Last updated Monday March 26, 2012

Making It Legal

Converting a vehicle to an all electric one is a relatively easy job to do. Though, you must keep in mind the safety and legal issues too.  

  • Battery Weight distribution
  • Securing batteries
  • Electrical safety
  • Redundant kill switch
  • Having the Title's fuel-type changed from gas/diesel to electric

An electric vehicle is actually easier to pass the state vehicle inspections since you no longer have to worry about the emissions test.  

I admit, I was nervous to take my converted EV to the well-oiled machine which is the Davis County Inspection Center.  I knew I would pass the normal inspection stuff, (brakes, headlights and turn signals).  I was worried about stuff that I didn't know about.  

It turns out, Utah has a very casual rules about EVs.  As long as it meets the regular safety standards to make it road worthy, you're good to go.  
I did get an advisory about my brakes not having vacuum pressure but that didn't stop me from passing the inspection.  

Inspections at the Davis county inspection center ground to a halt as all the technicians dropped their wrenches and walked over to check out my Toyota EV pickup truck.  Even the foreman had to leave his air conditioned office and come see it for himself.  

It was a first rate thrill watching one of the younger technicians looking for the exhaust pipe so he could take an emissions reading.  "Son, put that thing down", barked one of the more experienced technicians.  "This here truck is electric."  

If your vehicle can pass the safety test, you are good to go.  

Well, that was easy!  

For $10, I also got a Clean Air decal on my window.  Now I can drive in the HOV lanes and park in Clean Air parking spaces.  I should say so too! As an electric vehicle, my truck now gets more than double the equivalent gas mileage of the 2012 Toyota Prius, all without polluting the air one bit. 

Next Article: Extending the Range