Smart control devices have gained a wide interest in the seismic research community in recent years. Such interest is triggered by the fact that these devices are capable of adjusting their characteristics and/or properties in order to counter act adverse effects. Magneto-Rheological (MR) dampers have emerged as one of a range of promising smart control devices, being considered for seismic applications. However, the reliability of such devices, as a component within a smart structural control scheme, still pause a viable question. In this paper, the reliability of MR dampers, employed as devices within a smart structural control system, is investigated. An integrated smart control setup is proposed for that purpose. The system comprises a smart controller, which employs a single MR damper to improve the seismic response of a single-degree-of-freedom system. The smart controller, in addition to, a model of the MR damper, is utilized in estimating the damper resistance force available to the system. On the other hand, an inverse dynamics model is utilized in evaluating the required damper resistance force necessary to maintain a predefined displacement pattern. The required and supplied forces are, then, utilized in evaluating the reliability of the MR damper. This is the first in a series of studies that aim to explore the effect of other smart control techniques such as, neural networks and neuro fuzzy controllers, on the reliability of MR dampers.