to accommodate all of the monitors. The term NA, which stands for not available monitor, indicates that the automobile does not have that monitor. As a result, it cannot be tested. With the Android app, you can keep track of your reading readiness. For this driving cycle, the vehicle does not support the use of readiness monitors.

Why is a monitor incomplete or “not ready”

It is also possible to reset the monitor statuses by clearing the diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs) and the Check Engine Light. This generally occurs during or immediately following a car repair job. In the event of a power breakdown, the statuses are also reset. This frequently occurs after the battery has been removed from the system. As a result, it is not recommended that the battery be disconnected. If you need to disconnect the battery, for example, to replace it, continue reading this section of the guide.

When a new monitoring cycle is initiated, the state of the current monitoring cycle, also known as “this driving cycle,” is set to unfinished.

Your OBDII car may not pass the yearly inspection unless the relevant monitors have been replaced or reset, depending on your nation and state of residence.

Only a single monitor status might be incomplete or not ready for vehicles manufactured in 2001 and later model years.

How to get the monitors complete or “ready”?

Because the monitors have self-check procedures, driving the automobile is the most efficient method of getting them ready. However, monotonic driving will almost certainly fail to achieve all of the required requirements. That is why there is something known as an OBD drive cycle. Let’s start with the obvious ones first, and then move on to more complicated ones.

  1. To begin, check certain that the MIL (Malfunction Indicator Light) is not turned on by mistake. It is possible that having saved or even pending diagnostic problem codes activated would prohibit a monitor from doing its job. In the second place, make sure you have adequate petrol in your automobile. Some monitors, such as the EVAP monitor, may need that the fuel level be between 35 percent and 85 percent before the diagnostic testing may be performed
  2. However, this is not always the case. Third, finish what is known as the “drive cycle.” Typically, one week of combined city and highway driving is sufficient to get the monitors up to full operational level. Detailed explanation of the driving cycle is provided in the next paragraph

OBD drive cycle

On-board diagnostics (OBD2) are enabled via the OBD2 drive cycle, which allows your automobile to do diagnostics while driving. As a result, the readiness monitors are able to function properly. Additionally, it may identify probable problems in your vehicle’s emission system. The proper driving cycle for your automobile might differ significantly depending on the type and manufacturer of your vehicle. Aside from that, the monitor in question has an impact on the number of drive cycles necessary.

Typically, a few days of typical driving, both in the city and on the highway, will be sufficient to prepare the monitors.

It will aid in the resetting of monitors when a car-specific drive cycle is not available for a particular vehicle.

However, it is possible that it will not function with all automobiles and displays. Under regular driving situations, it might be difficult to keep track of the drive cycle in its entirety. As a result, it is preferable to drive in a limited region!

  1. Using the OBD2 drive cycle, your automobile will be able to perform on-board diagnostics, which is its intended function. As a result, the readiness monitors are able to function properly and efficiently. Additionally, it can identify any problems with your vehicle’s emission system. Based on the car type and manufacturer, the proper drive cycle for your vehicle might vary significantly. The needed driving cycle is also affected by the monitor in question. These driving cycles are now included in the vehicle owner’s handbook by a large number of automobile manufacturers. For most people, a few days of typical driving, including some highway driving, will be enough to get the monitors up and running. If a specific drive cycle is not known, the generic drive cycle that follows might be used as a guideline. It will aid in the resetting of monitors when a car-specific driving cycle is not available for the vehicle in question. The method may not be effective for all automobiles and displays, depending on their configuration. Under typical driving conditions, it might be difficult to follow the drive cycle perfectly. This means that it is best to drive it only inside designated areas.
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Get ready for inspection

You may prepare your automobile for the yearly inspection yourself, which will help you prevent having your car rejected. At the very least, you should check the readiness monitors to see whether they are operational. This will prevent you from receiving nearly certain rejection. Check for any diagnostic issue codes that may be present as well. All of this is possible with the help of the OBD Auto Doctor diagnostic software. Even with the free version, you can see the current condition of your monitors as well as the diagnostic issue codes.

Remember, you should not wait until the yearly inspection to address the problems.


