City of Dallas Anti-Idling Ordinance and Updates

Important City of Dallas Anti-Idling Ordinance Updates

The City of Dallas Anti-Idling Ordinance updates include exemptions for vehicles that have a gross vehicle weight rating greater than 14,000 pounds AND are equipped with a 2008 or subsequent model year heavy-duty diesel engine, or liquefied compressed natural gas engine:

  • that has been certified by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, or;
  • that has been certified by a state environmental agency to emit no more than 30 grams of nitrogen oxides emissions per hour when idling.

The most recent City of Dallas Anti-Idling Ordinance is No. 28833.

State Bills that Impact the Ordinance

Bills in the 2011 state legislature were passed that affected the original ordinance No. 26766 regarding the anti-idling rule.  

Texas Senate Bill, 82nd Legislature:  SB 493, Effective June 17, 2011

  • Exemption for heavy duty diesel or compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles, model year 2008 or newer, over 8,500 GVWR, certified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to emit no more than 30 grams of nitrogen oxide emissions per hour when idling.
  • Increase maximum weight allowable for vehicles with idle reduction systems.

Texas House Bill, 82nd Legislature:  HB 1906, Effective September 1, 2011

  • Make an offense of the State idling rule a class C misdemeanor
  • The rule applies year round. Previously, the ordinance was only enforced during the months of April through October.
  • Armored Vehicles are exempt


Idling for longer than five minutes is permitted if the following circumstances occur:

  • The vehicle weighs 14,000 pounds or less;
  • The vehicle must remain motionless because of traffic conditions;
  • The vehicle is being used by the United States military including National Guard and Reserve forces; or as an emergency or law enforcement motor vehicle;
  • The vehicle is providing a power source necessary for mechanical operation, not including propulsion, and/or passenger compartment heating or air conditioning;
  • The vehicle is idling for maintenance or diagnostic purposes;
  • The vehicle is idling to defrost a windshield;
  • The vehicle is idling to supply heat or air conditioning necessary for passenger comfort/safety in those vehicles intended for commercial passenger transportation or school buses, in which case idling up to a maximum of 30 minutes is allowed;
  • The vehicle is idling to provide air conditioning or heating necessary for employee health or safety while the employee is using the vehicle to perform an essential job function related to road way construction or maintenance;
  • The vehicle is being used as airport ground support equipment;
  • The vehicle is idling to provide heat or air conditioning for the driver while using the sleeper berth during a federally mandated rest period; or
  • The vehicle is an armored vehicle.


The Anti-Idling ordinance applies to vehicles in federal vehicle identification number (VIN) gross vehicle weight classes 4, 5, 6, 7, or 8, weighing over 14,000 pounds unless one or more of the regulation’s exemptions apply.

VIN Gross Vehicle Weight Classes:

  • Class 4: 14,001 to 16,000 pounds
  • Class 5: 16,001 to 19,500 pounds
  • Class 6: 19,501 to 26,000 pounds
  • Class 7: 26,001 to 33,000 pounds
  • Class 8: 33,001 to 150,000 pounds

City of Dallas Marshals will issue tickets to drivers of vehicles described above that idle for more than 5 minutes.  The penalty for idling is a fine not to exceed $500.  Violation of the idling ordinance is also considered a class C misdemeanor.

Tickets are issued to drivers of vehicles with out-of-state plates as well.  Hearings to dispute tickets are held on Wednesdays.  Tickets may be paid online.

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