Virginia Window Tinting Laws

Darkest legal tint for Sedans in Virginia

  • Windshield: Non-reflective tint is allowed on the top 6 inches of the windshield.
  • Front Side windows: Must allow more than 50% of light in.
  • Back Side windows: Must allow more than 35% of light in for sedans. SUVs and vans may have any level of darkness.
  • Rear window: Must allow more than 35% of light in for sedans. SUVs and vans may have any level of darkness.

Darkest legal tint for SUV and Vans in Virginia

  • Windshield: Non-reflective tint is allowed on the top 6 inches of the windshield.
  • Front Side windows: Must allow more than 50% of light in.
  • Back Side windows: Any level of darkness can be used.
  • Rear window: Any level of darkness can be used.

Virginia Tinting Regulations

Window tinting in Virginia isn’t just about giving your ride a sleek look or keeping the sun’s glare out of your eyes. It’s a regulated affair, and it pays to know the rules before darkening those car windows. After all, the right tint can mean cool comfort, but the wrong one can lead to a brush with the law.

Virginia’s Tinting Laws: The Basics

Virginia’s rules are clear-cut when it comes to how dark you can go with your window tints. For the front side windows, the law allows a tint that permits at least 50% of the light to pass through. As for the back side windows and the rear window, you’ve got a bit more leeway – a 35% Visible Light Transmission (VLT) is the minimum allowed.

But it’s not just about how much light gets through. Virginia cares about reflection too. Tints on the front and back side windows must not be more than 20% reflective. This is to prevent the ‘mirror effect,’ which can be blinding to other drivers and is a definite no-no on Virginia’s roads.

A Colorful Consideration

While we’re talking tints, let’s touch on color. Virginia’s laws are pretty straightforward—no tints that are red, amber, or yellow, as these are reserved for emergency vehicles. Stick to the traditional shades to avoid any mix-ups or mishaps.

Knowledge is Power

The best way to ensure you’re on the right side of the law is to stay informed. Virginia’s DMV website provides up-to-date information on all vehicle regulations, including window tints. A quick check can save you from potential fines and the hassle of having to remove illegal tints

Medical Exemptions for Virginia Tint Laws

image for an article on Medical Exemptions for Virginia Window Tint Rules, featuring a medical cross symbol on a tinted car window
Navigating Health and Law: Medical Tint Exemptions in Virginia

Medical exemptions come into play for individuals who require additional protection from the sun’s rays due to medical conditions. Conditions like systemic lupus erythematosus, porphyria, xeroderma pigmentosum, or severe drug photosensitivity can necessitate tints that might otherwise be illegal.

Navigating the Exemption Pathway

So how does one navigate the exemption process? It starts with a licensed physician in Virginia who can attest to the necessity of a darker tint for the patient’s health. The physician must provide a detailed document explaining the nature of the condition and why a darker tint is required.

The Certification Process

Once this documentation is in hand, it’s not just a matter of darkening those windows. No, Virginia requires that you take this documentation to the DMV, where they will issue an official authorization for your vehicle to be outfitted with the medically necessary tint.

The Rules of the Exemption

It’s essential to note that this isn’t a carte blanche to go as dark as you like. The exemption allows for a minimum of 35% VLT on all windows, including the front side windows, which normally would have to allow 50% light transmission. And don’t forget, the windshield still must comply with the standard regulation—only the top six inches may be tinted.

Life of the Exemption

Virginia’s medical exemptions for window tints aren’t a once-and-done deal. They come with an expiration date, typically the same as the patient’s driver’s license, to ensure that the exemption is still valid and medically necessary.

Compliance and Consideration

Even with an exemption, it’s crucial to stay compliant. That means ensuring the tinting is done professionally and meets the specifications outlined in the exemption. Law enforcement officers are trained to recognize the difference between legal and illegal tints, and they will check for compliance.

Window Film Certificates and Stickers In Virginia

Here’s the lowdown: In Virginia, every roll of window tint film that’s sold and applied must come with a certificate. This isn’t just a fancy piece of paper; it’s proof that the film meets the state’s stringent regulations for safety and visibility. The certificate should be provided by the film’s manufacturer or the installer and must be kept in the vehicle at all times.

Sticker on the Doorjamb

Now, this is where it gets sticker-y. Virginia requires a legal sticker to be placed on the inside of the driver’s side doorjamb. This isn’t some run-of-the-mill sticker you can peel off a sheet and slap on. No, this sticker is issued by the tint film manufacturer and is a declaration that your car’s darkened windows are street-legal.

Why Stickers and Certificates, You Ask?

It’s all about verification and compliance. These little pieces of paper and adhesive are what stand between you and a potential fine for non-compliance. They’re a quick reference for law enforcement to check if your car’s tint meets the legal Visible Light Transmission (VLT) limit of 50% for the front side windows and 35% for the rear.

The Nitty-Gritty of Compliance

If you’re rolling with tinted windows in Virginia without a certificate or sticker, you’re rolling the dice on your road legality. Non-compliance can lead to a citation, and no one wants to get pulled over for a window tint violation. It’s not just about the potential fine; it’s about keeping the roads safe for everyone.

Keeping It Legit

So, how do you keep things above board? It’s simple: when you get your windows tinted, make sure the installer provides you with the manufacturer’s certificate and affixes the sticker to the correct spot. This is your tint’s badge of honor – wear it proudly.

