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Initial Vehicle Inspection
DC residents are required to have their vehicles inspected prior to registration. Passenger vehicles receive an emission inspection that is valid for two years; commercial vehicles receive an emission and safety inspection that is valid for one year; and for-hire (i.e., taxi/limos) receive an emission, safety and DCTC inspection that is valid for six months.
New vehicles which have a Manufacturers Certificate of Origin (i.e., title for a new vehicle) and which are not used for commercial or for hire use are exempt from an initial inspection. However, these new vehicles are still required to display the inspection sticker that is provided by the DMV when the vehicle is originally titled and registered. The DC inspection of a vehicle is transferable to another owner as long as it is still valid.
Additionally, if your vehicle cannot pass the emission test, you can receive a two year waiver from the emission inspection by presented $820 in emission repairs from a certified mechanic.
Vehicle Inspection Appointment Scheduling is available online for your convenience. An appointment is not required to get your vehicle inspected. You may visit the Inspection Station during normal business hours without an appointment.
All inspection fees must be paid at the time of registration.
Individuals with vehicles that fail inspection are provided instruction sheets with information on repairs. Minor defects are identified to receive a pass with warning and do not require re-inspection, but must be repaired before the next regular scheduled inspection cycle.