If you have had your windows tinted, then you know that eventually window tint is likely to peel or bubble. Whether this makes it a bad job depends on how long it lasts. If your window tint was poorly applied, then it may peel or bubble quickly. This often happens if you are trying to do it yourself, especially for the first time.
How Long Should Tinted Windows Last?
The length of time you should expect your tint to last before needing to be redone actually depends on several factors:
- The type of film used. Simple dyed film, while very cheap, may only last a year or two. Hybrid film which contains both dying and reflective metals lasts four to five years. Very expensive window film, made in a vacuum chamber, can last as long as a decade. You should consider how long you plan on keeping the video when choosing what window film to buy. Also, some hybrid films can interfere with your cell reception because of the amount of metal in them.
- The quality of the installation. A good professional installation will generally last longer than do it yourself.
- Your local climate. Window tint generally lasts longer in cooler and cloudier areas. If you live in the desert then the constant sun exposure will reduce the lifespan of your tint. You should talk to your installer or other people who live in your area to find out what to expect. As tint is applied to the inside of the window, it is not affected by rain or snow.
Should You Fix Window Tint Yourself?
Sometimes yes, sometimes no. If you had a professional job done and it is still under warranty, you should take it back to the installer and make them fix it. If you did it yourself, then you can try to fix it yourself, but bear in mind that if you did a poor job the first time, your repairs may also be of lower quality. Applying window tint takes a lot of patience and is highly meticulous, so there is no shame in not being able to do it well.
How do You Fix Peeling Tint?
Peeling tint may need to be replaced. Sometimes you can fix it by rinsing it in soap and water and then using a squeegee to place it back in place, making sure to smooth out any bubbles first. However, it is generally better to mark a square around the damaged area and cut it away with a razor blade. Apply a fine mist of water and then remove the section, making sure you get both layers. Thoroughly clean the exposed window, then cut a new section about an inch larger, wet the window and reapply. Needless to say, you should use the same tinting film you used originally.
How do You Fix Wrinkled Tint?
Spray the edges of the wrinkled area with distilled water, then gently lift it from the window using a razor blade. Pull the wrinkled area back, then spray water on both the film and glass. Use a squeegee to press the film firmly back onto the window, starting from the inside and working to the edge. Leave it to dry for an hour. If this does not work or if you were unable to lift the film without cutting or tearing it, then you should use the same method listed above to replace the damaged area.
Will Bubbles in Tint Go Away?
It’s common to see small bubbles under freshly-installed tint. Normally, these bubbles should go away within a couple of weeks and should be very small. They may take longer to go away in cold weather and vanish faster in heat. If you have larger bubbles or bubbles that have formed in older tint, then they will not go away. You can get rid of bubbles that are causing problems by carefully pricking them with a pin or sewing needle and then smoothing a credit card over the bubble to make it disappear.
Excessive bubbling is probably a sign that your tint needs to be redone. If you are trying to install your own tint and have repeated problems with bubbles, it is probably time to go to a professional who has more experience applying the film evenly.
How Do I Remove Window Tint?
Sometimes the only answer to a bad window tinting job is to get rid of it and start over. Window tinting film is, of course, designed to stay on your car for an extended period of time, so it is not that easy to remove.
In order to do so, you should cut a black (not white) garbage bag to a bit over the size of the window. Then spray the window with water and put the bag over it. The bag should stick.
Cover the inside of the car with a large towel or tarp. Then spray the inside of the window with ammonia. Leave the car in direct sunlight for an hour. (You should do this on a sunny day if possible). Then peel the tint carefully of the window. You can start the process with a razor blade. If it doesn’t come off, reapply the ammonia and give it another thirty minutes.
Finally, clean the window thoroughly.
The best way, of course, is to avoid a bad tint job in the first place. Although many people do successfully apply tint to their own windows with a kit, it is not an easy job. Given you only do it at best every year or two, you have no opportunity to develop the kind of practice a professional who applies window tint several times a day has. Therefore, it is best for most people to hire a professional to apply the tint. Choose one that uses high quality film and talk to them about the right film for your need and about how to properly care for your tinted windows (also, make sure to check the law in your state about how much tint is allowed, especially on the windscreen). Window tint installation takes only a few hours. If you are interested in getting your car’s windows professionally tinted, contact Ultimate Window Tinting today.