Florida Motorists Laws on LED Light Colors

By Ron White ; Updated June 05, 2017
Car LED headlight

LED lights are a popular addition to cars, trucks and motorcycles in Florida. These lights give vehicles a stylish look at nighttime. They come in many colors to allow vehicle owners to match lights to their vehicles. In Florida, though, laws limit the colors of lights that can be used on vehicles. Some lights are designated for certain types of service vehicles, and other light colors are banned due to traffic safety concerns. Failure to follow these laws can result in fines for drivers.

Red and Blue Lights

For decades, red and blue lights have indicated to drivers that an emergency vehicle is on the road. The lights are used on ambulances, fire trucks and police cars, and drivers are supposed to take action when they see these light colors. Because these light colors are signals to drivers, Florida law bans their use in certain instances. Red lights are not allowed to be visible from the front on cars, trucks and motorcycles driven on a highway in the state unless they are fire department or police vehicles, and blue lights are not allowed at all on any vehicles except for police cars. Drivers who use these colors of lights can be fined.

Headlight Laws

LED headlights have become quite popular as alternatives to traditional halogen head lamps. All headlights, though, are required to be clear, lightly frosted white or blue bulbs. Other colors of bulbs are illegal for use as headlights in Florida. In fact, what matters more than the color of the bulb is the color of the light. According to Florida Statute 316.220, headlights must show a white light. Florida state law also requires the headlights to light the roadway for 450 feet from the vehicle. Drivers who use colored headlamps that do not emit white light can be ticketed for failing to comply with state vehicle laws. The violation is considered a nonmoving infraction.

Tail Lights and Turn Signals

In Florida, tail lights are required to be red or amber in color. These rules are part of Florida Statute 316.221. Although it is legal in Florida to use red LED lights for tail lights, the lights must be visible from 1,000 feet away to comply with the statute. Red LED lights that do not meet the distance requirement are deemed illegal for use on public roads and can result in a nonmoving violation. In addition to the tail light law, the same statute requires all vehicles to have a white license plate light. The law specifically says the light must be white. The light also must be visible from 50 feet away. White LED lights are legal based on the law. Florida Statute 316.234 requires front turn signal lights to be white or amber and rear turn signal lights to be red or amber. The lights must be visible from 500 feet away in normal sunlight.

About the Author

Based in Central Florida, Ron White has worked as professional journalist since 2001. He specializes in sports and business. White started his career as a sportswriter and later worked as associate editor for Maintenance Sales News and as the assistant editor for "The Observer," a daily newspaper based in New Smyrna Beach, Fla. White has written more than 2,000 news and sports stories for newspapers and websites. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Eastern Illinois University.