So, you’re tired from the annoying and shimmering sunlight in the summer, or perhaps you want to improve the looks of your car by tinting your windows. Have you ever wondered as to what the car window tinting prices are?
- What Is Window Tint?
- Are Tints Legal?
- Tint Percentages
- Types Of Window Tint
- Car Window Tinting Prices
- Tint Windows DIY?
Tinting windows is probably one of the smartest decisions that you could make for your car. Tinting your windows will exude a lot of presence on the road, while also improving your comfort inside the car.
You won’t have to pull out those annoying sun visors to prevent the sun from hitting you in the face. Sun in the middle of summer can be a heaty distraction, and could even get you involved in accidents. Especially on those bright and sunny days when the temperatures are well above 100 degrees.
Direct sunlight can make you lose your focus, and potentially enable you to do something that could affect your life. Many accidents occur by running no tint on the windows. Drivers get distracted, as they cannot clearly see from the side when the sun is being directed to their eyes and sometimes, bad things can happen.
In this article, we are going to cover everything that you need to know about tinting windows. We are going to cover the materials that are needed to do this, what types of materials are out there, and their characteristics. We will discuss more in-depth about the benefits of running tint on your windows. Then, we are going to discuss car window tinting prices. How expensive are they? Lastly, we are going to make a short tutorial about how to tint your windows DIY. So, follow along!
What Is A Window Tint?
A window tint is a thin film that is glued to the inside of the car window. The material is called tint film, and the process of applying the tint on the vehicle is called tinting.
This process of tinting is complex, although it may look extremely simple at first glance. It can be very complicated and be very tricky to do. It’s especially so for beginners who weren’t in the know of tinting car windows before. You will need a lot of practice in order to perfect this tinting skill, and learn how to apply the tint film. So do pay attention, if you are one of those DIY guys and gals who want to work on their car. Later in this article, we are going to explain this process and how you can perform it.
Anyway, the main purpose of this process is to reduce the heat entering the cabin. The thickness of the tint material may vary, and this also applies to the levels of darkness. This is important because the darker the tint, the better it works in protecting you from sunlight.
However, dark tint can also get you in trouble with the law. That’s something that we’re going to elaborate more on later in this article. It is important that you comply with the rules and regulations when you are installing some of these mods.
What Are The Benefits Of Tinting Your Windows?
The benefits of tinting are many. You’ll be able to feel most of these benefits during the hot summer day when the heat is burning at 90 degrees outside.
The insulation of the driving cabin will be perfect. This is because most of the harmful UV light will not be able to penetrate the glass, and thus burning your skin.
Tinting will also improve the insulation capability of your vehicle during the summer. When you turn on the air conditioning, the cabin will be cooler and driving will be a greater pleasure to relish.
This may also improve your driving quality. Heat is a big problem, especially if you get stuck in traffic without air conditioning and there’s no tint on your car. It can quickly drain your energy and cause you to lose focus. This may result in an accident. Many accidents during the summer occur because of this and plenty of drivers are suffering the permanent consequences.
Another positive side of tinting windows, as we mentioned, is about stopping the UV light from protruding into the cabin. This light is harmful to the interior and could cause your interior to fade prematurely. With a tint on the windows, you should not have to worry about this issue.
With tinting the windows, you will also increase your privacy. Many thieves are using the technique of seeing what’s inside the car to decide to then commit theft. With tinted windows, thieves are likely to stay away from your vehicle and you will be safe from possible thefts.
And lastly, not everyone needs to see who is driving the car. You can be certain that both you and your passengers will enjoy better privacy inside the cabin, without attracting unwanted attention.
Downsides Of Window Tinting
There are plenty of advantages to tinting your windows. However, there are also some downsides to this modification. Everything has its own ups and downs, so let’s discuss them.
The biggest drawback is the poor visibility that these window tints offer, especially if they’re darker. The darker the tint, the more difficult it will be to see out of.
For example, let’s say you’re turning into a set of crossroads. You may not be able to see who is coming at you if you are driving in poor conditions when you have a dark tint. This may result in a potential accident, and you could even lose your life. If someone T-bones you, you are going to have some serious injuries.
Another example is when you are reversing. At night, it may be hard to see what is going on behind you if you have a darker tint.
Personally, I’m running a 75% tint on my car, and when I back up, I always have to roll down my windows to properly see what’s going on. At night, the back window has zero visibility. At this point, you’re left to reverse based on your instinct – which isn’t a wise idea.
A few times already while reversing, I’ve accidentally bumped into something. Once I decided that I had to replace my bumper, it also required a full repaint. My bumper alone had cost me a small fortune. So, it’s important to keep these things in mind.
Another disadvantage of window tinting is that the glass doesn’t shatter if you have an accident. Window glass is made to shatter into a million pieces when there is an impact. But if you are running tinted windows, your glass won’t shatter. Instead, it will stick onto the foil, and this can potentially hurt you.
