DIY Window tinting…is it even possible? Absolutely. Window-tinting has been on the rise in popularity for decades. However, not many know that this feature has been in development for centuries to become what you know of them today. Not only does the slick shaded glass add more flare to your car, tinted windows help protect your interior while helping it cool during summer, and adds value to the sticker when it’s time to sell the car. In this new age of money-saving DIYers, car window tinting can now be done at home instead of having to take it into a professional and fork over hundreds of dollars. Curious to know how to tint your own windows? It may take some work effort, but definitely doable. Keep reading to find out how!
What is Window Tinting?
Window tinting refers to methods that block different levels of light from passing through the windshield, side windows, and rear window of your car. Many newer cars today are manufactured coated with window tinting to some degree of UV protection. Window tinting provides privacy, reduces glare, and can help cut down the costs of air conditioning and heating. The main types of tints available that include dyed, metalized, carbon, and ceramic window film that vary in quality, effectiveness, and price.
Be Familiar with State Laws for Tinting Windows
Regulations vary depending on jurisdiction, so please make sure you are aware of the darkest tint shade you can go before violating the law. Certain states allow dark tint in the back windows but not the front of your car. All installers must thoroughly review pertaining state regulations, local enforcement policies to ensure compliance with all the standards regarding window tinting before proceeding.
What You Will Need
- Window tint film (You can find this at your local auto parts retailer such as Oreilly’s)
- Window tint application solution
- Lint-free cleaning cloth
- Razor knife
- Scraper blade
- Application squeegee
- Heat gun
- Dust-free, fair temperature garage or space to work in
- Apply application solution on the inside of your window, being careful not to overspray the solution onto the door trims. To remove away any dust or debris before tint application, swipe your scraper blade across the window using side-to-side motions starting at the top of your window, working your way down. Do not scratch the glass with your swiper blade.
- Run your squeegee across the window in similar side-to-side fashion as the swiper blade, starting at the top and work your way down to remove any remaining dust or debris.
- Apply the application solution to the outside of your window and roll the tint film onto it with the protective layer facing upward. The application solution helps hold your film in place while you cut it to the exact shape of the window while being able to adjust the film to enable a precise cut.
- Wipe your squeegee over the tint to help it stay in place.
- If your car has sliding windows: roll your window down about a quarter of an inch and cut the top and sides to shape the film. This helps ensure the film covers past the window’s base. For those with non-sliding windows: Use the window gaskets as template as you cut the film to the edges. Apply application solution to the inside of the window.
- Stick a piece of clear tape to one edge of the window to hold the film in place and begin peeling away the protective liner. As you continue to peel, spray solution onto the adhesive surface. Discard protective liner when done.
- Lift the film from the outside of the window and place to the inside of the window, folding the bottom edge to avoid touching the door trim.
- Adjust the tint firmly into place while leaving a gap of ⅛ inches from the top of your sliding window. Use your squeegee to force out any air bubbles or water beneath the tint.
- Do you still have some extra application solution remaining on the windows? No problem! Place a dry lint-free towel over your squeegee and run it across the whole window and the towel should absorb any application solution left.
- If you still find any bubbles left trapped in the tinted film, use a heat gun to loosen and warm up the area and use your squeegee to push out the air bubbles closest to the window’s edge. Repeat as necessary until all windows are bubble-free.
Tinting your own windows is not necessarily considered a walk in the park, but could prove rewarding for anyone willing to take on the money-saving challenge. If you need more guidance, there are also video tutorials available on the web to give you a visual of what to expect, including some valuable tips and tricks. With the proper supplies, some patience, research, and a little faith you can tackle on the project of tinting your car windows yourself. For all your other car modifcation needs, make sure you go to Illuminate Nation to help you achieve the car of your dreams.