North Dakota Neon Underglow Laws

Neon underglow lights on vehicles have long been a popular way for car enthusiasts to add a touch of style and individuality to their rides. However, the use of these vibrant lights is subject to regulations in many states, including North Dakota. If you’re considering adding neon underglow lights to your vehicle or already have them installed, it’s crucial to understand the laws and restrictions that apply in the Peace Garden State.

Neon Underglow in North Dakota: The Basics

Neon underglow, often referred to as ground effects lighting, is a type of aftermarket vehicle lighting that is mounted beneath a vehicle to illuminate the ground around it. These lights come in various colors and can be a fun way to enhance your vehicle’s appearance, but it’s essential to use them within the confines of the law.

39-21-04. Taillamps.

[…] Either a taillamp or a separate lamp must be so constructed and placed as to illuminate with a white light the rear registration plate […]

39-21-26. Special restrictions on lamps.

2. No person may drive or move any vehicle or equipment upon any highway with any lamp or device thereon displaying a red or green light visible from directly in front of the center thereof. This section does not apply to any vehicle upon which a red light visible from the front is expressly authorized or required by this chapter [emergency vehicles].

3. Flashing lights are prohibited except on an authorized emergency vehicle, schoolbus, snow-removal equipment or on any vehicle as a means of indicating a right or left turn, or the presence of a vehicular traffic hazard requiring unusual care in approaching, overtaking, or passing.


According to section 39-06.1-05, non-compliance with vehicle equipment regulations usually incurs a $25 fine.

39-21-46. Scope and effect of equipment requirements – Penalty

1. It is unlawful for any person to drive or move, or for the owner to cause or knowingly permit to be driven or moved, on any highway any vehicle or combination of vehicles which the actor knows does not contain those parts or is not at all times equipped with lamps and other equipment in proper condition and adjustment as required in this chapter, or which the actor knows is equipped in any manner in violation of this chapter, or for any person to do any act forbidden or fail to perform any act required under this chapter for which a fee or penalty for its violation is not otherwise provided. 2. A person who drives or moves, or any owner who causes or knowingly permits to be driven or moved upon a highway, any vehicle or combination of vehicles which that person knows is in such unsafe condition as to endanger a person is guilty of an infraction.

Is Neon Underglow Legal in North Dakota?

In North Dakota, the use of neon underglow lights is generally legal, as long as you adhere to specific restrictions and regulations. It’s essential to be aware of the following key guidelines to ensure compliance:

  1. No Red or Blue Lights: Neon underglow lights must not emit red or blue colors that are typically reserved for emergency vehicles.
  2. No Flashing or Rotating Lights: Flashing, rotating, or oscillating neon lights are not permitted on civilian vehicles.
  3. Avoid Confusion: To prevent confusion with emergency vehicles, it’s advisable to steer clear of combinations of red, blue, and white lights.
  4. Candlepower Limits: Aftermarket lights, including neon underglow, must not emit more than 4 candlepower. Check the packaging of your neon lights to ensure compliance.

Using Neon Underglow in North Dakota

While neon underglow is not explicitly prohibited in North Dakota, it’s recommended to exercise caution and use these lights responsibly. Given the candlepower limits and color restrictions, it’s wise to avoid using neon underglow while driving on public roads. If you choose to use them, it’s a good practice to keep a printout of the relevant laws and the original lights packaging in your vehicle in case you encounter law enforcement.

Steering Clear of Flashing and Rotating Lights

Although neon underglow is generally allowed in North Dakota, it’s crucial to avoid flashing, rotating, or oscillating lights. These dynamic lighting effects can be distracting to other drivers and may subject you to other laws and regulations.


In North Dakota, neon underglow is not illegal, provided you follow the specific restrictions outlined by state law. By adhering to these guidelines, you can enjoy the stylish aesthetic enhancements of neon underglow while staying within the bounds of the law. Always exercise responsibility and safety when using these lights on your vehicle to ensure a positive and enjoyable driving experience in the Peace Garden State.

FAQs About North Dakota Neon Underglow laws

Underglow lights are legal in North Dakota as long as they adhere to certain restrictions. Here’s a breakdown of the regulations regarding underglow lights in North Dakota:

When Is It Legal to Use Underglow Lights in North Dakota State?

Underglow lights are legal for use while the vehicle is in motion as long as they comply with the following restrictions.

When Is It Illegal to Use Underglow Lights In North Dakota?

It is illegal to use underglow lights in North Dakota if they violate the restrictions mentioned below.

Is It Illegal to Install Underglow Lights In North Dakota?

Installing underglow lights is not illegal in North Dakota, but they must adhere to specific guidelines.

What North Dakota Vehicle & Traffic Law Restricts Use of Lights On Motorcycles?

While North Dakota’s regulations do not explicitly mention motorcycles, the same rules regarding underglow lights on cars are likely to apply to motorcycles.

Are Multicolored Underglow Lights Illegal in North Dakota?

Multicolored underglow lights are not necessarily illegal, but they must follow the guidelines mentioned below.

North Dakota Traffic Ticket/Summons for Under Glow Lights on a Motorcycle

The specific penalties for underglow light violations are not mentioned, but violators may face fines.

Are Under Glow Lights Legal While Parked in North Dakota?

Underglow lights are generally legal while parked, as long as they adhere to the following regulations.

Are Motorcycle Wheel Lights Legal in North Dakota?

The legality of motorcycle wheel lights is not explicitly mentioned in North Dakota’s regulations, but similar rules to those for underglow lights on cars are likely to apply.

Is the Law for Underglow Lights the Same for Cars and Motorcycles in North Dakota?

While the regulations for motorcycles are not explicitly stated, they are likely to follow the same rules as those for cars.

North Dakota Underglow law references:

North Dakota Code, Title 39: Motor Vehicles, Chapter 21: Equipment of Vehicles.

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