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The darker the windows, the greater the protection against harmful UV rays. However, there is a point where window tint can actually produce more harm than good. Having windows tinted beyond 30% or so is not only illegal, but dangerous. Here are just a few ways in which dark window film might harm you.

#1. Reduces Night Vision

Studies show that very dark film, which is typically anything over 30%, can significantly reduce visibility at night. You may have difficulty viewing objects between 15 and 30 meters away unless they are well illuminated. Stationery objects might blend into the background as your depth perception becomes fuzzy. You could also have difficulty seeing people, particularly if they are wearing dark clothing.

#2. Can’t Signal Other Drivers

While on the road, you are constantly making eye contact with other drivers. Whether changing lanes or yielding the right-of-way, most of us rely on signals from nearby motorists to determine their intentions. If people are unable to make eye contact, they have no choice but to guess at what you might do next. Even the slightest miscalculation on someone else’s part could result in serious consequences.

#3. Can be Problematic for Rescue Personnel

At an accident scene, first responders quickly assess the situation and come up with a plan of action. That process is often hindered when there is very dark window film on the side or rear windows. As a result, personnel are unable to determine how many people are inside or whether certain other hazards are present. Taking more time to gather the necessary information could potentially cost people their lives.

#4. Provides a False Sense of Comfort

Many areas have enacted laws against distracted driving. When traveling in one of these locations, you probably adhere to those laws-that is, unless your vehicle has dark window film. The increased privacy might make you feel secure enough to talk on your cell phone, eat, or perform other tasks anyway. Become too comfortable and your odds of an accident greatly increases. After all, doing these things does not suddenly become safe just because no one can see you.

#5. Can Negatively Impact your Insurance Rates

Driving with windows darker than the legal limit can net you a ticket. And the odds of you getting pulled over are also much greater, since you will naturally be drawing attention to yourself. Not only that, but you will likely be deemed at fault in any accident where visibility is an issue. Having too many tickets or “at fault” accidents can cause your insurance rates to skyrocket. This may not be a physical danger per say, but it is nonetheless hazardous for your wallet.

There’s a reason for legal limits on window tint, and it’s not just so that “Big Brother” can watch you. Very dark windows pose a traffic hazard, and should be avoided whenever possible. If you are not quite sure whether your windows meet legal standards, have an inspection performed by a reliable shop. Your safety and that of everyone else on the road depends on it.

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