I was one that thought the new "non sticker" vehicle inspection was a great idea; no more ugly sticker stuck in the corner of the windshield.
But I find out today that there were a few unmentioned rules that also when into effect with the new inspection procedure.
The one that got me today is:
Your vehicle must have been inspected within the past 3 months before you can renew your tag sticker. Not, 3 months and 1 day, 3 months period.
I traded for a new truck on December 29, 2009. I have a Blue Ridge Parkway tag, so I had it transfered to the truck. All vehicles sold in North Carolina by a licensed dealer must have a state inspection before they leave the lot with the new owner. So, my truck was inspected on 12/29 by the dealer. Although it is built into the price of the vehicle, you as the buyer pay for the state inspection.
Today, I go to renew my tag sticker. I can't get it because the truck needs a state inspection. WTF, It's a new truck, it was just inspected on 12/29. That doesn't matter you see, because it is past the 3 month grace period.
So basically, I've had to pay for 2 state inspections within the past 3 1/2 months due to the new vehicle inspection rules.
In the future, if you trade vehicles, and transfer a tag to your new vehicle, then you will most likely have to get the new vehicle reinspected when it comes time to renew your tag sticker.
Unless you have a special tag that you don't want to give up, the best solution is to get a new tag with the new vehicle, and avoid the inspection problem.