For the PCM to successfully execute all of the vehicle’s readiness monitors on a given day, an OBD II drive cycle must be completed in order to achieve the enabling circumstances for each monitor. In many cases, the right drive cycle for your car will depend on the vehicle’s model year, year of manufacturing, and make of manufacture. Additionally, the sort of monitor you are attempting to run might have an impact on the type of driving you need to conduct. Specific vehicle-specific drive cycle information may be found in the manufacturer’s service information, aftermarket service information, numerous websites, and in the vehicle owner’s handbook, if one is available.

If a specific drive cycle is not known, the generic drive cycle that follows might be used as a guideline to create one.

However, it is possible that it will not operate with all vehicles and readiness monitors.

  • The cold start phase of the universal OBD-II driving cycle is the first step (coolant temperature below 122 F, and the coolant and airtemperature sensors within 11 degrees of one another). This state may be readily reached by allowing the vehicle to remain overnight
  • However, the ignition key must not be left on prior to performing a cold starting procedure. Otherwise, the heated oxygen sensor diagnostic may not be able to be performed. Start the engine and let it idle in drive for two and a half minutes, with the A/C and rear defroster turned on if they are fitted
  • Turn off the air conditioning and rear defroster, then accelerate to 55 mph using a gentle and consistent acceleration technique. Continue at a constant speed for three minutes. For manual transmissions, decelerate (slow down) to 20 mph without braking or depressing the clutch
  • Accelerate back to 55-60 mph at 3/4 power to get back on track. Hold the pace at a constant rate for five minutes
  • To come to a complete stop without braking, decelerate (coast down).

Readiness Monitors and Drive Cycles

If you wish to have your vehicle examined, the readiness monitors in your vehicle must be in the “ready” condition in order for the vehicle to pass the inspection. And that means you’ll have to go through the motions of driving. In the early days of OBDI, you could simply reset the computer and drive your car over to an emissions testing lab to have it checked. That is no longer the case. Every time you delete the codes from the computer, you are effectively resetting the machine, which means it must restart all of its tests from the beginning.

If the readiness monitor is not set, the testing station will notice this instantly and will send you packing on the spot.

Here’s an example of a drive cycle routine for a Chevrolet Trailblazer

At least 17 hours have elapsed since the last driving cycle that met and passed all of the test requirements. The consequence of this is that you cannot clear codes and then immediately attempt to execute a driving cycle before zooming off to the testing station. Keep in mind that you must work a minimum of 17 hours. The check engine light has been turned off. There are no Emissions-related problem codes present. More than 74 kPa in the BARO signal. Battery voltage should be between 10 and 18 volts.

  • To put it another way, the two sensors must be in good working order.
  • It is not possible to begin this exam on a day with temperatures below zero.
  • The fuel level should be between 25 and 75%.
  • Start the engine and allow it to idle for 15 seconds.
  • 3) Continue driving for another 3 minutes at 45 mph on a flat route without ascending or descending any hills to reduce gasoline slosh.
  • 4.
  • When the test is completed, the Readiness code should be changed to YES.

If this is not the case, look for any temporary codes.

If no temporary codes are established, return to step 3.

When the test is completed, the Readiness code should be changed to YES.

If the test is interrupted before it is completed, restart the test from the beginning and repeat all of the procedures.

Making a visual assessment of the EVAP test chamber before conducting it may prevent the need to repeat the test.

After an aborted or failed test, the vehicle will need to cool down in order to fulfill the test criteria before it can be used for another test sequence. Rick Muscoplat was born in the year 2012. Rick Muscoplat posted a blog entry on

Emissions Drive Cycles Explained

Call (480) 588-2250 to schedule an appointment at 21622 North 7th Avenue in Phoenix, AZ. Readiness Monitors (System Checks)Light-duty cars manufactured after 1996 are equipped with onboard computer monitoring systems. Additionally, the onboard computer validates the appropriate operation of emission control systems by executing Emission Control System Checks, which are performed by a dedicated software program. It is necessary to execute system checks under specific driving circumstances set by the manufacturer, which is referred to as a “Drive Cycle.” Whether or not the various emissions control System Checks have been completed is kept track of by the on-board computer system.

Unlike readiness monitors, which merely validate that the emissions control system check has been done, they do not verify whether the system or any of its components has been successfully completed or failed.

Readiness Monitor – A status of “READY” indicates that the self-diagnostic System Check has been successfully conducted.

On Board Diagnostic (OBD) Readiness and Drive Cycle .

