When you’re trying to find an automotive technician job that’s the right fit for you, you may not have considered emissions inspection and repair. Emissions testing is big business in most states, and can be a great path to expanding your skillset and making yourself more marketable in your auto mechanic career. Each state has different requirements for smog inspectors and repair technicians, so you’ll need to research the various criteria you’ll have to meet in order to work in these capacities.
In the state of Louisiana, emissions testing is only required in the five-parish Baton Rouge ozone nonattainment area. This area encompasses Ascension, East Baton Rouge, Iberville, Livingston, and West Baton Rouge. Your best bet for employment as an inspector is to apply at one of the [186 Motor Vehicle Inspection](http://www.deq.louisiana.gov/portal/Portals/0/AirQualityAssessment/website%20station%20update%20Aug%2015.pdf stations in these areas. There are more than 2000 MVI stations statewide, with the stations located in non-emissions testing areas performing safety and equipment inspections.
How to become an emissions inspector in Louisiana
Once your application to become an inspector at a MVI station has been accepted, you will be sent for training to one of three state-approved schools:
- LA Technical College West Baton Rouge
- LA Technical College Winnfield
- LA Technical College Thibodaux
You must also possess a valid driver’s license and functional language, computer, math, communication, and customer service skills in order to succeed as a Louisiana state emissions inspector.
Also keep in mind that because many MVI stations are located within other businesses, such as tire or oil change shops, you may be expected to perform other duties outside of administering vehicle inspections.
In many states, including LA, emissions inspector is an entry-level job. If you already possess an automotive technology degree you may want to consider working on the repair end of things instead. If, however, you’re interested in going to auto mechanic school and you’re looking to gain some experience in the field, an inspector job could be a good fit – particularly because it can often be done as a part-time job.
How to become an emissions repair technician
In order to make yourself as marketable as possible to repair facilities which focus on repairing conditions that cause vehicles to fail smog checks, you should pursue ASE certification in areas pertaining to these types of repairs, such as the A Series, L1, and X1.
In addition, there are auto technician schools in Louisiana which offer programs focusing on emissions issues, such as the 60-credit diploma offered by Northwest Louisiana Technical College. Having specialized knowledge in addition to relevant ASE certifications can enhance your ability to get the right automotive tech job in an emissions repair facility.
If you’re already a certified mechanic and you’re interested in working with YourMechanic, submit an online application for an opportunity to become a mobile mechanic.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as How to Get Smog Technician Certified in Louisiana and was authored by Valerie Johnston.