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Maryland Window Tint Laws

Maryland Window Tint Laws

Darkest legal tint for Cars in Maryland

 

  • Windshield: Non-reflective 35% VLT tint is allowed on the AS-1 line or top 5 inches of the windshield
  • Front Side windows: Must allow more than 35% of light in
  • Back Side windows: Must allow more than 35% of light in
  • Rear window: Must allow more than 35% of light in

 

Darkest legal tint for SUV and Vans in Maryland

 

  • Windshield: Non-reflective 35% VLT tint is allowed on the AS-1 line or top 5 inches of the windshield
  • Front Side windows: Must allow more than 35% of light in
  • Back Side windows: Any darkness window tint can be used
  • Rear window: Any darkness window tint can be used

 

Please note: The accuracy, completeness, adequacy or currency of the content is not warranted or guaranteed. We are not lawyers or a law firm and we do not provide legal advice. We recommend you consult a lawyer or other appropriate professional if you want legal advice.

 
Window Tint Shades Chart – Window Tint Percentage Examples
 

Adding car window tint to your vehicle is the most cost effective way to make the automobile safer for you as a driver and to protect the interior of your vehicle against the ravages of sun damage. Auto window tint makes it easier for you to see the road by reducing sunshine and headlight glare and it blocks hot infrared light that can heat up and break down materials in the car and dangerous ultraviolet light that causes faded and cracked interiors.
 
Maryland vehicle window tinting rules allow for plenty of window darkening added to most windows on a private vehicle, so you can achieve the level of privacy, style, and sun protection you want. But any tint found to be outside Maryland window tint laws can come with strictly enforced penalties, so you need to understand the car tint rules in Maryland well to make sure you don’t end up cited.
 
As different tint laws apply to different types of vehicles in Maryland, we will look at Maryland’s car tinting laws and the state’s tint laws for larger vehicles (SUVs, trucks, and vans, e.g.) in separate sections.
 
Read on to learn about Maryland window tint laws, but first a quick explanation of terms: VLT is the abbreviation for “visible light transmission” and it essentially means how much light a window allows to pass through it, also known as how dark the window is. The higher the VLT number, the lighter and more transparent the window, and so too with the opposite, so a 99% VLT is essentially clear, while a 1% VLT is so dark all but the absolute brightest lights are blocked and it cannot be seen through. Make sure any car window tint in Maryland complies with the state’s VLT rules, because police and inspectors can use devices to test VLT on the scene, issuing tickets at any time a tint law violation is detected.
 

Maryland Car Window Tinting Rules

 
Privately owned cars in Maryland may have window tint applied to the windshield down to the manufacturer’s AS-1 line, which is a thin strip of the windshield about five inches below the top of the glass. If the AS-1 line is not marked, use five inches as the guideline. Many cars come with factory applied windshield tint, but if yours does not, make sure to follow Maryland tint laws and only have non-reflective tint that’s a maximum darkness of 35% VLT applied.
 
(Window tint laws are the same in Maryland for cars, trucks, SUVs, and vans when it comes to windshields, you can note.)
 
In Maryland window tint laws limit tint on all other windows to a 35% VLT or lighter, so for side windows both beside the front seat and the rear rows of cars (and third windows as applicable for hatchbacks) the window tinting must have a maximum darkness of 35% visible light transmission. This is true also for the rear window (sometimes called rear windshield) of all cars, this glass being also limited to 35% VLT darkness. It’s worth noting, however, that this tint is more than dark enough to add privacy to the vehicle and to enhance the style of the car as well.
 
No reflective, mirrored, or metallic-looking window tint is allowed on any car window under current Maryland law.
 

Window Tint Laws in Maryland for Trucks, Vans, and SUVs

 
As stated, Maryland windshield tint rules for vans, trucks, and SUVs are identical as for cars, with a non-reflective, 35% VLT tint allowed down to the windshield’s AS-1 line. Other windows each have specific regulations, so we’ll go through step by step.
 
In Maryland the front side windows of larger vehicles may have tint as dark as 35% VLT, and this tint must be non-reflective and non-metallic in appearance.
 
The rear side windows of a larger vehicle in Maryland can be coated with window tint of any darkness, including complete privacy tint that fully blocks the view into the vehicle. This allows for the total anonymity of passengers within the vehicle and also ensures maximum heat reduction and UV blocking. Again only non-reflective window tint can be used on rear windows.
 
When it comes to the rear windshield of vans, SUVs, and trucks, Maryland law also permits any darkness of non-reflective window tint be applied, however note that the rear brake light shining through the rear window cannot be covered in tint, so be sure you Maryland window tint installer (or you yourself for a DIY window tint application) trims the tint to fully reveal the rear brake light on the window.
 

Car Window Tint Regulations in Maryland

 
Maryland car window tint laws were first passed in 1995 and in the intervening years they have changed from time to time and are always subject to future updates, so it’s a good idea to stay abreast of the regulations.
 
There are various rules beyond simple VLT ratings and reflectivity restrictions that you must follow in Maryland. One is simple: if you have a back window that is tinted to any degree whatsoever, then dual side mirrors in good working order are required. (This is of course a standard for any reasonable driver, but still notable as pertaining to tint.)
 
In Maryland as in many states, you are prohibited from using red, amber, or yellow window tint colors or any shades or hues close to those. All other window tint colors are permitted.
 
Any window tint sold and/or installed in Maryland must come from a window tint manufacturer that certifies the film they sell meets with Maryland laws, so check with your installer or retailer (for DIY car window tint) to ensure they are using an approved tint. And while stickers proving window tint legality are not needed on tinted windows in Maryland, authorities recommend the use of these window film stickers anyway to prove your tint is legitimate.
 
Maryland tint laws do allow for special medical tint exemptions for window tint if a person can prove they need a darker tint than usually allowed based on health concerns. Consult with your doctor if you are going to request an exemption and keep proof of your Maryland tint law exemption with your vehicle’s other essential paperwork.
 

Car Window Tint Penalties in Maryland

 
Any violation of window tint laws in Maryland is treated as a non-criminal traffic offence (a civil offense, e.g.) and comes with a fine and with a Safety Equipment Repair Order (or SERO) that the state tracks, so you will have a short window of time to get the offending window tint removed (and replaced with legal tint if you want) and then to have the vehicle inspected and certified by an approved inspection station. Failure to do so in a timely matter can lead to a larger fine and more serious legal issues.