Readiness for On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) and Driving Information Regarding the Cycle Preparation for the OBD A total of up to 11 diagnostic checks of specific emission control are performed by your vehicle. Readiness of the on-board diagnostic (OBD) system as well as information about the drive cycle Preparation for the OBD Each of the specific emission control components, such as the engine, transmission, fuel system and other emission controls are subjected to up to 11 diagnostic checks. In order for a diagnostic check to be successful, it must communicate with a readiness monitor.

  • Certain driving conditions must be met in order to determine whether or not all of the components are operating within acceptable limits.
  • When these diagnostic checks are not completed, vehicles are disqualified from further testing.
  • The OBD (On-Board Diagnostics) system functions more like a computer monitoring system than a diagnostic system.
  • When the vehicle is driven, the computer in the vehicle performs a self-diagnostic computer test.
  • Working on a vehicle either before or after an E-Check OBD II test should avoid clearing Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) if at all possible, so that the check engine light remains illuminated after the repair (s).
  • If the check engine light continues to illuminate, it is possible that additional repairs will be required.
  • If the repairs necessitate the clearing of computer DTC’s or a battery disconnect (which also clears DTC’s), make sure to drive the vehicle for at least two or three days (older vehicles may require more time), covering both highway and city miles.

The bad news is that when the DTCs are cleared, the check engine light is turned off, and it becomes a guessing game as to when the computer monitors will be “ready.” The generic drive cycle provided below may or may not be useful, but it will provide you with a better understanding of the driving parameters that are typically required.

  1. * Do this all at the same time, rather than in segments (does not need to be exact) 1.
  2. 2.
  3. 3.
  4. Drive for at least 20 minutes in urban traffic, with at least four periods of inactivity in between.
  5. You can also go to the websites listed at the bottom of this page for more information.
  6. If you want to check whether or not the vehicle is ready, turn the ignition switch to the ON position without cranking or starting the engine, according to these owner’s manuals.
  7. If the check engine light flashes more than once, it is likely that the readiness codes have not been set.

It should be noted that, unless there are issues with the emissions control system, the check engine light should turn off when the engine is started.

Technical Service Bulletins will be used by others to provide information (TSB).

A few days of normal driving, both in the city and on the highway, will often suffice to reset the monitors.

For newer Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury vehicles, turn the ignition key to the “on” position for 15 seconds without cranking the engine to determine if the vehicle is ready for E-Check.

This procedure was included in the Owner’s Manual for a 2012 Ford Focus, and it is described in detail.

For Jeep, Chrysler, and Dodge vehicles, the owner’s manual states that the vehicle has a simple ignition keyactuated test that you can use prior to taking the vehicle to the testing facility.

If you turn the key or start the engine, you will have to start over from the beginning of the test.

The following two outcomes are possible approximately 15 seconds after the start of the timer: a.The MIL will flash for approximately 10 seconds before returning to its fully illuminated state until the ignition is turned off or the engine is turned on.

Because the MIL will not flash at all, it will remain fully illuminated until you turn off the ignition or begin to operate the vehicle’s engine.

Turn the ignition switch to the ON (II) position without starting the engine, according to the owner’s manual for Honda/Acura, to see if the readiness codes have been set for the vehicle.

If it then goes off, it means that the readiness monitors have been activated.

Performing a series of drive cycles to reset OBD II monitors The information in the following paragraphs pertains to manufacturer-specific information regarding drive cycles.

Driving cycles are not mentioned on the BMW public web site or in the owner’s manual, according to BMW.

The following drive cycle was found via an internet search: Generic drive cycle on Dodge forum: Ford: Newer Ford owner’s manuals include a drive cycle, which is as follows: The OBD-II system is designed to check the emission control system during normal driving.

If the vehicle is not ready for E-Check testing, the following driving cycle consisting of mixed city and highway driving should be performed: 15 minutes of steady driving on an expressway/highway followed by 20 minutes of stop-and-go driving with at least four 30-second idle periods.

Then, start the engine and complete the above driving cycle.

Once started, do not turn off the engine until the above driving cycle is complete.

GM (Chevy, Buick, Cadillac, GMC, Pontiac, Oldsmobile): Drive Cycles are not included in the manufacturer’s public web site or owner’s manual.

