shutterstock_403541029

Window Tint Percentage Laws In The US By State

Window tinting on our vehicles is something we’ve grown accustomed to. It is one of the more popular car upgrades today. In some states, it’s near necessary.  Modern car windows are treated using a special polyester material called window tint. It’s meant to protect passengers from UV (UltraViolet) rays of the sun.

Many car owners have window tint for protection from the sun, privacy, and other benefits. Even as a customization feature for improved looks and style. Today, “black is the new black” and dark tint is one of people’s all time favorite colors. If  you want that extra dark limo tint, though, be careful and check your state laws below first. Many states have laws prohibiting the level of tint that allowed.

Window tint can add aesthetic value to your car and reduce the glare from the sun. Tinting windows can also protect your car’s interior. It can also protect the people inside from the damage of UV rays.

While window tint offers other benefits, one potential drawback is poor visibility for drivers if the tint is too dark. On the other hand, law enforcement and police can’t see inside your car. Every state has window tint laws to dictate how much tinting is allowed on each window of your vehicle. These state laws allow drivers to use window tint and keep everyone around them safe.

Here is a breakdown of the different car window tinting laws and regulations by state. This information can help you make the right choices for your car. As you read these laws, remember that window tint percentages refer to the amount of light allowed in.  This is also known as the Visible Light Transmission (VLT) percent. The windshield tinting laws refer to the amount of the windshield that can be legally tinted or the amount of tint allowed on the entire windshield, depending on the state’s regulations.

Here are the window tint laws, including the darkest legal tint percentages in your state. Click your state below to jump the chart: California, Texas, Florida, Illinois, New York, Michigan, Virginia.

StateFront Side WindowsBack Side WindowsRear WindowsWindshieldReflectivityOther Restrictions
Alabama32%32%32%6 inchesno more than 20% reflectivenone
Alaska70%40%40%5 inchesno metallic or mirrored tintingno red, yellow or amber tinting allowed
Arizona33%anyanytinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 35% reflectivered and amber not permitted, back window tinting requires the use of dual side mirrors
Arkansas
25%
25%10%5 inchesno metallic or mirrored tintingnone
California70%anyany4 inchesno more reflective than a standard windowred, amber, and blue not allowed. dual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Colorado27%27%27%4 inchesno metallic or mirrored tintingred and amber not permitted, back window tinting requires the use of dual side mirrors
Connecticut35%35%anynon-reflective tint above the as-1 lineno more than 21% reflectivedual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Delaware70%anyanynon-reflective tint above the as-1 lineno metallic or mirrored tintingdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Florida28%15%15%non-reflective tint allowed above the as-1 lineno more than 25% reflectivedual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Georgia32%32%32%6 inchesno more than 20% reflectivered and amber not allowed
Hawaii32%35%35%no inch requirent, must allow 70% of lightno metallic or mirrored tintingdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Idaho35%20%35%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 35% reflectivedual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Illinois35%35%35%6 inchesmust be non-reflectivedual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Indiana30%30%30%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 25% reflectivenone
Iowa70%anyanytinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno excessive reflections allowed, but not specifiednone
Kansas35%35%35%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno metallic or mirrored tintingred, amber and yellow are prohibited and must have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows
Kentucky35%18%18%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 25% reflectivenone
Louisiana40%25%12%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 20% reflectivenone
Maine35%anyany4 inchesmust be non-reflectivedual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Maryland35%35%35%5 inchesno lawred, amber and yellow are prohibited and must have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows
Massachusetts35%35%35%6 inchesno more than 35% reflectivemust have dual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Michiganany percent, but only 4 inches from the top of windowanyany4 inchesno more than 35% reflectivenone
Minnesota50%50%50%none allowedno more than 20% reflectivenone
Mississippi28%28%28%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 20% reflectivenone
Missouri35%anyanytinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 35% reflectivemust have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows
Montana24%14%14%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 35% reflectivenone
Nebraska35%20%20%5 inches or as-1 line, whichever comes firstno more than 35% reflectiveunclear on side mirrors, but red, amber and yellow are not permitted
Nevada35%anyanytinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno lawdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
New Hampshireno tinting allowed35%35%6 inchesno metallic or mirrored tintingdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
New Jerseyno tinting allowedanyanyno tint allowedno metallic or mirrored tintingdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
New Mexico20%20%20%5 inches or as-1 line, whichever comes firstno lawdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
New York70%70%any6 inchesno metallic or mirrored tintingdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
North Carolina35%35%35%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 20% reflectivered, amber and yellow are prohibited and must have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows
North Dakota50%anyanyno more than 70%no metallic or mirrored tintingdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Ohio50%anyanyno more than 70%no more reflective than a standard windownone
Oklahoma
25%25%25%5 inches or as-1 line, whichever comes firstno more than 20% reflectivedual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Oregon35%35%35%6 inchesno more than 13% reflectivered, green, yellow, black and amber tints are not allowed, and must have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows
Pennsylvania70%70%70%none allowedno metallic or mirrored tintingdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Rhode Island70%70%70%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno lawnone
South Carolina27%27%27%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 linemust be non-reflectivered, amber and yellow are prohibited and must have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows
South Dakota35%20%20%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno metallic or mirrored tintingnone
Tennessee35%35%35%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno metallic or mirrored tintingnone
Texas25%25%any5 inches or as-1 line, whichever comes firstno more than 25% reflectivered, amber, and blue not allowed. dual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Utah43%anyanytinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno metallic or mirrored tintingdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Vermontnoneanyanytinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno metallic or mirrored tintingdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Virginia50%35%35%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno more than 20% reflectivered, amber and yellow are prohibited and must have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows
Washington24%24%24%6 inchesno more than 35% reflectivered, green, yellow, black and amber tints are not allowed, and must have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows
Washington D.C.70%50 percent for cars, 35 percent for multi-purpose vehicles50 percent for cars, 35 percent for multi-purpose vehicles5 inches or as-1 line, whichever comes firstno lawnone
West Virginia35%35%35%5 inches20% reflectivered, amber and yellow are prohibited and must have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows
Wisconsin50%35%35%tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s as-1 lineno lawdual side mirrors required for back tinted windows
Wyoming28%28%28%5 inches or as-1 line, whichever comes firstno more than 20% reflectivedual side mirrors required for back tinted windows

