Frequently Asked Questions About Car Registration in Durham North Carolina
Q: Do I need an emission test in Durham?
A: Yes, Durham County requires an on-board diagnostic emission inspection unless your car is:
- 35 years old or older.
- Model year 1995 or older.
- A diesel vehicle.
- Under a farmer rate license.
For a complete list of NC Counties that require emission tests, go here.
Q: Do I need to get my car inspected before I get it registered in NC?
A: Yes. Your car needs to pass a car safety inspection within 90 days before your old registration expires. If your county requires an emission test, you also need to pass it before registering your car.
Q: How much does it cost to register your car in NC?
A: This depends on your car. Here are some of the most common vehicle fees:
- Passenger vehicles: $36.
- Trucks under 4,000 lbs.: $36.
- Motorcycles: $24.
For new car registrations, the fees are the following:
- Passenger license plates: $36
- Certificate of title: $56
- Regional Transit Authority Registration Tax: $8
- County Vehicle Registration Tax: $15
Q: I just moved to Durham, when do I have to register my car?
A: You have 30 days after you move to NC to register your car. You do NOT need a new car inspection.
Q: How do I register my new car?
A: Before registering with the DMV, you need everything on this list:
- Your North Carolina driver’s license. If you are moving from out of state, you must register for a new North Carolina driver’s license FIRST. If you applied but have not received your card, you can use your proof of application from the DMV when registering your car.
- Notarized title.
- Proof of car insurance.
- Bill of sale.
- $36 license plate fee ready.
- Three forms:
- 1. Title Application
- 2. Damage Disclosure Statement
- 3. Odometer Disclosure Statement
Q: Can I register my new car online?
A: No, you can only register a new car in person or by mail. You can RENEW your car registration in-person at the DMV or online. For more information on how to renew your registration, see the previous post on how to register your car in Durham North Carolina.
Q: What if I am late to renew my car registration?
A: There is a 15 day grace period after your registration expires. During this time you can drive your car without getting a ticket, but you will be charged up to a $25 late fee.