In order to be categorized as a cold start the engine coolant temperature must be below 122°F and within 11°F of the ambient air temperature during startup.


The greater electrical load you can apply the better.


During this time the misfire, fuel trim, and purge flow diagnostics will be conducted.

Maintain a constant pace of 55 mph for three minutes.


Do not shift, use the brake, or engage the clutch.

It will be necessary to run diagnostics on the EGR, purge, and fuel trim systems during this period.

Until you reach 55-60 mph, maintain a 3/4 throttle setting.


Maintain a constant pace of 55 miles per hour for five minutes.

Depending on whether the catalyst is marginal or whether the battery has been removed, it may take up to five complete driving cycles to assess the status of the catalyst.

This will carry out the same diagnostics as in step 5 of the procedure.

Honda/Acura: The driving cycle is included in the owner’s manuals of newer Honda and Acura vehicles.

2.Confirm that the car has been parked with the engine off for at least 6 hours before proceeding.

4.Start the engine without depressing the accelerator pedal and let it to idle for 20 seconds before restarting.

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Increase the engine speed to 2,000 rpm and maintain it at that pace until the temperature gauge reaches at least 1/4 of the scale (about 3 minutes).

7.Choose a major route that is not much frequented and where you can sustain a speed of 50 to 60 miles per hour for at least 20 minutes.

It is not necessary to utilize the cruise control.

(There may be a minor difference in vehicle speed; this is normal).

8.After that, drive for at least 10 minutes in city or suburban traffic.

9.Check to see that the car has been parked with the engine turned off for at least 30 minutes.

Hyundai and Kia Tech Info online sites (and the two screenshots below are from the Hyundai Tech Info web site) both provide drive cycles.

In the case of Mitsubishi, neither the public web site nor the owner’s handbook have information about Drive Cycles.

After conducting an online search, we discovered the following driving cycle: Subaru: Driving simulations are provided (on the Subarutechinfowebsite).

After doing an online search, the following Technical Service Bulletin was discovered for Toyota (and perhaps Lexus) vehicles: * Although the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency does not approve, sanction, or guarantee the authenticity of material provided on external websites, we believe you will find the following external links to be informative.

Drive Cycle — Check Engine

An ECU trip is necessary in order to fulfill the enabling requirements and, as a result, to get the most recent and most correct information from the ECU. A trip begins when the engine is started, followed by driving the vehicle in particular conditions, and then the engine is switched off again. TRIPS differ from one monitor to the next because each monitor has a distinct set of ENABLING CRITERIA. Some FAULTS will cause the Malfunctioning Indicator Light (MIL), often known as the check engine light, to illuminate in a single trip, while others will illuminate in two or more trips (depending on the specific monitor).

TRIP COUNTER is initiated as soon as the MIL is requested to join the call.

It is switched off if the PCM does not identify a defect during three visits after that.

A drive-cycle is comprised of one or more journeys.


One or two trips are often necessary for a vehicle to complete a driving cycle in order for the powertrain control module (PCM) to activate the monitoring systems into readiness stages, which allows for the recovery of diagnostic data. An engine drive-cycle is also required after a proper repair has been completed and all fault codes have been cleared. This allows the PCM to run all monitoring systems in order to determine if the previously reported fault(s) no longer exist in comparison to the currently retrieved diagnostic information.

In addition, the task manager ensures that the monitors’ runtime is in the right sequential sequence and avoids any conflicts between individual monitors from occurring.

Each monitor test might be either passive, active, or invasive, depending on the situation.

10 Steps To Perform a Basic OBD2 Drive Cycle

Whether you’re a technician or just curious in what’s going on beneath the hood of your car, understanding the fundamental drive cycle is essential for understanding repairs and emissions testing. In most cases, it is beneficial when doing a car diagnostic test on your own using anOBD2 Scanner.

What is the Drive Cycle?

In the end, and without getting too far into the weeds, a simple driving cycle can let you or your technician determine how effective recent repairs have been and what — if anything — needs to be reevaluated.

It is a fundamental cycle that assists your vehicle’s computer (Powertrain Control Module) in doing self-diagnosis and updating the check engine light codes, also known as OBD2 Codes.

How do you do a Drive Cycle?

