Texas Smog and Emission Testing

The days of running around in smoggy vehicles are long over, especially in the state of Texas where vehicle owners are required to have their vehicle tests for smog and emissions.

Annual emission testing is required on many of the vehicles that are on Texas highways and roads due to the AirCheckTexas program which is helping to ensure clean air.

There are counties in Texas however that that do not require smog checks.  To find out more about your county visit: Texas Department of Public Safety

For those Texas counties that do require emission testing there will be a higher fee to have your vehicle registered which is $22 as opposed to the $28.

Visit to find an inspections station in your county.

Annual Inspections

Every car that is driven on Texas highways and roads must have an annual safety inspection.  Texas counties that also require emissions inspection will do so at the time of the annual inspection.

There are various types of emissions testing that are required which include:

  • TSI (Two speed idle)
  • OBDI  (On-board diagnostic)
  • ASM (Accelerations simulation mode
For older cars, vehicle owners will normally be required to have the TSI or ASM inspection performed.

For more information for how each method or combination of methods works, visit  Print Source Emissions Inventory

Out of State Inspections

Should you happen to be a Texas motorist and are out of state at the time that your inspection sticker is due to expire then you can have an out of state inspection on the vehicle.  To have an out of state inspection performed then your vehicle then you must follow the rules of the state you are in.

On the contrary, if you happen to be a visitor to Texas when you sticker is due to expire then you will need to get your vehicle inspected in the state of Texas.  You will also need to show proof of financial responsibility.

Once you return home you should have your vehicle retested to ensure that you are within the law.

If Your Vehicle Fails the Test

Cars can fail the mission test.  When this happens it will be your responsibility to have the problem diagnosed and fixed.  The facility where you have your vehicle inspected may tell you how to go about this.  Or to find a local mechanic visit 4dmv.com’s Mechanic Section.

  • If repair costs to have the vehicle fixed become too high, you may be eligible to have the inspection waived.  It is important to realize that all the costs of labor and parts when using a recognized emissions repair shop will be counted toward the total you are required to spend in order to fix the vehicle before a waiver may be issued.
  • Situations which a waiver may be issued for include if you happen to drive your vehicle very little or if the vehicle will not produce much smog.  If you are on a low income you may also be granted more time to make the repairs.
Visit for more information on waiver and forms.

In all Texas counties, cars that are older then 24 years old are considered antique cars and are exempt from emissions testing.