What are Street Legal Lights?

What are Street Legal Lights?

Street Legal Lights are approved for use on-highway. If a light is not approved for on-highway use, it needs to be covered with an opaque cover. If an off-road light is not covered with an opaque cover while on the highway or public roads, you may be subject to a fine from the authorities in your province/territory (RCMP, CVSE, Police). Please note that lights must also be mounted, wired and aimed appropriately based on provincial/territorial regulations and this post is focused on forward facing auxiliary and fog lamps.

What does SAE and ECE mean?

When it comes to Street Legal or Compliant LED lighting, there are 2 main organizations that govern certification standards, SAE and ECE. If a light is not SAE or ECE certified, it is generally a quick indicator that the light is not street legal.

What is SAE?

Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE or SAE International) was founded in the US in 1905.  SAE International is a globally active professional association focussed on developing standards for engineering of products in various industries, primarily automotive, aerospace, and commercial vehicles.

SAE markings should be clearly displayed on the lens of the light, Auxiliary High Beam Driving Lights will be marked SAE Y J581 and Fog Lights will be marked SAE F J583.

What is ECE?

United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE or ECE) was established in 1947 to promote pan-European economic integration. UNECE develops regulations, standards and norms to support cross-border trade and movement.

ECE Certified lights are also often referred to as EMARK, e-Mark and e-Code. This certification is required by many countries, including Canada, for motor vehicle parts and systems.

ECE Certified motor vehicle lights are typically marked on the inside of the lens for easy identification by vehicle inspectors and police officers. NightDriver Series ECE Certified lights meet stringent testing and performance requirements to bare the identification mark for street legal lighting.

What Standards (SAE and/or ECE) are permitted in your Province/Territory?

Auxiliary, fog and off-road light regulations vary across the provinces/territories, it is recommended to check the regulations specific to the areas that you drive in.


SAE certified lights are compliant for on-highway use throughout Canada and the US.


ECE certified auxiliary driving lights and fog lights are compliant in BC when mounted, wired and aimed correctly. For all other provinces/territories, consult the motor vehicle/traffic safety act in your jurisdiction.

Note - Always check regional rules and regulations regarding the use of auxiliary driving and fog lights for highway use. Northern Light Bars will not be accountable for improper mounting, aiming, wiring or regional restrictions.