Driving a bike is straightforward, but it does require some preparation and effort to execute successfully. Moreover, it might differ depending on the brand, model, and year of the vehicle, so be sure to consult your owner’s handbook for extra information and specifications. These, on the other hand, are the ten general phases involved in conducting a basic drive cycle: 1. Using your OBD2 Scanner, clear all OBD II error codes from your vehicle. The drive cycle will not be able to commence until this step has been successfully performed.

  1. 3.
  2. If you wish to complete a true driving cycle, you will not be able to start your car by jumping it.
  3. Allow your car to rest for an eight-hour period.
  4. 5.
  5. 6.
  6. 7.
  7. At each stop sign or stoplight, come to a complete and gradual halt.
  8. 8.
  9. Turn on the cruise control and keep the vehicle moving for at least five miles.
  10. At the bottom of the ramp, you may depress the brake pedal.
  11. Return to your house or to your mechanic and repeat step number seven if necessary.

Perform an OBDIIScan

Then, as you reach the end of the exit ramp, let your car automatically slow down as it approaches the next one. 10. At the bottom of the ramp, you may apply your brake. 3. Continue with step number seven at home or at your mechanic’s office. When you arrive, put your vehicle in park and allow it to idle for one to two minutes before driving away.

How Long does it Take to Complete a Drive Cycle

Although the preparation time will be eight hours, a simple drive cycle test should take no more than 30 minutes to complete, with around 20 minutes of real driving time. Understanding the general health of your car will assist you in ensuring that it drives smoothly and lasts as long as possible. Monitor your dashboard notifications and schedule frequent checks whenever feasible – it will be well worth your effort and money in the long run.

What if a New OBD2 Code Comes Up?

If you go back on the road and drive for a set number of miles, the check engine light will illuminate again if a new OBD2 code is detected. Do not fear, we are here to make sure you are all properly equipped for whatever may lie ahead. Smart Car Health Monitor from nonda is capable of monitoring the health of your vehicle and reading any OBD2 codes. In conjunction with the ZUS app, you may receive thorough diagnoses of your codes, as well as a dedicated short film that teaches you how to correct them at home before you finish another drive cycle of your vehicle.

Take a look at the video below to discover how it may help you save thousands of dollars on automobile expenses: How to Resolve the P0420 Engine Code in Three Minutes

Recommendation: Start Your DIY Diagnostics FREE

The automobile diagnostic test might be performed at home with the help of an OBD2 Scanner. Read on for additional information on how to do a simple do-it-yourself auto diagnostic test, as well as about the Car Code Reader from nonda, which comes with aFREE gadget and FREE APP!

Drive Cycle and Emissions Readiness Monitors

Every vehicle built in the United States must pass a test method developed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) known as the Federal Test Procedure. The allowable limits of wear and/or failure for the emission control system are established in this manner. When you come in for car repair in Nashua NH because your “Check Engine Light” is illuminated, it is most likely because your vehicle has fallen below one of these predetermined criteria. If these faults worsen, a vehicle may not be able to pass a state inspection in New Hampshire.

Should I get I get auto repair in Nashua NH?

When the powertrain control module (PCM) determines that an emissions system repair has been completed successfully, it will utilize the Drive Cycle and Emissions Readiness Monitors to determine if the repair has been completed properly. In our auto repair facility in Nashua, New Hampshire, we can do Drive Cycles, which are specific test drives that replicate the scenario of a person starting her car and making a brief highway journey, as if she were going to work. While the Drive Cycle test is taking place, the engine computer is conducting checks to determine whether or not the emissions system is functioning properly.

When this occurs, it indicates that an issue has been identified and that a fault code has been stored in the powertrain control module (PCM).

This procedure was created in order to prevent a vehicle from passing an emissions test while having a known fault.

The Drive Cycle and Emissions Readiness Monitors have, for the most part, prevented this immoral method from being used anymore.

What Is a Drive Cycle?

Immediately following the completion of the proper repair and the clearing of the fault code, the PCM will perform a series of self-tests to establish whether or not the repair was successful and whether or not the different emissions systems are operating properly. If they are, they will be able to adequately reduce the amount of emissions discharged into the environment as a result of the vehicle’s operations. A Drive Cycle simulates the conditions that would exist if a person went out and drove his or her car after it had been parked overnight.

After that, the automobile is driven through stop-and-go scenarios on city streets at speeds ranging from 25 to 35 miles per hour.

