Maine Smog Check / Emissions Test
The State of Maine requires residents of Cumberland County who own a gas vehicle to pass a vehicle emissions test along with the statewide vehicle safety inspection requirements.
Requirements to Pass the Maine Smog Check
If a vehicle falls under one of the following criteria, it must pass a smog check:
- Vehicle owners who are new residents and have not registered their car yet for the first time (If the vehicle has an inspection sticker from another state, the vehicle must pass a smog check as soon as the out-of-state smog check expires)
- The Maine smog check sticker is about to expire on your vehicle
- The Maine State Police law enforcement orders your car to pass a smog check
Smog Check Exemptions for Maine Drivers
If a vehicle registered in Cumberland County, Maine falls under one of the following makes and model years it does not need to pass a vehicle emissions test:
- Vehicles driven 1,000 miles or less
- Motorcycles and mopeds
- Maine-registered antique vehicles
- Farm tractors
- Fish trucks
- Wood trucks
- Island vehicles
- Low-speed vehicles
- Experimental vehicles
- 1996 Subarus (all models)
- 1996-98 Mitsubishis (all models)
- 1996 Volvo 850 Turbo
- 1996 Chrysler Avenger/Sebring/Talan,Cirrus/Stratus/Breeze, Intrepid/Concord/New Yorker/LHS/Vision, Neon
- Ford medium and heavy duty trucks made between the 1996-2003 model years weighing more than 8,600 lbs
There are no extensions or waivers allowed in the state of Maine.
Smog Check Fees
Maine caps smog check fees for vehicles made in the 1995 model year or earlier is $15.50, and $18.50 for vehicles made in the 1996 or later. If the vehicle fails its smog check the owner must still pay the smog check fee. The basic safety inspection fee cap for vehicles outside of Cumberland county is $12.50.
Performing Emissions Testing in Maine
Vehicle owners must take their vehicle to a state-certified service center, garage, or auto dealership to get their safety / emissions tests. Remember to bring the following to your vehicle emissions test:
Vehicles with owners who reside in Cumberland County must pass an emissions test annually. The type of test a vehicle must pass depends on its model year:
- Motor vehicles made in the 1996 model year or later receive an On-Board Diagnostic (ODBII) Test
- Motor vehicles made in the 1974 model year or newer receive a Gas Cap Pressure Test to check
- During the safety inspection, vehicles made in the 1983 model year or new will receive a Catalytic Converter visual inspection
- Diesel vehicles weighing over 18,000 lbs must pass a diesel opacity test
Failed Smog Inspections – Next Steps
When a vehicle fails an inspection:
- The vehicle owner will receive a Vehicle Inspection Report (VIR) detailing the emissions-related mechanical issues that need to be repaired
- Maine test personnel will make a diagonal cut through the vehicle’s inspection sticker to remove the sticker’s expiration date
- The Maine DMV will require the vehicle owner to get the repairs detailed in the VIR fixed
Owners with vehicles that do not pass a smog check, have 30 days to complete the emissions – related repairs and pass a retest. If the vehicle owner completes the emissions reinspection within the 30-day time frame, their reinspection is free. The Maine DMV recommends that emissions-related repairs be done by a state-qualified technician. If a vehicle owner does not comply with Maine’s vehicle emissions test requirements they risk receiving a citation or possibly having their vehicle registration suspended. The Maine DMV requires owners with vehicles that have ODBII systems installed on them to drive them for one week before getting them retested. Vehicle owners must get their vehicle to pass a smog check before they can get their vehicle registration renewed.
Moved to Maine – Smog Check Requirements
New residents must get their vehicle registered within 30 days of moving to Maine. If a new resident’s vehicle passed a smog check in another state, the State of Maine will honor that smog check until it expires. If a new resident’s vehicle has not passed a smog check when they arrive to Maine, their vehicle must pass a smog check when they get their Maine vehicle registration.
