Other Vehicle Registrations in Ohio

SUMMARY: How to Register Other Vehicle Types in Ohio

Registration requirements vary for vehicles other than standard cars and trucks. Many, like motorhomes, follow the same process as regular vehicles. Others, like custom-built cars, require an inspection prior to registration. Find your vehicle type below for details.

Snowmobiles, All-Purpose Vehicles & Off-Highway Motorcycles

Snowmobiles are categorized as self-propelled vehicles that are steered by skis, caterpillar treads, or runners, and are meant to be used mostly on ice or snow.

An all-purpose vehicle (APV) is defined as a self-propelled vehicle that is steered by wheels or caterpillar treads, and is designed primarily for cross-country travel on land or water.

While this definition is not meant to include utility vehicles or even things like golf carts, it does include all-terrain vehicles, trail bikes, mini-bikes, all-season vehicles, or vehicles that operate on a cushion of air.

An off-highway motorcycle (OHM) or all terrain vehicle (ATV) is classified as a bike that is meant to be used primarily on land, other than a highway or street.


To operate an APV, OHM, or snowmobile on the state's public land or waterways, you'll need to have a current operator, probationary, or commercial driver's license.

If you're under 16 years old, you'll also need to have a licensed driver who is at least 18 years old with you.

The state allows unlicensed riders younger than 16 years old to use these vehicles on state-controlled land, if they are with a currently-licensed parent or guardian who is at least 18 years old.

Titling and Registration

All the specialty vehicles we've discussed will need to be registered. However, only APV and OHM owners will need to have a title, too. And, the title must come first.

If you bought an APV or OHM from a dealer, the title must be in your name. The dealer has up to 30 days to give you the title. If you bought the vehicle from a private seller, the seller will need to assign it to you by signing the back of the title. You'll then need to apply for a new title at a title office for a $15 fee.

Once you've received your title, you must register your APV, OHM, or snowmobile at a branch office.

Registration certificates are valid for 3 years, and will expire on December 31 of the last year. The registration fee is $36.25. You may renew your registration as early as 90 days before it expires.

The registration comes with an alphanumerical decal that must be affixed to the vehicle in an easily-visible location.

Out-of-State Permits

If you live outside the state but want to operate an APV, OMV, or snowmobile on Ohio's public land or waterways, you'll have to apply for a temporary permit if your state doesn't have similar registration requirements to ours.

To apply for the permit, you'll need to visit a deputy registrar's office. The permit is valid for up to 1 year. You'll have to pay a $14.75 registration fee. Make sure to keep the permit handy.

If you're not sure how your state's registration laws compare to ours, you can call the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles at (844) 644-6268 to find out. Or, you can call or visit a deputy registrar's branch.

RVs and Motorhomes in Ohio

If you have a recreational vehicle (RV) or motorhome in Ohio, be sure to have it registered properly first before you take it for a spin. You can follow the same steps outlined on our Registering a Car in Ohio page. Fees may vary based on your RV's weight.

Custom-Built Vehicles

Registering your custom-built car in Ohio follows the same process as registering a regular car; however, you'll need to have it inspected first.

To have your vehicle inspected, visit your local Ohio BMV office, ask for an inspection application, and make an appointment with an inspection station.

You'll need to bring all required documents as listed on the Ohio BMV website.

Once you've completed the inspection, follow the steps outlined on our Ohio Vehicle Registration page to have your vehicle registered and ready to drive.

Ohio Mopeds and Scooters

You must register mopeds AND scooters in Ohio, just as you would register a car.

A moped is a vehicle with:

  • 2 wheels OR 3 wheels (1 front and 2 rear) that are:
  • Pedals to propel the vehicle.
  • A motor of more than 50 cc and 1 HP.
  • Able to achieve speeds over 20 MPH.

You can operate a moped with a driver's license OR a motorized bicycle license.

Scooters, dirt bikes, ATVs, and other motorized bikes that exceed the moped limits are classed as motorcycles. You must register these vehicles and have a motorcycle license to operate them.

You'll find more details on our scooter and moped page.

Buying or Selling Your Vehicle

Whether you're buying or selling a vehicle, getting your vehicle history report (VIN Check) is an important steps to take. Knowing your vehicle's history provides peace of mind and confidence in the purchase.

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