A constant and prudent speed of between 55 and 60 mph is maintained for a minimum of four to five miles after which the car is stopped.

On many vehicles, just one of these Drive Cycles is required to establish all or most of the Readiness Monitors, depending on their configuration.

Other vehicles need the repetition of the entire operation over a period of two or more consecutive days. The most of the time, this will not be an issue, unless it causes your NH State Inspection to be delayed.

What do the Readiness Monitors have to do with a NH state inspection?

In some cases, especially if you need an emissions repair in order to pass the New Hampshire State Inspection, we may have informed you that the Readiness Monitors in your vehicle are “not ready.” The emission control system is comprised of numerous subsystems that are continually or intermittently monitored in order to limit the emissions generated by the vehicle while it is in operation or when it is parked, respectively.

It is necessary to continually monitor three subsystems in order to function properly.

The sub-systems are as follows: In addition, there are five or more sub-systems that are not regularly monitored.

These situations, such as “cold starting” a vehicle after it has been parked for at least eight or more hours, may only occur once per 24 hours and must be avoided.

  • Also included are a number of non-continuously monitored sub-systems (five or more in number). In operation, and even while the vehicle is parked, the PCM is checking the performance of various sub-systems under extremely particular operating parameters, which are defined by the manufacturer. These situations, such as “cold starting” a car after it has been parked for eight or more hours, may only occur once per 24 hours and must be avoided. Subsystems include the following:

Air Quality Board – Readiness Q&A

If the vehicle’s computer has completed a number of needed driving cycles, the readiness monitors will indicate that it has done so. Dependent upon model and year, vehicles can execute up to 11 different system checks at the same time. All automobiles manufactured after 1996 are equipped with this sort of monitoring system. A system’s status will be indicated as “ready” once a test has been successfully performed. A exam that has not been finished will be marked as “not ready.”

What could cause my vehicle to be not ready?

Vehicles that are not ready to be used do not necessarily have a problem with their operation. Some of the following scenarios, for example, may result in the vehicle not being ready: Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) have been cleared with an OBD scan tool in the course of recent car repairs or maintenance. 2. A battery that has recently been unplugged or changed.

How do I set my readiness monitor to be”ready?”

If the only reason your vehicle failed inspection was due to a “not ready” monitor reading, you will most likely need to complete what is known as a “drive cycle,” which can take anywhere from a few days to several weeks and as many as 1,000 miles, depending on the make and model of your vehicle, to pass inspection. When a “drive cycle” is finished, the displays will be reset to their default settings. According to the vehicle’s make and model, the precise driving cycle must be followed, and the requirements are occasionally described in the owner’s handbook.

*Consult your owner’s handbook for details on individual driving cycle procedures.

How many monitors have to be ready?

If the only reason your vehicle failed inspection was due to a “not ready” monitor reading, you will most likely need to complete what is known as a “drive cycle,” which can take anywhere from a few days to several weeks and as many as 1,000 miles, depending on the make and model of your vehicle, to get it back into compliance. A “driving cycle” is finished when the monitors are turned off. According to the vehicle’s make and model, the precise driving cycle must be followed; the criteria are occasionally described in the owner’s handbook.

A generic drive cycle, if this information is not provided, may be used to reset the displays. *For precise driving cycle information, refer to your owner’s handbook.

How do I perform a Generic Drive Cycle?

The following drive cycle is a generic one, and it is not guaranteed to clear all readiness monitors. Important! In order to use this general driving cycle, you must adhere to all traffic regulations and drive in a safe manner. 1. The general drive cycle starts with a cold start, which is the first step. The coolant temperature must be less than 122 degrees Fahrenheit, and the temperature differential between the coolant and air temperatures measured by the sensors must be less than 11 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • The ignition key must not be left turned on prior to performing a cold start; otherwise, the heated oxygen sensor may fail to operate properly.
  • As soon as the engine starts, put the vehicle in drive and let it idle for 2 1/2 minutes with the air conditioner and rear defrost turned on.
  • Turn off the air conditioner and the rear defrost, and then speed to 55 mph with moderate and continuous throttle.
  • 5.
  • 6.
  • Hold the position for five (5) minutes.
  • *Consult your owner’s handbook for details on individual driving cycle procedures.
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If I fail due to readiness monitors, can I still qualify for a waiver?

