Radar detectors, along with jammers, are used by millions of Americans across the country. These are sold both online and offline and are widely available.
However, their legality is another matter entirely. Some states allow the installation and use of radar detectors in both private and commercial vehicles, while some strictly prohibit them.
What about Maryland? Are radar detectors legal in Maryland? Luckily for drivers and vehicle owners in the state, radar detectors are completely legal. However, as is the case with all laws, there are some exceptions to the rule which we’ll discuss in this article.
Maryland’s laws regarding the installation and usage of radar detectors are laid out by the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Here’s what you need to know about Maryland radar detector laws.
Though it is legal to own and use a radar detector, confusion can set in when you’re wondering which part of the vehicle it can be mounted on.
For example, in Minnesota and California, mounting a radar detector on the windshield will result in a ticket, even though the windshield is the ideal spot for the device.
In Maryland, radar detectors can be mounted on windshields, though it is advised to mount them in a way that doesn’t obstruct your view when driving or cause any distraction.
If you intend to drive across the country with a mounted radar, it is recommended that you install it on your dashboard or on a sun visor to avoid any risk of tickets and fines.
Privately Owned vs Commercially Owned Vehicles
Like all other states, installing radar detectors on commercial vehicles weighing over 10,000 lbs is illegal, as per federal law. This is done to prevent large trucks or passenger vehicles from speeding.
All privately owned vehicles and all commercially owned vehicles under 10,000 lbs can install and use radar detectors in Maryland.
In all 50 states, using radar detectors on military land is illegal, as per federal law. If you’re driving past a military base or area, be sure to uninstall your radar before you do so.
Visibly mounted radars are illegal on military bases and near military areas. This is because the signals for private radars can disturb the ones detected and emitted by military radars.
As long as you’re following the rules, you will not be pulled up for using a radar detector.
Therefore, if you’re using the device in a private or eligible commercial vehicle, regardless of where it’s mounted, you’re not likely to be pulled over, but if you’re driving an 18-wheeler with an affixed radio detector, you’re very likely to be pulled over and fined.
Police can easily pick up on your speed using a LiDAR device, a device similar to radars, but one that uses sensor technology instead of radio waves to draw up a 3D map of the area.
Radar Detector vs Radar Jammer
Radar detectors help you identify whether there is a police presence in your surroundings, allowing you to slow down if you are speeding and avoid a fine.
Radar jammers, on the other hand, are used to jam police radar signals. These emit radio waves, unlike detectors, which only pick up on emitted waves. Radar jammers are illegal as per federal law.
State of Maryland Info
Bordering the states of Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Delaware, the state of Maryland is the 7th state in the United States.
Though among the smallest states, it is densely populated.
It is home to a stunning diversity of landscapes ranging from forested hills to sandy dunes.
Registered vehicles: 1,977,742
Total lane miles: 68,889
Number of highways: 14