Texas Tint Laws Explained – How Dark Is Too Dark?
Part two of a three part series explaining Texas tint laws
While the sun might shine bright in Texas, people are sometimes still in the dark when it comes to Texas window tint laws. It seems many motorists are still unclear as to what is legal and what is not legal in the great state of Texas. In this blog we will try to clear up any questions about what can legally be applied to the windows of vehicles in Texas.
In Part One of our blog we discussed the legality of window tint on a windshield. In this post we will discuss tint on doors and rear windows. It’s an important issue, because Texas law specifically applies to the two front windows of all vehicles. Here we must discuss something called VLT, or visible light transmission. Car window tinting films are measured in visible light transmission levels, and these levels are represented as a percentage of the visible light transmitted through the windows. This measurement is captured by a tint meter.
Your local law enforcement agency, and all state inspection stations have these, and if there is any questions as to the legality of your film they will not hesitate to meter your film. That’s why it’s important that motorists are clear on this point.
In Texas the law applies to the front two windows of any vehicle. What does that mean for the rest of the vehicle? Well that means that the tint on the rear doors and rear window can be as dark as a motorist likes. Yes, that’s right even limo tint on all of the windows behind the two front windows is completely legal. So then what about those two font windows?
Too get the answer we go straight to the Texas Department of Public Safety website. According to the DPS “Sunscreening devices, when measured in combination with the original glass, have a light transmittance value of 25% or more. Sunscreening devices, when measured in combination with the original glass, have a luminous reflectance value of 25% or less”.
So that means that if your window tint is ever “metered”, or checked with a tint meter, it must read 25% VLT or higher. Now since factory glass is never 100% clear, most shades applied on the front side windows is usually in the 35% to 30% range of shades. Texas window tint law permits a certain window reflection when using a tint so make sure you pay attention to this as well. Tint reflection for front side windows must not be more than 25% reflective.
Even though dark tint may be legal, safety should always be your first consideration.
Applying window tint that can make it difficult to see out of at night might not be the best choice. That’s especially true for newer drivers and for drivers that might be dealing with poor eyesight, or a condition that affects their eyesight.
When choosing window tint always think about your safety and the safety of others.
Part 3 of this series will discuss tint on sunroofs, and a more in depth look at tint on rear doors and windows.
At Fletch Window Tint we work hard to keep our customers informed about all aspects of window tint. We also offer the latest film technologies such as ceramic and infrared films, which provide greater heat rejection without requiring dark shades of tint. If you have any questions feel free to contact us at www.fletchwindowtint.com or call us at 210-669-2940.