Disclaimer: Laws, rules, and regulations for off-road vehicles vary by geographic region. If you’re in the US, be sure to check out state guidelines for up-to-date street legal information.
If you just bought a UTV for off-road use, you may want to consider making it street legal for around-the-town driving. The added convenience of being able to travel on some roadways can be worth it, whether you’re going to fill up at the gas station before a trip or heading across town to visit friends and family. Here are some things to consider when making your UTV street legal.
The Basics: How to Make a UTV Street Legal
Most of the time, UTVs are sold as off-road vehicles. This means they don’t need to meet all the safety requirements of street legal vehicles when leaving a dealer’s lot.
Familiar parts you might overlook on a regular car, such as mirrors, may go unnoticed on your UTV as well, until you need them.
Installing a street legal kit is the first step in getting your off-road vehicle on the road.
Getting Your UTV Titled and Registered
Once you have your street legal kit and any other required safety parts properly installed on your UTV, you need to get titled and registered.
If you don’t already have a title, you’ll need to fill out some paperwork to sort that out with the DMV (Utah DMV UTV title paperwork).
Next, you’ll need to pass a safety inspection (required for first-time UTV registrations) to prove that your newly upgraded UTV can be driven on the street.
At some point, you’ll need to set up UTV insurance as well.
Finally, drop by the DMV with your title and passed safety inspection paperwork, pay your registration fees, and hit the streets (abiding by all the laws, of course).
Required Items: Complete Your UTV Street Legal Kit
You should know that your UTV street legal kit may not actually come with everything you need to make your vehicle street legal, especially if your state has stricter requirements. That’s okay, though, because you’ll be able to use your street legal kit as a solid launchpad for getting the rest.
Required Items That Make Your UTV Street Legal
This is a general list of required UTV safety parts not accounting for variations in state laws. Some of these items may not be required in your state and others may not be listed.
- Headlights and tail lights
- Brake lights and reflectors (rear)
- License plate light
- Turn signals (front and rear sides)
- Horn and muffler
- Side mirrors
- Speedometer (visible day and night)
- Wheel coverings
- Windshield or goggles
Does Your UTV Need a Windshield to Be Street Legal?
Depending on where you live, a windshield may be required before your UTV is street legal. In some states, like Utah, a windshield is optional, however, you need to be aware that the driver will need to wear goggles if the UTV doesn’t have a windshield. Getting a nice windshield for your UTV can look great and help you avoid any legal gray areas if you’re worried.
On the Roadways: How to Drive a UTV on the Streets
Once your UTV is street legal, it’s important to keep yourself and others safe by driving smart. This may seem obvious, but it can be somewhat of an adjustment to go from off-road all the time to sometimes on the street. Here’s what you can keep in mind to avoid UTV street safety issues.
Know Which Roadways You Can Legally Drive On
Since a UTV is first and foremost an off-road vehicle, it can’t be driven on all roadways, even if it’s street legal. You can’t drive on interstate freeways, for instance. Make sure you check out which roadways you can legally drive a UTV on in your state.
Keep Any Off-Road Accessories and Settings Off
Adding street legal gear to your UTV is fairly straightforward. Use your street legal items to safely navigate traffic and roadways. As far as your off-road accessories go, keep their settings within the guidelines set for operating on roadways or just shut them off. As an example, it’s important to not light up your whips with crazy colors while driving through your neighborhood.
Be Aware of Your Tires When Driving on the Street
If you’ll be operating your UTV on the street, you’ll need to make sure your tires are certified by the department of public transportation for street use. Having DOT-certified tires will keep you legal and you won’t have to worry so much about wearing down your tires on pavement. Like was mentioned before, keep your off-road gear, including tires, for off the road.
Do You Hear Honking?
The bad comes with the good, just like honking and traffic come with being able to get around town in your upgraded UTV. Of course, it all starts with the right street legal kit and a little knowhow. Whether you’re planning on installing everything yourself or you’d like professional service, we can help you out with your UTV at R1 Industries. Easily order compatible street legal kits and parts online or visit us at our full-service UTV shop in Lindon, Utah.