Rhode Island Smog Check / Emissions Test
The State of Rhode Island requires vehicle emissions testing and a safety inspection within 5 days of when a vehicle owner obtains an original registration or biennial registration renewal. When a vehicle fails an emissions test or safety inspection,vehicle owners must get the vehicle repaired and retested. Owners may be eligible for a waiver if their vehicle does not pass an emissions test. New residents have similar testing requirements as residents.
Requirements to Pass the Rhode Island Smog Check
In the State of Rhode Island gasoline passenger vehicles weighing less than 8500 lbs must pass a smog check and safety inspection every 2 years. Gasoline passenger vehicles older than 25 years do not get a failing status on an emissions test if they do not pass it.
If a vehicle falls under one of the following categories, it will have a different testing cycle then gasoline passenger vehicles:
- Cars and trucks weighing over 8500 lbs
- Vehicles bought from licensed dealers
- Trailers and semi-trailers
- Livestock trailers
Vehicles insured as Classic vehicles have different testing requirements. Call the Rhode Island DMV for more information at (401) 462-5890.
Smog Check Exemptions for Rhode Island Drivers
If a vehicle falls under one of the following categories, it is exempt from smog checks and safety inspections:
- Newly purchased vehicles exempted for its first two years or when the vehicle reaches 24,000 miles
- Electric vehicles (not exempted from safety inspections)
- Vehicles more than 25 years old and registered as antiques
Smog Check Fees
The smog check fees in Rhode Island are $55.00. The Rhode Island DMV suggests calling the testing location ahead of time to see if there is any special documentation required from the vehicle owner.
Performing Emissions Testing in Rhode Island
The Rhode Island Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) non-exempt vehicles to pass both safety inspection and a vehicle emissions test, and receive a new valid inspection sticker by the last of month shown on the vehicle’s current inspection sticker.Newly – registered vehicles must pass their inspections within 5 days of registration. Vehicle owners must drive their vehicles to a certified Rhode Island testing facility to get tested. The only exception to this requirement is for light-duty diesel vehicles (weighing less than 8500 lbs). They can only have inspections administered to them at specially-equipped inspection stations made for testing diesel vehicles.
Rhode Island-registered vehicles that pass their vehicle emissions tests will not be required to pass another one for two years. Vehicle owners reinstating a suspended registration, completing a registration renewal, or obtaining original registration must get their non-exempt vehicle to pass a safety inspection and emissions test as well. Vehicles weighing more than 8500 lbs, trailers, and motorcycles require safety inspections annually by 30 June every year.
Failed Smog Inspections – Next Steps
Vehicles that do not pass the Rhode Island smog check must get repaired and retested within 30 days of the initial check. Vehicle owners can choose where they take their vehicle to get repaired. However, many Rhode Island inspection stations offer repair discounts. If the vehicle owner gets the vehicle repaired, and then retested within 30 days of the original test date, the retest is free. If, however, the vehicle owner does not get the vehicle repaired and retested within 30 days, the owner must pay the full $55 inspection fee again.
Some vehicle owners may be eligible to apply and receive a waiver if they have completed the required emissions – related repairs on their vehicles, and it still does not pass a smog check. The Rhode Island DMV offers the following waivers to eligible vehicle owners:
Each waiver has its own eligibility requirements.
Moved to Rhode Island – Smog Check Requirements
New Rhode Island residents must register their vehicles within 30 days of moving to Rhode Island and pass a safety inspection and smog check by no later than 5 days after getting the vehicle registered.
Transferring a Vehicle Title in Rhode Island – Smog Check Needed?
Rhode Island residents have 5 days after a vehicle title transfer to get the vehicle to pass a safety inspection and smog check in order to receive a valid inspection sticker. That is, unless the vehicle already has a valid inspection sticker.
Do Sellers Give Buyers a Valid Smog Certificate?
New purchased vehicles do not need a valid smog certificate for 2 years or until the vehicle reaches 24,000 miles. Buyers who purchase a used vehicle must get the vehicle to pass a safety inspection and smog check in order to receive a valid inspection sticker if the vehicle does not already have one. When participating in an out-of-state private sale or title transfer, vehicles must be inspected within five days from the date the sale or transfer.
