Car Modifications That Are Illegal in the US
Many people like to add modifications to cars to make their vehicles stand out and perform better.
But modifying your car can also affect your car insurance. If you don’t tell your insurance company about any modifications, you may not be able to file a claim if something happens to your aftermarket parts.
The other problem is that many of these car modifications are either illegal or restricted depending on which state you live in. Even if the mods are legal where you live, you’ll need to follow the laws of other states if you bring them along on a trip.
Today, the global market for car modifications is worth hundreds of billions of dollars and continues to grow rapidly, according to HotCars. Here’s a look at some of the car modifications that are restricted or illegal in certain US states.
Cars come with mufflers for a reason: to control noise from the exhaust system. For the most part, it’s illegal to remove them, and different states have different rules about how loud your exhaust can be.
For example, Texas does not have a well-defined escape law. But many other states say the noise limit is 90 or 95 decibels, and some cities have their own rules for engine noise.
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Neon lights mounted under a vehicle are a popular modification of The Fast and the Furious movies. There are restrictions against this type of lighting in many states.
The reason for this is that it can distract other drivers. Some states will allow amber or white lights, and others don’t want cars to have flashing lights.
A raised suspension
It is common to make changes to a car’s suspension. These modifications can increase or decrease the distance between the car body and the road. But again, the rules between states vary a lot, so you’ll need to check this out.
In Connecticut, you can only raise the suspension a maximum of 4 inches. On the other hand, New York reportedly has no suspension lift limits or frame height restrictions. But, the mounting height of the bumper must be between 16 and 20 inches, according to the laws of elevation.
Brighter high intensity discharge lights
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It may seem like having brighter headlights would make you a safer driver by helping you see better. However, these types of lights are considered too bright for other drivers on the road.
High-intensity discharge lights emit a much brighter bluish-white light. Does not meet federal standards for replacement headlight bulbs, which ensure they must match original equipment.
A California man was recently sentenced to 18 months in prison and dangerously seized $1.7 million for illegally importing high-intensity discharge headlamps that do not meet US safety standards, according to the US Department of Justice. USA
Very dark tint on rear and side windows
While tinted windows can help keep things cool in hot weather, they can also pose a safety hazard if they’re too dark. This law varies by state, so if you have done this car modification where it is not allowed, you may be pulled over by a local police officer.
In Alaska, tint must allow 70% light transmission in the front side windows and 40% in the rear.
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