Auto Loan Guide Vehicle What Will Fail a Car Inspection in Ma

What Will Fail a Car Inspection in Ma


What Will Fail a Car Inspection in MA?

Car inspections are a necessary part of vehicle ownership in many states, including Massachusetts. They are designed to ensure that vehicles on the road are safe and meet certain emissions standards. Failure to pass a car inspection can result in fines, penalties, and even the inability to legally drive your vehicle. In this article, we will discuss the common reasons for failing a car inspection in MA, as well as answer some frequently asked questions about the process.

Common Reasons for Failing a Car Inspection in MA:

1. Brake Issues: One of the most common reasons for failing a car inspection in MA is brake problems. This includes worn brake pads, leaking brake fluid, or malfunctioning brake lights. A vehicle with faulty brakes poses a significant safety risk and will not pass inspection.

2. Exhaust System Problems: Another common reason for failing a car inspection is issues with the exhaust system. This can include a damaged or missing catalytic converter, a leaking exhaust pipe, or excessive emissions. MA has strict emissions standards, and any vehicle that does not meet these standards will fail inspection.

3. Suspension and Steering: Vehicles with worn or damaged suspension and steering components will not pass inspection. This includes issues such as broken springs, leaking shock absorbers, or loose steering components. A properly functioning suspension and steering system is crucial for safe driving.

4. Faulty Lights: Non-functioning or improperly aimed headlights, taillights, brake lights, and turn signals can cause a vehicle to fail inspection. It is important to regularly check and replace any bulbs that are not working properly to avoid failing the inspection.

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5. Safety Equipment: Vehicles in MA must have certain safety equipment, such as working windshield wipers, functional horn, and proper seatbelts. If any of these safety features are not in good working condition, the vehicle will not pass inspection.

6. Tire Issues: Worn-out tires, tires with insufficient tread depth, or mismatched tires can all cause a vehicle to fail inspection. It is important to regularly inspect your tires and replace them when necessary to ensure they meet the required standards.

7. Check Engine Light: If the check engine light is illuminated on your dashboard, your vehicle will automatically fail inspection. This is because the check engine light indicates a potential issue with the vehicle’s emissions or other important systems.


Q: How often do I need to get my car inspected in MA?

A: In Massachusetts, vehicles must undergo an annual safety inspection. However, newly registered vehicles are exempt from inspection for the first 7 years.

Q: How long does a car inspection in MA take?

A: The duration of a car inspection can vary depending on the specific inspection station and the condition of the vehicle. On average, it takes about 30 minutes to an hour.

Q: Can I drive my car if it fails inspection?

A: If your vehicle fails inspection, you will be given a rejection sticker. You have 60 days to repair the issues and get your vehicle re-inspected. During this time, you are allowed to drive your vehicle.

Q: Can I get a ticket for driving with an expired inspection sticker?

A: Yes, driving with an expired inspection sticker is a traffic violation in Massachusetts. You can receive a ticket and be subject to fines or penalties.

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Q: Can I go to any inspection station in MA?

A: No, you must go to a licensed inspection station in Massachusetts. These stations are authorized by the Registry of Motor Vehicles to perform inspections.

In conclusion, there are several common reasons for failing a car inspection in MA, including brake issues, exhaust system problems, suspension and steering problems, faulty lights, safety equipment deficiencies, tire issues, and a lit check engine light. It is important to address these issues promptly to ensure the safety of your vehicle and avoid penalties. Remember to stay up to date with your annual inspections to comply with Massachusetts laws and regulations.

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