No. Readiness monitors identify and report problems by showing Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) on their screens (DTCs). These DTCs are critical in determining which repairs need to be made and which ones do not.

I failed my emissions test because of Readiness Monitors?

Programs that continuously check the functioning of a vehicle’s emissions control equipment while it is being driven are known as readiness monitors (also known as readiness monitors). During an emissions test, the emissions testing analyzer examines the state of the readiness monitors to ensure that they are operational. It will be marked as “ready” once the readiness monitor has been performed. The status of a readiness monitor that has not been finished will be “not ready.” If a significant number of readiness monitors are not ready, your vehicle will fail an emissions test.

Using Emissions Drive Cycles to Verify Repairs

Just now, you’ve completed the process of clearing diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs), turning off the malfunction indication light (MIL), and concluding what you hope was a successful diagnostic repair. The following step will indicate whether or not the repair was effective. For the majority of technicians, the right next step is to put the vehicle through its paces to ensure that the repair was successful. The issue is, how are you planning on putting the car through its paces? What are your plans if the MIL doesn’t turn back on?

  1. When the Inspection and Maintenance (I M) readiness monitors are complete, would you do a complete generic OBD II driving cycle?
  2. What is the significance of this?
  3. The manner in which you road-test a car will ultimately determine whether or not the repair was effective.
  4. A well executed road test will assure success while also revealing any underlying flaws that may have been concealed by the first fault.
  5. However, for the benefit of those with less expertise, let us go through the basics.
  6. An OBD II drive cycle is a collection of driving circumstances that are meant to enable the OBD II readiness monitors that are supported.
  7. The PCM’s primary function is to determine whether or not the emissions-related components are functioning properly.

In an ideal world, this would take place in a fair amount of time and distance, but as we all know, the reality is not an ideal world.

The purpose is to ensure that the vehicle will meet emissions regulations under a range of operating scenarios, including city driving.

Driving Schedule for an IM240 Inspection and Maintenance Inspection is illustrated in the chart below.

In this scenario, the test is completed in 4 minutes, and the speed variance is simpler to keep up with over time.

Figure 2 is a screen grab of a typical OBD II I M readiness test screen.

As the vehicle is put through its paces on the road, the PCM runs a series of system checks and changes the monitor status to Complete.

DTCs are established after all tests are completed and the PCM is pleased with the results; in some circumstances, more testing is necessary before a DTC may be set.

I’m not concerned about completing the I M readiness monitoring; the client will notify me if the MIL is turned back on again.

If the MIL illuminates for the same fault code more than once, it means that you either misdiagnosed the problem or that there were many problems and you only corrected one of them.

It’s possible that you rectified the vacuum leak but failed to notice the torn intake air boot.

But what happens if, after the initial repair is completed, another system fails?

Is it more likely that you will be able to sell more diagnostic time or that you will lose money on this repair?

Let’s take a look at the three road test situations that we discussed before in this article.

There’s nothing wrong with a brief road test if you have a reliable means of confirming that the problem with the car was caused by the component you repaired in the first place.

Mode $06 data was utilized in my article “Advanced Mode $06 Diagnostics,” which appeared in the March 2007 edition of Motor, to validate a catalyst repair in little over 80 seconds using Mode $06 data.

The MIL came back on at the first two shops for the same DTC, but not on the first road test.

The third shop performed a proper diagnosis of the car, replaced the catalytic converter, and utilized Mode $06 to check that the repair had been completed successfully.

To read the rest of the article, click here.

Following the repair, the second road-test option was to complete an OBD II drive cycle to ensure that everything was working properly.

The disadvantage is that it may take a long time, or that you may not be able to finish the driving cycle owing to severe weather conditions, which can be frustrating.

You’ve just finished the repair and successfully cleared the code.

What do you think your options are?

Alternatively, the client can have the OBD II drive cycle performed for them, which will verify that the repair was successful and complete the readiness monitoring.

According to Motor’s OBD II Drive Cycle Guide (the MIL must be turned off), the following is the procedure to be followed: Step 1: Connect a scan tool to the monitor and examine the status and precondition of the monitor.

Start the engine and let it run for at least 2 minutes before turning it off.

Step 4: Bring the car to a complete stop and let the engine idle for at least 40 seconds.

Step 6: Check the status of the monitor; it should have changed to Complete.

