Smog & Emission Checks in Wisconsin
Vehicles newer than 1996 registered in certain Wisconsin counties must undergo emissions testing when it's time for registration renewal.
The vehicles that are exempt from emissions testing include:
- Diesel-powered vehicles with a model year 2006 and older.
- Vehicles manufactured before 1996.
- Vehicles manufactured after 1996 that are not OBDII-compliant (must be verified at test station).
- Motorcycles and mopeds.
- Vehicles with a registered gross weight over 14,000 pounds.
- Trucks with farm registration.
- Electric powered vehicles.
- Non-motorized vehicles.
- School buses and human service vehicles with seating capacity of 16 or more people.
- Vehicles registered as special design vehicles, Medal of Honor and apportioned plates.
When you arrive at the testing station, you will give your registration renewal notice to the inspector so that he or she can enter your vehicle's information into the computer. You vehicle will then be tested for emissions using one of two testing methods:
- A newer vehicle will be tested via access to the on-board computer system, which will download the vehicle's emissions information to the testing station computer system.
- Older vehicles will be tested by means of a tailpipe test, while the vehicle is driven on a treadmill device known as a dynamometer. This test is conducted while the vehicle goes through a series of driving simulations including driving, deceleration, acceleration, and idling.
After the emissions testing is complete, all vehicles will have a gas cap inspection to make sure that the gas caps are fitted properly.
If the vehicle passes both sections of the testing (emissions and gas cap) the registration can be renewed at the testing facility, or the vehicle owner may opt to renew online or in person at a local DMV service center. If you choose to renew in person on later via online or telephone access, you will be issued a certificate for your emissions standards testing results.
If the vehicle fails the emissions portion of the test, the owner will need to make the necessary repairs to bring the vehicle within emissions standards, or, if the gas cap portion is failed, replace the gas cap and have that portion of the test conducted again.
While the state does not offer a direct line for reporting vehicles suspected of violating Wisconsin's emission standards, you can call the Wisconsin Vehicle Inspection Control office at (800) 242-7510 for possible direction.Local Smog Check Stations
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