What are the Auto Tint Laws in Washington State?

tinting car window

Tinting windows has a variety of benefits. By blocking the brunt of bright sunrays, drivers can protect their upholstery from sun bleaching, maintain a more comfortable temperature inside the vehicle with less stress to the air conditioning system, and shield car passengers from harmful UV rays. Darkening windows also leads to more privacy and security, preventing people from easily seeing inside the vehicle and finding valuables.

There are many reasons drivers choose to tint their car windows. Before you tint, be aware of any relevant laws. Auto tint laws vary from state to state, so it’s very important for drivers to be aware of these laws so they can ensure to follow the laws properly in their state.

How Much Tint Can Be Applied?

In Washington state, the maximum level of auto tint material to be applied to any window (except the windshield) must have a total reflectance of 35% or less, and a light transmission of 24% or more for sedans. For SUVs and vans there is no limit to the darkness of tint that can be applied to the rear side windows and back glass. If a car is operated by or carrying a passenger a person who has a written medical exemption from a licensed physician, then a higher degree of light reduction is allowed on all windows and the top 6 inches of the windshield. Car owners may apply a clear film to the windshield if the film reduces or eliminates UV light.

There are several types of tint that are not allowed in Washington state, including: black, gold, red, or yellow material; mirror finish products; or liquid tint that is sprayed or brushed onto the window. There may not be any more than a single sheet of sun screening material to any window.

Devices to diffuse sunlight may be applied to all windows behind the driver as long as the device 1) reduces the driver’s field of vision uniformly and 2) reduces vision by no more than 50%. If drivers place a sunscreen device on the rear window, the car must have outside rearview mirrors on both sides.

These are the basics of window tint laws in Washington. Lucky Dog Auto Glass shares this information with our valued customers as a convenience, but we do not offer window tinting. We do offer auto glass repair and installation in Kent, Washington. Contact us today to make an appointment!

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