Are Quick Release Steering Wheels Legal? Detailed Answer

Are quick release steering wheels legal, or are they safe? These are the most common questions when people talk about car steering.

This speed-up device is one of the inevitable parts of the vehicle. That’s why people are more concerned when they want to install the aftermarket component.

Sometimes, drivers have the steering wheel off center but driving straight problems, and also think of replacing it with a removable one. Is it a good solution?

The first devices were applied to the racing cars to protect the racers. It supports the drivers getting in and out easier and reduces the risk of being choked during accidents.

However, are detachable steering wheels legal for regular street cars? Let’s find out!

What Is A Quick Release Steering Wheel? 

Are Quick Release Steering Wheels Legal

A quick steering wheel is a component that is attached to the hub. Most racers prefer it due to its safety function.

It assists the drivers in entering and exiting quickly in the situation of emergency. Plus, it’s said to protect your vehicle from car thieves.

It’s an easy installing system and suitable for most streetcars available in the aftermarket. You need a six-bolt hub and a quick release hub to install it. 

In case of an accident and the driver is stuck inside the car, you can press the button to release the rotation part and get yourself out of the dangerous situation.

Since the part is removable, you can remove it and leave your car without worrying about stealing.

Are Quick Release Steering Wheels Legal? 

It depends on the state where you live, what kind of vehicle you are using, or the registered purpose of it. Is a quick release steering wheel legal for your streetcar? If you ask, then the answer is no.

Though you can find the system in most modern cars, a quick release steering wheel legal for the racing car only because the component is not manufactured to perform on the street road, thus making it difficult for drivers to control.

If you really desire to increase the level of your rotation, register it for racing purposes only.

Are Quick Release Steering Wheels Safe? 

For your street-registered car, the component is not safe. It’s only designed for racing, off-road, and exhibition, but not for driving every day.

The only reason to consider its safety is, according to some people, it can help you avoid car thieves.

After all, if you still want to have the device on your daily vehicle without considering the question: is it illegal to have a quick release steering wheel? Remember some tips below to ensure you don’t put yourself in danger.

The quality of the product is important. Once it can not perform well on the road, it can lead you to a terrible situation at any time. So, make sure you check its quality with care.

After setting up the system in your vehicle, you’d better test it before going for a real drive. This test will help you get used to how the system works, how to use the quick lock, and how the hub and other connectors function.

Last but not least, each model is different. Ensure you follow what is instructed in the manual. Remember, safety is always first.

Pros And Cons Of Using A Quick Release Device


Are detachable steering wheels illegal? Though the detachable component is designed for racing cars, it’s also popular among those who like to go fast with their WRXs or Honda Civics.

The nice speedy look it brings to the car interior is what attracts users. Besides the aesthetic reasons, you can go faster with it, and it’s usually lighter than the originally manufactured models.

Moreover, it’s believed to increase the level of protecting your car from thieves.

Users just need to keep the safety button that secures the component, and nobody can attack the car without a rotation mechanism.


When there is a message of Service Power Steering – Drive With Care, fixing the component can be long and takes a lot of effort.

First-time users may need more time and struggle at first to drive the car with an aftermarket device.

There’s no guarantee of safety when applying it to your street car. In case of any mishap, it’s necessary to call for help from external assistance.

Is quick release steering wheel illegal? Again, using this appliance is not legal in all states. To travel through places, you should search about their rules before going and prepare all required documents.

States Where Quick Release Steering Wheels Are Legal

Are removable steering wheels legal in all of the US? Unfortunately, the answer is no. The reason for it is that they don’t have an airbag. It’s a requirement for all vehicles produced after 1989.

Actually, there aren’t many laws about and against aftermarket devices. You can still find for yourself the one with an airbag instead of sticking to the original installed one.

If your vehicle is older than the year 1989, you can install the speed-up method without an airbag.

Should you have a modern car, you’d better first have a hub and an airbag to which you can connect it. As long as your removable release mechanism has that safety device, it’s not against the law.

Are quick release steering wheels legal in California?

The answer is if you’re a resident of California, it’s illegal. You need to apply to the Department of Motor Vehicles or the Department of Transportation for installing acceptance. 

They will diagnose the type of your car, the rotation component and certification from the vehicle manufacturer before making any decision.

Even in other states, you should pass some safety inspection standards to install one.

Why Do You Need To Replace Your Steering Wheel?

Some people set aside the question of are aftermarket steering wheels legal and like to customize their vehicles.

Have a look around the parking lot; you may see many car owners doing so (with their Subaru WRX or Chevrolet, for example).

The leather device is becoming popular because it’s lighter and gives you a better grip. No one can deny the sporty feeling when sitting behind the wheel.

Moreover, it not only brings the racetrack appearance and feeling, but it also aids the users in getting in and out of the car effortlessly.

Plus, it’s a good way to stop your vehicle from being stolen since the rotation component is detachable.


What Is The Type Of Steering Wheel Legal?

You can not find much information about it from the Department of Highway Safety. Are custom steering wheels legal? Generally, an acceptable appliance should have a functional airbag.

However, if your vehicle is produced before 1989, there’s no need to obtain it. You’re ok to purchase any type and have professional service to change it for you.

There are also no specific rules about the size of the customized component. It can be half size or double the original one. An additional electronic one is also fine to replace.

How Can An Airbag Affect A Car Function? 

An airbag doesn’t have any influence on the vehicle’s performance. A car can still function properly with a deployed airbag.

The cars supported with airbags just started to be made around 30 years ago, and those manufactured before 1989 work well without an airbag.

The main purpose of the safety component is to protect the drivers and passengers from the risk of terrible injuries (especially severe head trauma) in the case of crashes.

Is It True That Aftermarket Steering Wheels Fit All Cars?

No, you can’t fit any rotation mechanism with any car randomly. You need a proper wheel boss adapter.

The adapter, or the hub, connects the device with your car so that you can freely steer it without any problem.

The hub is made specialized based on models, and using inappropriate one may cause difficulty in handling and even collision.

Choosing a good quality product is also important. A bad adapter can affect the rotating capabilities and lead to an accident.


Are quick release steering wheels legal? Now you know the answer is it’s not legal if you use the device for the daily roads. For the most part, it’s only legal for racing and performing cars.

You can modify the part with the vehicles produced prior to 1989, but make sure you have an airbag accompanied when you have a more modern car.

Consider thoroughly before installing, and always pay attention while driving if you’ve already used the system.

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