Texas Two Step: Two Steps, One Sticker

Printable bumper sticker from twostepsonesticker.com


Every Texas driver has heard the phrase “Check the date. Love your state” come through their radio at some point in their life. “Check the date. Love your state” refers to the vehicle registration program in Texas, but recently you may have heard something different on the news and radio programs: “Two Steps, One Sticker”.

“Two Steps, One Sticker”: What’s That?

During the 83rd legislative session, House Bill 2305 was passed paving the way for the State of Texas to stop issuing inspection stickers and transition to a one windshield sticker program. Starting on March 1, 2015, your vehicle registration sticker will serve as BOTH your registration and your inspection.

Alright, one less sticker to deal with. What do I need to do?

Step 1: March 1, 2015-February 29, 2016. Renew your registration if your vehicle has a current, passing inspection. If your inspection and registration both expire in the same month, your vehicle will need to pass inspection before the state will issue a new registration sticker.

Step 2: Renew your registration by one of these convenient methods.

  • Online
  • By Mail
  • In person at your county tax office

When you go to renew your registration, your inspection status will be verified electronically.

How much is this going to cost me?

Keeping with the two step theme, the inspection fee will be paid out in two steps.

Step 1: Pay the inspection station’s portion of the fee at the time of inspection.

Step 2: Pay the state’s portion of the fee at the time of registration.

You will see a handy breakdown of the fees on your registration renewal notice.

Breakdown of the Inspection and Registration Fees shown on twostepsonesticker.com


This program sounds pretty simple to us, of course there is a whole list of questions that have come up from our customers. Fortunately, the website twostepsonesticker.com has a very nice FAQ section that should be able to answer any questions that drivers might think of.

Be sure to check out the handy calculator that will tell you if you should have your vehicle inspected before renewing your registration. Just fill in your dates and it tells you what you need to do!

Inspection Calculator from twostepsonesticker.com


Our service department is more than happy to answer any questions that you might have about this new program. Give them a call or swing by to have your vehicle inspected by our certified technicians.


State Inspection Requirements

You know you should get your car inspected every year, along with registering it with the state of Texas (Check Your Date! Love Your State!), but do you know what your mechanic is actually looking for? A vehicle inspection includes a complete safety check and ensures basic road worthiness.

In case you don’t know what your mechanic is looking for, here are the specific guidelines from the Texas Department of Public Safety. The Texas Department of Public Safety lists these 20 point criteria that a passenger car must meet to pass its inspection test.

  1. Horn
  2. Windshield Wipers
  3. Mirror
  4. Steering
  5. Seat Belts
  6. Brakes (system)( Parking- beginning with 1960 models)
  7. Tires
  8. Wheel Assembly
  9. Exhaust System
  10. Exhaust Emission System (beginning with 1968 models)
  11. Beam Indicator (beginning with 1948 models)
  12. Tail Lamps (2); (1) if 1959 model or earlier
  13. Stop Lamps; (1) if 1959 model or earlier
  14. License Plate Lamp (1)
  15. Rear Red Reflectors (2)
  16. Turn Signal Lamps (beginning with 1960 models)
  17. Head Lamps (2)
  18. Motor, Serial, or Vehicle Identification Number
  19. Gas caps on vehicles 2-24 model years old
  20. Window Tint

Once your vehicle has passed inspection you will get a new inspection sticker put on your windshield. If your vehicle does not pass inspection you should have the items repaired and then take it back to the shop where it was previously inspected. You can take it back to the shop for a free re-test within 15 days of the original test date.

Additionally, vehicles in the following counties are required to have their emissions checked every year along with the regular inspection. Brazoria, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Montgomery, Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Johnson, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall, Tarrant, Travis, Williamson and El Paso counties.

Counties that require Emissions Testing- per TX Dept. of Public Safety
Counties that require Emissions Testing- per TX Dept. of Public Safety

Our Service Department wanted to remind everyone that there is a 5 day grace period from when your inspection sticker expires! Your sticker will expire at the end of the month and you will have until the 5th of the next month to renew your sticker.

Don’t forget to bring your insurance card with you and try to avoid the first and the last parts of the month, those are the busiest times for inspections!

Visit our Service Department page and book your appointment online. Prefer a more personal touch? Give our guys a call at (972) 408-1989.