Vehicles requiring an Smog Inspection

Affected Vehicles Requiring a Transfer-Of-Ownership and

Smog Inspection

Remember there are rules when it comes to smog or register your vehicle if you just purchase a car, from a sibling or private there are different rules you need to follow. 

The year of the vehicle is also important a vehicle 3yrs old verses at vehicle 10yrs old make a different. 

This page will discuss the difference and supply you with enough information for you to make a logical decision.

Affected Vehicles Requiring Smog Inspection

Gasoline- 1976 model-year and newer vehicles powered solely or in combination by:

 Gasoline (Includes hybrid vehicles - beginning January 2015);

 Propane;

 Natural gas;

 Methanol/ethanol.

Diesel- 1998 model-year and newer vehicles with GVWRs 14,000 pounds and less powered solely or in combination by:

 Diesel

 Propane

 Natural gas

 Methanol/ethanol.

Exempted Vehicles and Transfer-Of-Ownership

Exempted Vehicles

 Gasoline vehicles 1975 model-year and older;

 Gasoline vehicles 6 or less model-years old are exempt from the biennial inspection;

 Gasoline vehicles 4 or less model-years old are exempt from inspection upon change of ownership;

 Diesel vehicles 1997 model-year and older;

 Diesel vehicles with a GVWR of 14,001 and more;

 Vehicles powered solely by electricity;

 Two-cylinder or less;

 Two-stroke (two cycle) engines, excluding rotary engines;

 Motorcycles. Until further notice:

 CNG, LNG or LPG vehicles with a GVWR of 14,001 and more ;


Transfer of Ownership In addition to the biennial requirement, a certificate of compliance is required whenever a vehicle changes ownership except in the following circumstances:

 Vehicle is 4 or less model-years old. Example: In 2012, model years 2012, 2011, 2010, and 2009 are not subject to inspection upon transfer of ownership.

 Vehicle has had a Smog Check certificate in connection with registration renewal, and the transfer has occurred within 90 days of registration renewal.

 Vehicle is being transferred between a person’s spouse, child, grandchild, parent, grandparent or sibling.

 Vehicle registered to a sole proprietorship is transferred to the proprietor as owner.

 Vehicle is transferred between companies whose principal business is leasing vehicles and there is no change in the lessee or operator of the vehicle, or between the lessor and the person who has been, for at least one year, the lessee’s operator of the vehicle.

 Vehicle is transferred between the lessor and lessee and there is no change in the lessee or operator of the vehicle.

 When an additional individual is added to title.

DMV Transfer of ownership form

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