Effective April 1, vehicles three years old and newer with fewer than 70,000 miles may be exempt from an emissions inspection. For more information and a calculator to find out if your vehicle qualifies, visit http://www.ncair.org/motor/inspect/exemption.shtml.
Getting Your Vehicle Inspected, Steps
Before renewing a vehicle’s registration, most customers will need both a safety inspection and emission inspection. The vehicle inspection process consists of three steps:
- Step 1: Find a Certified Inspection Station
- Bring your vehicle to one of the 7,500 licensed inspection stations.
- County Listing
- Step 2: The Inspections
Most customers will have to undergo a two-part inspection process described below.
Vehicle Safety Inspection
This inspection is to make sure your vehicle is operating safely. It includes checks to the headlights, accessory lights, directional signals, foot brake, parking brake, steering and windshield wipers.
Exemptions, the following vehicle types do not need a Safety Inspection:
- Vehicles 35 years old, or older
On-Board Diagnostic (OBD) Emissions Inspection
North Carolina is fighting ozone-forming emissions from gasoline-operated cars and light duty trucks. Inspections are conducted using the vehicle’s On-Board Diagnostic (OBD) system, computerized equipment installed on all new vehicles since 1996. If you live in one of these counties list you are required to have an emissions inspection.
Exemptions, the following vehicle types do not need an OBD Emissions Inspection:
- Vehicles three years old and newer with fewer than 70,000 miles
- Model 1995 vehicles, or older
- Diesel-operated vehicles
- Vehicles licensed under the farmer rate
- Step 3, Pay Your Fees
Please check with your inspection station prior to arrival for their list of acceptable forms of payment.
Payments for transactions at License Plate Agencies Offices are accepted in the form of
personal checks[?] or
credit cards (limited to Visa, MasterCard and Discover).
We cannot accept debit cards at this time.
|On-Board Diagnostic Emissions Inspection [?]
|Safety Inspection [?]
N. C. Division of Motor Vehicles
3148 Mail Service Center
Safety & On-Board Diagnostic Inspections,
Electronic Vehicle Inspection Program
North Carolina vehicle safety and emissions inspections have gone electronic.
This means that, since Nov. 1, 2008 windshield inspection stickers are not issued at your
Inspection mechanics will continue to issue a receipt showing the date, station and results
of your inspection, and a record of your inspection will be entered into the DMV's vehicle
Failure to Pass Inspection
- Unable to repair your vehicle?
If your car passes the safety inspection but fails the emissions inspection your vehicle
may be eligible for a waiver if you meet the requirements imposed in North Carolina General Statute 20 – 183.5.
If you have questions regarding qualifications for a wavier: