NEW Online Application for Clean Air Vehicle Decals Offers Faster Service

Contact:  Office of Public Affairs
2415 First Avenue
Sacramento, CA 95818
(916) 657–6437 |

March 13, 2024

Using the digital form is easy and more convenient

Sacramento – Californians applying for a Clean Air Vehicle (CAV) decal can now enter the digital service express lane with a new online option from the Department of Motor Vehicles. Customers with a qualifying zero- or low-emission vehicle can skip the paper application, save the stamp and simply go to to complete the process quickly and conveniently.

This latest digital offering from the DMV – which has more than doubled the number of online transactions over the past few years – allows customers to confirm their vehicle’s eligibility instantly and expedite their request so they can receive their decal sooner.

Cars driving on the freeway next to a carpool lane sign.

“This is another example of the DMV streamlining how we engage with our customers,” said DMV Director Steve Gordon. “This is just the latest digital option in our transformation.”

“This new online system for a Clean Air Vehicle decal will make it fast and easy to beat the traffic with a zero-emission vehicle,” said Dr. Steven Cliff, Executive Officer of the California Air Resources Board (CARB). “Californians continue to make the switch, and the yearly upward trend in sales of zero-emission cars and trucks is cutting pollution in our communities.”

The DMV encourages customers waiting to receive their decal after applying by mail to reapply online for faster service. Their paper check and application will be voided once the DMV processes the electronic application.

The decal and identification card allow drivers to use carpool or High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes with only one person in the car. This federally approved access to HOV lanes is scheduled to end on September 30, 2025, unless Congress decides to extend it.

Currently, there are 411,133 vehicles in California with active CAV decals. Since the program started in January 2001, the DMV has issued more than 1.05 million decals.

The DMV runs the decal program in partnership with other state agencies that include CARB and California Department of Transportation (Caltrans). CAV decals are only issued to vehicles that have not been previously issued a decal. All CAV decal-related transactions can be completed online.

Learn more at Clean Air Vehicle Decals for Using Carpool and HOV Lanes – California DMV.

Red clean air vehicle decal
Green clean air vehicle decal
Yellow clean air vehicle decal
Blue clean air vehicle decal

The red, green and yellow CAV decals are currently issued to qualifying vehicles that meet California’s super ultra-low emission vehicle (SULEV), inherently low-emission vehicle (ILEV) and transitional zero emission vehicle (TZEV) evaporative emission standard for exhaust emissions. These decals expire on September 30, 2025.

Compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) fueled vehicles may also qualify for the CAV decal program.

The blue decal was issued in 2021 and will expire on January 1, 2025.

Regardless of color, all decals issued before 2021 have now expired.


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