Vehicle Inspection Report: Certificates, Warrants, and Stickers

Ruperi Jadhav |

Owning a car comes with its own set of responsibilities, one of which is the compulsory period of car inspections and tests that determine the car’s condition. Here’s where car inspection reports come into play and have a crucial role in providing the highlights of the tests carried out. This article takes a deep dive into Vehicular Inspection Reports and how they are implemented in different ways.

Table of Contents:

What is a Vehicle Inspection Report?

A Vehicle Inspection Report is a document prepared by the inspection center that handles the vehicle’s overall inspection tests and includes information like the damages sustained by the vehicle and whether it’s passed the inspection test or not. It also consists of data such as the vehicle’s make, model, VIN, and mileage, along with the inspection date and location.

This regulatory practice summarizes the vehicle’s overall condition and whether it is performing according to the legal road standards. Vehicle inspection reports are used for pre-purchase assessments, annual safety checks, fleet maintenance, and insurance purposes, helping ensure the vehicle is safe and in good working order.

What does a Vehicle Inspection Report entail?

The report consists of the results after an examination. This report looks at summarizing the following features:

Oiling and Coolant Levels: to ensure a smoother engine flow and internal workflow.
Tires: The quality, the wear and tear, air pressure, and any signs of puncture, to ensure safety above all else.
Steering & Brakes: The quality and smoothness of the mechanics of the internal framework.
External features: Lights, windshield wipers, and battery-operated devices like the music system.

These features are tested thoroughly and are then included in the report. 

What are the possible outcomes of a vehicle inspection?

The Vehicle Passes the Test

Head to the section: Mandatory Inspection vs. Individual Inspection Results.

The Vehicle Fails the Test

If there are any defects in any of the factors mentioned above, the users are usually given a period to get it fixed, after which they are required to return and redo the tests. This period ranges from three to six weeks depending on the locality and allows the driver to fix any and all damages the vehicle might have sustained.

After the verdict is given out finally, the car’s condition is determined and the status of whether or not it passed is decided as well.

Why is a Vehicle Inspection Report Important?

A vehicle inspection report is important because it provides a detailed overview of the vehicle’s condition and provides information that can be used by both the driver and the inspection companies for other factors. Apart from the car’s overall condition, the report also helps in negotiations between the driver and company when discussing any possible costs that either party would have to bear in case of any damages. A report will include all the collected data about the possible damages a vehicle could have sustained during its tenure with the driver and reduce any misunderstandings and unfairness in handling the costs. 

Further, its detailed structure provides an overview that ensures the driver’s safety. If the vehicle is not in good condition, it will be visible on the report in consistent detail, which would allow the user to investigate and solve any dangerous issues with the vehicle. The overall importance of the report is obvious due to the ease with which it provides the test results and allows the user to identify where exactly their vehicle might need work.

Usually, an inspection report is generated during any kind of inspection but when looking and mandatory inspections like PTIs or MOTs, inspection history reports aren’t generated. Instead, drivers are handed certificates or stickers that show whether the vehicle has passed their regular inspection tests or not. 

Mandatory Inspection V.S. Individual Inspection results

After the vehicle has passed the mandatory inspection or PTI, the vehicle will receive a Certificate, Warrant, or Sticker as a display of whether or not the vehicle has passed its test or not:

Vehicle Certificates

This is a document that states if a car has passed the inspection tests or not. Inspection certificates are written or digital documents that the users receive once their car has been deemed fit to be driven.


This is another form of a certificate and is commonly issued in New Zealand. The WoF or the Warrant of Fitness is an annual inspection that’s carried out to determine if a vehicle meets New Zealand’s security standards. It is a general safety check that ends with a WoF label if the vehicle passes the general safety test. This WoF label is applied on the front of the vehicle’s windscreen – on the driver’s side.


Car inspection stickers are another form of displaying whether the vehicle has passed the inspection tests or not. In Denmark, these are valid for a year; hence, vehicle owners are not required to hold a printed inspection report when the vehicle passes the overall inspection.

After individual inspections are done by private companies, usually, the driver receives an inspection report that entails detailed information about all tests that have been carried out through the process. 

How Long are the Inspection Certificates, Stickers, or Warrants Valid For?

The validity of the certificate, warrant, sticker, or printed report differs with each jurisdiction. Generally, these reports are valid until the next inspection is due – which can change yearly depending on the country and locality of the place. In the case of WoF, for example, it must be renewed every year to avoid any safety hazards when considering the car’s overall condition. The timeframe of the validity can hence range from 6 months to two years depending on your locality. Stickers and certificates are also similar, and it can be generally assumed that they are valid until the next periodic inspection is due.


The age of printed reports is going through major changes, however, the overall results of the inspection process are still recorded and taken into account when considering any possible costs. Overall, vehicle inspection reports are integral not only to maintain road safety but also to protect inspection companies against any misunderstandings when considering mitigating costs. Understanding the verdicts, certificates, warrants, and stickers associated with inspections is also essential for vehicle owners, as it determines whether the vehicle in question has passed the overall test or not.