With the re-opening of Ohio BMV registrars, Ohio EPA has asked its contractor that operates the E-Check automobile emissions testing stations in the seven-county Cleveland-Akron metro area to re-open all stations today.
To be both protective of its employees and customers entering the E-Check stations, Envirotest Systems is taking several COVID-19 related precautions, including following guidelines issued by the Ohio Department of Health. These precautions include: one employee working per lane; all employees will be wearing gloves, face mask, face shield, and safety glasses; reducing or eliminating touch points with customer vehicles; monitoring the health of its employees each day; and implementing enhanced cleaning procedures of all commonly touched surfaces within stations.
It is also recommended that customers consider traveling to the E-Check station alone and wear some type of face covering, as part of the E-Check procedures may require vehicle occupants to exit the vehicle for a brief duration during testing.
After the stations closed on March 19, Ohio EPA coordinated with Ohio BMV to issue a six-month extension to all motorists whose vehicle renewal was due between Feb. 1 and June 30. That six-month extension remains in effect because motorists have six months from the date the vehicle renewal is due to have their vehicle tested, so motorists should not immediately need to get an E-check test upon reopening. Staggering visits and planning ahead will help reduce wait times.
To help avoid long wait periods, motorists also have the option to use one of the of 16 self-serve kiosks available 24 hours a day. In addition, Envirotest will be frequently updating its website at ohioecheck.info to keep customers informed of station volume; customers should check wait times before they go to a station.
Motorists in Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage, and Summit counties are required to get their vehicles’ emissions tested and brought to passing every other year before renewing the vehicles’ registration. Vehicles with model years four years old or newer and older than 25 years are exempted. E-Check is normally offered at 23 full-service stations and 46 independent repair shops in Northeast Ohio. Updates and information about the E-Check program is at ohioecheck.org.