“I was told that detectors were outlawed in my state.”
“If I get pulled over, can they confiscate my Vedetta?”
“I’m driving to Vancouver this weekend. What’s the law there?”
It’s no surprise that radar detectors laws are confusing and generally misunderstood. Based on the size and type of vehicle you drive, the laws for these devices will vary from state to state and country to country. Some states even have rules for where your device can and cannot be mounted. So whether you’re a new driving enthusiast looking to get up to speed or a seasoned road warrior, here are some helpful facts every Cobra driver should know before heading out on the open road.
In the United States:
Under the Communications Act of 1934, nearly every state allows the use of detectors in private vehicles, including cars, motorcycles, trucks and vans. These are the exceptions:
- Radar detectors are illegal only in Virginia, Washington D.C. and on U.S. military bases.
- New York bans radar detectors in all vehicles over 18,000 pounds, which could include privately owned recreational vehicles (RVs) or motor homes.
- Radar detectors are illegal in all commercial vehicles over 10,000 pounds, including buses, tractor-trailers (semi trucks) and other heavy trucks.
- It is illegal to affix your radar detector to your windshield in Minnesota and California. But a dash-mounted detector is legal in those states.
- Radar jammers are illegal in all states under federal law, but laser jammers are not. Only California, Colorado, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Washington, D.C. prohibit the use of laser jamming devices.
- Seizure of detection devices when pulled over for a moving violation is illegal in all states.
- Radar detectors are legal in British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan.
- Radar detectors are illegal in Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut. Seizure of detection devices when pulled over for a moving violation is permitted in these provinces.
Illinois Compiled Statutes 625 ILCS 5 Illinois Vehicle Code. Section 12-714
Office of Modal Safety & Security, Truck & Motor Carrier Safety
Radar Detector, Legality
Digest of Motor Laws, Radar Detectors
Regarding Federal Laws
Which States is it Illegal to Use a Radar Detector?