Virginia Window Tinting Laws 2021 Explained

Getting pulled over by a police officer because you did not follow the 2021 legal tint in VA isn’t worth it.

Get all the facts behind the Virginia window tint laws so you can confidently choose the legal tint shades for your car. 

This article will give you the latest Virginia car tint laws you need to abide by for 2021. You can protect yourself, pedestrians, and law enforcement by choosing a tint that is legal. We will explain the various laws in place regarding tinting your car windows in Virginia for the front-side, back-side, rear, and windshield. If you need it to be darker than normal, we’ll discuss how to get a medical exemption.

Read this article carefully to get all the up-to-date details and never get a ticket for dark tint again.

Virginia Car Tint Laws

legal tint in virginia

The percentage of visible light allowed through your car windows is called VLT (Visible Light Transmission). In Virginia, there are specific VLT tint percentages (%) you must follow to abide by state laws and prevent any fines.

Here are the details at a glance for passenger vehicles:

  • Front Side Windows: Must allow more than 50% of light in.
  • Back Side Windows: Must allow more than 35% of light in.
  • Rear Window: Must allow more than 35% of light in.
  • Windshield: tinting allowed to the top of the manufacturer’s AS-1 line (5 or 6 inches from the top).
  • Reflectivity: no more than 20% reflective
  • Other Restrictions: red, amber, and yellow are prohibited and must have dual side mirrors for back tinted windows.

Front And Back Side Windows

The tint laws for the side windows of vehicles vary depending on the type of vehicle and the location of the window. On passenger vehicles, the front-side windows can only have a tint with a 50% VLT. The rear-side windows, however, can have 35% VLT tints. Multi-purpose vehicles can have 50% VLT tints on their front-side Windows and any VLT% on their rear-side windows.

Windshield

The Virginia windshield tint law prohibits drivers from having the full windshields of their vehicles tinted in any VLT%. However, drivers can apply non-reflective tint above the AS-1 lines (5 – 6 inches from the top of the windshield).

Rear Window

Passenger vehicles are allowed to have back windows with 35% VLT tints in Virginia. Multi-purpose vehicles, however, can have tints in any VLT% on their back windows.

Headlight Tint Laws

It is illegal for drivers to tint their headlights in Virginia. There are several ways that headlights can be tinted, either through film products or spray-on products. However, all of these methods are illegal in the state of Virginia as the tint can prevent light from passing through a vehicle’s headlights onto the roads. In addition, headlight tints can pose various dangers to drivers and the drivers of other cars on the streets.

Tail Light Tint Laws

Drivers cannot legally drive their vehicles with tinted tail lights in Virginia. Therefore, taillights on any car must have their original red shading. This allows other drivers on the road to easily see the vehicle in front of them and be prepared to stop.

Tinted License Plate Cover Laws

Virginia state law prohibits license plate covers from being tinted or colored in any way. The law does not prohibit clear license plate covers. Still, it places restrictions on how the cover is allowed to obstruct the license plate. The license plate cover that you choose for your vehicle cannot block any part of the vehicle’s license plate.

Virginia Window Tint Laws for Trucks and SUVs

The Virginia window tint laws are the same for trucks and SUVs, and vans as they are for passenger sedans. However, the laws vary based on the usage of the truck or SUV. Passenger trucks and passenger SUVs cannot have less than 50% VLT on their front-side windows, 35% VLT on their back-side windows, and 35% VLT on their back windows. The windshields of trucks and SUVs in Virginia, whether passenger vehicles or multi-purpose vehicles, cannot be fully tinted but may be tinted above their AS-1 lines. However, there are different laws if a driver is medically exempt.

Virginia Window Tint Law Medical Exemption

Drivers who need to have their vision protected from excess light due to medical conditions may have their windows tinted to darker shades if they are medically authorized. Known as the Sun-Shading Medical Authorization, the exemption allows qualified drivers to have their front-side, rear-side, and rear windows tinted with a 35 percent VLT tint. Their windshields are allowed 35 percent (upper 5 inches or to AS-1 line) VLT tint or 70 percent tint on the entire windshield.

Virginia Tint Law Medical Waiver

You must apply for medical authorization that allows drivers to have their windows legally tinted darker. Once a driver is approved, they will be mailed a registration card that they must keep with them in their vehicles at all times. The card will allow the driver to avoid facing unnecessary fines.

Download and fill out the Medical Authorization application.

Virginia Tint Law Fines

You can get pulled over by a law enforcement officer at a traffic stop and get ticketed for illegal tints in VA. After repeat offenses, drivers can face jail time for their window tints. Fines in Virginia can start at $96 per citation. You can take photos and show proof of removal/remediation with your fine for the judge to drop or lower the ticket fee. 

Additional Research

Window tint laws change over time. If you would like to ensure that you are always operating your vehicle within the legal limits that have been set by the Virginia window tint law, many resources are available to you online from the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.

Choosing a Legal Tint

At Rayno Window Film, we take pride in offering customers the best window tint for their cars. Our premium Rayno Phantom Series film is a nano-carbon ceramic film product that provides the many advantages that both carbon films and ceramic films offer. If you are looking for an affordable tint solution, then you will undoubtedly be interested in our Rayno MonoCarbon film, which is a carbon-based film that will last with minimal fading over time. In addition, our Rayno Air7090 line is a perfect tint for the windshield, effectively cutting down the amount of glare and heat that passes through the front of your car.

You can apply CREED paint protection film (PPF) to the headlights and tail lights to give protection against UV rays, environmental pollutants, and scratches. This is a legal alternative to using a colored window tint.

Top Tint Shops Offering Legal Tint

If you would like to have Rayno Window Film installed on your vehicle, you can have it done at any one of our Virginia window tint shops. Use the dealer locator to find your nearest Rayno Window Film tint shop in Virginia. The tinting professional can provide you with more information about our various products and the window tinting process.