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Pennsylvania Car Registration Renewal

Vehicle Registration Online Services Guide

How to Renew A Pennsylvania Car Registration

Renewing car registrations in Pennsylvania is easier than one may think. Drivers in the state will have different car registration renewal options to choose from: online, in person and by mail. The documents you need to provide will depend upon which method you choose to apply, but generally applicants will need to provide the following:

  • Proof of identity.
  • Completed car registration renewal notice.
  • Proof of auto insurance.
  • Payment for applicable renewal fees.

If you are ready to find out how to renew car registrations in PA, continue reading the following information.

When to Renew Your PA Car Registration

Drivers will receive Pennsylvania vehicle registration renewal notices from the DOT shortly before their current registrations expire. A car registration application will be attached to the notice for the applicant to complete and submit. Drivers who do not receive a notice will still need to ensure that their registration is renewed on time. These motorists may download form MV-140 (Request for Registration), and send it to the DOT in Harrisburg. If you renew car registration by mail, you will need to send your payment along with it.

How to Renew Your Pennsylvania Car Registration

Vehicle owners may renew car registrations in PA via three different ways. The car registration online system is considered the most convenient, but you may also renew by mail or in person, if needed. Motorists will also be required to pay a fee before receiving their registration. Drivers may renew vehicle registration online only if PennDOT possesses your current name and address. If not, then you will need to renew in person or by mail.


Renew your car registration online in Pennsylvania if you meet the two conditions listed below:

  • You have six months or less until your current car registration expires.
  • Your present name and address are on file with the Department of Transportation.

Drivers who meet the two conditions can proceed to renew their auto registration online. During the online registration renewal process, you will need to provide the following information:

  • License plate number.
  • First eight digits of title number.
  • Vehicle mileage (odometer reading).
  • Proof of insurance.

After completing the online registration renewal application, drivers will be subject to a modest renewal fee. Once DMV registration fees are paid, motorists will be allowed to print a temporary registration to use until their new one arrives in the mail.

By Mail

It is also relatively easy to renew car registrations in Pennsylvania by mail. Each year, PennDOT sends out renewal notices to drivers whose registration is due to expire in the near future. Attached to this vehicle registration renewal notice is a renewal application and directions for completing it. Drivers will need to follow the car registration renewal directions carefully, and send the completed application and their renewal fee to the state DOT office in Harrisburg. The address of the DOT office is printed on the notice. If PennDOT did not send you a notice, you will need to download form MV-140 at the PennDOT website and submit it.

In Person

Vehicle registration renewal in PA can also be performed in person. Drivers must head to their nearest Pennsylvania DMV office to complete the process. To complete your DMV registration renewal in person, take the following with you:

  • A completed MV-140 (Request for Registration form) or renewal application.
  • Payment for your car registration renewal fee.

Once you renew your car registration and pay the fee, you will receive a new registration in the mail within 10 days.

Liability Insurance Requirements

Applicants who intend to renew PA car registrations will need to show PennDOT that they have proof of current car insurance. Most car insurance companies allow its customers to print proof of insurance online, but you may need to contact your insurance provider if this is not an option. Drivers who lack liability insurance will not be able to renew their car registration until they purchase a current policy. If you prefer to renew your car registration online, you will still need to provide proof that you have insurance.

Vehicle Registration Fees in Pennsylvania

When drivers renew their car registration in Pennsylvania, they will be required to pay a small fee. The renewal fees are as follows:

  • Passenger vehicle - $36.00
  • Passenger vehicle (for retired individuals) - $10.00
  • Motorcycle - $18.00

Commercial vehicles have different renewal fees and requirements, so you will need to check the PennDOT website if you need to register a commercial vehicle.

If you renew your car registration online, then you can pay your renewal fee with a credit or debit card. If you renew by mail, you must send a check or money order. Drivers who renew PA car registrations in person at the DMV can pay with a check, money order or a credit/debit card. All money orders and checks should be made payable to the "Commonwealth of Pennsylvania."

Pennsylvania Vehicle Registration for Military Members

Drivers may still renew car registrations in PA if they are an active member of the armed forces stationed in another country or state. Military members may renew vehicle registration online, or by mail. If your car has not passed the PA Safety Inspections & Emissions Test at the time of your renewal, then you will have 10 days to have it tested once you return to Pennsylvania. You can change car registration address by completing form MV-8 (Self Certification for Proof of Residency) and sending it to the address printed on the front of the form. Even if you are stationed outside of the state, your vehicle must be covered by an active insurance policy before it undergoes registration.

New PA Resident?

Renewing car registrations in Pennsylvania is easy if you are new to the state. To do so you will need to download PA DMV Form MV-1 (Application for Certificate of Title). Send the vehicle registration renewal form, along with a check or money order made payable to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, to the address printed on the form. If the lienholder does not live in Pennsylvania, you will need to list his or her name on the form. The PA car registration renewal fee is $24.00 for each lienholder, and you will need to provide copies of the following as well:

  • Valid PA driver's license, photo ID card, or military identification.
  • Manufacturer certificate of origin.
  • Proof of auto insurance.

In addition to the lien-recording fee, you will need to pay the traditional car registration renewal fee associated with your class of vehicle. If you need more than one copy of car registration, there will be a $2.00 charge for each additional card.

Submitted by sglacken (not verified) on 27th Feb 2009

Shannon Glacken

Shannon Glacken

Submitted by alice grabowski (not verified) on 29th Feb 2012

I have never applied online

I have never applied online before .. but 2 others i know did and got their stuff quite qucikly. i mailed my registration on 2-14-12 and I still

did not get them.. and today my inspection runs out. never had any trouble in the mail.. where do i go from here??