What You Have to Know About Inspections | North Baltimore, MD | AutoStream Car Care Center

The What and Why of Vehicle Inspection

All the Nitty Gritty Details

Maryland requires that your vehicle be inspected before it can be registered to you in our state. If you’ve just moved to Maryland, welcome! You can drive legally in a vehicle registered elsewhere for up to 60 days. By the end of that time, you are expected to have obtained the inspection and registered the car, truck, or trailer in Maryland. Also, if you purchase a used car, it must have been inspected within the last 90 days in order for the registration to be transferred into your name.


Maryland Vehicle Inspections are thorough, so you will need to allow adequate time for one of the ASE certified technicians at AutoStream in North Baltimore, Maryland, to complete the work. The average inspection takes between one and two hours. The cost of the inspection varies. While the Maryland Vehicle Administration (MVA) sets the allowable charge for the inspection itself, the cost of the hourly labor required to complete the task will vary between licensed inspection stations based on each shop’s rate.


Once your vehicle has passed inspection, you are provided with a report showing that it is road ready. The goldenrod colored copy is for your records. The inspection station will either provide you with a green copy to submit to MVA or electronically submit one for you so that you become eligible to complete the registration process.


In the event that your car does not pass inspection, AutoStream can help you navigate the re-inspection process. You have 30 days with less than 1,000 miles of driving to make the needed repairs to bring the vehicle into compliance. If this is done, you will need to reinspect only the element(s) that were out of compliance, saving you time and money. If you exceed those limitations, you will be required to start the inspection process again.

What is Inspected?

Before a car coming into Maryland or changing hands within the state is registered, the Maryland State Police wants to ensure that it is roadworthy for both the safety of the vehicle’s driver and that of others on the road. Major systems and components must all be checked. These include the braking system, lights, suspension system, tires, emissions system, etc. A full checklist can be found prior to your AutoStream appointment by visiting the MVA website. Generally, the seller of a used car, SUV, light duty truck (gross vehicle weight rating not exceeding 10,000 pounds), or trailer (not exceeding 20′ in length and not equipped with air brakes) is responsible for obtaining a passing inspection certificate prior to attempting to transfer ownership of the vehicle.

Why Inspect?

Maryland requires inspections to ensure that you, your passengers, and others driving in your vicinity are safe. The inspection process prevents you from unknowingly driving a hazardous car. At North Baltimore, Maryland’s AutoStream, we participate in the state inspection process because we genuinely care about you, our valued customer. We want you to have a convenient location with technicians you can trust to help you with the inspection process and any needed repairs. More importantly, however, we want to make sure you drive safely.

Written by Doug Grills