Northern Charm: License Plate Covers for the Canadian Driver

In Canada, license plates are required to be displayed on all registered vehicles. While they serve an important purpose in identifying and tracking vehicles, many drivers may find them unattractive or plain. This is where license plate covers come into play.

License plate covers are protective shields that can be placed over the top of a license plate. They can be made from a variety of materials, such as plastic, metal, or even silicone. License plate covers not only add a touch of personalization and style to a vehicle, but they also offer protection against wear and tear.

Why Use License Plate Covers?

There are several reasons why Canadian drivers may choose to use license plate covers:

  • Personalization: License plate covers allow drivers to add a personal touch to their vehicle, whether it’s with a cool design or a personalized message. This can be especially fun for car enthusiasts who want to make their vehicle stand out.
  • Protection: License plate covers protect the plates from damage caused by debris, scratches, and harsh weather conditions. They also help prevent fading and rusting, which can occur over time.
  • Privacy: Some drivers may choose to use license plate covers to obscure their plates from view. This can provide a sense of privacy and protection from potential thieves or vandals who may try to steal or tamper with the plates.
  • Compliance with Regulations: In some Canadian provinces, license plate covers are required by law. By using a license plate cover, drivers can ensure they’re adhering to these regulations and avoid potential fines or penalties. For example, in Ontario, license plate covers are mandated to protect the plate and keep it clearly visible to law enforcement and other drivers.
  • Aesthetic Appeal: Some drivers use license plate covers simply because they look good. They can enhance the overall appearance of the vehicle and add a finishing touch to its design. A carefully chosen license plate cover can complement the vehicle’s color scheme and style, contributing to the aesthetic appeal.
  • Unique Identification: License plate covers can serve as unique identifiers in crowded parking lots or garages. This can be particularly helpful in large public places like shopping malls or stadiums where locating one’s vehicle can be challenging. A distinctive license plate cover can make identification quick and easy.
  • Promotion: Businesses and individuals can use license plate covers for promotional purposes. They can be customized with logos, slogans, or messages to advertise a business or cause. This turns the vehicle into a mobile billboard, capturing attention and potentially generating interest everywhere it goes.
  • Preserving Value: License plate covers can help preserve the resale value of a vehicle. A well-maintained license plate can indicate to potential buyers that the vehicle has been well cared for. It can also protect the license plate from damage that could detract from the vehicle’s overall appearance and value.
  • Expression of Personality: License plate covers allow drivers to express their personalities or interests. Whether it’s a favorite sports team, a hobby, or a favorite quote, license plate covers let drivers personalize their vehicles in a way that reflects who they are.
  • Gifts: License plate covers can make great gifts for car enthusiasts or new drivers. They’re small, affordable items that can add a personal touch to a vehicle. Whether it’s for a birthday, holiday, or just because, a license plate cover can make a thoughtful and useful gift.

Are License Plate Covers Legal in Canada?

While license plate covers are popular among Canadian drivers, it’s essential to note that the Canadian government regulates their use. According to the Canada Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations, license plate covers must meet certain requirements in order to be considered legal.

The regulations state that a license plate cover must:

  • Not obstruct any of the numbers or letters on the plates
  • Be transparent so that the plate is still clearly visible
  • Allow for easy removal of the cover when necessary
  • Not interfere with any reflective properties of the plate

If a license plate cover does not meet these requirements, it could result in a fine or even lead to the plates being seized by authorities.

Where Can You Purchase License Plate Covers?

License plate covers can be found in various places, including specialty car shops, online retailers, and even some department stores. It’s essential to ensure that the cover you purchase meets the legal requirements and is of good quality.

Some popular brands among Canadian drivers include WeatherTech, AutoTex Pink, and Tough Bubble.

How to Install License Plate Covers

One of the best things about license plate covers is that they are relatively easy to install. Below, we’ve provided a step-by-step guide to help you install your license plate cover safely and correctly:

  1. Purchase the Right License Plate Cover: Before you begin the installation process, make sure you’ve purchased a license plate cover that fits your vehicle’s license plate size and is compliant with Canadian regulations.
  2. Gather Your Tools: You’ll need a screwdriver to remove the screws from your current license plate. The type of screwdriver (Phillips or flathead) depends on the screws currently in use.
  3. Remove the Old License Plate: Use the screwdriver to remove the screws holding your license plate in place. Keep these screws in a safe place, as you’ll be using them again to install the new cover.
  4. Attach the License Plate Cover: Place your license plate cover over your license plate. Ensure that the cover does not obscure any numbers or letters and that it is aligned correctly.
  5. Screw the License Plate Back: Using the screws you set aside earlier, screw your license plate (now with the cover attached) back onto your vehicle. Make sure the screws are tight enough to keep the plate and cover secure but not so tight that they damage the plate or cover.

With these five simple steps, you can easily install your license plate cover and start reaping its benefits.


License plate covers offer Canadian drivers a practical and stylish way to protect their plates while adding a touch of personalization to their vehicles. However, it’s crucial to ensure that the cover meets all legal requirements to avoid any potential issues with authorities. With proper installation and maintenance, a license plate cover can be a great addition to any Canadian driver’s vehicle. So, if you’re looking for a way to add some Northern charm to your car and protect your plates at the same time, consider investing in a license plate cover. Happy driving!


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