PA inspection question re: rear window glazing

'94 Ford F150, 152k mi.

Recently, I managed to break the rear window (DOH!) on my pickup. (Nom-sliding.) Given that I could reasonably forsee it happening again, given the amount of sctap metal I haul with it, I opted for a lexan rear window (thought it looked cleaner than a mesh cover).

Well, I’m due for inspection, so I was reading the PA inspection standards (to “pre-inspect” as to optimize chances of passing).

Lo and behold, I read that “sadety glass” is requirrd on ALL windows. This sorta floored me, given that–as a licensed truck, there are NO rear visibility criteria (think dump bed or van box).

So, my understanding (and my question) is that I’m free to replace the rear window with sheet metal/OSB/whatever, but if I want somethingI can actually SEE out of, it has to have the DOT logo.

Is that true? I’d hate to be in the stupid situation of having to duct tape over it, to pass inspection, to immediately remove it.

Any inspectors out there: likelihood that tbey’ll carch this?

Try running it thru inspection and see if they notice. What’s the worse that can happen? They tell you to put in a DOT approved safety glass and have it reinspected.


Yeah…I’m just wondering, given no rear-vis requirements, if I could save $200 by just obscuring that there is anything transparent back thete (the mentioned “duct tape” solution).

See what the inspector says.

Years ago I had a Toyota pickup with a 2x12 rear bumper. carriage bolted to a 2x2 steel agle iron and then to the frame via 2x4 steel brackets. After years of having it, I stopped at a differnet inspection station from my usual, a Firestone on Granite Street. Lo and behold, they for the rear bumper! I made him show me the regulation. It says that pickup trucks are not required to have rear bumpers, but of they DO and it’s wood it must be at least a one piece nonlaminated piece of 4x4 hard wood (softwood is prohinited) and backed by a 1x4 steel plate…etc. I had them cut the bolts on the brakets, throw the bumper in the bed, and give me a sticker. That made the truck compliant. Then I drove home and bolted the bumper back on.

Sometimes I think the inspection requirements are written by beaurocratic clerks who know nothing about cars, mechanics, physics, or opposable thumbs. And then there are other states that have no safety inspections at all. Go figure.

Good luck.

Call the State Police. When I lived in PA, they were the go-to guys for auto law.

I would think that the inspector would allow a Lexan or a Polycarbonate rear window in your vehicle. Polycarbonate is a very tough plastic and is resistant to breakage. If they discover that you have a Lexan rear window, just tell them you had a piece of angle iron smash thru the original rear window when braking. So you installed a material that might prevent something from coming thru the window and smashing into the back of your skull.