General Inspection Requirements

​​All vehicles, (including motorcycles), trailers, semi-trailers and pole trailers registered in West Virginia or displaying thereon a temporary registration plate or marker, or required to be registered in West Virginia must be inspected and a valid certificate of inspection affixed to same before they may be operated on or over the public streets and/or highways of the State of West Virginia, except vehicles classified and registered as Class "R" (house trailer), Class "S" (special), Class "T" (trailers less than 2,000 lbs. GVWR), Antique vehicles as described in 17A -10-3a of the Code of West Virginia with special note regarding antique vehicles in that antique vehicle displaying actual license plates of the same year as the antique vehicle which is further described in 17A-10-3a must be inspected, and further exception requiring inspection being granted to NEW VEHICLE dealers as stated in WV Code 17C-16-9.

The responsibility to ensure that a vehicle has current inspection certificate shall be the purchaser of the vehicle.

If a purchaser obtains the vehicle in the State of West Virginia, they have ten (10) days from the date of purchase to obtain a certificate of inspection. If a purchaser obtains the vehicle from outside the State of West Virginia, they have ten (10) days from the date of purchase to obtain a certificate of inspection.

Residents who have been out of the State of West Virginia for over thirty (30) days continuously, and their current certificate of inspection has expired while out of state, they have ten (10) days to obtain a current certificate of inspection upon their return.

The following list of states now have reciprocity with West Virginia:

1. Utah
2. Texas
3. Louisiana
4. Mississippi
5. New Hampshire
6. Oklahoma
7. Missouri
8. New York

WARNING: ​This list is subject to change and you will be advised in writing of all additions or corrections to this list.

1. Any vehicle which has had the inspection certificate stolen, removed, mutilated or otherwise altered or destroyed, must have a new inspection completed and a current certificate issued. There will not be any duplicate stickers issued.

2. Whenever a vehicle is presented for inspection, it must be either approved or rejected.

3. Each inspection shall be a complete inspection and shall include a check of all the items in these rules and regulations; except a re-inspection of a rejected vehicle by the same station within five (5) days of rejection need include only a check of the items previously found defective.

4. All inspections must be made at the place or places approved by the Superintendent of the West Virginia State Police.

5. No mechanic shall act in the capacity of an inspector mechanic until he has attended the Inspector Mechanic's Training Program, successfully passed the examination required by the West Virginia State Police and has been issued a card designating him as an inspector mechanic. An inspector mechanic may be re-tested at any time, upon notification by the West Virginia State Police.

The identification card will be made available for verification to members of the West Virginia State Police when so requested.

This card and privilege may be recalled by the Superintendent of the West Virginia State Police for an infraction or violation of the rules and regulations governing the inspection of vehicles.

6. A fee of no more than fourteen dollars plus sixty-six cents sales tax may be charged for an inspection and the issuance of the certificate of inspection. Eleven dollars labor plus sales tax for labor, plus three dollars for certificate.

7. When a vehicle is presented for annual inspection, the vehicle title, bill of origin, notarized bill of sale, valid certificate of registration, or valid temporary certificate will be compared to the vehicle identification number found on the vehicle. The inspector mechanic will also verify current insurance coverage. If these items are found to be proper, the appropriate information will be entered onto Form DPS-MVI-5 or DPS-MVI-5A (Approved Automobile Log Sheet or Approved Motorcycle/Trailer Log Sheet). The old approval sticker will be removed before further inspection will be made.

8. Official inspection stations shall be open for inspections at least eight (8) hours of each normal business day, with a certified inspector mechanic on duty. All official inspection stations shall be able to perform inspections twelve months of the year. A normal business day would be a day in a normal business week, Monday through Friday inclusive.

9. When a vehicle is rejected, only one rejection sticker shall be issued before vehicle is approved. On a vehicle that has been rejected and displays a rejection sticker, the sticker shall not be removed until the inspection is complete. The vehicle should have been legally delivered to the station by means of legal registration, one trip permit or legally hauled.


10. The "Certificate of Appointment" will be framed under glass and posted at the point of inspection.

11. All inspection supplies (unused stickers, bulletins and other forms), must be safeguarded against loss. All losses of stickers must be reported at once to the area supervisor of the West Virginia State Police, Traffic Records Section, at South Charleston in writing. Every precaution against the loss of stickers must be taken. If the loss occurs through carelessness or neglect, a suspension of station certificate may result. No refund will be made for stickers lost or stolen.

12. Station supplies issued to an inspection station can be used only by that station and are not to be loaned or re-issued to any other station.

13. Appointed stations will keep sufficient inspection supplies on hand to meet their needs. This will include certificate of approval (stickers) for vehicle, trailer and motorcycle. Request for additional supplies are to be made to the West Virginia State Police, Traffic Records Section, 701 Jefferson Road, South Charleston, West Virginia 25309-1698.

14. Vehicles bearing out-of-state registration are exempt from inspection requirements, but may be inspected upon request of owner. Such vehicles inspected shall not be issued a certificate of approval (sticker) unless they meet West Virginia standards.

15. Fleet stations may inspect only vehicles registered in name of company or vehicles under lease to that particular company.

16. All vehicles operated under a dealer's permit must be inspected, approved and have affixed to the windshield thereof a valid West Virginia certificate of inspection (sticker) before being operated on the
streets or highways, except those new vehicles expressly exempted by West Virginia Code, Chapter 17C, Article 16, Section 9.

17. IMPORTANT - Any change in ownership or in location of an official inspection station cancels the appointment of that station and the West Virginia State Police, Traffic Records Section and the area supervisor must be notified in writing.

18. Reports of violations of the inspection law of these rules and regulations will be investigated and, if found to be justified, will result in the suspension of the station inspection certificate.

19. Any vehicle which fails to meet the requirements for approval will be issued a rejection sticker by the inspector mechanic. Such rejections will be recorded on the MVI-5 (log sheet) or MVI-5A. (IMPORTANT) - Only one (1) rejection sticker can be issued to a vehicle no matter how many stations inspect a vehicle. If a station has issued a rejection sticker to a vehicle, and the vehicle is taken to another station for inspection, the rejection sticker will be removed only if the vehicle passes inspection.

20. When a station has been suspended or voluntarily canceled, it must release to a member of the West Virginia State Police all inspection supplies, posters, inspection stickers and certificate of appointment.

21. Any vehicle that has been raised in altitude as described in WV Code 17C-15-48, must undergo a modified vehicle inspection. Refer to Official Modified Vehicle Inspection Manual for these requirements.

22. No more than 18 vehicle inspections may be conducted by any one inspector mechanic per day.

23. The walk-in window at the West Virginia State Police Headquarters, 701 Jefferson Road, South Charleston, West Virginia, is open Monday through Friday between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. to purchase inspection stickers. NO OTHER TIME WILL BE ALLOTTED FOR WALK-IN PURCHASES.