Special Tips to Pass the Maine Emissions Test
Maine vehicle owners may want to get their vehicle’s tested as soon as they receive their first testing notice. Allow extra time to get any needed repairs done before your registration expires. Also, if a vehicle owner plans to be out of town during the date when their registration expires, planning early will give owners time to meet the deadline. Here are some tips to keep in mind to ensure passing a Maine vehicle emissions test:
- Make sure the vehicle does not have its “Check Engine” light on; If it does, it will not pass the test. To fix, check to make sure the gas cap is on tight and is not broken. Keep the sealing surfaces in the cap clean so it can make a good seal. If it is not, tighten it and drive around to see if the light goes off.
- Follow the vehicle’s recommended maintenance schedule. Many of the mechanical issues that cause vehicles to fail their tests can be addressed during a routine check-up
- If your vehicle is a make and model year when catalytic converters came standard on the vehicle, make sure your vehicle has one and is not malfunctioning; If it does not have one or it is not working, it will not pass the test
- Allow your vehicle to run for at least 10 minutes before it takes a test to insure an accurate reading
- Research your vehicle manufacturer’s recalls, Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs), and warranties before getting any repairs done. The cost of their repair maybe covered by the manufacturer.
- If your vehicle’s On Board Diagnostic (OBDII) system is showing trouble codes, make sure to get them fixed by a certified emissions mechanic. Do not just try to clear the codes.Test personnel will know and the vehicle will not pass inspection.
- If your vehicle is misfiring when it is idling, make sure to get this addressed before taking the test
- If a vehicle’s battery is brand new, drive the vehicle for a couple of days before taking it to get an On Board Diagnostics test so as to allow the OBD system to reset
- Make sure the vehicle’s oil is not dirty. Get the oil changed on a routine basis
- Maintain the recommended air pressure in your vehicle’s tires
- Inspect your vehicle’s hoses and belts for wear. Get them replaced if necessary
- Get any mechanical issues with your vehicle’s transmission address and fixed. Transmissions problems can affect your vehicle’s emissions and cause your vehicle to fail its test.
- If your motor vehicle’s emissions system has a mechanical issue, check your manufacturer’s warranty. Federal law states emissions systems on vehicles made in the 1995 and newer model years must have their emissions systems warrantied for two years or 24,000 miles.
- If the OBDII diagnostic system or catalytic converter on your vehicle made in the 1995 model year or newer has a mechanical issue, check your vehicle’s manufacturer’s warranty also. Federal regulation states these vehicles must have a warranty on their OBDII and catalytic converters for eight years or 80,000 miles.
Find Smog Check Stations Near Me
To stay in compliance of the State of Maine’s smog check requirements, Maine-registered drivers required to get their vehicle’s to pass a vehicle emissions test can check out our DMV & Emissions Testing Locations in Maine pages below to find a DMV office or testing location in your area.
Smog Check Stations in Portland, Maine
The city of Portland, in Cumberland County, Maine, has a population of 67,000 and is the biggest city in Maine. Maine-registered drivers with vehicles that require testing, and living in or around Portland must get their vehicles to pass an emissions inspection. Check out our DMV & Emissions Testing Locations in Portland, Maine page to find a DMV office or testing location in your area.
Smog Check Stations in South Portland, Maine
The city of South Portland, part of Cumberland County, Maine, has a population of 25,000. Maine-registered drivers with vehicles that require testing, and living in South Portland area may have to get their vehicles to pass an emissions inspection. Check out our DMV & Emissions Testing Locations in South Portland, Maine page to find a DMV office or testing location in your area.
Smog Check Stations in Westbrook, Maine
The city of Westbrook, in Cumberland County, Maine, has a population of 18,000 and is a suburb of Maine. Maine-registered drivers with vehicles that require testing, and living in or around Cumberland county may have to get their vehicles to pass an emissions inspection. Check out our DMV & Emissions Testing Locations in Westbrook, Maine page to find a DMV office or testing location in your area.