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Hawaii Window Tint Laws [2023 Update]

Nothing quite compares to the overheating feeling of stepping into your car in the middle of summer.

That’s why many car owners choose to tint their car windows.

If you’re getting ready to tint your windows, you need to take some time to understand the window tint laws in your state.

Have you wondered, “Can you get pulled over for tint in Hawaii?”

Hawaii has closely adhered to its window tint laws since 1989 when they were first implemented.

We’ve provided all the necessary information—including how reflective or dark your tint should be—regarding the window tint laws in Hawaii.

Window Tint Darkness in Hawaii

Visible Light Transmission, or VLT, refers to how much light may pass through your car windows.

Each state varies in its VLT limits, including Hawaii.

The VLT limit also depends on whether you’re driving a Passenger Vehicle or a Multi-Purpose Vehicle.

The higher the VLT, the less tint the window has.

High VLT means more light can pass through your windows.

Since Hawaii established its first window tint laws, they’ve updated tinting applications and technology.

Compared to many states, Hawaii’s window tint laws are overall easier to understand and abide by.

However, the rules vary for each vehicle type, and the state has different laws for each window type.

For regular cars, Hawaii’s VLT limit is 35% transmission or lighter on the side and rear windows.

Twenty percent isn’t permitted.

For trucks, the VLT limit is also 35% or lighter on driver and passenger windows.

Rear and backside windows are allowed to use any range of darkness.

Depending on whether you have a sedan, SUV, or van, Hawaiian window tint laws are very specific.

Window Tint Darkness for Sedans

For sedans, the top four inches of your windshield allow a non-reflective windshield tint.

A sedan’s front side windows should allow more than 35% of light to pass through.

The backside and rear windows also allow 35% light in.

Window Tint Darkness for SUVs and Vans

Just like sedans, SUVs and vans also have varying window tint limits.

The top four inches of these vehicles allow a non-reflective tint.

The front and side windows of SUVs and vans require over 35% of light to pass through.

The backside and rear windows let you use any range of darkness.

According to Hawaii state law, once you get your vehicle’s window tint installed, your installer must provide you with a certificate of compliance, where it must remain in your vehicle at all times.

Other Rules and Regulations to be Aware of

There’s also several other rules and regulations regarding car tinting in Hawaii you may want to be aware of, such as:

  • Law Tinting Penalties: Range from $250-$500
  • Tint Variance: 6%
  • No restriction of tint colors
  • Hawaii does not require identification stickers indicating window tint
  • Although many states allow medical exemptions which let some use a special tint, Hawaii does NOT
  • Hawaii requires side mirrors if the back window is tinted
  • Hawaii does not require film manufacturers to certify the available film

It’s wise to remember that window tinting laws and regulations in Hawaii might vary from county to county, or depend on your place of residence.

We recommend checking with law enforcement authorities or your local DMV to receive accurate information.

Why Window Tint Laws are Important

Tinting your windows doesn’t just help reduce heat inside your vehicle.

There are also several safety factors. Window tint can reflect incoming light and reduce glare that might interfere with your driving.

Window tint laws in Hawaii allow a certain amount of reflection when using a tint, so make sure you pay attention to this as well.

Below are some of the most common reasons why people tint their car windows.


In Hawaii, temperatures usually range from 70-90 degrees Fahrenheit year-round, and humidity also has an impact on heat.

Depending on the type of window tint you receive, your vehicle can reflect rays of the sun away from your car.

This prevents your car from turning into an oven when you park it outside on a hot day.

Increasing the tint of your windows will keep you more cool and comfortable as you drive on the road.

UV Rays

Continued exposure to the sun’s UV rays isn’t healthy, and any dermatologist will tell you how harmful these rays can be to your skin.

Strong UV rays can cause skin cancer, eye damage, and immune system suppression.

Tinting your windows keeps these harmful rays out of your car and offers an added shield of protection every time you enter your car.


According to state statistics, approximately 10,000 serious car accidents occur every year in Hawaii.

Tinting your windows, however, can also support the strength and durability of your windshield.

If you ever get involved in an automobile accident, tinted windows will prevent your windshield from being destroyed, which can lead to serious injuries.

Tinting your windows makes your car far more secure and reduces the chances of injury in the case of a car accident.