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How to Go Through an FL (Florida) Car Inspection?

  • Car Registration
  • Melanie Barrett
  • 5 minutes

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If you are a Florida resident and own a car, then make sure you take your car for an FL car inspection regularly. As long as you stay in Florida, it is your responsibility to ensure that your car is safe for use and that you adhere to the rules and regulations. A car inspection is a process that assures the safety of drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. 

An FL car inspection is mandatory to prove your car is roadworthy and safe. Hence, understanding the process of inspection and going through it is crucial. Here’s what you need to know about your car inspection in Florida. 

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How to Go Through an FL Car Inspection?

Need for an FL car inspection 

You’ll have to take your car for an FL car inspection whenever you buy a car from within or outside Florida. This inspection aims to prove that your car is safe to drive with all the necessary documents in place. Another reason an inspection is compulsory is to double-check the car’s internal parts and, if any, need a replacement. 

Also, you may not notice when the documents such as emission certificates, safety standards, and equipment validity expire. Remember that whenever you take your car for an FL car inspection, you bring the necessary documents and understand the laws and the restrictions. 

Process of an FL car inspection 

The FL car inspection takes place through many stages. Here’s the process in detail: 

Equipment standard check 

While you go through an equipment standard check, the vehicle inspector checks the quality of your car equipment and whether they’re safe to use. The main parameters of an equipment standard check are your car brakes, the braking light, and the distance.  

Your car brakes must function well while driving uphill, downhill, and while pulling aside for emergencies. Also, see that your car brakes are in good condition and always work well. 

Then, check the car lights. Also, thoroughly check the bright, dim, white, and red lights before taking your car for an inspection. All the lights must be visible 1000 feet ahead of the distance, except the red ones. The red lights must be visible from 600 to 1000 feet ahead. 

Other equipment checks 

The other equipment you’ll need to check for an FL car inspection. This equipment includes the horn, windshields, windows, wipers, mirrors, indicators, and tires. 

If you notice squeaky brakes, dirty or faulty lights, dirty windows, and window shields, repair them immediately. Missing out on checking this car equipment means your driving is risky and can lead to accidents. Also, before the inspection, clean the equipment and replace the faulty ones quickly. 

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Documents you’ll need to carry for an FL car inspection 

If you’re getting ready for an FL car inspection, make sure to carry the following documents: 

  • Firstly, make sure to carry a photo ID for verification. 
  • Also, keep proof of ownership to prove that the car belongs to you. 
  • Finally, see to it that the insurance documents are current and valid. 

Equipment not permitted for an FL car inspection 

The following equipment is not allowed for your cars during an FL car inspection: 

  • Emergency lights unless you have prior permission. 
  • Sirens. 
  • Stickers, boards, and posters unless it is an emergency. 
  • Screens other than one for rear view. 
  • Extra lights are other than fog lights, fender lights, and tail lights. 
  • You must not use earphones or headphones during driving or a car inspection. 

Cost of the FL car inspection

There is no preset cost for an FL car inspection as such. Mostly, you can go for a free car inspection. In other rare cases, you’ll have to pay a nominal amount of $150 if you inspect a car with Florida registration in another state. 

FL car inspection laws you should know

Here are some of the FL car inspection laws you must keep in mind before you go ahead with the process: 

  • Drivers with low-emission vehicles must have a windshield sticker. These stickers are available at the Florida Tax Collector’s office. It may cost you $5 to get these stickers for a year. 
  • Drivers in Florida must drive with all equipment of the car in place. You must also make sure that the equipment must not old. 
  • Gas-emission cars in Florida must not emit more than 5 seconds of visible emissions. According to the state car inspection laws, it is illegal to have excessive emissions. This law ensures that the car you use is eco-friendly. 
  • The bumper of your car should not be beyond the recommended height. The bumper should be 27 to 29 inches for cars weighing 3500 pounds and above. 
  • Also, cars weighing between 2000 to 3500 pounds should have a bumper height of 24 to 26 inches. 
  • Similarly, cars weighing more than 3500 must have a bumper height of 28 to 30 inches. 


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