How Long Is A Vehicle Inspection Good For In Texas?

Getting your vehicle inspected on time is crucial in Texas, with steep penalties for driving with an expired inspection sticker. But how long does a passing vehicle inspection last before you need to get re-inspected? This article will examine Texas vehicle inspection laws and validity periods.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: Vehicle inspections in Texas are valid for one year from the date of issue before requiring renewal.

Texas Inspection Periods

When it comes to vehicle inspections in Texas, there are a few important things to keep in mind. One of the first things to know is that an annual inspection is required in order to register your vehicle. This means that you’ll need to have your vehicle inspected at least once every 12 months.

Annual inspection required for registration

In Texas, it is mandatory to have your vehicle inspected before you can register it. This inspection ensures that your vehicle meets the safety and emissions standards set by the state. Without a current inspection, you won’t be able to renew your registration or receive new license plates.

Inspections expire after 12 months

Once you have your vehicle inspected, the inspection is valid for a period of 12 months. This means that you have one year from the date of your inspection to renew your registration and get a new inspection sticker.

It’s important to keep track of when your inspection expires to avoid any issues with your registration.

Both safety and emissions inspected

During the vehicle inspection in Texas, both safety and emissions are inspected. Safety inspections check for things like functioning headlights, turn signals, brakes, and tires, while emissions inspections ensure that your vehicle is not emitting excessive pollutants into the air.

It’s worth noting that the specific requirements for vehicle inspections can vary depending on the county in Texas. Some counties may have additional inspection requirements, so it’s always a good idea to check with your local DMV or visit the official Texas Department of Public Safety website for the most up-to-date information.

For more information about vehicle inspections in Texas, you can visit the official Texas Department of Public Safety website at

Grace Periods and Extensions

When it comes to vehicle inspections in Texas, there is no grace period offered. This means that once your inspection sticker expires, you are technically in violation of the law. It’s important to note that Texas law enforcement officials can cite you immediately upon the expiry of your inspection sticker, so it’s crucial to keep your inspection up to date.

No grace period offered in Texas

Unlike some other states that offer a short grace period after the expiration of an inspection sticker, Texas does not provide any leniency in this matter. This means that if you fail to have your vehicle inspected before the expiration date on your current sticker, you can be cited by law enforcement.

It’s always a good idea to stay on top of your inspection dates to avoid any unnecessary fines or penalties.

Can be cited immediately upon expiry

It’s important to remember that in Texas, law enforcement officers have the authority to issue citations for expired inspection stickers as soon as they notice them. So, if you’re driving around with an expired sticker, you could potentially be pulled over and cited on the spot.

To avoid this hassle, make sure to schedule your vehicle inspection in a timely manner.

Registration renewal also denied without current inspection

Another important point to keep in mind is that in Texas, you cannot renew your vehicle registration without a current inspection. This means that if your inspection is expired, you won’t be able to renew your registration until you have your vehicle inspected and receive a new sticker.

It’s crucial to have a valid inspection sticker in order to keep your vehicle registration up to date.

Where to Get Inspected

When it comes to getting your vehicle inspected in Texas, there are several options available. Whether you prefer a licensed inspection station, a self-service kiosk, or even a MOT shop or dealer, you’ll find a convenient location near you to get the job done.

Any licensed inspection station

One of the most common and reliable options for getting your vehicle inspected in Texas is to visit any licensed inspection station. These stations have certified inspectors who are trained to thoroughly examine your vehicle and ensure it meets all the necessary safety and emission standards.

The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) oversees the licensing and regulation of inspection stations, so you can trust that they are held to high standards of quality and professionalism.

Self-service kiosks available in some areas

If you prefer a more convenient and time-saving option, you may be able to use a self-service kiosk to get your vehicle inspected. These kiosks are available in select areas and allow you to complete the inspection process on your own.

Simply follow the step-by-step instructions provided, and the kiosk will guide you through the inspection process. It’s a quick and efficient way to get your vehicle inspected without having to wait in line.

MOT shops and dealers may also provide inspections

In addition to licensed inspection stations and self-service kiosks, you may also be able to get your vehicle inspected at a MOT shop or dealer. While these establishments primarily focus on vehicle repairs and maintenance, many of them also offer inspection services to ensure your vehicle is roadworthy.

It’s worth checking with your local MOT shop or dealer to see if they provide inspections and what their process entails.

Remember, it’s important to get your vehicle inspected on time to comply with Texas state regulations. Failing to do so could result in fines or penalties. So, whether you choose a licensed inspection station, a self-service kiosk, or a MOT shop or dealer, make sure to get your vehicle inspected within the required timeframe to stay on the right side of the law.

Cost and Fines for Invalid Inspections

Inspection fee around $14 on average

Getting a vehicle inspection in Texas comes with a small cost. On average, the inspection fee is around $14. This fee covers the cost of the inspection itself, as well as any necessary paperwork and administrative expenses.

It’s important to note that this fee may vary slightly depending on the county or service provider you choose.

Fines up to $200 for expired/no inspection

Driving with an expired or no inspection sticker can result in hefty fines. In Texas, the fine for an expired or missing inspection sticker can be up to $200. These fines are in place to encourage drivers to keep their inspections up to date, as inspections ensure that vehicles are safe for both the driver and other road users.

It’s always best to schedule your inspection in advance to avoid any potential fines and ensure your vehicle is compliant with state regulations.

Registration non-renewal until compliant

When a vehicle fails to pass inspection or has an expired inspection sticker, the registration cannot be renewed until the vehicle is brought into compliance. This means that if your vehicle does not have a valid inspection, you will not be able to renew your registration until you have resolved the issue.

It’s important to address any inspection-related matters promptly to avoid any inconvenience when it comes time to renew your registration.


In summary, an annual vehicle safety and emissions inspection is mandatory in Texas to legally drive. Inspections are valid for 12 months from the issue date before expiring. No grace periods exist, so drivers must ensure they renew on time to avoid fines. Staying on top of the yearly inspection due date is crucial for all Texas motorists.

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