Understanding WI Vehicle Inspection Requirements | Brookfield, WI | Silver Lake Auto & Tire Centers
Schedule Service

What’s on the Wisconsin State Inspection?

Understanding Wisconsin Vehicle Inspection Requirements — Silver Lake Auto & Tire Centers

Some car owners/drivers feel nervous about state vehicle inspections. What are the requirements? What if the auto doesn’t pass? Really, there’s no need to worry. Bring your vehicle to Silver Lake Auto & Tire Centers in Brookfield, Wisconsin. We’ve been a support system for our motoring neighbors since 1973. As such, our ASE-certified technicians not only have the technical know-how to take care of mechanical issues, but they also pride themselves on offering phenomenal customer service.

What Must Be Inspected and When?

While some states have extensive lists of inspection checkpoints, Wisconsin’s requirement is specific to emissions testing. Beyond that, it’s also dependent upon where you live. Of the state’s 72 counties, only seven southeastern counties fall under the smog testing provision. These are Racine, Washington, Kenosha, Sheboygan, Milwaukee, Waukeesha, and Ozaukee. Gasoline powered autos registered in these areas weighing less than 8,500 pounds for 1996-2006 models and gas or diesel powered vehicles weighing less than 14,000 pounds for 2007 or newer manufacture years must be inspected. Periodic inspections are arranged to coincide with transfer of ownership and license plate renewal every two years. You won’t have trouble remembering, however, because the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) will remind you. Relevant information is included with your registration renewal when it is mailed to you, and you receive a letter if you purchase a used car. The requirement is waived if the car was inspected within 180 days prior to your purchase. You may also receive notification of mandatory testing if evidence of emissions system tampering is discovered.

Policies: Exemptions, Fees, FailuresM

Even within the seven specified counties, there are some policy exemptions. These include older cars (prior to year models listed above), motorcycles, large trucks, farm vehicles, electric cars, large capacity service vehicles (16-passenger or greater; example: school bus), and autos registered to Medal of Honor recipients (special plate). Also, you may apply for a temporary exemption (Form MV2472) if your vehicle will be out of the requirement zone for an extended period of time. Should your auto fail the smog test, you will receive a report detailing required repairs. You will have 180 days to correct the problem(s) and retest. The best news is that testing is free to you. Choose one of the state-sanctioned private shops in the designated area, and WisDOT pays the service provider for the inspection.

What About Those Lights?

Perhaps you’re wondering if dashboard lights will cause a failed inspection. If the check engine light is illuminated, yes, your auto will fail. If other lights are on (brakes, service soon, TPMS), the vehicle will still be able to pass. For inspection or to address concerns, visit Silver Lake Auto & Tire Centers.

Written by Silver Lake Auto & Tire Centers