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Florida Driver Handbook: Other Equipment Standards

Study for your upcoming driver's license test or learner's permit exam with the Florida Driver Handbook.

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Florida Driver Handbook: Other Equipment Standards

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Table of Contents

7. Vehicle Equipment

Horn: Your vehicle must have a horn which can be heard from a distance of 200 feet. Windshield Wiper: Your vehicle must have a windshield wiper in good working order for cleaning rain, snow or other moisture from the windshield. Windshields: Must be safety glass and may not be covered or treated with any material which has the effect of making the windshield reflective or in any way non-transparent. It must be free of any stickers not required by law. Side windows: May not be composed of, covered by, or treated with any material which has a highly reflective or mirrored appearance and reflects more than 35% of the light. Directional signals: You must have electrical turn signals if your vehicle measures more than 24 inches from the center of the top of the steering post to the left outside limit of the body, or when the distance from the steering post to the rear of the body or load is greater than 14 feet. Tires: Your tires should have visible tread of at least 2/32 of an inch across the base with no worn spots showing the ply. Smooth tires on wet roads contribute to thousands of serious crashes. Mirrors: Your vehicle must have at least one rearview mirror which gives a view of the highway at least 200 feet to the rear.

Keeping your Car in Good Condition

No matter how well you drive, you are not safe unless your vehicle is in good condition. If it is not, you could have a serious crash.

Brakes: Check to see that the pedal stays well above the floor when you step on it. If the car pulls to one side when you use the brakes or you hear any scraping or squealing noises, your brakes may need to be repaired. Lights: Replace burned-out bulbs and clean lenses often.

Dirty headlights can cut your night vision by one-half. Burned out signal lights or brake lights mean you can't tell other drivers what you are doing. Keep your lights adjusted so that you don't blind oncoming drivers.

Windows and Windshields: Keep the glass clean, inside and out, to reduce glare. Rear windows: When the rear window is composed of, covered by, or treated with any material which makes the rear window non-transparent, the vehicle must be equipped with side mirrors on both sides.

Bumper Height Requirements

Owners of automobiles and pickup trucks are required to have both front and rear bumpers mounted within certain height levels. Height limitations are governed by the net shipping weight of the vehicle, not the modified or altered weight. The maximum allowable heights between the pavement and bottom of the front and rear bumper, provided by section 316.251, Florida Statutes, are:

  • Cars with a net weight of less than 2,500 pounds - 22 inches front and rear.
  • Cars 2,500 pounds or more but less than 3,500 pounds - 24 inches front; 26 inches rear.
  • Cars 3,500 pounds or more - 27 inches front; 29 inches rear.
  • Trucks under 2,000 pounds - 24 inches front; 26 inches rear.
  • Trucks 2,000 pounds or more but less than 3,000 pounds - 27 inches front; 29 inches rear.
  • Trucks 3,000 pounds or more but not more than 5,000 pounds - 28 inches front; 30 inches rear.