Whether you just moved to the Lone Star State or its that time of year again, Texas Car Inspections are a requirement every driver has to meet. Let’s take a closer look at what the Texas Safety Inspection and Emissions Test requires of car owners to pass.

How Often Do I Need to Inspect My Car in Texas?

Texas requires an annual safety inspection if you wish to keep your car’s registration valid and lawful. No exceptions. But, what if you have a multi-year registration or are just in-state for college?

  • Multi-Year Registration. If you have multi-year registration, it does not matter. The state mandates the same yearly inspection rules.
  • New Residents. You have 30 days starting the date you move to Texas. Anything after 30 days and you are susceptible to ticketing.
  • Out-of-State Vehicles (College Students). Your car and your home address are out of state, but you are living in Texas, it can get confusing. You will need to get a safety inspection in the state of Texas while keeping your out-of-state registration.

What’s Checked in Texas Car Inspections?

Everything and anything related to the safety of your vehicle, including the safety of the cars around you. The list includes, but is not limited to:

  • Headlights, stop lights, indicator lights, and hazard lights.
  • Braking system: foot and parking brakes.
  • Wheel components including tire tread depth.
  • All mirrors (side and rearview).
  • Window tint and coating.
  • Horn.
  • Seatbelts and airbag system.
  • Exhaust system.
  • Gas caps (for vehicles 2-24 model years old).
  • Steering system and components.

Everything must be in proper working order. If one thing fails, your entire vehicle fails and cannot pass until after repairs.

Is an Emissions Test Required for Texas Car Inspections?

Not all vehicles require an emissions tests. It depends on the vehicle and county of registration.

Gasoline powered vehicles in designated counties that are 2 to 24 model years old require emissions tests for a passing safety inspection. If just purchases your vehicle within the last two years, you are exempt. Diesel powered cars and motorcycles are exempt from this test.

The following counties require annual emissions testing:

  • Travis
  • Williamson
  • Brazoria
  • Fort Bend
  • Galveston
  • Harris
  • Montgomery
  • Collin
  • Dallas
  • Denton
  • Ellis
  • Johnson
  • Kaufman
  • Parker
  • Rockwell
  • Tarrant
  • El Paso

All safety and emissions inspections must be conducted at a DPS-certified inspection station.

Afraid you won’t pass? Know you won’t pass? Visit Northwest Auto Center of Houston today to get your car back in passing shape!