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Frequently Asked Questions

Changes effective August 1, 2010: emissions check only; download FAQs [pdf]


What are the new inspection changes?
  • Effective, May 1, 2016 commercial vehicles and re-inspections will no longer be inspected at Central Inspection Facilities (CIF), click here. All commercial vehicles must be initially inspected at a Private Inspection Facility (PIF). All re-inspections including commercial and passenger vehicles must be conducted at a PIF click here. Passenger vehicles can be initially inspected at either a CIF or PIF.

Will there be a cost for these inspections?
  • Yes. Commercial vehicles will have to pay for their inspections. The fee is market priced, so you should contact the PIF to find the price. There is no cost for re-inspection provided that the repair is made at the PIF performing the re-inspection. You will pay for any repair and a sticker fee of no more than $2.50. If you repair the vehicle yourself or it is repaired elsewhere, you will pay for re-inspection. The cost for re-inspection is three-tenths (.3) of the shops hourly rate which must be posted, plus a sticker fee of no more than $2.50.

Does my vehicle need to be inspected?
  • Effective May 1, 2016, the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission made changes to the New Jersey Vehicle Inspection Program eliminating the Two Speed Idle  and Idle (tailpipe) portion of the inspection process for vehicles model year 1995 and older. These vehicles are exempt from inspection. Passenger vehicles 1996 and newer will be required to be inspected biennially (every two years) for emissions only. Commercial vehicles and buses will be required to be inspected annually (every year) for safety and the appropriate emissions test. Motorcycles are still exempt from inspection.


What vehicles have to be inspected every two years for emissions?

  • Vehicles that have to be inspected for emissions every two years are:

    • Model year 1996 and newer, gasoline and bi-fueled passenger vehicles 8,500 and under GVWR
    • Model year 2008 – newer, gasoline and bi-fueled passenger vehicles 8,501 to 14,000 GVWR
    • Model year 2014 – newer, gasoline and bi-fueled passenger vehicles 14,000 or greater GVWR
    • Model year 1997 – newer, diesel passenger vehicles 8,500 or less GVWR
    • All model years, diesel passenger vehicles 18,000 or greater GVWR
    • Vehicles within the five (5) model year exemption will be inspected in their 5th year, then every two years afterwards


What is considered a passenger vehicle?

  • Any registration with code: codes 1-9, code 12, code 15, code 31, and code 73

Sample Registration

Registration Code

What is considered a commercial vehicle?

  • Any registration with code 11, code 12 if plated as; OP, OM, OA, Code 13, code 14, Code 54 if plated as; O2, OJ, OH

Sample Registration


What vehicles do not have to be inspected?

  • The following vehicles will receive a card in the mail indicating the vehicle will no longer require an inspection sticker:
    • Electric vehicles and other vehicles not fueled by hydrocarbon based fuels
    • 1995 – older gasoline passenger vehicles 8,500 and under GVWR
    • 2007 – older gasoline passenger vehicles 8,501-14,000 GVWR
    • 2013 – older gasoline passenger vehicles 14,001 or greater GVWR
    • 1996 – older diesel passenger vehicles 17,999 or less GVWR
    • All model years diesel vehicles 8,501 to 17,999 GVWR (self-inspected under NJAC 13:20-26.16)
    • All model years diesel commercial vehicles 8,501 to 17,999 GVWR (self-inspected under NJAC 13:20-26.16)

  • The following vehicles will not receive anything in the mail, as they have not required an inspection sticker prior to the changes of May 1, 2016
    • Motorcycles
    • Vehicles registered as “farm use” or “farm tractor”
    • Collector Vehicles (Odometer and credential verification at Specialty Inspection Facility)
    • Historic Plates (QQ)
    • Trailer
    • Mopeds
What vehicles are required to be inspected annually for both safety and emissions?

You can request a referee inspection after you complete the first inspection if:

  • Vehicles required to be inspected annually for safety and emissions are listed below:
    • Taxis
    • Limousines
    • Jitneys
    • All model years, gasoline and bi-fueled commercial vehicles all weights
    • 1997 – newer, diesel commercial vehicles 8,500 or less GVWR
    • 2013 – older, diesel commercial vehicles 18,000 or greater GVWR (self-inspected for safety)
    • 2014 – newer, diesel commercial vehicles 18,000 or greater GVWR (OBD emission test only, self-inspected for safety)
    • PVT Vehicles (Ambulance, MAV, Omnibus 2, Hotel Bus and Paratransit) regardless of fuel type

I saw a big diesel truck spewing out all kind of black smoke. What does the state do to stop these vehicles from emitting this smoke?

  • Diesel-powered vehicles with a GVWR of 18,000 pounds and greater are required to have annual (every year) smoke opacity or an OBDII inspection at a diesel Private Inspection Facility only.

Where can I get my vehicle inspected?

  • Depending on the vehicle you drive, there are many different facilities to choose from:
    • Central Inspection Facilities can only perform initial (first test of each new inspection cycle) testing on all On Board Diagnostic (OBD) compliant passenger vehicles. They do not perform testing on commercial vehicles or perform re-inspections.
    • Private Inspection Facilities can perform inspection and re-inspections on all passenger and commercial vehicles. Commercial inspections include vehicles plated as PVT and vehicles registered as registration code 11.
    • Diesel Private Inspection Facilities perform required annual smoke opacity inspection on all Heavy-Duty diesel powered vehicles (GVWR 18,000 or greater).

What do I have to bring to have my car inspected?

