Ohio Neon Underglow Laws – Is neon underglow legal in Ohio?

Customizing your vehicle with neon underglow lights is a great way to add a touch of personal style and make your car stand out on Ohio’s roads. However, to enjoy these unique enhancements while ensuring safety and compliance with the law, it’s essential to understand Ohio’s regulations regarding neon underglow. In this comprehensive blog post, we will explore Ohio’s neon underglow laws, what is permitted, what is restricted, and how to express your style while respecting the legal boundaries.

Is neon underglow legal in Ohio?

Under Ohio law, there are no specific restrictions on additional vehicle lighting, which includes neon underglow. Therefore, it is our conclusion that neon underglow is generally legal in Ohio, with the following restrictions:

  1. Flashing, rotating, or oscillating lights are not permitted.
  2. License plate illumination must be white.
  3. Underglow lights must not exceed 300 candlepower.

Unlike many other states where red and blue colors are restricted and prohibited on civilian vehicles, Ohio does not impose restrictions on colors. However, it is advisable to avoid combinations of red and blue to prevent any potential confusion with police or emergency vehicles.

Ohio also allows the use of side cowl and fender lights. If you are mounting additional lights on the side of your vehicle rather than underneath it, ensure that the lights are either white or amber.

There are no specific Ohio laws that restrict or prohibit the installation of car underglow, making it generally legal to use while driving. Additionally, according to the Ohio State Patrol, underbody car glow is considered legal for use.”

Please note that laws and regulations can change over time, so it’s essential to stay updated with the latest Ohio Vehicle & Traffic Laws or consult local authorities to ensure compliance with current regulations.

Ohio Neon underglow lighting laws

Here are the pertinent excerpts from the Ohio Vehicle Code that define, regulate, and provide guidelines for the installation of specific aftermarket lights on vehicles.

4513.05 Tail lights and illumination of rear license plate

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

4513.13 Cowl, fender, and back-up lights.

(A) Any motor vehicle may be equipped with side cowl or fender lights which shall emit a white or amber light without glare. […]

4513.17 Limit on number of lights

[…] (1) Flashing lights are prohibited on motor vehicles, except as a means for indicating a right or a left turn, or in the presence of a vehicular traffic hazard requiring unusual care in approaching, or overtaking or passing. This prohibition does not apply to emergency vehicles […]

Ohio Neon Underglow Laws: The Essentials

Ohio’s laws regarding neon underglow lights are designed to strike a balance between individual expression and public safety. Here are the key points to keep in mind:

  1. Permissible Colors: Ohio generally allows neon underglow lights, but there are restrictions on colors. The use of red, blue, or green lights is typically reserved for emergency and law enforcement vehicles and is prohibited on civilian vehicles. Other colors, such as white, amber, or purple, are typically acceptable.
  2. Placement: The law stipulates that neon underglow lights should be installed on the sides of the vehicle and must not be visible from the front. They should not obstruct the driver’s view of the road.
  3. Flashing Lights: Flashing or oscillating neon underglow lights are not permitted on public roads. Steady, non-flashing lights are generally acceptable, provided they adhere to the color and placement restrictions.
  4. Distraction: Neon underglow lights should not be excessively bright or distracting, as they can impair other drivers’ vision or pose a hazard on the road.

Penalties for Violations

Violating Ohio’s neon underglow laws can result in penalties, including fines or warnings from law enforcement. To avoid legal issues, it’s crucial to follow the regulations carefully.

Under Ohio Code 4513.17, the violation of displaying flashing lights is categorized as a minor misdemeanor.

Stay Informed

Laws and regulations can change over time, so it’s advisable to consult up-to-date sources, such as the Ohio Department of Transportation or local law enforcement, to ensure compliance with the most current information.

Safety Considerations

While neon underglow lights can enhance the aesthetics of your vehicle, safety should always be a top priority. Here are a few safety tips to keep in mind when using neon underglow lights in Ohio:

  1. Responsible Usage: Use neon underglow lights responsibly, especially in residential areas, and avoid overusing them to prevent disturbances.
  2. Regular Maintenance: Ensure that your neon lights are in good working condition and securely attached to your vehicle to prevent accidents or light malfunctions.
  3. Environmental Awareness: Be considerate of the environment and other drivers. Adjust the brightness and usage of your neon lights to avoid causing distractions or discomfort to fellow road users.


Customizing your vehicle with neon underglow lights in Ohio is a creative way to express your style and make your vehicle stand out. However, it’s essential to understand and adhere to the state’s laws and regulations to avoid legal troubles and ensure road safety. By following the permissible colors, placement restrictions, and other rules, you can enjoy your neon underglow lights while staying within the bounds of the law. Remember that laws can change, so it’s advisable to stay informed and consult up-to-date sources for the latest regulations in Ohio.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Underglow Lights in Ohio:

Are Underglow Lights Legal in Ohio?

  • Neon underglow lights are generally legal in Ohio, subject to specific regulations and restrictions.

When Is It Legal to Use Underglow Lights in Ohio State?

  • Neon underglow lights can be used in Ohio as long as they comply with the state’s regulations, including permissible colors and placement restrictions.

When Is It Illegal to Use Underglow Lights In Ohio?

  • It is generally illegal to use red, blue, or green neon underglow lights in Ohio. These colors are typically reserved for emergency and law enforcement vehicles. Violating these restrictions may result in legal consequences.

Is It Illegal to Install Underglow Lights In Ohio?

  • Installing neon underglow lights in Ohio is not explicitly illegal, provided they adhere to the permissible colors and placement regulations outlined in state law.

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

  • The same Ohio Vehicle & Traffic Law restrictions that apply to cars regarding neon underglow lights also apply to motorcycles. These regulations are consistent for both cars and motorcycles.

Are Multicolored Underglow Lights Illegal in Ohio?

  • Using multicolored neon underglow lights, especially red, blue, and green, is generally illegal in Ohio. The state typically allows only specific colors.

Ohio Traffic Ticket/Summons for Under Glow Lights on a Motorcycle

  • Violating the neon underglow restrictions in Ohio may lead to receiving a traffic ticket or summons.

Are Under Glow Lights Legal While Parked in Ohio?

  • Neon underglow lights are generally legal for use on a parked vehicle in Ohio as long as they adhere to state regulations.

Are Motorcycle Wheel Lights Legal in Ohio?

  • The legality of motorcycle wheel lights in Ohio is subject to the same regulations as underglow lights on other vehicles.

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

  • Yes, the same laws and regulations regarding underglow lights apply to both cars and motorcycles in Ohio.

Ohio Underglow law references:

Ohio Code Section 4513.17: Limit on number of lights

Ohio Highway Patrol FAQ: What colors and types of neon lights are legal?

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