I live in California, where then-governor George Deukmejian came up with the idea of Smog Check Stations some 20 years ago. Now, when each car must undergo a smog check every other registration year, my '84 T-Bird (with an engine rebuilt in June 2001) passed only after 3 tries. Besides, there’s a device under the hood, driven by a V-belt, called a “smog pump,” which I had restored to proper operation Sunday by a mechanically-inclined friend who tightened the belt, causing the pump to run properly. (The diagnostic mechanic had traced the failures to the catalytic converter so I had to have it replaced.)
So I’m asking:
- What does the smog pump have to do with the exhaust system?
- Is there anything special about the catalytic convertor in 80s Fords, as compared with other cars?