Tennessee – General Emissions Information

Last updated on March 16th, 2021

Tennessee Emissions Laws

When you live in Tennessee and find that it is time to renew your vehicle registration, you will learn that the state participates in an emission testing program. This testing helps to improve the air quality of the state and will fill you in on the details of your car so that you will know if you need to make any repairs to it.

This is not just beneficial for the state, but it is beneficial to you as well. When your vehicle burns fuel, it is more likely that it will burn more of it if there are issues that need to be repaired. This can be a major problem because of the rising gas prices.

Emissions Testing

In order to determine if you are required to have a Tennessee emissions test, you will need to examine where you live. There are many locations in the state that require Tennessee emissions testing before you’re able to gain a registration or renew your registration.

If your vehicle runs on gas or is a diesel fuel vehicle that weighs less than 10,500 pounds and is newer than 1975, you will need to have a Tennessee emissions test if you live in the following counties:

  • Davidson
  • Shelby
  • Hamilton
  • Rutherford
  • Sumner
  • Williamson
  • Wilson

Those who are registered in Memphis will also be required to undergo emissions testing before they are able to register their vehicles or renew the registration.

Every county in Tennessee that requires testing offers at least one station where you can have your vehicle tested. You can review the list online so that you know exactly where to go. The fee for the test is nine dollars and you must pay in cash.

The test itself is valid for 90 days and you will need to have your vehicle registered during this timeframe. Emissions test are required every year and can help cut down on the smog and emissions that are created by our vehicles.

Exemptions and Failures

There are some exemptions when it comes to emissions testing in Tennessee. For example, if you drive a motorcycle, electric car, or are temporarily out of state, you can file for an exemption or a temporary exemption.

If you have failed the test, you will be able to set up a free diagnostic so that your mechanic will be able to see exactly what needs to be repaired in order for you to pass the test. After these repairs are made, you will need to retest your vehicle to make sure that it remains in compliance with the law.


If you believe that someone is polluting the air, there is something that you can do to help the situation. There is a program that allows you to report gross polluters to the state of Tennessee. You will need to contact the division of air pollution control so that the situation can be taken care of.

The air quality in Tennessee is a serious issue and we all need to work together to make sure that it is maintained at a healthy level. This is the best way to keep everyone healthy and our air quality at a level that can make the state proud.

Find Smog Check Stations Near Me

To stay in compliance with the State of Tennessee’s smog check requirements, Tennessee-registered drivers must get their vehicles to pass a vehicle emissions test if they live in certain regions of the state. Check out our DMV & Emissions Testing Locations in Tennessee pages below to find a DMV office or testing location in your area.

Filed under: Tennessee, Articles, State Emissions Testing

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