Philadelphia, PA State Inspection for Your Vehicle


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auto repair shop in Philadelphia, PAAt Schafer’s Auto Center our goal is to keep your car in peak reliable condition. We’ve been serving clients since 1954. We ensure our technicians receive continuing education to stay up to date on the changes in our industry. We meticulously update our shop to include the latest in auto repair and diagnostic equipment. Contact us at 215-755-1270 or visit us at 1924 S Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19148.

It might seem like an inconvenience to take your car in for an inspection every year, but a Philadelphia, PA state inspection is required by law. Both the safety vehicle inspections and smog checks are designed to assess your car’s road worthiness. When the inspections are complete, then you will receive a certificate that must be used to register the vehicle.

At Schafer’s Auto Center our goal is to keep your car in peak reliable condition. We want to make it easy for you to register the vehicle each year. If any problems pop up between inspections, we will gladly help you with the repairs and maintenance. You are always welcome to call our team anytime for information about the repair services we offer.

New Vehicle Registrations and Renewals

A safety inspection must be done when you buy a used car. The car must pass inspection by an authorized mechanic in inspection stations before the state registers the vehicle. Additionally, every vehicle needs to pay for a registration renewal each year. Newer cars might not need the inspection on an annual basis; check with a trusted mechanic for more information specific to your vehicle.

A thorough inspection before the purchase can be a real advantage because it gives you a full understanding of the condition of the car at a particular moment in time. If any repairs are needed, you will understand the associated costs before making your decision. The inspection can offer two benefits because you will learn about the car’s current operating condition and if all is in order, you will receive the certificate needed to pay for the state registration.

For residents moving into the state from a different location, these inspections will need to be completed before you can receive PA license plates. You have a window of 20 days to register the vehicle after residency is established in the state.

How to Get Your Certificate of State Inspection

The only way to get the safety inspection certificate needed for vehicle registration is by talking to a certified mechanic. Here at Schafer’s Auto Center, we can complete the inspection and fix any problems that might be discovered during the inspection. Then, you will receive an authorized copy of the safety inspection to take to the state offices to register the vehicle.

There are times when a vehicle needs a temporary registration while repairs are in process. In this case, you can talk to the DMV about getting a 30-day registration that will keep your car legal until you have completed the necessary repairs and inspection before you can get your license plates.

When the state inspection is finished, you will receive two copies of the certificate. You can keep one copy for your records, and the other one needs to be taken to the state offices.

What Happens if My Car Fails Inspection?

There are times when a vehicle might not meet all of the safety requirements that are in place. In this situation, you will have a window of time when the repairs should be completed. If you take care of the repairs right away, you won’t need to pay for a full inspection again. But, delaying the repairs could result in the need to pay for and complete a second inspection before you can receive your certificate.

It is convenient to have a mechanic complete the inspection instead of a shop that only offers the inspections without repair services. In the case where repairs are needed, you can ask the mechanic to take care of those items without the need to take the vehicle somewhere else.

What Types of Vehicles need to be inspected?

All road-worthy vehicles will need to have a state inspection before they are licensed for driving. Here is a list of the vehicles that need to meet these safety regulations:

  • Passenger cars
  • Light, medium, and heavy duty trucks
  • Buses
  • Semi-trailers
  • Utility and recreational trailers
  • Street Rods
  • Motorcycles
  • All vehicles with alternative controls and fuel systems
  • Specialty reconstructed vehicles

Timing of Safety Inspection and a Smog Check

Since the state of Pennsylvania also requires an emissions test, the easiest solution is to complete the safety check and emissions test at the same time. Most mechanics will offer these services together, but it is always a good idea to ask before the inspection, just in case.

These inspections are beneficial to help you understand more about the quality of the car. When you stay consistent with regular inspections and keep up with maintenance, you can protect the life of the vehicle. Regular care is important to help you avoid expensive repair bills in the future.

PA state inspection near me

Here at Schafer’s Auto Center, we are here to help with the state inspection and smog check for your vehicle. Stop by our shop at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148. To speed up the appointment, feel free to call ahead to let us know what time you will be arriving: (215) 755-1270

Auto Repair and Maintenance FAQs

What is a car repair estimate?

The estimate serves to inform car owners of the initial cost of the parts and labor likely needed to fix it properly. However, the shop can disassemble the vehicle and look at it thoroughly, they may find that additional work will be required. Learn more.

How often should tires be replaced?

It’s usually every six years but it would still depend on how you use your car. Even if there is plenty of tread left, tires should be replaced if they are too old. Look for a shop that carry the hunter revolution tire machine. It is the state-of-the-art tire mounting and dismounting machine. It is completely touchless which means scratch less. Learn more.

What does an overheating engine smell like?

If you smell that burned rubber scent coming from your vehicle, it probably means that somehow, rubber parts of your car are in contact with something hot and are melting. In most cases, that burning could be because of the friction between moving metal parts or a hose or belt could be slipped within the power steering system. Learn more.