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Failing a car inspection at Delaware

View USA East Coast on divatmotoros's travel map.

After almost two months of buying our car and travel trailer the temporary tag of the car was about to expire. It also became clear that we have to visit DMV somewhere at Delaware for a mandatory VIN check. So we rerouted ourselves and after a few pit stops at farms and private properties we have checked in at a KOA camp in Clarksboro, South of Philadelphia (and about 25 minutes from the DMV of Wilmington, Delaware).


We were a bit worried as the temp tag of the car was already extended once and it was expiring in three days. The dealer said he can not get any more temp tags for us. The other dealer (where we bought the trailer) informed us that the final tag will not be ready before two and a half months as DMV at Delaware is heavily overloaded at the moment. He at least can get another temp tag for the trailer until then. But if we can not get a tag for the car then we can not continue our journey.

I visited DMV the next day and it was quite an experience. DMV looks like a drive-through food court with 5 lanes and the first step was the VIN check. The gentleman said that as our car is from 2016 we need to have a full check, not just VIN check, so I had to pull over to the next counter. After I stopped there another gentleman was looking at the tinted side windows and said: it's a fail, you can not have tints on the front side windows in Delaware.

A few drops of sweat appeared on my forehead as I did not know what to do next. I asked the man how to proceed and he advised to peel off the tint and come back after that. So I pulled over to the parking area and with my credit card peeled off the tint in a few minutes. Tried again at the drive-through and this time (at another lane) the car passed the inspection.

Then I parked again and with my papers I went into the office building. There a very kind lady called my number immediately and I started my story about the dealer who promised evetything and now failed to get us a tag and the full desparation if we can not continue our big trip and so on. She looked at my papers, quickly picked the three things she needed from the pack and smiled.

I was still quite nervous as I did not know what is next: so I asked how long it takes to get the final tag? She smiled and pointed behind her, where in a big brown paper box a lot of licence plates were stored. She kept working on her computer and after two minutes grabbed a plate from the box and handed over to me with the papers. What a relief! We have the final Delaware plates for our car!


The only step to continue is to get the renewed temp plate for the trailer and we can return to Canada while the dealer sorts out the final tag for the trailer. I obviously tried to get that plate from the lady but she said it is not possible as the dealership started the process and it is already processed in DMV's systems.

Posted by divatmotoros 06:00 Archived in USA

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