Window Tint Laws in Minnesota

Window Tint Laws in Minnesota

Over the past few decades, window tinting has become a popular form of car modification that many Minnesota drivers enjoy.

Window and windshield tinting can provide many benefits. During hot Minnesota summers, window tints can help control your vehicle’s temperatures and provide much-needed relief. Other drivers enjoy the personal safety and security of having darker windows. 

Whatever the case, window tinting has boomed in popularity, and Minnesota lawmakers have enacted a series of strict regulations for car tints.

If you’re planning on tinting your windows, it is important to comply with state laws. Windows that are too dark can pose a hazard to other motorists and may even cause serious car accidents.

Minnesota Window Tint Laws Explained

Every state regulates the varying levels of tinting allowed on their vehicles’ windows and mirrors. Generally, the two most critical elements when discussing window tint allowance include reflection levels and darkness intensity.

Experts measure the amount of light that can enter a tinted window using visible light transmission (VLT). The higher the VLT percentage, the more light can pass through a window, making it easier to see inside a vehicle.

Minnesota lawmakers started regulating window tinting in 1985 and have since made modifications and allowances regarding tint levels and other requirements.

Tinting Limits in Minnesota

Unlike other states, Minnesota has different legal allowances for tint levels, depending on the type of vehicle. 

For drivers who operate a sedan, the following requirements must be met to comply with current window tint laws:

  • Front Side Windows: Over 50% VLT
  • Back Side Windows: Over 50% VLT
  • Rear Window: Over 50% VLT
  • Windshield: No tinting allowed

For vans and SUVs, tinting laws are far more flexible and include the following:

  • Front Side Windows: Over 50% VLT
  • Back Side Windows: No regulations
  • Rear Window: No regulations
  • Windshield: No tinting allowed

Generally, the most crucial element regarding window tint laws in Minnesota is driver visibility. 

With so many distractions and environmental factors, drivers require a high level of visibility to keep their eyes on the road. When windows and windshields are too dark, they can become a hazard and lead to severe accidents. 

As such, law enforcement can issue citations when tint becomes a risk to public safety.

Reflectivity Levels

Visible light reflectance (VLR) is a measurement that determines the amount of visible light reflected by a car’s window. Higher VLR percentages correspond with more light reflected.

While dark tints keep out heat and provide extra comfort, reflective films help reduce glare. Unfortunately, when windows are too reflective, they can negatively impact other drivers and become a public safety concern.

Minnesota requires all vehicle windows to have a maximum of 20% VLR. 

Exceptions To Minnesota’s Window Tint Laws

In some cases, Minnesota drivers may need special tint installed in their vehicles for medical purposes. Often, these tinting requirements go beyond the state’s legal limitations.

Some common conditions that qualify for a window tint exemption include:

  • Migraines
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Bloom syndrome
  • Albinism
  • Skin conditions

Under these particular circumstances, motorists must first obtain a medical exemption through their medical provider. Although there’s no formal application process for an exemption, motorists must carry a medical note at all times as proof for law enforcement.

Penalties for Window Tint Violations in Minnesota

Failure to comply with the established tinting laws can result in a traffic citation. Minnesota State Troopers and local law enforcement often carry window tint meters to test the levels of visibility on questionable windows.

In more serious cases, window tint that does not follow state laws may cause an accident due to the hazards increased darkness or reflectiveness can pose. Ensuring that your vehicle’s tint complies with Minnesota law can help you prevent not only potential fines, but also the consequences of a car accident.

Contact the Minnesota Car Accident Law Firm of Hall Law Personal Injury Attorneys For Help Today

For more information, please contact an experienced car accident lawyer at Hall Law Personal Injury Attorneys to schedule a free initial consultation today. We have three convenient locations in Minnesota, including Minneapolis, St. Cloud, and Edina.

We proudly serve Hennepin County, Stearns County, and its surrounding areas:

Hall Law Personal Injury Attorneys – Minneapolis
825 Nicollet Mall, Suite 615
Minneapolis, MN 55402
(800) 292-1979

Hall Law Personal Injury Attorneys – St. Cloud
1010 W St Germain St # 320
St Cloud, MN 56301
(320) 255-1000

Hall Law Personal Injury Attorneys – Edina
5200 Willson Rd #203
Edina, MN 55424
(952) 697-5560

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