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Is It Legal to Drive with a Dirty Windscreen?

Reading time 3 minutes • Last updated on February 26th, 2021

Categories Driving Law »

Is It Legal to Drive with a Dirty Windscreen?

Last updated on February 26th, 2021What does this mean?

Visibility whilst driving is key to operating your vehicle correctly, so if you’re driving with a dirty windscreen, it’s likely you’re impeding your ability to drive safely. Previously, we’ve discussed the dangers of driving with a messy car, but what about driving with a dirty windscreen?

car with a dirty windscreen

Why do I need to have a clean windscreen?

The Highway Code for the UK explicitly states that ‘windscreens and windows MUST be kept clean and free from obstructions to vision’ to ensure optimum safety when driving your vehicle. A dirty windscreen, as well as side windows, side mirrors and the back window, can create blind spots for the driver, therefore rendering the vehicle unsafe to drive. 

What determines the difference between unclean and illegally dirty?

Windscreens naturally get dirty over time, but what determines the difference between an unclean windscreen and an illegally dirty windscreen? If your line of vision is obstructed in any way, this is classed as illegal and leaves you liable to a fine. 

What are the legal consequences?

A dirty windscreen could land you a fine of £1000, so it’s worth keeping your windscreen clean to not only avoid the fine, but to keep yourself, passengers and pedestrians safe too. 

Top tips for keeping your windscreen clean and clear

A windscreen can be dirtied or obstructed for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Dirty windscreen wipers
    The main component of your car that cleans your windscreen is your windscreen wipers. If you find it’s difficult to keep your windscreen clear whilst using them, it might be time for a new pair. Click here for information on cleaning your windscreen wipers. 
  • Demist
    Windscreens often get misted when it’s cold outside, so it’s crucial you clear your windscreen before you begin driving. Most cars have a windscreen demister button that blows air onto the inside of your windscreen to help clear the mist faster. Putting the air-con on will also help reduce mist on the windscreen, as it dries out the air in the car.
  • Windscreen damage
    A damaged windscreen can certainly impair your visibility – as well as causing a distracting glare when the sunlight shines on the cracks in the glass. If you’ve got windscreen damage, call us today and we’ll promptly meet you at your location to repair or replace your windscreen in no time, so you can be on your way.

Here at The Windscreen Company, we offer premier windscreen repairs and replacements to customers throughout Ipswich, Essex and nationwide. Our 24-hour service is swift and reliable, so you’ll never be left without support in an emergency. So whether you need a one-off service or an ongoing contract for your company, our team can help you every step of the way. For more information on any of our services, please get in touch with a member of our team today.

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The Windscreen Company, has over 20 years of experience in windscreen repair and replacement. Since 1998, they have been at the forefront of industry innovation, leveraging the latest technology to ensure customer safety and satisfaction.

The Windscreen Company's, help-and-advice pages offer valuable tips and guidance on maintaining vehicle safety through quality windscreen care, while also featuring updated industry realted content.

The information within this article was accurate on the date the article was last updated based on the information that was openly available on the topic online. The Windscreen Company accepts no liability for any loss or damage caused by or connected with any error or omission in this article. You should make your own judgement in regards to use of this document and seek professional advice on your particular circumstances.

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