The state of Washington enacted the car window tinting laws in 2011. The Washington State Legislature regulates the laws.
In this article, we offer and explain the window tint laws for cars in Washington. The data on this article is based on the latest news and follows the regulations provided by the authorities at Washington State Legislature and the Window Film Association in March 2020.
- In Brief: Washington Window Tint Laws
- Washington Window Tinting Laws
- Tint Darkness for Sedans
- Tint Darkness for SUVs and vans
- Windows Tint Reflection Laws in Washington
- Other Window Tint Rules in Washington
- Color Rules Related to Window Tints in Washington
- Exceptions to Window Tinting Laws in Washington
- Penalty for Breaking Washington Window Tinting Laws
Washington Window Tinting Laws
Cars and multipurpose vehicles have window tinting for useful applications apart from protection from sunlight, such as privacy and security of drivers and special passengers and shielding due to medical issues.
The window tint of your car is understood by the Visible Light Transmission or VLT. It is the percentage of light that a window tint film permits to enter your car.
A higher VLT allows more light to pass through the window and a lower VLT lets in a lower amount of light.
The percentage of light permitted through your car window in Washington is particular and different for the type of your car, be it a passenger vehicle or a multipurpose vehicle.
Tint Darkness for Sedans
Here are the tint darkness laws for sedans in Washington.
Windshield: Non-reflective tint is permitted on the top six (06) inches of the windshield.
Front Side Windows: Minimum 24% of the external light must be allowed inside. This means the windows are allowed up to 24% VLT or tint darkness.
Rear Windows: Minimum 24% of the outside light must be allowed inside.
Back Side Windows: Minimum 24% of the external light must be allowed inside.
Tint Darkness for SUVs and vans
Here are the tint darkness laws for SUVs and vans in Washington.
Windshield: Non-reflective tinting is allowed on the top six (06) inches of the windshield.
Front Side Windows: Minimum 24% of the external light must be allowed inside.
Rear Windows: Any tint darkness can be applied on these windows.
Back Side Windows: Any tint darkness can be applied on these windows.
Windows Tint Reflection Laws in Washington
A reflective window tint for your car, permitted in some states, reflects the incoming light on the window and reduces the glare and heat that could be generated inside the vehicle.
Tint Reflections for Sedans
Please see the tint reflection laws for sedans in Washington.
- Front Side Windows: The tints must not go beyond 35% reflectiveness.
- Back Side Windows: The tints must not go beyond 35% reflectiveness.
Tint Reflections for SUVs and vans
Please see the tint reflection laws for SUVs and vans in Washington.
- Front Side Windows: The window tints must go beyond 35% reflectiveness.
- Back Side Windows: The window tints must go beyond 35% reflectiveness.
Other Window Tint Rules in Washington
Here are some additional laws to be followed in Washington regarding the installation of side mirrors, manufacturer’s certificate, stickers, and so on.
Side mirrors: Left and right side mirrors are required for the vehicle if the back windows have tint.
Certificates: Certification of the tinted film by manufacturers is compulsory in Washington. Please obtain further information from your tint manufacturer.
Stickers: In Washington, a sticker to identify certified tinting is compulsory between the tint film and the driver’s side window glass.
Medical Exceptions: Washington provides medical exemptions for special tints. Please see Exceptions to Window Tinting Laws.
Color Rules Related to Window Tints in Washington
You may modify your car’s windows with a colored tint. Some states restrict the colors for usage.
The state of Washington restricts the colors YELLOW, RED, and AMBER as tints. Other colors are allowed.
Exceptions to Window Tinting Laws in Washington
Exemptions for special window tints are permitted for medical reasons in many states.
They are provided to the drivers and passengers with medical conditions that require them to be protected from the sun’s direct rays while driving.
The exemption is made for the operator or the passenger of the vehicle. The exemption is applicable for all the windows except the windshield, where the top six (06) inches are permitted to have a darker tint.
A certification from a licensed physician is required when applying for an exemption. Written verification from them is necessary in the vehicle at all times.
Penalty for Breaking Washington Window Tinting Laws
Failure to comply with the above laws as a motor vehicle operator will result in a suspension of any motor vehicle registration by the director of the licensing until the owner carries out the changes that conform to the legal requirements.
We have provided laws for window tint films for vehicles in the state of Washington.
If you have any questions or valuable comments, do not hesitate to comment down or email us.
While we regularly update our articles, please keep up to date with the latest laws by contacting your state department of transportation or police.
Check other State’s window tint laws here>