Car Inspection Laws in Florida
Paul Brannon | October 19, 2022 | Florida Law
Car inspections are often necessary to ensure vehicles are in working order and safe to be on the roads. Some states, including Florida, don’t require mandatory vehicle inspections. There are, however, situations in which vehicles must go through inspection.
Without passing inspection, a vehicle cannot be registered with the state or insured. A vehicle that fails inspection could also be more prone to a car accident. Therefore, it’s important that your vehicle be able to pass inspection if necessary.
What Is a Car Inspection?
Many states require yearly vehicle inspections. Inspections generally involve testing vehicle safety features and emissions.
A standard vehicle safety test checks components such as:
- Seat belts
- Car horns
- Head and tail lights
Some states also require carbon emissions testing, which determines how much pollution the car emits.
If a vehicle fails to pass inspection for any reason, the owner may receive a fine. Additionally, they must fix the issue and take the vehicle back for another inspection. Until it passes inspection, it’s not allowed on the road.
Does Florida Require Car Inspections?
Florida required yearly car inspections until 1981. A decade later, the state mandated vehicle emissions tests, which ended in 2000 when the Governor decided these tests did little to reduce pollution in the state.
Today, Florida does not require yearly vehicle inspections. However, there are two circumstances that legally require inspection:
- If an individual purchases a used vehicle in Florida
- If an individual purchases a vehicle outside of the state
New cars purchased in Florida are not subject to inspections.
It’s critical that vehicle owners respect Florida laws regarding vehicle inspections. If a vehicle requires inspection and either doesn’t go through inspection or doesn’t pass, it can’t be registered with the DMV or insured.
What Happens During a Vehicle Inspection in Florida?
Vehicle inspections are much simpler than they used to be.
In short, the inspector will perform a physical examination of the vehicle and its major components. They’ll also look into your vehicle identification number (VIN) to make sure the title of the vehicle is valid and the car isn’t stolen.
Who Conducts Vehicle Inspections in Florida?
There are several ways to get a vehicle inspection in Florida.
Many mechanics are authorized to perform inspections, and there are also special locations where you can take your vehicle in to be inspected. However, it’s important to make sure the individual inspecting your vehicle is certified by the state, as not just anyone can perform a vehicle inspection.
In some cases, you may be able to take your vehicle to your local police station, as law enforcement officers are often able to inspect vehicles.
When in doubt, a quick internet search can provide many locations to get your vehicle inspected.
How Much Does a Vehicle Inspection Cost?
The cost of an inspection in Florida depends on where you get your vehicle inspected or who performs the inspection.
Mechanics typically don’t charge an additional fee for an inspection if they’re already providing a service. Other inspectors, including those at a specified inspection center, typically charge about $100-$150.
Make Sure Your Vehicle Is in Good Shape
Even if your vehicle doesn’t require an inspection, you should always take steps to ensure it’s safe to drive. Visit your mechanic regularly, or learn to check your vehicle’s primary components yourself.
Having a safe and properly working vehicle requires checking parts such as:
- Oil levels
- Fluid levels
- Head and tail lights
- Emergency flashers
Operating a safe and reliable vehicle helps avoid potential car trouble and traffic accidents, keeping you and others on the road free from danger.
Contact Our Car Accident Law Firm in Northwest Florida
We have two convenient locations in Northwest Florida:
Brannon & Brannon Personal Injury Attorneys – Destin Office
4507 Furling Ln Suite 214
Destin, FL 32541
Brannon & Brannon Personal Injury Attorneys – Fort Walton Beach Office
975 Mar Walt Dr
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547