  • Bring original documents (photocopy, fax or e-mail unacceptable):
    • Valid driver license; Driver does not need to be vehicle owner
    • Valid vehicle registration document (online renewal receipt unacceptable)
    • State of New Jersey Insurance Identification Card. For ID card specifications, download NJ Dept. of Banking & Insurance regulations
    • Surname of the insured must match owner’s surname on vehicle registration
    • Leasing companies must be listed as owner on leased vehicle ID cards
    • Owner insured fleet, dealer or leasing company insurance ID cards are acceptable with the words "All Owned Vehicles" or "Fleet" inserted in the vehicle description portion of the card
    • Insured name and owner name, matching the vehicle registration, are required for "Fleet" leased vehicle ID cards
What if I don’t want to wait in line at the Inspection Station?
  • If you do not want to wait in line at the Inspection Station, you can always make an appointment at State Inspection Facilities located in Washington (Warren County), Salem or Cape May. Appointments apply only to passenger vehicles, commercial and other vehicles are not able to make appointment
  • You can make an appointment by calling TBD toll free in NJ or TBD out-of-state.
  • Customer service representatives are available:
    • Mon-Fri: 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
    • Sat: 7 a.m.–12 p.m.
  • You can also schedule your appointment online using the Schedule an Inspection Web Page.
Where else can I get my car inspected?
  • Your other option would be to have your car inspected at your local Private Inspection Facility. A Private Inspection Facility is a privately owned garage licensed by the state to perform the same safety and emission inspection as a state inspection station for a fee. To find the nearest Private Inspection Facility go to www.njmvc.gov/Private Inspection Facility.
If my vehicle fails an emissions test where can I get it repaired?
  • The motorist has a choice to either make the emission repairs themselves or have the repairs made at an MVC- registered Emission Repair Facility. An Emission Repair Facility is a registered emission repair facility that meets the qualifications and training requirements for emission repairs and maintenance set forth by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. To find the nearest Emission Repair Facility location, CLICK HERE.
Is my motorcycle required to be inspected?
  • Effective August 1, 2010, motorcycles are no longer required to submit for an inspection in the State of New Jersey. As a result of this change, a rider should keep in mind that it is their responsibility to ensure that their motorcycle is free from mechanical defects and is operating properly
How do I self-inspect my motorcycle?
  • Here are some points that every rider should remember before they hit the road. They should be mindful to have the current motorcycle registration, insurance card and driver license with them whenever they ride. Of course, they must always ride with the correct protective equipment, which includes the following:
    • USDOT approved non-reflective helmet with four inches of reflective tape on each side
    • Approved goggles or face shield if motorcycle is not equipped with an approved windscreen
  • Finally, it is important that the motorcycle be examined to ensure that every component is working in accordance with the manufacture’s specifications and is not bent, loose, damaged, broken, defective, or out of alignment. These components are as follow:
    • Steering, suspension, and wheel alignment
    • Handlebar grips that are not higher than your shoulders when you are seated on the motorcycle in normal driving position
    • Horn
    • Red rear light and reflector
    • Stop light
    • Head light
    • Rear view mirror
    • Exhaust system
    • Tires
    • Seat, hand holds, and foot rests
    • Adequate brakes (all motorcycles made after 1974 require brakes on front and rear wheels.)
  • It is important for all riders to remember that any vehicle, including motorcycles, may be cited by law enforcement at any time for mechanical defects or when equipment is out of compliance. For additional information on motorcycle safety and training please CLICK HERE.
How do I get a replacement inspection sticker?
  • To get a replacement inspection sticker issued for an inspection conducted at a Private Inspection Facility or Central Inspection Facility, you must go to designated re-inspection area of a Central Inspection Facility. You must present to the inspector at the station your driver license, vehicle registration and insurance card. All documents must be originals, no copies, faxes or computer generated pdf files. You must also present one of the documents listed below:
    • Vehicle Inspection Report
    • Repair invoice from a glass company for windshield replacement, if windshield is replaced.
    • A police report, in cases where inspection sticker has been stolen.
  • The inspector will install a new inspection sticker at no cost to the motorist.
I bought a model year 2016 car from a New Jersey New Car Dealer this year, when does it have to be inspected?

If you have purchased any car less than five (5) years old, it will not be required to be inspected until it is five (5) years old. At the time of purchase, the dealer will install a New Car Dealer Inspection Decal on the car’s windshield on the lower driver side corner. The decal will expire on the last day of the month in which the car was registered.

Example 1: If a model year car is purchased in September 2015 from a New Jersey New Car Dealer, it will be issued an inspection sticker expiring on the last day of September 2020.

Example 2: If the car is purchased in April 2016, it will be given an inspection sticker expiring on the last day of April 2021.

What if a car less than five (5) model years old is purchased from someone other than a New Jersey New Car Dealer and has never inspected in the State of New Jersey, when does my car have to be inspected?
  • Any car less than five (5) model years is eligible for a five (5) year exemption, which means that it can receive a New Car Dealer Inspection Decal expiring on the last day of the month which the car was registered 5 years from the model year. You should have received a green card or SS-19 from a MVC Motor Vehicle Agency at the time of registration.

    The SS19 instructs you go to designated re-inspection area of your locate state station inspection with your car to receive a New Car Dealer Inspection Decal. At the station, you must present to the inspector your driver license, vehicle registration and insurance card. All documents must be originals, no copies, faxes or computer generated pdf files. After reviewing the documents, the inspector will install a New Car Dealer Inspection Decal expiring on the last day of the month, which the car was registered 5 years from the model year.

    See the sample below:

    Front
    Back
  • For further information you can contact: Inspection Services at 609-633-9474