• Karolena Serratos

State Inspections Getting the Boot


As an automotive professional I am shocked when I hear legislation being presented to eliminate the state inspections. Being a licensed state inspector, the things I see come through the bay is shocking. I definitely would not want to be next to a number of these vehicles on a freeway.

I think it comes from a general lack of understanding the role of the state inspection. The state inspection is not meant to make lives difficult, but rather to create a base line of what is the absolute worst condition of a vehicle we'd be willing to share the road with. (And to be honest, in my professional opinion, it is not strict enough.)

Yet, people turn super aggressive when they discover they will not pass the inspection--and more so when they realize they still need to pay for the fee. (Not sure if they expect us to do it for free? It's already $25.50. The shop is doing them at a loss if people haven't figured it out by now. And didn't you read the paper you just signed saying you're obligated to pay?)

I am not sure if this aggression is more towards the word failure and the act of "failing", embarrassment of the vehicle, or due to the limited time people feel to have these days and now they need something fixed. I have begun to say the phrase "didn't pass" instead of failed.

Failing the inspection is not a big deal. If you needed tires, at that point you really needed them and whoever has been doing your oil change has done you no favors not preparing you for this expense. If a light is out, that is definitely safety to ensure other drivers can see you. Being a native Houstonian it really feels something people aren't looking, but hopefully blinking lights will catch their attention!

I think it comes down to better time management. Either find a shop who performs state inspections to save you a trip or plan your day more effectively by doing your inspection first thing in the morning so you can make adjustments for your day.

Side note: And remember we are people too. We understand you are on a tight schedule and we are doing everything you can to help you, but treat your inspectors/fellow human being with respect. At least once a week an inspection customer is disrespectful to me or a member of my staff. For $25.50 it's not worth the bad karma.


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