Missouri Emissions

The state of Missouri requires non-exempt vehicles to pass a safety inspection. These inspections have been put in place to make sure that vehicles that operate on the roads of Missouri are safe to do so.

Your vehicle must pass the state safety inspection in order to be able to be registered in the state of Missouri. After the inspection is completed, you will receive a certificate of inspection and approval and you will need to present it when you’re renewing or looking to receive a new title and vehicle registration.

Exempt vehicles

Vehicle inspections are performed depending on the year your vehicle was manufactured. For example, vehicles that were manufactured in even years are required to have inspections point years that ended in numbers. Likewise, vehicles that were manufactured in odd years are required to have inspections completed on years that end in an odd number. Trailers and vehicles that have a historical license plate are not required to have a safety inspection and are considered exempt.

Most new vehicles are not required to have a safety inspection, but if ownership changes within the first five years and inspection must be completed.


Inspections are completed at particular stations that must have equipment in order to check the following items:

  • Brake performance
    • There must be some way for the inspector to test the brakes on the vehicle; however, there is not one designated way that this must be completed.
  • Brake lining
    • A device will be required to check the thickness in regards to the bonded and riveted linings of the brakes
  • Brake pad
    • A gauge will also be required to check the thickness of the brake pads
  • Ball joint
    • The ball joint will also need to be checked to measure any looseness that may be present
  • Windows
    • The tint will also be checked on a vehicle as well

Emissions Testing

If you are new to the state you have 30 days to register your vehicle and in order to do so you must have your vehicle inspected and be able to present proof of this inspection when you are registering the vehicle. Although a safety inspection is required before you can register your vehicle, and emissions test is only required if you live in one of the following areas:

  • St. Louis city
  • St. Louis County
  • St. Charles County
  • Franklin County
  • Jefferson County


If you are renewing your registration, you must have a vehicle safety and/or emissions inspection completed within 60 days before you renew your registration. If you sell your vehicle, keep in mind that you will be required to provide the buyer with a safety inspection certificate that is less than 60 days old as well as an emissions certificate that is less than six years old if you live in one of the required areas.

You will also be required to receive an inspection if your vehicle was in an accident or if a law enforcement officer orders that you submit your vehicle for inspection. If you fail to register your vehicle or renew your registration within the 60 days, your inspection will not be valid any longer and you will need to complete and pay for another vehicle inspection.