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Old 08-11-2007, 02:24 PM   #1
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Is a Light on a Trailerís License Plate Required?

Iím wondering if a light on a trailer license plate is required, in NY or other states.

Why I ask, Iím thinking about mounting our tote carrier on the back bumper of our new trailer. I have to mount it on the side because of our rear storage door and it would hide the license plate.

Hereís a picture of our trailerís rear end.



Therefore, Iím thinking about moving the license plate to the middle of the bumper, using 2 U-Bolts to hold it on. But I wasnít sure if this would be legal due to any lighting requirements on a license plate.

Thanks in advance for you replies.
Hutch
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Old 08-11-2007, 07:53 PM   #2
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My T@B had the plate in the center away from the other lights. The plate light was out and it wouldn't pass NYS inspection one year. They had a bulb and all was well so I would think that it must be a law in New York.
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Old 08-11-2007, 08:02 PM   #3
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Paul,

Thanks, I sort-of figured it might be.

Iím guessing thereís probably something about obstructing the view of the license plate too.

I wonder if I could flip the rear light so the license plate is above the light, instead of below it.

I guess I need to think this through a little more.

Hutch
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Old 08-11-2007, 08:02 PM   #4
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Hutch,
The federal Traffic Highway Act 1990 chap H*, section 64 sub 19 "lamps", states the rear number plate must be illuminate at 3 candela (whatever that is) operated from sunset to sunrise, with white light. This is paraphrasing a long lot of legaleze. THis is what aplplied to interstate trucking. I do remember ifrom my old truck driving days that was always a point of inspection when I picked up containers off the pier. They would insist and checked all blinkers, brake, clearance and number plate lights were fully operating on the chassies. I think to be safe you could get a small light with frame from an autoparts store to bolt on the bumper and still be legal. You do not need the whole tail assembly. Basicly it would just have to be wired from a clearance light. At least it would save you from an overzealous patrolman looking for an excuse to snoop.
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Old 08-11-2007, 08:07 PM   #5
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Hi Jay,

Thanks for that info, very legal of you

The ďwhite lightĒ statement in that is interesting, since on our trailer the license plate is below the taillight. I donít believe it has a white light illuminating the plate, only the taillight .

Your idea of framed light is a good one, Iíll have to check some of the local auto parts stores for something like that.

Thanks
Hutch
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Old 08-11-2007, 08:55 PM   #6
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Hutch,
I like your idea better. The light lens for the plate although red from back and sides, should have a clear strip under the lens for the plate. If you flpped it and the plate and light cleared the tote, I would guess you are good to go. I wouldn't think it mattered if the light was from the top of from the bottom. as long as you could see it. Be sure that the lens doesn't have weep holes in the bottom, that if you flipped it the holes would be on the top. You could fill the holes and drill some for the "new bottom". Of course the plate would then bolt from the bottom. Just get one of the Sunline Owners Club plate frames and that would stiffen the plate from accidental bending.
I think your idea may be best.
Jay
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Old 08-11-2007, 09:13 PM   #7
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Check this one out. The frame illuminates the plate. http://www.brandsport.com/amic-84000tl.html

The challenge would be to wire it.
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Old 08-12-2007, 10:21 AM   #8
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Galaxiedriver
here's another one that looks like the exact item you need.

http://www.rvlifestyles.net/ItemPage...5-78d6b84fe46e

Paul
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Old 08-17-2007, 12:30 PM   #9
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I remembered reading your question a while ago when I was reading this...

http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/rules/.../Trlrpstr.html

The NHTSA guidlines specifically say the light must be above or to the side of the plate...

Just an FYI
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Old 08-17-2007, 01:27 PM   #10
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Thanks - that answers my question.
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