Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

The Guide to Legal Car Modifications in Minnesota

The Guide to Legal Car Modifications in Minnesota ARENA Creative /

Whether currently living in the state or planning to move to Minnesota in the near future, you need to make sure that you understand the restrictions on vehicle modifications. The following will help you understand what requirements you have to meet in order to make sure your vehicle is street legal.

Sounds and noise

Minnesota has regulations on the sounds permitted from your vehicle.

Sound system

  • 60-65 decibels in residential areas from 7 AM to 10 PM
  • 50-55 decibels in residential areas from 10 PM to 7 AM
  • 88 decibels when stationary


  • Mufflers are required on all vehicles and must work properly.

  • Muffler cutouts are not permitted.

  • Vehicles traveling 35 MPH or less can’t be louder than 94 decibels at 2 feet from the center travel lane.

  • Vehicles traveling more than 35 MPH can’t be louder than 98 decibels at 2 feet from the center travel lane.

Tip: Also check with local county laws in Minnesota to make sure you are following any municipal noise ordinances that may be more stringent than state-level laws.

Frame and suspension

Minnesota does not have frame height or suspension modification restrictions providing the vehicle be within the following requirements:

  • Vehicles cannot be taller than 13 feet 6 inches.

  • Bumper height is restricted to within six inches of the original factory bumper height for the vehicle.

  • 4x4 vehicles have a maximum bumper height of 25 inches.


Minnesota does not require emissions testing and does not have restrictions on engine swaps or modifications.

Lighting and windows


  • Lights greater than 300 candlepower cannot hit the roadway 75 feet in front of the vehicle.

  • Flashing lights (other than hazard lights) are not permitted.

  • Red lights are permitted for braking only on passenger vehicles.

  • Blue lights are not permitted on passenger vehicles.

Window tinting

  • No tint is permitted on the windshield.

  • Front side, back side and rear windows must allow over 50% of light through.

  • Front side and back side window reflective tint cannot reflect more than 20%.

  • Sticker designating legal tint must be between the glass and film on driver’s side window.

Antique/classic car modifications

Minnesota does not allow vehicles that are designated as collector vehicles with plates to be driven as general or daily transportation. These plates are available for vehicles 20 more years old.

If you want to make sure your modifications are within Minnesota laws, YourMechanic can provide the mobile mechanics to help you install the new parts. You can also ask our mechanics what modifications may be best suited to your car using our free online Q&A system, Ask a Mechanic.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.


Post a question and get free advice from our certified mechanics.


More related articles

P0222 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle/Pedal Position Switch/Sensor B Circuit Low Input
P0222 code definition Throttle/Pedal Position Switch/Sensor B Circuit Low Input What the P0222 code means The manufacturer specifies a range of acceptable voltage to be produced from the throttle position...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
How to Buy Fuel Treatments
Adding a fuel additive to your gas tank when you fill up is one way to clean vital engine parts of deposits, improve the performance of your engine,...

Related questions

Q: Will a after market performance chip increase my horse power? Will it pass smog?

If you live in California or any jurisdiction that regulates these aftermarket products, the first thing to check is whether the California Air Resources Board (CARB) has "registered" or "approved" the product. If no approval exists, particularly in California, that...

Q: Power capabilities

Hi there. The engine will not start to break down or lose power at that point. The factory engine does not make that much power on its own so I have to assume you are talking about aftermarket power modifications....

Q: I am looking to make a "sports" , "dub" car with alot of power.

Taking on a project such as this takes lots of time, even for the most experienced mechanic. You will be re-engineering your car and this will require you to learn a lot and make a lot of decisions. There is...