How to Renew Car Registration in Pennsylvania

Renewing car registration documents in Pennsylvania is required of every vehicle owner, especially those with expired car registration documents. The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) sends notification reminding drivers to renew expired car registration documents before they reach their dates of expiration. If you do not receive a renew car registration notification by mail, you must submit a Request for Registration to PennDOT, along with your payment. Learn more about the steps to renew car registration in PA by downloading our free guide. You will find out more about vehicle registration renewal below, including the different methods and options available to you.

Pennsylvania DMV Vehicle Registration Renewal Methods

Car registration renewal in Pennsylvania can be fulfilled in several ways. Pennsylvania motorists may renew Pennsylvania auto registration cards in person at a PennDOT office. Renewing registration in Pennsylvania may also be done via regular mail, or drivers may opt for the renew car registration online option.

To renew car registration cards online, the Pennsylvania DOT must have your current address updated in the state system, and your tags or expiring card must be set to expire in six months or less. The renew car registration online option requires you to visit the Pennsylvania DOT website. Once on the DOT website, you will need:

  • The first eight digits of your title number.
  • Your Pennsylvania license plate number.
  • Your valid insurance policy information.
  • Your vehicle's odometer reading.

To continue renewing your vehicle registration, you must print out the temporary registration card and pay the registration's renewal fees. Download our comprehensive guide to read more information about online vehicle registration renewal in Pennsylvania.

You may also opt for renewing car registration documents by regular mail service. When renewing a Pennsylvania car registration card by mail, you must follow the instructions that were provided on your Pennsylvania registration renewal notice. Your auto registration renewal notice provides the address to which you must send your auto renewal notice, as well as the amount you must pay.

Renewing car registration documents in person at a Pennsylvania DMV office is the third option. To renew your car registration in person, you will need to bring your registration renewal notice with you to the DMV office. For renewing car registration without your registration renewal notice, you must have a completed Request for Registration form with you, as well as payment for your car registration renewal. Renewing an auto registration card or your license plates is also possible using online messenger services and third-party providers. However, vehicle registration renewal using these methods usually requires additional fees, on top of the registration renewal fees required by the DMV.

Learn more about PA vehicle registration renewal methods by downloading our free, informative guide.

Car Registration Renewal for Retired Pennsylvania Residents

Discounted DMV vehicle registration renewal documents are available to Pennsylvania residents who are retired and receiving Social Security benefits payments, or those who receive their income via pension payments. Those seeking to renew auto registration and receive the retired resident discount need to complete the vehicle registration renewal either in person or by regular mail. Renewing car registration for retired residents interested in the discount also includes completing additional required forms. Standard Pennsylvania auto registration renewal applications must accompany this form. You may submit your application for renewing your auto registration and the related forms at your local Pennsylvania DOT office, or mail them to the DOT.

Vehicle Registration Renewal for Military Members in Pennsylvania

DMV vehicle registration renewal for active military members is available by regular mail, along with the option to renew car registration online. When it comes to how to renew car registration cards, those on active military duty must have their vehicles undergo safety and emissions inspections within 10 days of returning to Pennsylvania. Those on active duty can receive their renewed car registration cards and license plate stickers at an address outside of Pennsylvania by completing a Self-Certification for Proof of Residency form. To obtain the vehicle registration renewal for Pennsylvania, active military members must maintain valid auto insurance.

Pennsylvania's Optional Two-Year Vehicle Registration Renewal

Those planning on DMV vehicle registration renewal have an option for a two-year renewal. As part of Act 89 that passed in 2013, Pennsylvania residents can opt for a two-year vehicle registration renewal instead of the standard one-year car registration renewal. Opting for a two-year vehicle registration renewal requires the applicant to pay a two-year fee for the automobile registration renewal. The fee for a two-year vehicle license plate renewal is twice the amount of a standard one-year auto registration renewal. A two-year registration renewal in Pennsylvania is not an option for all motor vehicles. For example, any vehicles registered under the International Registration Plan, all motor vehicles that possess seasonal registration cards or those that have circus or carnival registrations are ineligible for two-year motor vehicle registration in Pennsylvania. When the vehicle registration renewal notice arrives from the Pennsylvania DOT, if the option for the two-year car registration renewal is greyed out, that vehicle is not eligible for Pennsylvania's two-year car registration card.

Learn more about Pennsylvania car registration renewal in our complimentary guide.