Vehicle Emissions Inspection Program
On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) Test
- The On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) test is required for:
- Model year 1996 and newer passenger vehicles and light duty trucks.
- Model year 2008 and newer heavy duty vehicles up to 14,000 pounds.
- The OBD test uses a scan tool to connect to the vehicle's On-Board Diagnostics computer. The connector is usually located under the dashboard.
- The system is checked to determine if there are emissions control components that are failing which may cause the vehicle's emissions to exceed allowable limits.
- Make sure the amber-colored OBD "check engine" or similar warning light is not illuminated or the vehicle will fail the OBD test. If the light is on, you should see your dealer or repair technician before coming in for the test.
- If the vehicle has had recent repairs that required the battery to be disconnected, drive the vehicle in a normal manner for one week to reset the emissions monitors before bring the vehicle in for the OBD test.
NOTE: The vehicle cannot be tested if the shift indicator is not properly aligned or if the driver's door is not operational.
Idle Tailpipe and Gas Cap Test:
- The idle tailpipe test is required for:
- Model year 1977 and newer heavy duty vehicles 8,501 - 26,000 pounds.
- The vehicle should be driven at highway speeds for at least 20 minutes before the test to warm it up.
- The vehicle will fail if the exhaust system has holes or leaks that prevent a valid exhaust sample from being taken.
- The vehicle will fail if the gas cap is missing or leaking, damaged, or the wrong cap for the vehicle.
- The vehicle will fail if the catalytic converter is missing or damaged.
Here is some important information you need to know before you take your vehicle in for testing.
You will receive a test notice from the Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) about eight weeks before the deadline for your vehicle should be tested. You may bring your vehicle to be tested as soon as you receive the notice, or at any time during your eight week inspection period. Bring your notice and your vehicle to any one of the testing stations.
- If you forget the notice, bring your vehicle registration card as a substitute.
- When you pull into the lane for the test, put the vehicle in "park," and keep the engine running.
- A certified emissions inspector will check for leaking fluids, excessive smoke, signs of tampering with the exhaust system, a gas cap, dashboard warning lights, and badly worn tires. Nothing is disconnected.
- The test fee of $14 is collected. We accept cash, VISA, American Express, and MasterCard, traveler's check, money order, or a personal check (with 2 current ID's) made payable to VEIP.
- At the end of the test the inspector will present you with a vehicle emissions certificate that shows whether your vehicle passed or failed the test and the date of your next test.
- If you do not pass the test, you will be referred to the station representative. The station representative can discuss the results with you and point out the area(s) on your vehicle's engine or emission control system to be checked and repaired. A brochure listing Maryland Certified Emissions Repair Facilities is available from the station representative.
PLEASE VISIT THE STATION REPRESENTATIVE BEFORE LEAVING IF YOUR VEHICLE DOES NOT PASS. DON'T FORGET, your first re-test is free. To speak to the station representative, please move your vehicle to one of the convenient parking spaces, and enter the office. Our station representatives are fully prepared to answer any and all questions you may have.
- Be certain you have the proper gas cap.
- Keep your vehicle properly maintained - manufacturer's recommendations are found in your owner's manual. Make sure all of your vehicle's emissions control equipment is present and connected.
- Make sure your exhaust system is free of leaks or holes, and that the tailpipe is easily accessible.
- Make sure no gasoline, oil, or coolant is leaking from your vehicle. Check for bald tires or a temporary spare on the drive wheels.
If you are unable to have your vehicle tested by the due date, you can request an extension online or call VEIP at 410-768-7000.
Your Vehicle Emissions Inspection Improves Maryland’s Air and Water Quality! By having your vehicle tested, you're playing an important part in Maryland's successful and ongoing efforts to clean our air and water, creating a healthier Maryland for all of us. Although there are many sources of pollutants which form ground-level ozone, automobiles and light trucks remain the major source here in Maryland. By making certain our cars and trucks are properly maintained in accordance with manufacturer recommendations (the whole purpose of the VEIP inspection), vehicle owners can be assured that we are doing our part, along with industry and government, to keep Maryland a clean and healthy place to live.