Performing a State Inspection

Pennsylvania State Inspection Checklist: Performing a State Inspection

Pennsylvania State Inspection Checklist: Performing a State Inspection

Ready to be on the other side of a Pennsylvania vehicle safety inspection? These inspections are performed at official PennDOT Inspection Stations each day, with inspectors checking vehicles to ensure they’re ready for the road.

It may be a tradition Exton and Warminster motorists would like to see disappear, but that’s certainly no guarantee any time soon. At Automotive Training Center, you can enroll in certification courses which prepare you for these all-important inspections.

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What Does a PA State Inspection Cover?

Knowing what an inspector is looking for can be a big help, because you can review some of these things prior to an inspection. PA vehicle inspectors are certified to:

  • PA State Inspection LawsCompare registration against Vehicle Information Number (VIN) and other records.
  • Make a visual anti-tampering check to see if required emissions parts have been altered or removed.
  • Test windshield wipers, horns and warning lights, suspension components and steering, braking and fuel systems, tires and wheels, windows and mirrors, speedometer, seatbelts, and safety equipment.
  • Inspect body and chassis for rust and leaks.
  • Check anything that appears to put the vehicle and driver at risk.

With a PA state inspection, there are very few check points that receive a simple “yes” or “no.” For example, steering, exhaust systems, and brakes are all tested for a range of acceptability. If the vehicle is lowered but within the range of acceptability, it can be approved with a caution to have it fixed in the near future.

Things Inspectors Look For

Inspectors aren’t looking for reasons to fail your vehicle, and of course, the large majority of vehicles do pass inspection and emissions tests. So, what are some things that will tip off inspectors?

  • Check Engine Light PA State InspectionIf the check engine light is on or not operating, the vehicle will fail inspection
  • Rearview, passenger sideview, and driver sideview mirrors must not be cracked, and if they are, they must be replaced with new or used mirrors.
  • If the windshield is cracked on the driver’s side, and the crack is large, it must be replaced. This can be an obvious safety hazard if not properly repaired.
  • All exterior lights, including headlights, taillights, and turn signals, must be fully operational. If a bulb is blown out, it will need to be replaced.

These are just a few of the things inspectors look for on their own inspection checklists.

Completing a PA Auto Inspection

Given how complicated and technologically advanced vehicles are today, completing a thorough inspection takes more time than it used to. There used to be a time when any auto technician could look at a car, but parts and systems have become more complex.

It takes a specific certification, which must be held before you can legally approve a car for the roadways. If you’re looking for more automotive checklists, check out our free eBook, the Automotive Training Center Diesel Emissions Checklist.

Contact us at our Exton or Warminster locations to learn more about our ATC certification inspection programs today!

If you’re looking for more auto checklists, download our free ebook, The ATC Diesel Emissions Checklist.

Diesel Emissions

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