A Clear View Ahead

Remember, in Virginia, it’s not just about looking cool; it’s about adhering to the rules of the road. Window film certificates and stickers are your passport to a hassle-free drive with your stylish tinted windows.

People Also Read:  Vermont Window Tinting Laws

Penalties or Ticket Cost for Illegal Window Tint in Virginia

a car with dark windows and an officer issuing a ticket
Facing the Fines: Illegal Window Tint Penalties in Virginia

In Virginia, the law requires a certain amount of light to penetrate your car windows. To be specific, at least 50% of light should pass through your front side windows, and 35% through the back side windows. If your windows are darker than the law allows, you’re setting the stage for a ticket.

The Price of Shade

So, what’s the damage to your wallet if your tint crosses into the illegal territory? The cost of a ticket for illegal window tint in Virginia can vary, but it typically starts at $116. That might not seem like a wallet-breaker, but it’s more than just a monetary hit. It’s a mark on your driving record and could lead to a court date where you might be ordered to strip off that non-compliant tint.

Repeat Offenders, Beware

If you’ve been down this road before and it’s not your first offense, brace yourself—the cost can escalate with each ticket. Virginia isn’t just looking to collect fines; the state wants to ensure compliance for safety’s sake. Multiple offenses could also raise eyebrows at your insurance company, potentially bumping up your premiums.

But There’s More…

Beyond the ticket itself, there are the costs of removing or replacing the illegal tint, which can add up in terms of time and money. And let’s not forget the time spent being pulled over and dealing with the aftermath—that’s time you could have spent enjoying everything Virginia has to offer.

The Moral of the Story

The lesson here? Know the rules before you tint. It’s simple: Stay within Virginia’s legal VLT limits, and you can enjoy the benefits of your tint without the worry of fines or court dates. It’s about cruising smart and keeping your driving record as clear as your windows should be.


Virginia’s window tinting laws are all about ensuring that while you enjoy your drive, everyone stays safe – you, your passengers, and your fellow drivers on the road. So embrace the rules, pick the right tint, and drive safe in the knowledge that you’re not just following the law, but you’re also preserving the Virginia way of life – respectful of the past, mindful of the present.

State of Virginia Info

Virginia, known affectionately as the Old Dominion due to its status as the first English colonial possession in the continental United States, is a state rich in diversity and history. From the rolling Blue Ridge Mountains to the expansive Chesapeake Bay, Virginia’s geography is as varied as its past.

A Melting Pot of History and Culture

Virginia’s story is deeply woven into the fabric of American history. It’s the birthplace of eight U.S. presidents, more than any other state, earning it another nickname, “Mother of Presidents.” The state played a central role in the American Revolution, with figures like Thomas Jefferson and George Washington calling it home. Fast forward to the Civil War, and Virginia was again a key player, with its capital, Richmond, serving as the capital of the Confederacy.

Economic Vitality in the Modern Age

Modern-day Virginia is a hub for government and technology. Northern Virginia, part of the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, hosts a myriad of government agencies and contractors. The state’s economy benefits from the Pentagon, the CIA headquarters, and numerous tech companies, making it a nerve center for the nation’s defense and tech industries.

Educational Excellence

Virginia also boasts an impressive education system, with top-tier institutions like the University of Virginia and Virginia Tech. These universities are not just academic heavyweights but are also significant contributors to the state’s research and development prowess, particularly in engineering, computer sciences, and biotechnology.

Natural Wonders and Scenic Beauty

The state’s natural beauty is second to none. Virginia offers outdoor enthusiasts a playground of options: hiking in Shenandoah National Park, beach-going on the Atlantic coast, and exploring the caverns dotting the Shenandoah Valley. The state’s commitment to conservation ensures these treasures remain for generations to enjoy.

A Blend of Urban and Rural

Virginia’s cities, such as Richmond, Norfolk, and Charlottesville, offer a vibrant urban culture with a thriving arts scene, diverse cuisine, and rich music heritage. Conversely, the rural areas preserve a slower pace of life, where traditions are held dear, and community ties are strong.

The Cultural Tapestry

Virginia is also a cultural tapestry, with festivals celebrating everything from wine to oysters, history to bluegrass music. The state’s cultural diversity is a point of pride, offering a mosaic of experiences that reflect its rich history and modern dynamism.

Forward-Thinking Policies

The Commonwealth is known for its forward-thinking policies, particularly in areas like technology and environmental protection. Virginia’s stance on education, healthcare, and economic development is progressive, aimed at improving the quality of life for its residents.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there any banned tint colors in Virginia?

Yes, red, yellow, and amber tints are not allowed in Virginia

Do tint manufacturers need certification in Virginia?

No, film manufacturers do not need to certify their products in Virginia​

How can I ensure my tint meets Virginia’s standards?

It is recommended to cross-check with official state resources or consult with professional tint installers

Are SUV tint rules different in Virginia?

Yes, SUVs and vans have similar rules to sedans but offer more flexibility for back and rear windows

Do I need a sticker for my tinted windows in Virginia?

Yes, Virginia requires certain stickers for tinted windows​

Can I have different tint shades on my vehicle in Virginia?

Yes, you can have different tint shades as long as each window’s tint complies with the state’s regulations

What if I sell my car with tinted windows in Virginia?

Ensure the tint complies with Virginia’s laws to avoid legal issues for the new owner

Is removing window tint a complex process?

Removing window tint can be complex, and it is advisable to seek professional help to avoid damage

Can I get a medical exemption for darker tints in Virginia?

es, Virginia offers medical exemptions for specific tinting requirements​

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