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

The state of Oregon does not require that vehicles be inspected for safety or emissions to be operated legally; however, the cities of Portland and Medford do require emissions testing to be performed on the certain vehicles. Additionally, most counties in Oregon require that all vehicles being registered for the first time have an emissions test. For mechanics seeking an automotive technician job an excellent way to build a resume of valuable skills is to seek out an inspection certification. In the state of Oregon, inspections are provided by the Department of Environmental Quality.

Oregon mobile vehicle inspectors

In Oregon, automotive service technicians do not perform smog checks; instead, agents from the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) come to repair facilities, fleet garages, and dealerships to perform testing. In most cases, an auto service technician should apply with the state to become an employee of the DEQ in order to perform emissions tests.

The DEQ does recognize certain repair shops in Portland that have the authority to perform repairs on vehicles that have failed a smog test. If a mechanic who is ASE certified works at one of these facilities, they can perform emissions related repairs for vehicles that have failed an emissions tests. They cannot perform the emissions inspections necessary for registration.

Oregon vehicle inspection requirements

The following types of vehicles are required to undergo emission inspections during the vehicle registration and renewal process:

  • All vehicles newer than 1975 in Portland.

  • All vehicles newer than 20 years old in Medford.

  • All gasoline-powered vehicles in both areas, including cars, trucks, vans, motor homes, buses, and hybrids.

  • All diesel-powered vehicles under 8,500 pounds are included in these requirements, for both areas.

Emission inspection procedures

The Department of Environmental Quality uses the OBD-II test for all vehicles newer than 1996, as well as a tailpipe emissions test for all vehicles new than model year 1995. These two tests can determine if a vehicle is releasing too much pollution into the atmosphere.

While DEQ representatives and authorized smog check facilities typically perform smog checks, there are some self-service kiosks around the areas where smog checks are required. Vehicle owners can perform the smog check themselves at these stations if they prefer, and the garage owner where the kiosk is located may be called upon to assist.

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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