Special Tips to Pass the Rhode Island Emissions Test
Rhode Island vehicle owners may want to get their vehicles tested as soon as they receive their first testing notice. Allow extra time to get any needed repairs done before the vehicle’s registration expires. Also, if a vehicle owner plans to be out of town during the date when their registration expires, planning early will give owners time to meet the deadline. Here are some tips to keep in mind to ensure passing a Rhode Island vehicle emissions test:
- Make sure the vehicle does not have its “Check Engine” light on; If it does, it will not pass the test. To fix, check to make sure the gas cap is on tight and is not broken. Keep the sealing surfaces in the cap clean so it can make a good seal. If it is not, tighten it and drive around to see if the light goes off.
- Follow the vehicle’s recommended maintenance schedule. Many of the mechanical issues that cause vehicles to fail their tests can be addressed during a routine check-up
- If your vehicle is a make and model year when catalytic converters came standard on the vehicle, make sure your it has one, and is not malfunctioning; If it does not have one or it is not working, the vehicle will not pass the test
- Allow your vehicle to run for at least 10 minutes before it takes a test to insure an accurate reading
- Research your vehicle manufacturer’s recalls, Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs), and warranties before getting any repairs done. The cost of the repair maybe covered by the manufacturer.
- If your vehicle’s On Board Diagnostic (OBDII) system is showing trouble codes, make sure to get them fixed by a certified emissions mechanic. Do not just try to clear the codes.Test personnel will know and the vehicle will not pass inspection.
- If your vehicle is misfiring when it is idling, make sure to get this addressed before getting an emissions test
- If a vehicle’s battery is brand new, drive the vehicle for a couple of days before taking it to get an On Board Diagnostics test so as to allow the OBD system to reset
- Make sure the vehicle’s oil is not dirty. Get the oil changed on a routine basis
- Maintain the recommended air pressure in your vehicle’s tires
- Inspect your vehicle’s hoses and belts for wear. Get them replaced if necessary
- Get any mechanical issues with your vehicle’s transmission addressed and fixed. Transmission problems can affect your vehicle’s emissions and cause your vehicle to fail an emissions test
- If your motor vehicle’s emissions system has a mechanical issue, check your manufacturer’s warranty. Federal law states emissions systems on vehicles made in the 1995 and newer model years must have their emissions systems warrantied for two years or 24,000 miles
- If the OBDII diagnostic system or catalytic converter on your vehicle made in the 1995 model year or newer has a mechanical issue, check the manufacturer’s warranty also. Federal regulation states these vehicles must have a warranty on their OBDII and catalytic converters for eight years or 80,000 miles.
Find Smog Check Stations Near Me
To stay in compliance of the State of Rhode Island’s smog check requirements, Rhode Island-registered drivers must get their vehicles to pass a vehicle emissions test. Check out our DMV & Emissions Testing Locations in Rhode Island pages below to find a DMV office or testing location in your area.
Smog Check Stations in Providence, Rhode Island
The City of Providence, in Providence County, Rhode Island, has a population of 178,000. Rhode Island-registered drivers with vehicles that require testing and living in Providence must get their vehicles to pass a smog check. Check out our DMV & Emissions Testing Location in Providence, Rhode Island page to find a DMV office or testing location in your area.
Smog Check Stations in Warwick, Rhode Island
The City of Warwick, in Kent County, Rhode Island, has a population of 83,000. Rhode Island-registered drivers with vehicles that require testing and living in Warwick must get their vehicles to pass a smog check. Check out our DMV & Emissions Testing Locations in Warwick, Rhode Island page to find a DMV office or testing location in your area.
Smog Check Stations in Cranston, Rhode Island
The City of Cranston, in Providence County, Rhode Island, has a population of 80,000. Rhode Island-registered drivers with vehicles that require testing and living in Cranston must get their vehicles to pass a smog check. Check out our DMV & Emissions Testing Locations in Cranston, Rhode Island page to find a DMV office or testing location in your area.