What’s the Legal Limit for Window Tints

What’s the Legal Limit for Window Tints

Window tinting is an entirely legal customisation that almost eny vehicle can have. But how much tinting can you get until it can get you in trouble? Or are tinting rules even that complex?

In this blog, we will answer the question ‘What’s the legal limit for window tints?’

The UK automotive aftermarket industry is thriving, ranking fourth in Europe and ninth in the world in terms of size, and turning over an annual £21.1 billion.

The sector supports 345,600 jobs and contributes £12.2 billion each year to the economy. And it is growing: the sector’s value is set to rise to £28 billion by 2022.

That’s why we at Car Specialist Customs are here to provide you with all the information you require to get the best car customisation possible, whilst being as informed as possible.

What does window tinting do?

Window tinting offers a range of benefits for both you and your car. Here are the key advantages:

Enhanced Comfort and Sun Protection:

  • Reduced Heat Gain: Window tint helps block ultraviolet (UV) rays and infrared radiation from the sun. This translates to a cooler car interior, especially during hot weather, making your drives more comfortable.
  • Glare Reduction: Tinting minimizes sun glare, improving visibility while driving and reducing eye strain,especially when encountering oncoming headlights or bright sunlight.

Improved Safety and Security:

  • Shattered Glass Protection: Window film can help hold shattered glass together in case of an accident, potentially preventing injuries from flying glass shards.
  • Increased Privacy: Tinting offers a degree of privacy by obscuring the view into your car, making it less attractive to potential thieves and protecting your belongings from prying eyes.

Interior Protection:

  • Reduced Fading: UV rays from the sun can fade upholstery, leather, and plastic surfaces over time. Window tint helps block these rays, slowing down the fading process and preserving your car’s interior for longer.
  • Crack Prevention: Excessive heat can cause cracks in the dashboard and other plastic components. Tinting helps regulate interior temperature, potentially minimizing this risk.

What’s the legal limit for window tints?

What’s the legal limit for window tints?

The legal limit for window tinting in the UK depends on the position of the window on your vehicle. Surprisingly, you don’t have to have all of your windows at the same tint. Some areas are allowed to be darker than others.

  • Front side windows: The front side windows must allow at least 70% of light through (not blocking more than 30% of light).

*These rules apply to vehicles first used on or after April 1, 1985. Vehicles used before that date can have a minimum of 70% light transmission on the windscreen and front side windows.

It’s always recommended to refer to the official DVSA guidance for the latest information and any regulation updates.

What happens if my tint is illegal?

Whilst on the road, you can be stopped by the police if your tinting looks to be past the legal limit. The police or Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) can use light measuring equipment to check the tint on your windows. If your windows don’t meet the legal requirements, you could be fined and required to remove the tint.

Why are certain tints illegal?

Certain tints are illegal as they can obstruct the driver’s view, especially in dark settings where natural light isn’t available. This is why there are limits on the front window and front side/passenger windows.

Although, it could be argued that the rear window must abide by the same rules, rather than having complete freedom for tinting, as this window is a critical requirement for day to day driving.

Can any vehicle get a window tint?

Most regular road vehicles are eligible for tinting in the UK. However, there are exceptions. Read on to find out which vehicles can, and can not get tinted.

Vehicles Eligible for Window Tinting:

  • Cars: Most cars can be legally tinted as long as the tint adheres to the regulations for light transmission (minimum 75% for windscreen, minimum 70% for front side windows).
  • SUVs and Vans: Similar to cars, SUVs and vans can be tinted as long as the tint complies with the legal limits.
  • Motorcycles: While less common, motorcycles can also have their windscreens tinted, but again, the tint needs to meet the legal requirements for light transmission.

Vehicles Not Eligible for Window Tinting:

There are a limited number of vehicle categories that cannot be legally tinted in the UK:

  • Vehicles Exempt from MOT Tests: These include tractors, agricultural machinery, and some older vehicles. Since they don’t have a standard registration system, window tinting regulations wouldn’t be applicable.
  • Vehicles with Q Registrations: The DVLA issues Q registrations when they have doubts about a vehicle’s identity or age. These vehicles typically require further investigation before being eligible for a standard registration, and so window tinting wouldn’t be allowed until the situation is resolved. However, if you have evidence to prove the vehicle’s age (for example, with a kit car), you can apply to the DVSA for permission to use window tint.
  • Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) and Trailers: These require a specific registration system for weight and licensing purposes, and window tinting wouldn’t be compatible with that system.

Is a window tint good for security?

A tinted window will help the security of your vehicle slightly, as it will help to obscure anything inside the vehicle, depending on where it is and which tinted window is being looked through. Aside from this, a window tint will not prevent a thief from robbing the contents of your vehicle, or attempting to steal the vehicle itself.

If you’re looking for an effective security measure that can prevent the theft of your vehicle, consider looking at ghost immobilisers.

Invest in a window tint today

Invest in a window tint today

Our team members at Car Specialist Customs are extremely passionate and proud of the multiple services and products we provide for the people of Greater Manchester and beyond.

As a fully insured and approved installer, catering to the needs of vehicle owners of Greater Manchester and beyond, we are proud to let you know that we offer services for the following:


Wrapping and PPF:

Interior customisation/ technology:


Featuring the brands, Pandora, ScorpionTrak, Meta Trak & SmarTrack, we’ve included affordable, and premium products to suit the needs of our customers. With finance options available, and the option of installation, head to our website to get your quote!

We will always go above expectations to make your car feel special to you. With even more services and options becoming available in the future, Car Specialist Customs is the home of making any car unique, secure and special.

See what we can do for you today, we hope the details we shared have helped you decide to take a step forward in personalising your vehicle with our unique service.

In this blog, we aimed to have answered the question, ‘What’s the legal limit for window tints?’ Whilst also providing supplementary information that can help you make an informed choice when it comes to investing in customisation options for your vehicle.

Want to get in touch? You can find us right here:


Unit 30

Caldershaw Centre

Ings Ln


OL12 7LQ


Monday to Wednesday – 10 AM—7 PM

Thursday – Closed

Friday to Sunday – 11 AM—7 PM


07523 971347 (Mon – Fri: 8:30 am – 6:00 pm)



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