Vehicle Registration Renewal

After driving a car for several years, you have to renew its registration. The process takes a few steps, and you must complete each one to drive legally. Here are the main steps to complete a vehicle registration renewal in Wisconsin.


Get a Notice in the Mail

The DMV mails you a letter a few months before your registration expires. In this letter, you are told the date of expiration, the requirements to renew and the reference number to include on the form. You are encouraged to complete the renewal before this date.


Make Sure You Are Not Driving Illegally

Driving with an expired registration is like driving with an expired license. If the DMV office finds out, you could face a fine or imprisonment. The minimal penalty is that you’ll pay a $10 late registration fee. All drivers should remember this fact for the next renewal.

Check if You Need an Emissions Inspection

Some drivers are required to complete a vehicle emissions inspection. Any requirement is listed on your renewal notice. The counties that require inspections are listed on the DMV website.

An emissions test is required if you are registering a vehicle in Wisconsin for the first time. It is also required within 45 days of becoming the vehicle’s new owner. For the test in general, complete it within six months of the registration expiration.

Ways to Renew

You have three ways to renew: online, by mail or in person. There is a fee for the renewal, and on some websites, there is an additional convenience fee. You’ll need the renewal notice that has the reference number on it. You can find this number by looking up your license plate information through the DMV. Another option is to look for the product number on your registration certificate. If you don’t find the reference number using those three options, you cannot renew online.

After the Renewal

Receive a printed confirmation of your renewal and place the document in your car. In 10 days, receive a new registration certificate in the mail. During the wait, you can check your order status through the DMV.

A vehicle registration ensures that the owner is linked to the vehicle. Renewing the registration online is the fastest, most convenient method if you qualify. You may have to complete an emissions test beforehand. Complete all of the necessary steps to complete this process so that you continue driving legally.