Ontario Eliminating Major Fee

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Since everyone knows life in Ontario can get expensive (hydro, housing, etc.), it's nice to know that the government is working to eliminate a few extra costs.

Recently, the provincial government announced that it's eliminating the $30 Drive Clean test fee for light-duty vehicles, such as most cars, vans, SUVs and light trucks.

The elimination comes into effect April 1 (today - yay!)

Glen Murray, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, recently made the announcement at Start Auto Electric Ltd. in Toronto.

According to the government, eliminating the Drive Clean fee will be both cost-effective and convenient, as consumers will save money and therefore find it easier to ensure their vehicles are running efficiently with minimum emissions.

"We are fulfilling our commitment to eliminate the Drive Clean test fee for light-duty vehicles and deliver lower costs for Ontario households," Murray said in a statement. "The fee elimination and other changes to the program will help make life easier for vehicle owners, while ensuring Drive Clean continues to target polluting vehicles and protect Ontario's air quality."

The province is also implementing other changes to the Drive Clean Program to help ensure that more vehicles are repaired within two years of emissions problems being identified, including:

  • Eliminating testing requirements for light-duty vehicles when they are re-sold

  • Prohibiting back-to-back conditional passes for vehicles that fail their emissions test

  • Ensuring that only fees paid for direct emission system repairs count towards the $450 repair cost limit, the amount required for a conditional pass.

According to the government, Ontario’s Drive Clean Program tests 2.3 million vehicles per year. It's intended reduce emissions that cause smog and poor air quality.

While this news is pretty nice, there are some other fees that will remain in place. Drivers whose vehicles fail to pass the regular Drive Clean test will have to pay for any subsequent retest. Also, drivers who want to subject their vehicle to a Drive Clean test outside of the regularly required tests will also have to pay the test fee.

The program rules for heavy-duty vehicles, such as large trucks, motorhomes and buses, are not changing. Heavy-duty vehicle owners will continue to pay for Drive Clean tests and will still require an emissions test if the vehicle is re-sold.

Vehicle owners can find out if they are eligible for a free emissions test using the new Drive Clean online tool.

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