Montana Car Window Tint Laws (Updated)

If you have tint on your car and are planning to move to Montana or maybe your road trip includes Montana, you may be wondering what the window tint laws are in Montana?

Quick Answer

In Montana, the following tint laws are in place:

  • Front windshield – must be clear and transparent below the AS-1 line. Above the AS-1 line it cannot be red, yellow, or amber in color.
  • Front side window – Must have luminous reflectance of less than 35% or light transmission greater than 24%.
  • Rear windows and back side windows – must have luminous reflectance of less than 35% or light transmission of more than 14%.

Here we’ll go over the window tint laws in Montana and answer the most common questions asked about Montana tint laws.

Window Tinting in Montana – What Does the Law Say?

Tint laws vary from state to state, so it’s important to understand what ratio of light transmission and reflectance are allowed in each state to avoid law infractions.

Can Windows Be Tinted in Montana?

The front windshield cannot be tinted: In Montana, the front window must be clear and transparent below the AS-1 line. This line is typically established by the manufacturer and visible on the windshield. Above the windshield it can be tinted, but it cannot be red, yellow, or amber colored.

Other windows can be tinted to a degree: The front side windows, rear side windows, and rear window can all be tinted, but must meet the correct transmission and reflectance ratio requirements. Multipurpose vehicles carrying under 10 passengers are exempt from passenger vehicle tint laws for back side and rear windows.

What Windows Can Be Tinted in Montana?

All windows except the front windshield can be tinted to a certain degree in Montana. Even the front windshield can be tinted as long as it is above the manufacturer’s AS-1 line. Here is a breakdown for each window, so you know you’ll be staying within the law:

Front Windshield: According to Title 61, Chapter 9, Part 4 of the Montana Code, a person may not drive a motor vehicle with a “windshield that has tint that is not clear and transparent below the AS-1 line.” The code goes on to say that red, yellow, and amber tint are illegal above the AS-1 line.

Back Windshield: The Montana Code 61-9-405(4)(c) describes the law for rear windshields, stating that a person may not drive a motor vehicle with a rear window that has tint with a “luminous reflectance of more than 35% or has light transmission of less than 14%.” It goes on to exclude multipurpose vehicles, vans, and busses.

Driver and Passenger Window: Montana Code 61-9-405(4)(b) states that a person may not drive a motor vehicle with driver side windows using tint material that has a luminous reflection of more than 35% or light transmission of less than 24%. Some states allow darker tint for passenger side windows, but in Montana they are the same for both front side windows.

Back Windows: Montana Code 61-9-405(4)(c) states the same tint laws for the back side windows as it does for the rear window: The luminous reflection of the tint cannot be more than 35% and the light transmission cannot be less than 14%. This exempts multipurpose vehicles such as vans and busses.

Restricted Colors: According to Montana law, you can use colored tint on your vehicle. The tint cannot be the colors red, yellow, or amber.

Montana Window Tint Law Medical Exemption

Tint laws can be waived for certain medical conditions. Exact details can be found under Montana Code 61-9-428. In order to waive Montana tinting laws, you must obtain a signed affidavit with the following qualifications:

Signed By Licensed Professional: You must have an affidavit signed by a licensed physician, physician assistant, or advanced practice registered nurse (RN). Their signature and associated titles must be visible somewhere on the affidavit.

Affidavit must include: Your signed affidavit must be in writing and include the VIN number or registration number of the vehicle. If it does not contain one of these two items, it must be able to clearly identify the vehicle that is identified in the waiver. It must include the date issued, the name of the owner of the vehicle, and the medical reason for the waiver.

Must be able to give a copy: If you are pulled over by highway patrol or local law enforcement, you must be able to grant a copy to the law enforcement agent, who will keep a copy of the waiver until it expires. This does not mean you have to keep two copies readily available, merely that you are willing to allow the law enforcement agent to make a copy.

Frequently Asked Questions About Montana Car Window Tinting Laws

Tint laws can change from year to year and vary from state to state. Be sure to know your laws in Montana.

What does VLT mean according to Montana? VLT refers to the visible light transmission. In Montana, the VLT is measured in a percentage and refers to the percent of visible light that’s allowed to pass through the factory tint and additional tint of the window. For example, front side windows must allow more than 24% VLT.

How much does car window tinting cost in Montana? Tinting prices vary depending on where you go and how professional you want your tint to look. For professional window tinting in Billings, Montana for example, it costs around $202-240 to tint a four-door sedan. This is the price for dyed film tint.

How dark can your windows be in Montana? If you’re driving a multipurpose vehicle, the rear and back windows can be as dark as you want in terms of tint. For passenger vehicles, the darkest tint you can get is 24% for front side windows and 14% for back side and rear windows.

Is reflective or colored tint legal in Montana? Yes, if you use the right colors and the correct reflective percentage. Montana has made the colors red, yellow, and amber illegal tint colors in the state. All reflective tints must be less than 35% reflective in order to be legal in the state of Montana.

Can you get a ticket for tinted windows in Montana? If your windows are tinted darker than the legal limit, you may be issued a ticket under a minor traffic law. Tickets typically start out at $100 and will escalate for each time you are pulled over. However, some officers may issue a warning first.

Wrap Up

Because tint laws are so varying between states, it’s always a good idea to know the laws in any state you are travelling to. It avoids tickets, saves you money and a lot of headaches!

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