In CA, Old car registration/smog check due at end of September, can I sell/trade-in end of August without paying? Do I have to tell the dealer/private party about this.

  • Its a 2001 Toyota Corola. Commented Aug 25, 2017 at 22:59
  • 1
    Why wouldn't you?
    – Michael
    Commented Aug 26, 2017 at 0:19

1 Answer 1


In California, you must get a smog check when selling a car privately. You usually do not need a smog check if you are selling to a dealer. Just tell the dealer it hasn't been smogged and they'll take care of it and/or adjust the sale price accordingly.

This web site has all the details:


  • 1
    Note that the site you linked to is not the California DMV (as stated with a big warning at the top of the page). The info on that site generally seems to be accurate but it's not vetted by the state government of California. A relevant real DMV page is here. It does not mention any exemption for selling to a dealer (nor does the page you linked to), although of course the dealer may offer to pay for the smog check themselves.
    – BrenBarn
    Commented Aug 26, 2017 at 7:44
  • I've sold to dealers in CA and they've never required a smog certification. Private party you certainly need it.
    – Rocky
    Commented Aug 26, 2017 at 14:26

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .