Are acrylic plates unbreakable?

If you’re ever unfortunate enough to experience your number plate breaking, it’s not only be a hassle, but confusing to know what you should do, where to go, and what exactly constitutes as a broken number plate?

In this blog, we will share guidance on what to do if your number plate is broken. 

Bespoke Plates is a renowned and legally certified registration platemaker and installer, with options of 3D Plates, 4D Plates, Show Plates, and Standard/ Electric Vehicle Plates and more. We are the one-stop shop for all things registration plates! 

Whether it’s a Private Plate, Gel Plate, Standard Registration Plate or accessories for your plate, we have you covered. 

As a certified and experienced team of plate fitters and makers, our plates are installed to the specification of UK law, provided alongside the appropriate paperwork you need. (The only exception to this is Show Plates.)

What can cause a number plate to break?

Although number plates are resilient considering their size and thickness, they are known to break on certain occasions, here are the most common scenarios. 

  • High velocity impact, this could be from a crash, or from a hazard hitting the plate.
  • Scraping. This could happen due to another road user driving too close to your vehicle, breaking the plate. This is possible at slow speeds.
  • Attempted theft, or purposeful criminal damage. 
  • A loose plate, which eventually falls off the bumper and is run over.

Can you get stronger number plates?

Gel plates provide a nominal increase in durability as a result of the materials used to construct the signature 3D or 4D look of the gel plate. This will not only protect the plate from most superficial damage such as scratches, but will provide a slightly greater resistance to forces that would have easily destroyed a regular number plate. 

What Are Acrylic Number Plates

Gel Plates – The stronger and eye-catching alternative

Gel plates come under the category of 3D & 4D plates, these are specialised plates in which the plate’s characters are raised and provide a distinctive effect. As highlighted before, they do provide a nominal increase in durability. 

Are gel plates legal?

Yes, our plate modification options excluding show plates are entirely legal. Our legal options are 3D, 4D, and Hex Plates. As long as you follow the highlighted rules from the DVLA, you will be legally compliant to drive with the aforementioned modified plates.*

*Please do your due diligence and research, some unverified registration plate providers may not be making their plates to the legal specification, which could become an inconvenience for you. Visiting Bespoke Plates is the best way to avoid this trouble.

Alternatively, using the government gateway to find licenced, and approved platemakers is the best option for peace of mind and finding platemakers close to you. Enter your postcode on the government gateway website.

The legal requirements of number plates

The legal terms that a registration plate must adhere to are:

  • be made from a reflective material – for road safety
  • black display characters on a white background (front plate)
  • black display characters on a yellow background (rear plate)
  • not have a background pattern – so as not to distort the readability of your plate
  • be marked to show who supplied the registration plate – to assist with thefts and sourcing queries
  • be marked with a British Standard number – this is ‘BS AU 145e’ for plates fitted after 1 September 2021
  • Characters must not be removable or reflective. If your registration plates were fitted after 1 September 2021, they must also be a single shade of black.

You can find the full list of legal requirements here.

What to do if your number plate is broken

Firstly, depending on where your number plate breaks, try to retrieve any parts that you can. If it broke on the motorway, don’t stop to retrieve it under any circumstances. 

If you noticed that your plate has broken after your journey, driving back the way you came could be dangerous as you are technically not road legal, as you only have one number plate on your vehicle. But what exactly constitutes as a broken number plate?

A broken number plate is any number plate that is damaged to a point where the characters on the plate are not identifiable, this could be due to severe scrapes, denting, or clean breakages. 

The best thing to do is firstly contact your insurance, and/or lease provider and inform them. They may be able to schedule the repair from you through their own channels. Additionally, this could be an inadvertent way to upgrade your number plate.

As an established and trusted platemaker, we provide a variety of road legal number plates that are not only refined and eye-catching, but also provide a nominal yet additional layer of durability. (Specifically in the case of gel plates.)

What if my number plate fell off my bumper? 

On the occasion that your plate has only detached from the bumper, and is not broken, contacting a local plate-maker, or even your local garage, to schedule a reinstallation should rectify the issue. Be sure to drive with the plate visible on the front or back window of your vehicle in the meantime.

What You Need to Know About Personalised Car Number Plates

The easiest way to replace a number plate

By far, the most simple method of replacing your number plate due to physical damage, loss, or just for the sake of upgrading it, is through Bespoke Plates. Our pain-free process is made with you in mind, we have options for those who want to talk over the phone, and for those who prefer to click and order.

By following these steps, you will also have the option to see the plate before making a decision.  Let us walk you through the process of choosing your plate through us.

  1. Head to the Bespoke Plates website 
  2. Select the plate style you want under the “Build Your Plate” tab. Alternatively, you can follow this link.
  3. Enter your registration (You can press ‘preview’ to see your registration with all the modification options you have selected.)
  4. When selecting your chosen plate, you can opt for 3D/4D options, a Hex plate, and whether you want a legal plate or a show plate.
  5. Select preferred optional accessories. 
  6. Decide if you are collecting with installation, or if you want it to be delivered.

Installing through Bespoke Plates ensures the best service & secure installation for your number plate, along with guidance regarding after care, or address any questions you may have.

Can I repair my number plate by myself?

Yes, provided you have all the correct equipment that can ensure that your plate is repaired without compromising the readability of the characters. Regular glue, or see-through tape, is not enough to hold the plate together, especially when travelling at high speeds. 

Because repair is a delicate process, the best option is to order a replacement to have installed by us. Our process saves you lots of time, and headache!

Helping all your plating problems today

In this blog, we have highlighted our plate options, and the information you need in order to our stylish customisation option to your vehicle. We aim to have answered the question ‘What to do if your number plate is broken?’

We hope that we provided all the right answers and options for all of your plate modification needs. 

Bespoke Plates has all the options you can ask for, as an approved registration vendor we can guarantee your modification abides by the DVLA rules whilst offering same-day collections and full fitting service.

To get in touch and discuss the full fitting service we offer with our plates, you can talk to one of the members of our team by:


Phone 0333 006 7878

Visit in-store 
36A Broughton Street,
M8 8NN

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