And last but not least, we have the legality of this mod, and that’s something that we are going to discuss next. That’s just before we move on to see what car window tinting prices are like.
Are Window Tints Legal?
Window tints are legal, but it depends on where you want to place your tint, and how dark you want your window tints to be. The darker, the worse, when it comes to the law and its legal implications that this mod is creating.
Depending on the state that you’re living in, the regulations can be different as some states tend to be more prohibitive than others when it comes to window tints. The best thing to do is to inform yourself about the laws in your local county when it comes to tints.
Although, there are some general rules when it comes to tinting in order to avoid tickets. The first rule is that you should never, ever tint your windshield, especially with some high gloss reflective tint. By doing this, you will instantly get a ticket, and your car may even be excluded from the traffic.
Another rule is to not install reflective tint just anywhere on your car, especially not on the front windows. With this type of tint, you’re going to be a cop magnet and you will be frequently stopped by the police.
Also, never overdo your front glass. With the front glass, it’s good to have some visibility, and the tint should be lighter. You need to see in order to drive. But you also can’t only see what’s in front of you, as you’ll eventually need to pull a few maneuvers in certain situations.
That said, tinting your front windows can be illegal in many states, and you could get a ticket. That’s especially so if they’re too dark, and the police would have difficulties identifying who the driver is. In these situations, you could also get yourself in danger. So, if you have tinted windows and you are stopped by the police, always pull down your windows in order to be identified.
Tint Percentages How Do They Work?
Window tint percentage can vary from 5% up to 90%. You’re probably thinking that the bigger percentage, the darker the tint, right? You are wrong.
In this case, the bigger the percentage, the lighter the tint. For example, a lot of cars from the factory have 90% tinted windows. They are not using darkening film, but rather a special method when they manufacture the glass. This factory tint offers 100% protection from harmful UV lights, and it’s enough for most cases.
But if you want more, you can go lower. For example, if you want to tint your front windows, 50% will probably be the lowest that you can go, and in some states, you actually can’t go lower than 75%. If you go below these percentages and make your car windows darker, you’re probably going to get a fine, or you won’t be able to pass the inspection. Said regulatory inspection will not let you register the vehicle until you make it road legal.
For the back windows, you can go as dark as you want. You can even go down to 5%. However, I don’t recommend this, because you still want your passengers to have some visibility and to be able to enjoy the ride.
Also, while reversing or maneuvering, it’s useful to not overdo your rear window, and still have some vision to see who or what is behind you.
Types Of Window Tint
In this chapter, we are going to discuss some of the types of window tints that you can install on your vehicle. Some of them are more affordable, while others can cost a lot of money. This will depend on your budget, and how much material you need to cover the glassy surfaces on your car.
Dyed Window Tint
This is one of the more affordable options that you can get. This is because of its simplicity of production, and that it’s a relatively inexpensive material. With this film, a dye is used in the production process which is added to the plastic material.
The downside of this material is its bad tolerance for UV rays. The UV rays will quickly start to eat away at the dye, and the high heat will also cause the dye to fade and peel. This sort of tint, over time, will change colors from purple to brown and, in some cases can even turn transparent if exposed for too long.
This type of film is extremely cheap to get because of the simple manufacturing process that is involved in creating the tint. Another point, in that since it quickly fades, it will be replaced more often than other film types.
If you want to get something that is more durable and will last longer, this is not the option for you.
Ceramic Window Tint
The ceramic window tint is one of the highest quality tints. This tint is also the most expensive option among them. This window tint does not contain any dye. Instead, ceramic window tints only use ceramic particles. These ceramic particles are known for their durability when it comes to UV light. Ceramic is non-conductive and non-metallic.
This film also doesn’t block signals, so you should never have to worry if your cell phone or radio is suddenly going to stop working.
Ceramic film is one of the most expensive of such products on the market. This is because of the advanced technologies that are put into manufacturing this film. Also, the materials by themselves aren’t cheap or are easy to find.
One of the newer versions of the ceramic film includes a hybrid version between ceramic and carbon. This new tint includes nano carbon ceramic particles. These particles can increase the durability of UV lights, and improve heat rejection. Furthermore, it can aid in visibility from the interior of your car by a wide margin compared to a more conventional ceramic tint.
If you want the best for your car and yourself, this is the way to go. It may cost more but it’s worth it.
Carbon Window Tint
Carbon tints are one of the better-quality options that you can get. It is fairly cheaper compared to ceramic tint but also very durable. It effectively blocks the UV particles from entering the car and also lowers the temperatures significantly. The greatest benefit of using this type of tint is that you will see more when driving on the hot summer days.
The quality of this tint is on par with the best. It doesn’t contain any dye that will fade, and this tint will never start to peel off from the glass. This tint doesn’t contain metallic particles, either. So, you will never have to worry that you are going to get a cell phone or radio transmission failure.
The downside of carbon film is that this type of tint can create glare from the inside. Oh, and you’ll also have some trouble seeing when you go around corners.
