Legal window tint limits

Wondering what the rules for are for tinted windows? Did you even know that you could tint your windows? Which windows can you tint? So many questions, and here is where you'll find your answers.

If your car doesn't have tinted windows yet, you can bet you'll want some after this. This guide will tell you all about the darkest legal limits for tinted glass.

window tint

What is the legal window tint in the UK?

Before you go in all heavy-handed and start tinting your windows on your vehicle, it's probably a good idea to check first that your not buying the wrong level of tint.

Did you know that if you tint your windows too heavily you could be a risk of being prosecuted by the police? Your windows must have the right amount of tint, and this applies to cars, vans, and lorries. Safety first and all that, so it's good to understand the rules and what can happen if your tint is too dark.

To simply put it, your windscreen and front side windows are subject to glass tinting restrictions here in the UK that we all must follow. You'll be pleased to know that most manufacturers these days actually produce vehicles with just a slight window tint, which means it's already added to the glass as standard so you shouldn't need to do much else to them.

Let's say you do choose to add some extra tint, you could be at risk of your windows failing the legal requirement for window tinting. There are no rules for tinting the rear windscreen or rear passenger windows.

Penalties for over tinted windows

If you're found to have over tinted windows or windscreens, then you would be breaking the law.

You could find yourself with:

  • A court summons (or penalty notice).
  • A prohibition notice, which means that you must stop using your vehicle until the tints on it have been removed.

Windows that matter

For the windows that matter, the law requires that you follow these simple rules when it comes to tinting your windows:

  • 75 percent of light through the front windscreen
  • 70 percent of light through the front side windows

That doesn't mean to say you need to start measuring the percentage of light coming through yourself, well you can if you have know-how but it's best to have a professional look for you to make sure you meet the requirements.

Why have window tinting rules?

Think about it, our whole lives are based on rules. Laws are there for a reason and it's the same with window tinting too. At the end of the day, it all comes down to road safety. If you've got dark-tinted glass on your vehicle that's really affecting your visibility, it's bound to cause some safety issues.

If you were to breach these rules, you could only begin to imagine the horrific accidents that could happen as a result. It doesn't even bear thinking about. You need to see where you're going, especially in tricky weather conditions. By having dim window tints, you might not be able to see everything, like that pedestrian crossing the road or the cyclist coming up at the side of you.

Does MOT testing consider window tinting?

You'll be pleased to know that the answer is no to this one. Can you imagine if every garage in the UK had to test every car to make sure that it was complying with window tinting regulations? Exactly, it would cost thousands for the garages to purchase the correct equipment so that they could do this. You know what's coming next, it would mean that they would have to increase MOT testing prices in order to cover for the equipment and time taken to test which just isn't worth it. That's why the government decided that it would be better for roadside testing instead. Fair and square, wouldn't you agree? This way tests can be carried out much more easily than having to test every single car during an MOT. Simple.

Selling your car with a window tint

Eventually, the time will probably come and you're ready to sell your vehicle. If you've tinted your windows though, and you know it could be just over the legal limit, whatever you do, don't sell it. The last thing you want is the police on your back or to be prosecuted by Trading Standards.

Where window tint is involved, your insurance is going to want to get involved too. Let's face it, they like to be in on everything and if you've got tinted windows, they need to know about it. This is a modification to your vehicle at the end of the day which can affect any future claims. We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it's true.

If you fancy selling your vehicle, whether its got tinted windows or not, we can provide you with exactly what you need, offering a free online quotation to see how much your car is worth. It's so easy, all you have to do is pop your reg number into our online valuation tool and off you go. You can thank us later once you've accepted your quote and been paid for your vehicle.

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