In Colorado, most vehicles have to pass an emissions inspection prior to being able to renew license plates. Going to the actual emissions inspection stations is a pain and can be time consuming, especially, if you can’t plan around weekends, lunch breaks, and standard work hours.
Fortunately, there is a way to skip emissions testing in Colorado at the emissions testing locations.
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There is a way to test your emissions without going to the emissions testing place. Simply drive past a Rapid Screen station twice in the year before your license plates are due and get a passing score.
There are two catches. First, you have to have both passing scores at least 60 days before your license plates are due. That means you have to be thinking about emissions BEFORE the notice for license plate renewal shows up in the mail. The second catch is that you have to actually drive past one of the Rapid Screen locations to get tested. Depending upon where you live and drive, this might happen for you automatically. For others, you may never drive past a remote, roadside emissions testing van without deliberately doing so.
Fortunately, the location of the Rapid Screen test locations is not a secret. You can look them up on the RapidScreen section of the Air Care Colorado website. It tells you not only where the stations will be this week, but the following week as well. If it’s still 60 days or more until your license plates expire, you should look up where the stations are and plan to drive past one or more a few times.
Remember, you need two passing scores, and sometimes things can interfere with your scores, such as wind, other cars, or other factors beyond your control. So, make sure to drive by one more than just two times to take into account any problematic tests.