Step 7: If the monitor does not show that the process is complete, turn off the ignition and repeat Steps 2 through 5 until it does.

In order to validate the DTC, do a second driving cycle.

It is unlikely that you would be satisfied with this method if you are working on a flat rate with limited diagnostic time.

The final conclusion is that you must conduct further study into the driving cycle as part of your repair suggestions.

Perform a driving cycle while the gas gauge is either on Empty or Full, for example, makes no sense.

If you find that the customer requires the readiness monitors to be completed following the repair and that it will take you 30 to 40 minutes to do the road test, you should suggest that the repair be completed over a longer period of time.

Another purpose to finish the OBD II driving cycle is to capture any DTCs that may have been buried previously.

Figure 4 on page 40 is an excerpt from the 2005 Ford OBD System Operation Summary for Gasoline Engines, which can be seen on the Ford website.

Take a look at the Sensors OK line, for starters.

What would be the procedure?

After you’ve cleared the code, you’ll want to put the car through its paces.

The majority of emissions-related DTCs require at least two drive cycle failures before they may be cleared.

If you chose to reconnect the scan tool and run a check for any outstanding DTCs, you may come across this information.

In most cases, the car will be returned to the client within a day or two and the MIL will be turned back on.

Understanding the DTC enabling circumstances is crucial to conducting a correct drive cycle once a repair has been completed successfully.

It is necessary that the following requirements are satisfied in order for the test to be successful: In the Short Term There must be no more than 70 percent of the fuel trim range remaining and no more than 130 percent remaining, and the vehicle must be traveling between 30 and 60 miles per hour, which means the test cannot be conducted at idle in the service bay.

It is highly likely that you will be able to correctly test the Bank 1 O2 sensor and verify that it has been repaired if you road-test the car under these circumstances.

The time required to complete this driving cycle would be less than one minute if the engine had attained operational temperature and had entered closed-loop operation.

This test can be performed by the PCM just once during the driving cycle.

Remember that the second driving cycle will not be completed until the ignition is turned off.

It is possible that you will not want to clear the trouble codes if you are in an OBD II emissions testing location and the client is required to do the state-mandated test straight away.

It may be too hot in Arizona during the summer or too cold in Alaska during the winter to properly do a complete OBD II driving cycle, for example.

This will not be true for all automobiles, so do your homework before making a decision.

However, most of the time, you will not have the luxury of doing so.

It was about 4 inches thick when it was initially released, and it contained the OBD II Drive Cycle Guide.

The number of drive cycles is unknown to me, although I would assume that it is considerably in excess of a thousand.

Figure 5 on page 40 depicts an example of a driving cycle that appears to operate extremely well for the vast majority of Chrysler cars tested.

What shortcuts or programs exist that allow you to automatically reset readiness monitors with a single click of a button?

How would you know whether the PCM was satisfied with the repair if you merely pushed the readiness monitors to perform their tasks?

Basic settings mode is provided by Volkswagen, and it walks you through a number of in-bay operations in order to complete the needed driving cycle tests.

Chrysler offers one of the most user-friendly ways for preparing for the readiness monitor.


The needed things are provided with a low and high range for easy identification and selection.

The first four things on the top screen are within range, but the RPM Range is marked with an arrow, which indicates that the engine is running at too low a speed.

Following that, you can see that all of the enabling conditions have been satisfied and that the test is now in process.

Following this approach will guarantee that the vehicle has been fixed and tested to the highest possible standard.


The EGR temperature (EGRT) is 66.2°F on the left-hand screen, EGR is directed to be turned off, and the monitor is marked as Incomplete.

The third screen displays that the EGRT has continued to rise, and that the EGR monitor has reached its maximum capacity.

Even with a generic OBD II scan tool, it will be tough to get by in this day and age.

If not, you should.

A permanent DTC can only be cleared by the PCM; you will not be able to clear this code with a scan tool or by disconnecting the power supply.

In this instance, the MIL is turned back on immediately after a vehicle passes the needed test.

Again, this is only intended to be used for informational purposes at this time, but it is possible that this will become part of the regulatory framework in the future.

At the end of the day, your aim is to fix autos correctly the first time. Drive cycle testing is intended to assist you in validating your repair, but it will only be effective if it is carried out correctly. Obtain a PDF version of this document.

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