• Pollution Under Control (PUC) Certificate

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    The smoke that emits from the vehicles have a chance of polluting the air if left unchecked. PUC or the Pollution Under Control certificate is provided to the vehicles after they take the Pollution Under Control test. The certificate is an indicator to the vehicle following the standard rules set by the government to control pollution. It is mandatory for all vehicles plying on the Indian roads to carry a legitimate PUC certificate.

    PUC Certificate

    PUC testing is done at any of the independent testing centres or authorised petrol pumps. The certificates are also issued at the centre after the test.

    A PUC certificate will contain the following information:

    • The certificate’s serial number
    • The registration number of the vehicle
    • The date of PUC testing
    • The PUC certificates date of expiry
    • The PUC readings from the test

    A PUC certificate is a vital document that should be carried at all times while driving your car. You should be able to produce a valid PUC certificate when requested by a traffic official, in case you are unable to produce the same, you will be charged with penalty.

    In case you do not hold a valid PUC certificate, you will then be fined Rs.1,000 for the first-time offense and Rs.2,000 for every offense thereafter as per the Motor Vehicles Act.

    In case you do hold a valid PUC certificate but the emission from your vehicle is high, your PUC certificate will be cancelled if caught by the traffic official and you will be requested to get a new PUC certificate within a week. If you fail to do so, you will have to bear the set penalties under the Motor Vehicles Act.

    Why is a Pollution Under Control Certificate required?

    With the impending danger of global warming and to effectively reduce the amount of pollution in the air, the Government of India has mandated that every vehicle - commercial and private - has a pollution under control (PUC) certificate. The pollution under control (PUC) certificate is one which shows whether the vehicle is under the prescribed standards with regard to emissions. Apart from this, the PUC certificate has been made mandatory as per the Central Motor Vehicle Rule, 1989. Only if the emissions from the vehicle are below the prescribed norms which are deemed as legal, will the vehicle owner be allowed to use the vehicle on the roads of India. The emission test which checks the carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon levels of the emitted fumes can be carried out at any petrol bunk that is certified to carry out the test.

    Where can vehicle owners get the pollution under control (PUC) certificate?

    Car owners can get the emission test and the pollution under control (PUC) certificate at any of the places as listed below:

    • At a petrol bunk that is authorised to carry out the emission tests.
    • At authorised emission testing centers.
    • At service centers that are authorised to carry out emission tests.

    Do you need a PUC (Pollution Under Control) certificate for car insurance

    In order to make sure that vehicle owners go through emission tests to see if their vehicle falls within the prescribed pollution levels, the Supreme Court in 2017 mandated that vehicle owners submit a valid pollution under control (PUC) certificate at the time of renewing car insurance policy. As already mentioned, car owners can carry out the emission test in a few minutes at any petrol bunk, authorised emission center, or at an authorised service center. Now, along with the registration certificate, the driving license of the policyholder and other documents, the pollution under control (PUC) certificate has to be submitted at the time of a car insurance policy renewal.

    Validity and Cost

    A PUC certificate for a new car is provided at the time of its purchase and is valid for a year. After the first year is over, you need to get the PUC test done for your car at regular intervals. Every time you have your vehicle undergo the PUC test, a new PUC certificate will be issued each time.The new certificate is valid for 6 months only, hence it is mandatory to get your vehicle take the PUC test every 6 months.

    In cases where the PUC test shows adverse results for a vehicle, the certificate validity will vary on the basis of the reading. During the PUC test if any cars show a higher level of emission that is more than the prescribed limit, the agent conducting the PUC test will notify the RTO or Deputy RTO or Assistant RTO and provide them with the car’s registration number within 24 hours of taking the test.

    A PUC test costs very less, the cost varies anywhere between Rs.60 to Rs.100. The cost of PUC test depends on the vehicle being tested and its fuel type.

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    PUC Test Procedure

    • When it comes to PUC testing of diesel cars, the accelerator of the car is completely pressed to get an accurate reading on the level of emission. This procedure is repeated five times, and each time the reading is noted down, then the average of these readings are taken as the final reading.
    • When it comes to PUC testing of petrol vehicles, the car is switched on and the engine is kept running without applying the accelerator. This process is done only once and an accurate reading is noted as the final reading.

    Pollution under control (PUC) norms

    For a vehicle to be legal to be used on the roads of India, the vehicle’s emission should be within the prescribed limit:

    Vehicle Type CO % Hydrocarbon (PPM)
    For two-wheelers and three-wheelers (2/4- stroke) that have been manufactured on or before 31st March 2000 4.5 9,000
    For two-wheelers and three-wheelers (2-stroke) that have been manufactured on or after 31st March 2000 3.5 6,000
    For two-wheelers and three-wheelers (4-stroke) that have been manufactured on or after 31st March 2000 3.5 4,500
    For four-wheelers manufactured according to Pre-Bharat Stage II Norms 3 1,500
    For four-wheelers manufactured based on the Pre-Bharat Stage II, Stage III and subsequent norms 0.5 750

    Pollution under control - FAQs

    Is it necessary to carry around the pollution control (PUC) certificate with you all the time?

    Yes, it is necessary for vehicle owners to carry around the PUC certificate at all times. Just like the registration certificate of the vehicle and the driving license of the vehicle owner, the pollution under control (PUC) certificate is absolutely necessary if vehicle owners do not be want to be penalised by the traffic police. Failure to produce the PUC certificate and the vehicle owner will have to pay a stiff fine of Rs.1,000 for the first instance and Rs.2,000 for repeated offences.

    What is displayed on the PUC certificate?

    The PUC certificate contains details such as the PUC certificate serial number, the date of the emission test, the date when the PUC certificate will expire, the license plate number of the vehicle, and the emission test reading.

    For how long is the pollution under control (PUC) certificate valid?

    For a brand new car, the pollution under control (PUC) certificate is valid for 1 year and after that the PUC certificate is valid for 6 months. Vehicle owners have to ensure that the emission test is carried out six months to avoid being penalised by the traffic police.

    What is the cost of the emission test?

    Depending on the type of vehicle, the emission test will cost the vehicle owner anything between Rs.60 and Rs.100.

    Is the pollution under control certificate required for all types of vehicles?

    Yes, the pollution under control (PUC) certificate is required for all vehicles - private and commercial.

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