How to Get Smog Technician Certified in New York

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The state of New York requires that most vehicles, with a few exceptions, must get a smog check, or an emissions test, at the same time as the regular safety inspection during the registration process. Only certified inspectors, working at state licensed inspection stations, may perform smog checks. Certifications are awarded by the state, and can offer those seeking an automotive technician job an excellent way to build their resume.

New York smog check inspector qualifications

The certification for providing smog checks is the same as the certification required to perform standard safety inspections. In order to provide smog checks in the state of New York, an applicant who is at least 17 years of age must submit an application to the Department of Motor Vehicles. This applicant must meet one of the following qualifications:

  • They must have a high school, vocational school, or college certificate from an automotive technician study program. This can be a diploma in vocational automotive trades, or a certificate of completion showing at least one year completed in an associate’s degree.

Or:

  • They must have at least one year of experience repairing motor vehicles; this one year must have occurred within the past five years, and must have taken place in an approved study program through an auto mechanic school, or a firm in the automotive industry.

There is an application fee of $25, which covers both the non-refundable $10 fee, and the $15 three-year certification fee. All applicants must pass a written exam and score at least a 70%.

Licensed vehicle inspectors may inspect vehicles at any state licensed inspection station, which may include garages, transportation companies, or dealerships, for both safety and emissions.

New York smog check exam

The exam given for smog checks is the same as the standard inspection exam, and is made up of three groups of questions, which each cover different parts of the vehicle inspection process. Each part contains all that is necessary to perform smog checks on vehicles in all classes, including motorcycles, passenger vehicles and trailers rated under 18,000 pounds, and vehicles and semi-trailers rated over 18,000 pounds.

New York vehicle inspection requirements

Only the following vehicles are exempt from emissions tests:

  • Motorcycles
  • Vehicles with historical plates
  • Vehicles less than two years old or more than 25 years’ old
  • Electric-powered vehicles
  • Diesel powered vehicles that are older than 1997 and have a GVRW of more than 8,500 pounds
  • Vehicles that are subject to the heavy vehicle safety inspection

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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Michael

15 years of experience
518 reviews
Michael
15 years of experience
Mercedes-Benz GL450 - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Atlanta, Georgia
Micheal was punctual and friendly. Work was completed within promised time. Will definitely use again.
Volvo S80 - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Roswell, Georgia
Michael was SUPER QUICK with doing my brake and rotors. Great communication throughout the whole process. Will always recommend

Kenneth

19 years of experience
509 reviews
Kenneth
19 years of experience
Toyota Sequoia - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Newport Beach, California
Kenneth did a great job and very knowledgeable. He has a great attitude and I will for sure be using him again.

Chuy

13 years of experience
129 reviews
Chuy
13 years of experience
Honda Civic - Brake Pads Replacement (Front, Rear) - Cicero, Illinois
Excellent work on doing the breaks for my car and the break and steering system flush I’ll definitely recommend and take into consideration for chuy’s work whenever I need a fix on my car

Richard

16 years of experience
72 reviews
Richard
16 years of experience
BMW 328i - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Dublin, California
Richard was an outstanding mechanic. After he arrived, the first thing he did after taking the initial pictures of the car is an assessment into what work was asked. He quickly verified that I did not need brake fluid and my front brakes even-though it affects his personal commitments and time, which I think is highly appreciate and thorough professional. He was detailed oriented - took time to make sure that all the issue are fixed. He paid attention to detail in overall car assessment- he goes above and beyond. He was also teaching me through the process which I found highly educational and appreciate him providing the information ensuring and making me comfortable what he was doing and explaining patiently all the questions that was thrown at him. When he works - you know he's highly skilled and experienced and knows his stuff. He is highly experienced. He is a "Master" mechanic in true sense :)

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