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What Is the NC Emissions Inspection?

The automotive industry is becoming increasingly environmentally-friendly. Here at Chapel Hill Tire, we do our part in making the auto industry green:  our rooftop garden, and our hybrid specialty attention. We also help keep our readers in the know about North Carolina emission requirements and testing. Here is everything you need to know about the NC Emission Inspection, brought to you by the experts at Chapel Hill Tire. 

What is an Emissions Inspection?

An emissions inspection is an annual assessment that ensures that your vehicle is in compliance with the NC emissions standards implemented by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. These are designed to help limit the environmental impacts of the automotive industry. By ensuring vehicle emissions are regulated, North Carolina can do its part to protect the environment. 

Do I Need An NC Emissions Inspection?

If you are registered in a county that requires emissions inspections, you may be required to complete this inspection when renewing your tags each year. Currently, 22 counties require this inspection, which accounts for almost a quarter of those within our state. These regulations and requirements are subject to change. Annual emissions inspections are currently required in the following counties: Alamance, Buncombe, Cabarrus, Cumberland, Davidson, Durham, Forsyth, Franklin, Gaston, Guilford, Iredell, Johnston, Lee, Lincoln, Mecklenburg, New Hanover, Onslow, Randolph, Rockingham, Rowan, Wake, and Union.

However, not every driver within these counties is required to get an emissions inspection each year. There are a few other parameters of this law that omit you from this inspection:

  • Many vehicles qualify for an exemption if they are less than 3 years old and have less than 70,000 miles. Consult this FAQ from the NC Department of Environmental Quality to learn if your vehicle qualifies for this exemption.
  • You may also be exempt if your vehicle was manufactured before the year 1995.
  • You are exempt from the emissions inspection if you were approved for a waiver or exemption and paid any necessary fees.

What is the Point of an Emissions Inspection?

This might leave you wondering, “What is the purpose of emissions inspections?” By monitoring and regulating the emissions produced by North Carolina drivers, the government can enforce sustainability within the automotive industry. Moving forward, as environmental protections waiver, having these measures in place will make it easy for North Carolina to remain in compliance with changing emission standards. 

What Does the Emissions Inspection Check?

An emissions inspection checks for any engine, tire, and other vehicle issues that could be causing your vehicle to perform inefficiently. This includes catalytic converter problems, worn/deflated tires, air filter issues, air/fuel mixture problems, and more. Depending on your vehicle, your inspection may also include checks for electrical or sensor issues that might misread or misreport your vehicle’s health. Read more here about common reasons for failing the emissions inspection. The specifics of your emissions inspection will depend on your vehicle. If an emissions inspection finds an issue with your vehicle, it gives you the chance to increase your fuel efficiency and avoid costly repairs down the road. 

How Much Does an Emissions Inspection Cost?

When you bring your vehicle to a Chapel Hill Tire location, we will complete a thorough emissions inspection for just $30. We also have the tools and expertise required to complete any repairs you may need to pass your inspection. 

Emissions Inspections in Raleigh, Chapel Hill, Durham, and Carrboro

Chapel Hill Tire is proud to provide emissions inspections out of our 8 Triangle-area locations. Our experts will complete a quick, affordable emissions inspection that will have you in, out, and on your way. Visit your nearest Chapel Hill Tire to get your emissions inspection today!

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