If you are renewing your registration, you only need to take your vehicle, your Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Registration Renewal Notice , and a method of payment for the smog check. If you are transferring a vehicle, or registering it in California for the first time, take the vehicle, a form of payment, and all of your registration documents to the station.
What happens during a smog check?
While performing a smog check, the certified technician will connect measuring equipment to your vehicle. This equipment is connected to computers at the Bureau of Automotive Repair.
Measurements taken during the smog check are recorded and available immediately to BAR. Certifications are immediately transmitted to the DMV. The staff at the Smog Check Station will tell you the results of the test. They will give you a receipt and a copy of the test results, known as a Vehicle Inspection Report (VIR).
What to do next
If your vehicle passes, you may complete your vehicle registration. Be sure to follow the the exact instructions provided by DMV. In some cases, such as paying your fees at a DMV field office, you will have to notify DMV that you received a smog certification before they will process your registration and send you the renewed registration and sticker.