How to Become a Certified Mobile Vehicle Inspector (State Car Inspector Certified) in Arizona

The state of Arizona does have a state-wide requirement that all motor vehicles pass a vehicle safety inspection; however, Phoenix and Tucson require emissions inspections in order to operate vehicles legally. The Vehicle Emissions Inspection Program is run by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ). Seeking out the ADEQ to become a certified inspection technician can offer those seeking an automotive technician job an excellent way to build their resume.

Arizona vehicle inspector information

In order to become a vehicle inspector in Arizona, a technician must contact the ADEQ and apply to become part of the department. They must also operate in a department-certified repair facility.

Many technicians want to know how becoming certified to inspect vehicles may affect their auto mechanic salary. We compared the average yearly salary of a smog technician, or emissions inspector, with the average yearly salary of a mobile mechanic, such as our team at YourMechanic:

Arizona vehicle inspection requirements

If a vehicle is newer than model year 1967, but older than six years old, and is regularly used for commuting in Phoenix or Tucson, the vehicle will typically have to undergo emissions testing. This includes gasoline-powered vehicles, diesel-powered vehicles, alternative fuel, flex-fuel, and hybrid vehicles.

Emissions inspections are required every one to two years, depending on the vehicle’s year and weight. Light duty vehicles in Phoenix that are newer than 1981 must be tested every two years; vehicles that are older than 1980, or vehicles in the Tucson area, must be tested every year.

Arizona vehicle inspection procedure

The state of Arizona mostly uses the OBD-II system to test for emissions. If a vehicle fails an emissions test due to a faulty component, anyone can perform the repairs. There is no necessary certification to repair smog components in the state of Arizona. There are four types of tests that may be used during the emissions testing process:

  • IM 147: Used for gasoline-powered vehicles made from 1981 to 1995.

  • Steady State Loaded or Idle test: Used for heavy-duty gasoline vehicles made from 1967 to 1995.

  • OBD test: Used for most vehicles, especially those made after 1996.

  • Diesel-specific testing: Diesel tests involve the use of an opacity meter to check the smoke density from the emissions system.

If you’re already a certified mechanic and you’re interested in working with YourMechanic, submit an online application for an opportunity to become a mobile mechanic.


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Kenneth

20 years of experience
649 reviews
Kenneth
20 years of experience
Volkswagen Passat - Oil Change - Venice, California
Kenneth was engaging, informative, and knowledgeable. He didn't perform one of the requested services because he said it was unnecessary, saving me money and time. 10/10 would and will hire him again.
Land Rover Discovery Sport - Oil Change - Los Angeles, California
Kenneth was on time (on Thanksgiving no less!) and got the work done in a timely fashion. Highly recommended.

Pierre

9 years of experience
183 reviews
Pierre
9 years of experience
Honda Civic - Oil Change - Boston, Massachusetts
My first time using this service and Pierre was awesome! He put my mind at ease and I will definitely be a repeat customer!
Toyota Highlander - Oil Change - Auburndale, Massachusetts
Great mechanic. Made everything easy - showed up right on time, was nice and polite, and did exactly what I needed on the car. Will keep working with Pierre in the future for sure.

Josh

16 years of experience
60 reviews
Josh
16 years of experience
Dodge Grand Caravan - Oil Change - Naples, Florida
He came, did the job quickly and let me know what is needed to keep my van running at its optimal level.
Ford Thunderbird - Oil Change - Naples, Florida
Josh was on time, stayed until he completed the job, very knowledgable. He pointed out that the also need a oil change, came back and completed that job. Very nice young man.

Rodney

36 years of experience
442 reviews
Rodney
36 years of experience
Porsche 718 Boxster - Oil Change - Rancho Cordova, California
Rodney was knowledgeable and professional! Changed the oil in my 2019 Porsche (which is not an easy task.) I am already recommending him to others.

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