What is Car Window Tinting?
Car window tinting is the process of applying a layer of film to the inside of a car’s window to help improve its utility and aesthetic value.
Many who approach car window tinting view it solely as a way to make their car more appealing. But as the industry has evolved with time and technology, the usefulness of window tinting has improved as well.
For instance, the use of carbon and nanoceramic particles enable films to reject a greater amount of heat without the dark look.
There’s also a tint option that performs like a dark film but comes in a legal shade. It accomplishes this by using a multilayer polyester film that can accommodate a wide variety of installation requirements.
These innovations have made a tremendous impact on the automotive market, particularly in states with strict tint laws.
With all of this in mind, let’s explore the basics of how window tinting is applied, the reasons why people get car tinting, how much car window tinting costs, different window tint options, and tint laws.
How is Car Tinting Applied?
The installation procedure is mostly universal, although the techniques used vary widely from shop to shop.
The four common steps are:
- Sizing and shaping the film to the contour of the glass.
- Cleaning the glass.
- Applying the film to the inside of the glass.
- Removing any excess water from between the film and glass.
Once applied the film needs to dry, which takes anywhere from one to five days depending on the temperature.
There are also several car window tinting types to accommodate each individuals’ different needs:
♦ Standard dyed films
♦ Carbon nano-hybrid film for better performance
♦ Full Nano-Ceramic films for the best possible performance
♦ Photochromatic films that transition from light to dark when exposed to light
In my 27 years of being in the car tinting industry, I have noticed that it’s hard to explain in words the tremendous difference in glare, heat reduction and comfort in general that film makes.
However, once you’ve had a car with window film you will likely always want film.
Why Do You Need Car Window Tinting?
Car window tinting is usually a personal preference, and because it looks great!
Many people with trucks, SUV’s and Jeeps like to match the front windows to the factory tinted rear windows to create a uniform look. Sedan and coupe owners enjoy the stylish looks and added privacy, eradicating the feeling of being in a fishbowl when driving a car without tint.
But there are many additional benefits to car tint that many car owners may not have considered.
Here are the top five reasons to get your car tinted:
Reason #1: It’s Safer to Drive With Them
Driving with the sun directly in your eyes isn’t just an annoyance – it can be deadly. Car window tint shields your eyes and reduces glare from all sources of extreme light so you’ll never be caught struggling to focus on the road.
Reason #2: Tinted Windows Preserve Privacy
We all value our privacy. Most of us don’t appreciate the “fishbowl” effect of driving a car without tint. Car tint guards your privacy and protects your belongings from unwanted eyes.
Reason #3: They Help With Skin Health & Protection
The majority of people think that they get the most sun exposure when they’re in the outdoors, but the reality is that get more exposure to the sun in your car than almost anywhere else.
This can lead to all kinds of skin conditions, including age spots, wrinkles, sagging, or even cancer – especially on the left side of the face. Car window tinting helps block harmful UV rays and keeps your skin healthy.
Reason #4: Extra Accident Protection
Window film helps to keep your car’s windows intact when you hit an object or experience an accident. Less shattered glass means there’s less of a chance that passengers can be hurt should this unfortunate event happen to you.
Reason #5: They Keep Your Car Cool
Hate getting into a hot car? The right window tint can help you reduce the heat in your car by up to 60% during the hot summer months.
And as a bonus, you’ll use less gas on the AC as well.
How Much Does Car Window Tinting Cost?
The cost to tint an average sized four-door car can range from $150.00 to $400.00, but giving an accurate price quote isn’t as simple as giving out a price range.
Aside from the installation difficulty that comes with each unique car, some of the factors used to determine the price include:
♦ The number of windows
♦ Type of tint
♦ Shop reputation.
Let’s talk about each of these for more detail.
Depending on the car you drive, you may have a harder time tinting the windows.
A good tint shop will always ask you about your specific vehicle and what type of tint you want before telling you their prices. This will help them determine how big the job will be and how much to charge.
For example, cars that have larger rear windows, like a Corvette or VW Beetle, will need more work and have a higher price point.
Type of Tinting Film
As with most products, the quality and price differ vastly among the various tinting films out there.
A top of the line photochromatic film can be 20x more expensive than a standard film, and ceramic films can be 4x the price of standard. Upgrades will also add to installation difficulty, so keep that in mind.
Warranties vary between shops, film brands, and film types. Some warranties last a lifetime, whereas others are only valid for as little as one year.
You should always inquire about the Warranty coverage and duration before handing over your money.
Note of Caution: You can only use a Lifetime Warranty if the business that provided it is around to back it. Less popular or budget shops pose a risk, and could leave you on the hook for a replacement if they go out of business.
Good tint shops will have a reputation for high-quality work that leaves their customers satisfied. These shops will ensure that your tint is installed perfectly, and won’t skimp on their material.
But keep in mind that they will charge more. A shop with a good reputation is easy to find, but if your budget can hack it or they don’t meet your needs, you should reconsider.
Car Window Tinting Options
Car Window Tinting Laws
Here at Top Edge Tinting, we do our best to keep up-to-date with the ever-changing laws and state requirements for window tint. Unfortunately, due to the nature and scale of these laws it’s not always possible for us to keep 100% accurate information on hand at all times.
To make matters worse, our customers occasionally report instances where state laws are enforced differently depending on which regional police department you deal with.
Keep in mind that these inconsistencies are not the police department’s fault. Many citations result from different interpretations of the same state window tint laws, and these laws can change frequently.
But because of this, we recommend double-checking with the department closest to your location to ask about current window tint laws, rules and regulations, and their general enforcement policies.
Go with an option that aligns with your area’s local regulations.