Anyone who is licensed to drive knows that there are numerous traffic rules that he or she has to follow to stay safe and avoid accidents. In addition to those rules, motorists are also required to know and follow laws relating to the equipment of their vehicle. One area that is important is the windshield. Below are the windshield laws in Virginia, that all drivers must follow.
Virginia has a few different requirements for windshields:
Vehicles manufactured or assembled after July 1, 1970 are required to have windshields.
Safety glass, which is made up of at least two sheets of glass with glazing material between them, is required on all vehicles assembled or manufactured after January 1, 1936.
All vehicles equipped with windshields must also have windshield wipers that cleans the glass of rain and other types of moisture. The wipers must be under the control of the driver and in good working condition.
All vehicles with a windshield are required to have a working defroster.
Virginia limits the obstructions that may be placed on or within the driver’s view of the roadway.
Large objects hanging from the rearview mirror are not permitted.
CB radios, tachometers, GPS systems and other similar devices cannot be affixed to the dash.
Hood scoops on vehicles manufactured in 1990 or before cannot be taller than 2-1/4 inches above the point where the dash and windshield join.
Hood scoops on vehicles manufactured in 1991 or after cannot be taller than 1-1/8 inches above the point where the windshield and dash meet.
Only stickers required by law are permitted on the windshield, but must not be larger than 2-1/2 by 4 inches and should be affixed directly behind the rearview mirror.
Any additional required stickers cannot extend over 4-1/2 inches above the bottom of the windshield and must be positioned outside of the area cleared by the windshield wipers.
Only non-reflective tint placed above the AS-1 line from the manufacturer is permitted on the windshield.
Tint applied to the front side windows must allow greater than 50% of the light to pass through the combination of the film and the glass.
Tint applied to any other windows must allow more than 35% light transmittance.
If the rear window is tinted, the vehicle must have dual side mirrors.
No tint may be more than 20% reflective.
Red tint is not permitted on any vehicle.
Cracks, chips and defects
Scratches larger than 6 inches by ¼ inch within the area cleared by the wipers are not permitted.
Star cracks, chips and pits larger than 1-1/2 inches in diameter are not permitted anywhere on the windshield above the bottom three inches of the glass.
Multiple cracks from the same area with any one being larger than 1-1/2 inches long are not permitted.
Multiple cracks starting from a star crack that are above the bottom three inches of the windshield are not permitted.
Drivers who fail to comply with the above windshield laws may face fines starting at $81 for each offense. Additionally, any vehicle that is not in compliance with these rules will not pass the required annual inspections.
If your windshield needs to be inspected or your wipers are not working properly, a certified technician, such as one from YourMechanic, can help you get back on the road safely and quickly so you are driving within the laws.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as Windshield Laws in Virginia and was authored by Valerie Johnston.