The carbon window tint is fairly cheaper than ceramic tint but is also more expensive than dyed tint. This tint also looks quite good from the outside, and you won’t see any wrinkles or fade. The film will give your car a perfectly balanced black color that will make it look really good.
In my opinion, the carbon tint is the best tint overall if we’re looking at a quality-to-price ratio. I personally have carbon tint. It’s been almost 5 years since I have it installed on my car, and it still looks perfectly good and brand new.
Car Window Tinting Prices?
Car window tinting prices will depend much on the type of vehicle that you have, and also the amount of material and hours needed to cover the whole vehicle’s glass in tint. Some vehicles have more glass, and that’s why the tinting process may take longer and could cost you more.
For example, if you want to wrap your windows in carbon film, you can expect to pay somewhere between $50 and $70 per window. In total, the cost may come to around $250 for all four windows, including the rear and side windows. If you want to opt for the more expensive ceramic film, you can expect to pay around $650. If you want to go the cheapest route and get a dyed film, it’s not going to cost you any more than $200.
Coupes are trickier to do because they implement somewhat curvier glass than sedan vehicles. It also depends on the type of film that you want to install. Prices for coupes may vary from $200 to $650.
Pickup trucks can be expensive to do, because of the size and spread of the glass that they’re using. Full-size trucks that have a big cabin will have monumentally a lot of glass to cover. Prices for trucks can average from around $250 to $650. As we said, the more expensive the film, the pricier the job gets.
SUVs are the most expensive vehicles that you can tint. Especially if you are running a big Escalade or a Suburban. The sheer size of these SUVs and the size of the glass matters a lot in pricing them. These vehicles are using much more material than ordinary sedans, and even pickup trucks.
The price for tinting a full-size SUV with ceramic film can go up to $750, or roughly $450 if you opt for carbon film. The cheapest film is the dye film that can come at a cost of $350.
How To Tint Your Car DIY?
Tinting your car can be a tricky job to do if it’s your first time. If you want to experiment, you can get a cheap dye film that won’t cost you a lot of money. And if you do make any mistakes, it won’t cost you a lot, either.
The first step involves cleaning your glass and spraying the surface with soapy water.
In this step, you apply the film to the outside of the glass. Make sure that you don’t stick your film. This step is important because you want to create a mold for your window.
Now it’s time to cut the edges of the tint with a sharp scalpel. Make sure that you get all the edges right.
Spray the interior of the window with soapy water and put the film on the inside of the window.
Make sure that you remove all the air bubbles that are on the inside, and then let the car bake in the sun.
Letting it bake in the heat will make certain that your film will stick to the window.
How To Peel Of Window Tint
Let’s say you aren’t satisfied with the result, and you want to peel off the foil. You can do this quite easily. In order to remove the film safely, you need to get a heat gun or let your car bake further in the sun to warm up. Then, slowly start to remove the film, bit by bit.
You can later clean off the glue residue on the glass with a special residue cleaner. This will make sure that you won’t be looking at glue through your windows.
Cost of Auto Window Tinting
- Auto window tinting can cost anywhere from $59 to $1000, with the average customer paying around $100-$500.
- Factors affecting the price of auto window tinting include the type of tint, warranties, and how many windows you are tinting.
- Vehicles with fewer windows require less material, which results in a lower price.
- Unique aspects of some vehicles, such as a Tesla Model 3’s massive glass roof, can add time and material to the installation.
- Tint removal, if needed, can increase the cost of installation.
- The type of material used to make the window tint film affects the price, with dyed window tint being cheaper than carbon or ceramic window tint.
- The experience of the installer affects the price of the installation.
- A good tint shop has overhead costs that affect the price, including the use of high-end equipment and a controlled environment.
- The brand of window tint affects the price, with higher quality films costing more.
- The cost of auto window tinting varies by vehicle type, with coupes, sedans, trucks, vans, and SUVs all having different pricing structures based on the number of windows to be tinted. Tesla vehicles also have unique pricing structures due to their non-metalized window tint requirements and complex window shapes.
Car Window Tinting Prices – Conclusion
In this article, we’ve covered a lot when it comes to car window tinting prices. We also learned plenty when it comes to the advantages and disadvantages of tinted windows.
We discussed also as to what are the laws when it comes to tinting windows, and how much you can tint your windows without getting a ticket.
Then, we’ve covered the most common types of window tints that are used. You have the cheapest dye tint that peels off regularly, to more expensive options like the carbon and the ceramic film.
In my opinion, carbon film is the best option when you’re looking for a good quality-to-price ratio solution. It’s going to look amazing on your car. Plus, in the case of car window tinting prices, it will be more affordable and you won’t have to worry about your carbon film peeling off.
And lastly, we have covered how you can do this job DIY-style. It’s a very simple process and one that can be done at home with almost no tools. You might fail at first but, with a little bit of practice, you’ll be an expert in no time.