For more detailed information and up to date state laws, visit this page. New York just recently updated its state tint law for 2018. To learn more about these specific changes, visit our 2018 New York tint laws page.

Why is window tint illegal in some states?

Most states prohibit window tinting for safety and security purposes. Tinting limits the amount of light that enters the car but can make it hard to view the street. Limited vision leads to an increased number of accidents on the road. The other reason why tinting may be illegal is for public safety when it comes to the police and other federal agencies. Extremely dark tint can be obstructive to investigations, and dangerous during traffic stops and other incidents.

Can one get pulled over for having tinted windows?

The answer is, sometimes. It is entirely dependent on the state one is in and the laws that govern that state. Many states have legalized some degree of tinting. Tinting done in the lines of these laws is permitted so you would not get pulled over. If the tint laws that are in place are not followed, you may be subject to being pulled over. In other states, tinting is entirely illegal. Any form of illegal tinting would attract negative attention from law enforcement. You need to understand and follow the laws of your state, as they do vary.

Is limo tint (blacked out tint) legal?

In the US, the tinting laws vary from state to state defined by the Department of Motor Vehicles in each location. Taking the state of California for example, the rules permit the tinting of the front passenger window only up to 70%. This means that these windows should allow a minimum of 70% visible light through them. This means that ‘limo tint’ is not permitted on these windows.

California window tint law

It is generally sunny all year round, so it is common for cars in California to have tint. California window tint must meet specific requirements under the state’s law.

Here are the laws you must abide by in the state of California:

  • Use a tint that is green, gray, or neutral smoke in color.
  • Have a luminous transmittance of at least 70%. The legal VLT % in California is 70% VLT.
  • Must not increase reflectivity for front and back windows.

Front window tint strip law

The ‘eyebrow’ (the little strip on the car’s windshield) is also permitted as long as it meets your state’s laws. These small front window tint strips ensure that the driver has enough visibility of their surroundings. While on the road, you can get some protection from the sun. Some state laws also prohibit the installation of windows that are not tinted which result in some specified degree of light reflection. Front window tint strip laws vary by state so please refer to the chart above to see if it is allowed in your state.

35% vs 20% vs 5%. What are the differences?

The restrictions on the amount of visible light being transmitted into a car are defined and measured in percentages. These different percentages are the minimum amount of light that should be getting through the glass.  The higher percentage means the tint is lighter. Lower tint percentage means the tint is darker. The legal percentage varies from state to state and also for the different windows of the car.

Medical Exemptions and Waivers for Window Tint

These laws are ‘bent’ for people with medical conditions that make them more sensitive to light than the average person. A perfect example would be people with albinism who need always to be protected from the sun. Other diseases such as Psoriasis might affect people. While sunlight can benefit some people with psoriasis, there are people who will have a negative reaction towards UV radiation. People with Rosacea, as well, might be able to get a medical exemption. Rosacea might cause increased sensitivity (especially to sun) and inflammation of your face.  If you have any of these conditions, obtain a medical letter from your doctor. Keep it in the car for law enforcement and police.

Like all laws, the regulations regarding window tint on your vehicle are there for your safety and the safety of those around you. Always be sure to check your state’s laws before applying window tint.

If you are shopping for window film tint for your car, make sure you work with a company that understands these window tinting rules or tint percentages and how they affect your car’s window tint. Rayno Window Film is here to help you, and our crew is fully compliant with all state regulations. By staying within the car window tint laws, you will be able to enjoy the benefits of window tinting without running the risk of an unwanted or unexpected citation. Contact us today to get started.

find a rayno film installer near you