Are Car Decorations Legal?

Whenever there’s a large-scale event going on, like a World Cup, jubilee or even Christmas, many drivers rush to adorn their vehicles with decorative ornaments to show off their passion and support for the occasion. The stylistic choices of the UK’s drivers can range from subtly colourful to garishly in-your-face, but are decorations of any kind actually legal, or will dressing up your vehicle land you in hot water with the law?

Perhaps your car is brandishing a few smashed up panels or patches of rust, and it’s about time for it to be crushed down and transformed into something shiny and new? Get a quote from us here at Scrap Car Comparison and we’ll find you the best price for your vehicle, offered by scrap and salvage dealers in your local area. Our nationwide service even offers free collection of your vehicle, no matter where you live or where the car might be kept, so give us a call on 03333 44 99 50 or use our scrap value calculator to find out how much your old car or van could net you today!

A car with many German flags attached to it

What Kind Of Decorations Can You Get For Your Car?

There’s a surprisingly wide range of car decorations that people purchase to personalise their vehicles. Below, we’ve listed some of the more common ones:

Bumper Stickers – Often used to let the driver behind you know a bit more about your personality (like that you’re powered by pixie dust), but sometimes stuck on to inform them of your favourite pop culture properties or worse, your political opinions.

Flags – Most commonly, you see an influx of flags in or on cars whenever the national team is playing a game of football, or on occasion, rugby. Some people will go all out and cover their rear window with a large flag, but most drivers opt for the smaller ‘flag on a stick out of the window’ option.

Christmas Lights – Everything becomes a little bit brighter and more colourful as soon as December the 1st rolls around, including many cars. Festive drivers will sometimes hang fairy lights inside their car, but some may even attach them to the outside!

Recently, year-round interior mood lighting has also taken off, with owners adding coloured lighting to the footwells as part of their car decor.

Wedding Décor – We’ve all seen wedding cars travelling to and from churches with ribbons adorning the exterior, whilst occasionally being pinned up inside the car too. It’s a symbol of the traditional British wedding, usually attached to an old, vintage motor.

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Is It Illegal To Decorate Your Car?

Technically, it’s not illegal to buy decorative accessories for your car and brighten things up a bit, inside or out. However, there are situations where doing so becomes illegal.

If you must decorate the inside of your car, it’s important that you do not obstruct your view out of the front windscreen or of your mirrors. If police spot your car and establish that the required amount of visibility space isn’t available due to any kind of novelty decoration, you could be fined £100 on the spot, but this could rise to £1,000 and you could even be given three points!

You’re putting yourself at risk of a fine if you attach stuff to the outside of your car, too – including those flags that everybody has during a sporting event! Should something fall off your car, or even appear to be improperly secured and liable to break away and cause injury or damage, you will be looking at another £100 on-the-spot fine, rising to £2,500 and three more points.

It doesn’t stop there though. If you’ve attached something to your car that could cause further damage to a person were you to hit someone (like a makeshift bonnet ornament) then you could find yourself in trouble.

Lighting is another thing that can venture into troublesome territory. Some of you may remember when you’d flick the interior light on while your dad was driving and he’d act like Jason Bourne was about to hunt you down – perhaps some of you were that dad when your kids were riding in the front seat.

Well, dad knows best in this case and though he may have been a bit overdramatic, it is actually against the rules of the road to illuminate using any extra light sources, particularly if they are not of the usual colour of your lights.

A green Triumph car with decorative flowers along the outside of the windscreen

How To Safely Decorate Your Car

Whether it’s for a wedding, Halloween or Christmas, there are plenty of opportunities to decorate your car, and we want to let you know how to do it safely:

Secure everything – Whatever you attach to your car, ensure that it is absolutely not going to fall off while you’re driving.

Keep it out of sight – Make sure that any decorations don’t cover up your view of the windscreen (from the inside or outside) and, ideally, keep the rear window clear as well.

Will it be insured? – Insurance companies can be very, very fussy when it comes to paying out on claims, so make sure that whatever you attach to your car doesn’t count as an undisclosed modification that will hinder your claim.

Now that you know how to decorate your car without getting yourself into trouble, have fun with it whilst staying within the law. If your car is so old and run down that no amount of decoration will polish the you-know-what, then sell it with Scrap Car Comparison and we’ll find you the best price offered by scrap and salvage dealers all over the UK. Our nationwide network ensures that we’ll be able to find you a buyer in your local area, and because we’re so confident, we even offer the collection of your car for free! So, give our sales team a call on 03333 44 99 50 or enter your details into our scrap value calculator and find you how much your vehicle could be worth today.

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