If you are looking to tint your vehicle, then you may be wondering what the best window tint is.
The window tint spectrum comes in percentages, which refers to visible light transmission (VLT). VLT is the amount of light that can pass through your window. So, if you choose a 15% tint, this means that 15% of visible light can get through. Limousines commonly have a 5% tint, which is known as the ‘limo tint’.
There are a few things to consider when shopping for a window tint.
Firstly, consider your budget. Are you willing to spend more money, for a more stylish and sleeker appearance? Or are you after something more affordable? Make sure to look for the best window tint within your budget.
If you buy a low-quality window tint, then it may be more prone to bubbling, cracking, fading or peeling. Whatever window tint you choose, ensure it is durable, fade-resistant and blocks heat penetration.
Secondly, don’t forget that your tinted windows must abide by the rules of the law. By law, vehicles first used on 1 April 1985 or later must have a front windscreen that lets in at least 75% of light through. The front side windows must let at least 70% of the light through.
For vehicles first used before 1 April 1985, the front windscreen and front side windows must let at least 70% of light through.
You could face a penalty if your car windscreen or windows are incorrectly tinted. It is illegal to fit or sell glass that breaks the rules on tinted windows. It is also illegal to sell a vehicle already fitted with glass that breaks the rules.
If a car’s tinted windows do not adhere to the legal limit, they will restrict the view of the driver, thus risking the safety of the driver and passengers. Having excessively dark windows will also pose a danger for other road users and pedestrians, who won’t be able to see the driver properly through the tinted windows.
You could be pulled over by the police for having overly-tinted windows. They will use measuring equipment to measure the level of visible light passing through the glass inside the vehicle.
Thirdly, choose a window tint that blocks Ultraviolet rays from the sun, which are damaging to your skin cells. The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends that window tints in your car can protect you from harmful UV rays, which can cause tanning, and premature ageing and can lead to skin cancer.
What kind of window tint should I choose?
Choose which kind of tint is best for you. The film inside window tints can be made of different materials: you can get ceramic film, metallised window film, carbon film, dyed window film, and hybrid tint film.
- Ceramic tint offers the best result out of all window tints. It contains tiny nano-ceramic particles that are invisible to the naked eye but are strong enough to block 99% of the sun’s damaging Ultraviolet rays. Considered the overall best window tint.
- Metallised window tint is comprised of metallic particles, which reflect heat. It is scratch-resistant and shinier than other window tints. However, metallised window tint can interfere with mobile phones and radio transmissions.
- Carbon tint comes with a matte black finish and does not contain metal properties. It blocks infrared light from entering the car and helps keep your car cooler, meaning you can save on air conditioning costs.
- Dyed window film is a window tint that has been coated with dyes to create darkness or colour. Dyed window tints come in all colours but are mostly black, grey, blue or purple.
- The hybrid tint film is made using both metallised tints and dyed tints. It looks opaque from the outside and is cheaper than metallised window tint.
Which parts of the car should not be tinted?
- Never tint your side mirror and rear mirror, as these mirrors are vital for safe driving.
- Never use darker shades of tint on your front windscreen and front side windows; it is better to pick a tint in a lighter shade.
- Never go for a window tint which is a total blackout shade, meaning you can’t see out of the windows from the driver’s seat at all.
What is the best window tint for driving at night?
As a rule of thumb, you could tint your car according to the number of street lights on the roads in your area. The best window tint is not too dark, as the night already brings darkness with it.
But, you will want to reduce the glare of streetlights and oncoming headlights. So, going for 20% tint for the front windscreen can give you a balanced experience when driving at night time.
At what percentage do tints look best?
The best window tint percentage will vary, depending on your preference.
The lower the visible light transmission (VLT), the darker the tint will be. So, a car window tint percentage of 5% will be considerably darker than a window with 30% VLT.
The five standard grades of VLT are 5%, 20%, 35%, 50% and 70%.
- 70% is the lightest possible tint. It blocks out a lot of sunlight, without sacrificing visibility. Best window tint for visibility.
- 50% is darker than 70%. It still allows you to see through the windows but it blocks out sunlight really well.
- 35% is darker than 50%. It is ideal for security inside the car and for keeping the car cool from the heat.
- 20% is the darkest tint you can get without being completely opaque. It significantly reduces light and is ideal for people who want privacy.
- 5% is the darkest possible tint that you can get. It completely blocks out all light, making it impossible to see through the car windows. It is ideal for people who don’t mind sacrificing visibility because they want maximum privacy.
Does window tint get darker with age?
Over time, it can look like the window tint in your vehicle is getting darker. However, it is actually the adhesive being exposed to sunlight and heat. The chemicals in the adhesive react with the sun, which may cause it to change colours. This is frequently seen in the cheaper tints, which are of a much poorer quality – but not as common amongst the top best window tints.
How do I know if my window tint film is of poor quality?
If your window tint film is of poor quality or is applied incorrectly, you may see:
- Lasting bubbles– Bubbles are a normal part of the application process, as the water gets trapped in between the window and the film. The majority should disappear within the first week. If the bubbles remain after 3 to 4 weeks, it is a sign of poor application.
- Peeling– If the tint begins to peel off after only a few days, then something isn’t right.
- Sticky residue– There should not be a lot of sticky residues all over the windows after the tint. If you are having to scrub off patches of glue for hours, then you will scratch and damage the car windows.
- Blurry windows– When driving your car, the view from your windows should be clear. If the windows are hazy and reduce your vision, then it will cause dangerous driving.
- Noticeable gaps and uneven lines– There should be no gaps around the edges of the window. If there are, the installer has rushed the job or incorrectly calculated how much tint is needed.
- Purple hue– If you see a purple colour in your tint that is not supposed to be there, then the tint material is probably of lower quality.
- Hot car – If the interiors of your car are hotter than they were before the installation, then this is a warning sign about the tint. Window tints are designed to keep you cool and provide shade from the sun.
What window tint lasts the longest?
On average, a good quality window tint can last you 5 to 10 years. A good-quality window tint will last you for much longer than a poor-quality one will.
However, over time, as your vehicle is exposed to more sun and heat, this can cause wear and tear to your window tint.
Improper maintenance can also cause damage to your window tint. Dirt, oils, bacteria and the wrong type of cleaning products can disintegrate the film inside your window tint.
Poor installation of window tint can also wear down the film more quicker. To prevent this from happening, visit a professional who will install the window tint in your vehicle for you.
How do you maintain window tint?
- Immediately after your car is tinted, do not open and close the windows. The tint is still wet and needs a week or two to dry.
- Clean your tinted windows with a soft cloth and soapy water.
- You can use a cleaning product, but choose one that is free from ammonia, which is harmful to the tint.
- Do not use paper towels to clean tinted windows, as this will leave tiny fibres everywhere.
- Avoid constantly touching tinted windows with your hands, as this will create smudges and smears.
- If you see bubbles in your tinted windows, do not pop them with a sharp object such as razor blades; this will scratch the tint film. Poke the bubbles with a plastic card instead.
How long does tinting a car take?
At Car Specialist Customs, the installation time can range between 1 to 3 hours, depending on how many windows are being tinted and the complexity of the job.
How much does tinting a car cost?
To find out more about the best window tint for your car visit our website here at Car Specialist Customs.
Request a quote here to find the best window tint for your vehicle.
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