Vehicle emission test notices halted

IEPA-logoThe Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (Illinois EPA) and the Illinois Secretary of State’s office today announced temporary policy changes regarding vehicle emission test notification and vehicle renewal procedures.

Due to the budget impasse, Illinois EPA was forced to suspend the mailing of vehicle emissions test notices beginning in December 2015. Vehicle owners whose license plates expire at the end of March 2016 will be the first motorists who will not receive the vehicle emissions test notice.

As a result, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White announced that he will temporarily allow license plate renewals for vehicle owners who have not yet taken the EPA emissions test, citing an unfair burden to Illinois citizens. Motorists may renew their license plates, but will be informed they are still required to get the vehicle tested. White also noted that when Illinois EPA resumes mailing out vehicle emissions test notices to the public, his office will resume regular vehicle registration procedures.

Vehicles subject to testing in 2016 include most even model-year vehicles with a model-year of 1996-2012. Generally, most 1996 and newer gasoline-powered passenger vehicles are subject to testing after they are four years old. 2007 model year and newer heavy duty trucks, with a manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) between 8,501 and 14,000 are also subject to testing. Diesel powered vehicles, vehicles powered exclusively by electricity, and certain other vehicles are not required to test. Illinois EPA has an exempt vehicle list available on the Agency website. In addition, some ZIP codes in Kane, Kendall, McHenry, Will, Madison, Monroe and St. Clair counties are also exempt from testing.

The Illinois Secretary of State’s Office offers paperless License Plates Renewal Notices via email to individuals who register at Electronic notices include a statement as to whether compliance with the Vehicle Emissions Inspection Law is required before a vehicle’s registration can be renewed.

Illinois EPA is committed to working with affected motorists to ensure they are well informed of their testing date and answering any questions they may have regarding emissions testing. Information has been posted on the Agency website at to note that vehicle emissions test notices are no longer being sent by mail. Motorists in the testing area are encouraged to use the Illinois Secretary of State online tool at to determine whether a vehicle is due for emissions testing. Motorists in the testing areas may also contact Illinois EPA at 847-758-3400 or 800-635-2380 for additional assistance.