New tool helps Scottsdale police clear up questions about window tint

Posted: Updated:
(Source: WAFB) (Source: WAFB)
(Source: WAFB) (Source: WAFB)

Tinted windows are almost a must for drivers looking to survive Arizona’s summer heat. 

While it would seem darker is better when the sun is beating down, Arizona has strict rules on just how dark you can go.  

Tinting is not allowed on windshields, except for a small strip on the top edge. As for side windows, tinted windows that obscure 35% of sunlight or more is illegal.   

This applies to both the driver or passenger side.  

Side windows behind the driver and the rear window can have darker tints, but you must also have double side view mirrors and the tinting cannot reflect more than 35 percent.

If that sounds a little complicated, imagine what it might be like for a police officer trying to judge if a driver is in violation of the law. However, that won’t be a problem in Scottsdale any longer. Thanks to a grant from the Arizona Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, the department now has 12-tint meters. 

The tint meters are equipped with the latest technology that enhances officer’s safety and ability to conduct traffic enforcement throughout the City of Scottsdale. 

In general, tint meters measure the amount of light that passes through a window that has some sort of tint applied. 

The department tells us they can stop a driver if the tint appears to be too dark, as opposed to testing only if drivers are pulled over for another offense.

The meters will be deployed mainly in the city’s downtown entertainment district. Scottsdale police say the meters will let officers easily detect if a window tint is within the law and will play an integral part in pedestrian/bicyclist safety in the downtown area and other active pedestrian/bicyclist locations within the city.

For full window tint rules: ARS 28-959.01.

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