Several types of vehicles are PERMANENTLY EXEMPT from the E-Check test requirement and do not need a visual inspection. A complete list with a detailed explanation may be found in Ohio Revised Code, Section 3704.14. It is not necessary for vehicle owners that are permanently exempt to be issued an exemption certificate. The most common types are listed below.
1. Vehicles more than 25 years old, as determined by vehicle model year
2. Vehicles weighing more than 10,000 pounds gross vehicle weight
3. Historical and collector
4. Parade and exhibition vehicles
5. Motorcycles, recreational vehicles and motor homes
Which vehicles must be tested
All gasoline and diesel-fueled vehicles equal to or less than 10,000 pounds Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW), 25 years old or newer from the current testing year, and registered in an E-Check county must comply with E-Check. All even model year vehicles must be tested during the even-numbered years (e.g. a 1998 vehicle must be tested in 2002, 2004, etc.). All odd model year vehicles must be tested during the odd-numbered years (e.g. a 1999 vehicle must be tested in 2003, 2005, etc.). The possible exceptions to this cycle are new vehicles (depending on title date), newly purchased used vehicles, and any other vehicle undergoing a title switch. Ohio vehicles moving into an E-Check county from a non E-C heck county do not need to test before registration unless it is that vehicle's normal testing cycle.
IMPORTANT: An inspection certificate is valid for 365 days following the date of the test. If you have received a test on a new-used vehicle or for other title changes you may use that same test to renew your registration if your renewal date falls within 365 days from the initial test.
New vehicles are exempt for the first two years from original title date. If a vehicle is less than two years old but has undergone a title change or is being titled in Ohio for the first time, a test is required.
All newly purchased used vehicles must receive an emissions test in order to register that vehicle for the first time, regardless of the model year. The only exception is if the new owner of the vehicle was given a valid inspection certificate from the previous owner. If this is the case, then that certificate may be used to register the vehicle. If you want to find out if a vehicle has been tested call 1-800-CAR-TEST. You do not have to be the owner of the vehicle to have it tested.
Whenever a vehicle's title transfers to another individual within one of the fourteen E-Check counties, that vehicle must be tested. Vehicles that are 25 years old or newer and were titled out-of-state must also be tested before they are registered in Ohio. This rule came about because individuals would switch the title to their vehicle among members of their family in order to avoid the E-Check program. This loophole was eliminated by requiring testing of all vehicles undergoing a title transfer.
IMPORTANT: An inspection certificate is valid for 365 days following the date of the test. If a vehicle that has undergone a title change is registered within 365 days from a previous test, then the new owner will not need to have the vehicle tested again in order to register. An inspection certificate is valid for one full year from test date, regardless of title changes.
What counties are included in the Ohio E-Check program?
The 14 Ohio counties currently participating in the program include: Butler, Clark, Clermont, Cuyahoga, Geauga, Greene, Hamilton, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Montgomery, Portage, Summit and Warren.