Call us (408)-423-0000 | 88 Keyes St.
San Jose, CA 95112

Smog Check

Smog Test Exemptions

Smog testing is an integral part of the procedure when you buy a new vehicle or use an old one. It is essential to learn about your contribution to smog and air pollution and, to make sure that it is minimal, you must get your vehicle smog-tested. While it is vital to get a smog test and follow specific rules and regulations regarding it, there are also a few scenarios for exemption. In certain cases and situations, you do not need to get a yearly smog test. To find out more about these situations, keep on reading!

Exemptions from Smog Testing:

Whether your vehicle needs a smog test depends on what the model is, how old it is, and how it operates. If you fall in any of the following categories, the chances are that your vehicle does not require a smog test every year and that you are producing minimum pollution.

The 1947 year models or older.

If the car you own is a 1947 model or any older than that, you will most likely be an exemption from giving a smog test. This rule applies to diesel-powered vehicles only. This exemption’s logic is that models over 30 years old become an automatic exemption under the 30-year rolling exemption.

The 1975 and older models.

If your vehicle is gasoline-powered and the model is older than 1975, you don’t have to go through a smog test. According to the old smog laws we talked about earlier, all models made in 1975 and before turned 30-years old and are automatically an exemption under the 30-year old rule.

More than 14,000 lbs Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW).

A vehicle weighing more than 14000 lbs is automatically an exemption from smog testing. You can determine the gross vehicle weight by looking at the vehicle’s specifications or asking the seller. Even though this detail might seem to be an insignificant one, it will come in handy when you go for smog checking.

Natural Gas-Powered Vehicles over 14,000 lbs.

Vehicles that run on natural gas are commonly an exemption when it comes to smog checks. This rule comes from the fact that natural gas produces low amounts of smog compared to gasoline and diesel motor vehicles. So, these vehicles are often an exemption from smog checks. Plus, if they weigh over 14,000 lbs, the possibility of exemption is even more likely.

Electric vehicles.

Vehicles that run on electricity produce minimal to no direct emissions. Thus, electric cars are not a part of smog-producing transport and help improve air quality, especially in urban areas. As a result, it is natural that they are an exemption from smog tests.

Gasoline-powered models older than 1975 and more.

Even though vehicles that are powered by gasoline do produce smog, models that are older than 1975 are naturally an exemption since they are over 30 years old.

Gasoline-powered motor vehicle models as old as four years and less.

Vehicles that are new and have a manufacturing date of 4 years or less are not a part of the compulsory smog test list. However, if the Air Resources Board claims that the vehicle does not fulfill the exemption criteria, you have to get a regular yearly smog check. This rule does not apply to diesel motor vehicles.


Large trailers can weigh around 12 to 19000 lbs. Since vehicles that are heavier than 14000 pounds are an exemption from smog testing, specific containers automatically become a part of this list. To make sure whether your trailer has to get a yearly smog test, find out how much it weighs. Then, search for “smog check San Jose,” or any area that you live in, and get proper information.


New motorcycles and bicycles have a smog-free design and mechanism. Such models do not need a smog test and are, thus, an exemption. It is still essential to know which model you have, how old it is, and whether it is smog-free.

Transferred vehicles.

Vehicles transferred from a spouse, domestic partner, sibling, child, parent, grandparent, or grandchild are an automatic exemption from smog testing, given that the owner submitted a smog certification within 90 days of the transfer. Before the transaction of transfer complete, the original owner must get a smog test done, obtain a certificate, and submit it within three months. Only if they do this will the vehicle become an exemption from testing.


If you have an old car, a new one, one that someone transferred to you, or a part of any of the other scenarios mentioned above, you might be an exemption from needing a smog test every year. However, different states and areas of the world have different laws regarding it. The best way to make sure would be to search “smog check near me” and contact one of the service providers for more specific and authentic information.

This article was originally posted at Greenstar Smog Check.

Smog Check Near Me

Smog Check Price

Smog Check Online Service