- A mountable GPS device can be used when traveling the globe.gps image by AlcelVision from Fotolia.com
The Global Positioning System, more commonly known as GPS, has provided drivers with the ability to travel almost anywhere with precise directions. Beyond the convenience, the GPS also adds an element of safety to the road; drivers no longer have to attempt to refer to cumbersome maps while driving. Lastly, the improvements in GPS technology over the past decade have allowed their price to become much more affordable.
- California continues to be one of the few states that requires its drivers to obey regulations on GPS use. Attaching systems to the windshield used to be banned; however, as of January 2009, windshield mounting became legal with certain restrictions, according to the California Department of Motor Vehicles. The GPS must be placed in a five-inch square on the bottom left of the windshield or in a seven-inch square on the bottom right corner of the windshield. If mounted anywhere else on the windshield, it can result in a penalty or fine.
- The state of Minnesota allows the use of in-car GPS devices; however, they must be used in accordance with state regulations. If a driver wishes to use a GPS in his car, he must find a means to attach the device securely in the car, but it cannot be attached to or block the windshield. According to the Minnesota Office of the Revisor of Statutes, a driver cannot operate a vehicle if there is anything that blocks any part of the windshield unless it is either a sun visor or an electronic toll-paying device.
Other States and Options
- All other states in the United States allow the use of GPS devices attached to the windshield of a car. While these states permit the use of a windshield-mounted GPS, the driver may not want to have the device in her line of sight. If that is the case, a GPS device can be mounted in a car using a variety of devices, both permanent and movable.
A popular option is mounting the GPS on the vents using a mount that attaches to the plastic outside the vent; this is legal for use in both California and Minnesota. Dashboard mounting can also be used in every state except Minnesota. Using suction cups that are provided with the GPS, simply place the device onto the top of the dashboard of your car.