We’ve all been there: You get in your car at the end of the day and can barely breathe, it’s so hot. Or, you’re driving home and can hardly see because the sun is too low for your visors.
These situations are not only incredibly uncomfortable but also potentially dangerous. Tinting your car windows can help reduce the danger, and it’s fairly easy to do yourself.
Benefits of Window Tinting
In addition to reducing heat buildup and cutting glare from sun, snow and headlights, tinted windows can protect you during an accident by holding shattered glass together. Auto window tinting also block up to 99 percent of UV rays, keeping your interior from fading or cracking due to sun exposure. This feature will also keep you from getting sunburned on those long drives to the cottage or beach.
Of course, one of the main reasons people tint their windows is for privacy—you don’t need everyone looking in your car as they pass by. This can also deter thieves since they won’t be able to see any valuables left in the car.
Easy Techniques for DIY Window Tinting
Professional window tinting is expensive and unnecessary. You can do it yourself in a few simple steps for about half the cost.
Many companies offer window tinting kits created specifically for certain brands and models. You can also purchase film separately. Be sure to check your local laws before choosing a tint color or shade—many states limit how dark windows can be.
To install your tint:
- Locate a window pattern in your kit or on the Internet, or make one using heavy paper (wax paper or craft paper work best, since they come in large rolls)
- Clean the windows that will be tinted
- While the windows are drying, lay your film on a clean, flat surface and trace the pattern onto it
- Cut the film, erring on the outside of the lines—you can always trim excess film later
- Spray or brush the adhesive solution to the inside of the film; coat it but don’t soak it
- Apply film to window
- Use a squeegee to remove air bubbles (run squeegee top-to-bottom, working from one side of the window to the other)
- Run a cloth around the edges to remove any excess adhesive
- Trim excess film with a utility knife
Windowing tinting can be an essential part of your car care efforts when done properly. So make sure you take the time and put in the effort to do it right!