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NYS Motor Vehicle Inspection and Maintenance (I/M) Programs

Information Sheet

NYS' motor vehicle inspection and maintenance (I/M) programs are jointly administered by the Departments of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Motor Vehicles (DMV). As the result of different air quality designations across the state and federal I/M regulation, NYS has been geographically divided into two "I/M areas." The downstate New York Metropolitan Area (NYMA) is comprised of nine counties; Suffolk (except Fisher's Island), Nassau, Kings, Queens, Richmond, New York, Bronx, Westchester and Rockland. The remaining 53 counties of NYS comprise the "Upstate I/M area."

DEC Regulations

DEC is responsible for ensuring that inspection stations are in compliance with Regulations under 6 NYCRR Part 217 and that the equipment and software utilized for the tests are approved and certified. DEC monitors the program to ensure that standards are proper to achieve the emission reductions needed to fulfill the federal requirements, and initiates changes to the state regulations in response to changes in the federal requirements or issues raised by the public or the legislature.

New York Vehicle Inspection Program (NYVIP)

NYVIP is a statewide program that was initially phased into the Upstate I/M area during 2004 and later expanded into NYMA in 2005. NYVIP features on-board diagnostic (OBD II) inspections. OBD II is a computer system designed by vehicle manufacturers to monitor the operation of the vehicle's power train and associated emissions control systems. Most light-duty vehicles (passenger cars, and most SUVs, vans, and light-duty pick-up trucks) beginning with the 1996 model year are equipped with standardized OBD II computer systems. If the OBD II system detects a problem that could result in excessive emissions, the malfunction indicator light ("MIL" or "Check Engine light") located on the dashboard will illuminate to inform the driver of a detected fault code. The NYVIP OBD II inspection pass/fail criteria are based on proper MIL function and on electronic data collected from the vehicle's on-board computer.

Heavy Duty Diesel Vehicle Program (HDDV)

Heavy duty diesel vehicles (HDDVs) are those on-road diesel-powered vehicles greater than 8,500 pounds gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR). HDDVs registered within NYMA are required to have an annual emissions inspection, which includes a tailpipe opacity test. HDDVs operating on any NYS public roadway are also subject to a roadside emissions inspection.

Test Frequency

Both NYVIP and HDDV I/M programs require annual inspections and at change of vehicle ownership.

Annual Emissions Testing Exemptions


a) Electric powered vehicles, motorcycles, vehicles with historic and farm registrations;
b) Diesel-powered vehicles ≥8,501 lbs GVWR registered Upstate;
(Note: Beginning on July 1, 2012, all applicable light-duty diesel vehicles, model years 1997 and newer, became subject to statewide NYVIP OBD II inspections.)

For NYVIP Only:

c) Vehicles older than 25 model years old (For example, during calendar year 2012, vehicles model year 1987 and older are exempt from emissions testing).
d) Vehicles less than 2 model years old (For example, during calendar year 2012, model years 2011 and 2012 are exempt from emissions testing) (Note that most vehicles exempt from emissions testing are still subject to the annual safety inspection requirements.)

Test Types/NYMA

    • Non-diesel vehicles model year 1996 and newer and ≤8,500 lbs GVWR.
    • Diesel vehicles model year 1997 and newer and ≤8,500 lbs GVWR.
  • NYVIP Low Enhanced: Gas cap presence and Anti-tampering visual checks for:
    • Non-exempt vehicles, 25 model years old to Model Year 1995, up to 18,000 lbs. GVWR.
    • Non-exempt vehicles, model year 1996 and newer, between 8,501 pounds 18,000 pounds GVWR.
  • Heavy-Duty Diesel Opacity Test: Diesel-powered vehicles >8,500 lbs.
  • The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission requires safety and OBD II inspections of applicable yellow medallion taxicabs and for-hire vehicles.

Test Types/Upstate

    • Non-diesel vehicles model year 1996 and newer and ≤8,500 lbs GVWR.
    • Diesel vehicles model year 1997 and newer and ≤8,500 lbs GVWR.
  • NYVIP Low Enhanced: Gas cap presence and anti-tampering visual checks for:
    • Non-exempt vehicles, 25 model years old to Model Year 1995, up to 18,000 lbs. GVWR.
    • Non-exempt vehicles, model year 1996 and newer, between 8,501 pounds to 18,000 pounds GVWR.

Test Fees (do not include safety inspection fees)

  • NYMA:
    • NYVIP OBD II - $27.00, NYVIP low enhanced - $11.00
    • Heavy-duty Diesel - $25.00
  • Upstate:
    • NYVIP OBD II - $11.00, NYVIP low enhanced - $11.00

Additional re-inspection fees may apply to vehicles that fail. These fees vary depending on the re-inspection requirements.

Enforcement Type

New York has adopted both on-road enforcement (inspection stickers) and registration-based denial. HDDVs operating on public roadways are subject to a roadside emissions inspection by certified NYSDEC officials. HDDVs found in violation are subject to penalties as noted in Subpart 217-5.


NYVIP allows for a repair expenditure waiver of the emissions inspection for failing OBD II inspections. Documented costs must exceed $450 for qualifying repairs following the initial failed inspection. Additional information can be found on our Onboard Diagnostics page.

For HDDV inspections, minimum hardship waiver repair costs are established in Subpart 217-5 based on vehicle GVWR.

I/M Test Data

DEC stores all emissions data from the OBD II inspections in a database. Inspection data is analyzed and reported as necessary to comply with US EPA guidelines. The Department also analyzes data to assess overall impacts of the program on air quality, costs to motorists, and identifying problem vehicles.

Quality Assurance

I/M program data is subject to quality assurance checks to ensure that approved testing procedures are applied and that I/M data is valid. The Department periodically reviews test methods and equipment to assure that they meet accepted quality standards.

More about NYS Motor Vehicle Inspection and Maintenance (I/M) Programs:

  • Inspection/Maintenance Programs in NYS - Frequently Asked Questions - Additional DEC information is provided based on questions received from the general public.
  • Onboard Diagnostics - A vehicle's Onboard Diagnostic (OBD) system is diagnostic software controlled by the vehicle's onboard computer. OBD alerts the motorist when an emission related fault is encountered, and provides valuable information to assist in emissions-related repair. OBD is also a required emissions test for applicable vehicles.
  • Enhanced I/M Program Reports - summaries of emission inspection data, quality assurance/quality control measures, and program enforcement.
  • Important Links
  • Links Leaving DEC's Website
  • Contact for this Page
    Division of Air Resources
    Inspection & Maintenance
    625 Broadway
    Albany, NY 12233-3255
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