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  • Buying CNG truck

    Going to California to buy a Chevy Bi-fuel P/U truck. The CNG system was designed by the company Alternative Fuel Systems. What questions do I need to ask ? Because it's registered in California, does that tell me everything is OK?
    The Tank is certified till 2014 Thanks Frank

  • #2
    Re: Buying CNG truck

    That's a long trip to make if you are not totally sure about what you are buying. Just because it is registered in California doesn't mean the system is safe or operational. Is this a "factory" conversion? A lot of GM stuff says "GM alternative fuel systems" on it. If it was a factory system, it was made by Impco, now Quantaum Technologies. At least with a factory system you can be assured that the original installaton was done correctly. With a tank date of 2014 you must be looking at a 1999 or 2000 truck. Some of the parts for the older GM systems are getting a little hard to find, if it is an aftermarket system who knows. Does the truck run OK on CNG? Have the required 3 year or 36,000 mile tank inspections been carried out? With a vehicle of that age you really have to look at the entire system (tanks, mountings, regulators, coolant lines, hoses, wiring, electronics, etc.) for damage, wear and corrosion. If the seller doesn't know much about what he is selling and you don't know much about what you are buying, you might be looking at a disaster in the making . Be careful--maybe someone else on this forum (in California) can advise you on a place you and the seller can take the truck to have a qualified person look at it before you put your money down.

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    • #3
      Re: Buying CNG truck

      Thanks for the info siai47 You are correct, it is a 2000 Chevrolet. The Seller claims it runs great on cng and gasoline. I asked if it was difficult switching over, as there will be gaps where cng won't be available. He said when cng runs out, it switches automatically, and I wouldn't even feel the difference.
      I didn't know about the 3 year/ 36,000 inspection. Would this be something I could get done easily while I'm there. Is it very time consuming ? Expensive?
      The truck has less than 40,000 miles so there shouldn't be a problem.
      Again, thanks for your help. And thanks very much for this wonderful website!
      SO Much Information...so little Time!!\\
      ....Frank

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      • #4
        Re: Buying CNG truck

        Since you are from New York, you probably won't be registering the vehicle in Calif. If you do register it in Calif, it will have to have a SMOG inspection, and it is legally the selles responsibility.

        Larrycng

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        • #5
          Re: Buying CNG truck

          Thanks larrycng for the info. You're right...I won't be registering the truck in California, But trust me the motor vehicle inspection laws in New York state are a royal pain.It cost me over 1200.to get my 02 Tahoe inspected a ouple of months ago because of a check engine light (and the damn thing is on again)
          Do you know if the 3 year 36,000 mile tank/system inspections are country wide? I should probably insist it gets done before I buy it huh.... ...Frank

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          • #6
            Re: Buying CNG truck

            I would most likely try to find a tank inspector to certify it in California. All you inspectors chime in here . I don't know if the New York inspectors will gig you on the tank inspection or not, however, it would be good to have your bases covered before you leave with the Truck. Seeing how you are subject to emission inspection, make sure all the required emission labels are in place. I know there is some CNG activity in the Buffalo area so the inspectors might be up to speed on what's required. You might want to ask an inspection station---let them know you have a CNG vehicle and see what's needed. Some states test both systems, some just test the gasoline side not knowing that there is another side . If it is a GM system, and that needs to be confirmed (ask the seller to tell you the name on the underhood emission label (Impco is what your are looking for)), it is OBD compliant and a emissions readiness output can be generated by both ECU's.

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