ARB's Frequently Asked Questions

This page last reviewed December 20, 2013

This is a compilation of the questions most frequently asked of ARB's Helpline. You can contact the Helpline by calling (800) 242-4450 or via email


List of all ARB fact sheets by topic


Air Quality and emissions information for all of California.


A listing of the clean and efficient vehicles and incentives to drive one is available at our partner Drive Clean website.

ARB maintains the official list of Zero Emission and advanced technology vehicles that qualify for the single occupant carpool lane (HOV) stickers.

The HOV sticker application form (DMV REG 1000) is available from the Department of Motor Vehicle's website.

Please see our information about California's innovative zero emission program.


Information regarding the registration of vehicles first sold outside the United States.

Using engine from vehicles first sold in Japan

Information regarding the use of used engines first sold outside the United States.


May I register a vehicle from out of state in California?

California's new vehicle standards are an important part of improving the air we all breathe. Any vehicle meeting California standards may be registered at any time. Vehicles not meeting California standards can only be registered if they were obtained as a "used" vehicle (used vehicle must have at least 7,500 miles at the time of purchase). Non-California vehicles can also be registered by individuals moving to California from other states.

May I register a vehicle originally sold in another country in California?

1968 and newer vehicles originally intended for sale in other countries may be imported to California but are subject to an extensive modification and testing process. These requirements often exceed the vehicles value and are not able to be completed on all types of vehicles. Diesels and older vehicles are especially difficult to modify to meet California emission standards. 1977 and newer motorcycles not intended by their manufacturer for sale in the United States are not permitted to be registered in California and there is no authorized upgrade process. For more information on these requirements and for authorized testing facilities, please call us at (800) 242-4450.

I have a car from Canada. May I register it in California?

Some 1988 through 2001 model year vehicles first sold in Canada and identified by their manufacturers as identical to the United States versions may be registered by individuals in California. Please contact our helpline to assist you with this process.

I have a car from Mexico. May I register it in California?

Only if the vehicle meets United States or California emission standards. Vehicles not meeting these standards must be upgraded and tested as described above or should be disposed of before moving to California.

How can I check if a vehicle was made for California?

All 1968 and newer vehicles are required to be labeled to show what emission standards they meet. This label is located under the hood of cars and trucks and on the frame of motorcycles. This label is also required on the engine of all heavy duty vehicles.


Please see our website to get information on using a "RED STICKER" motorcycle or OHV?

Please see our website to get information on registering OHV's purchased outside of California.


Information regarding the registration of vehicles first sold in other states.


How long is the emissions warranty on my vehicle and what parts are covered?

All new cars and light trucks sold in California have an "emission performance warranty" that covers the vehicle for the first three years or 50,000 miles (whichever comes first). This warranty covers any parts or service required to maintain compliance with California new vehicle standards. After this period, coverage varies depending on the vehicle model. Some vehicles such as PZEV's have extended coverage to 150,000 miles.

A table of emissions warranty requirements is available here

Or you can consult your vehicles owners manual or call (800) 242-4450 for more information.

My registration says a Recall "Proof of Correction" is required; what do I do?

Contact the nearest authorized dealer of the vehicles manufacturer for a free recall repair. Once the recall repair is completed, the dealer will issue a "Proof of Correction" certificate that is returned to the DMV. If your vehicle is refused service by a dealer, please contact us at (800) 242-4450.

Vehicle Smog Check

Where do I find California Smog Check information?

The Smog Check program is administered by the California Bureau of Automotive Repairs (BAR). The BAR may be reached at: (800) 242-4450


Where do I get information on California's Portable Equipment Registration Program?

Please see our information on equipment registration and permits.

I have several different types of diesel equipment, is there one place I can call for information?

The ARB has links to all of its diesel related programs. For additional information you may email or call toll-free 866-6DIESEL (866 634-3735).