Windshield Laws in Wisconsin

Driving in Wisconsin means you have to follow the rules of the road. In addition to the traffic laws, however, motorists are also required to make sure that their vehicle equipment meets the standards set forth for safety. Below you will find the windshield laws in Wisconsin that all drivers are required to follow.

Windshield requirements

Wisconsin’s requirements for the windshield and associated devices are as follows:

  • All vehicles manufactured after January 1, 1936 must have a windshield when driven on the highway.

  • All vehicles manufactured after January 1, 1955 must have a working defroster that is capable of removing frost and condensation from the windshield.

  • All vehicles required to have windshields must also have windshield wipers that are in good working order, capable of removing rain, snow and other moisture from the windshield and have blades that are free from tears and rips.

  • Vehicles manufactured after January 1, 1968 must also have a working windshield washer that has proper fluid for cleaning the windshield.

Obstructions

Wisconsin motorists must also make sure their view of the roadways are clear.

  • Posters, signs and any other nontransparent materials are not permitted on the windshield.

  • Stickers required by law are permitted in the lower corners of the windshield as long as they do not cover the vehicle identification number.

  • No items may be placed or suspended between the driver and the windshield that could obscure vision other than the rearview mirror.

Window tint

Wisconsin allows the use of window tint providing it complies with the following:

  • Windshield tint must be non-reflective and must be placed above the AS-1 line provided by the manufacturer. If no AS-1 line is present, the use of window tint is prohibited.

  • Front side window tint must allow greater than 50% of the light to pass through.

  • Back side and rear window tint must allow greater than 35% light transmittance.

  • If tint is applied to the rear window, dual side mirrors are required.

  • Reflective or mirrored tints are not permitted on any window.

Cracks, chips and defects

The Wisconsin laws concerning cracks, chips and defects in the windshield are as follows:

  • Cracks that extend into the area directly in front of the driver are not permitted.

  • No cracks may be inside the area directly in front of the driver.

  • No cracks may extend greater than eight inches from the edge of the windshield.

  • Chips and stone damage larger than half an inch in diameter are not permitted in the area directly in front of the driver.

  • Chips and stone damage larger than 1-1/2 inches in diameter are not permitted on any part of the windshield.

  • Etches, abrasions, and scratches that distort or block the driver’s view are not permitted in the area right in front of the driver.

Violations

Failing to comply with the above laws can result in traffic stops by law enforcement and subsequent fines for each offense.

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.


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