If you’ve found yourself a good tint installer, you probably don’t have to worry about this step. Because your installer will tell you everything you need to know.
But, if you want to be extra safe, it never hurts to look up the laws surrounding car window tints before you purchase them.
When it comes to window tinting, there are rules and regulations your tints must follow. And, you have to be sure to abide by both the federal rules and the state rules.
It’s a little tricky, but every state has its own set of regulations regarding window tints. The good news is that you only have to follow the rules of the state in which you live.
And before you worry, these rules are not too complicated. They just limit how dark your tints can be for certain windows in the car.
Choose what kind of tint you want.
Once you know your state laws regarding how dark your windows can be, it’s time to choose the tints.
The biggest decision you’ll have to make for choosing tints is what percentage you want.
When it comes to window tints, percentage simply refers to how dark or how light you want your tints. So, if you want a darker tint, you’ll choose a higher percentage. And if you want a lighter tint, you’ll choose a lower percentage.
(Don’t get confused with the numbers. It’s very simple in practice.)
Choose where you want the tints.
And finally, once you’ve chosen what kind of tints you want, you can decide where you want the tints. You can get tints for your front side windows, backside windows, rear-view window, and the very top of your windshield.
Most people don’t realize this, but you don’t need to have the same tint percentage for all of your windows. You can mix and match.
If you like a lighter tint to drive within the front, but you want a darker tint to shade your children in the back -you can have it all! Just be clear and tell your tint installer exactly what you want, and you should be good to go.
A Couple Pro Tips
If you’re struggling to choose a tint percentage and which windows to tint, start by asking yourself these 2 questions:
What is most important to you? Protection from U.V rays, privacy, safe driving, or temperature control? – Knowing your priorities will help a lot when it comes to choosing the tint. Just keep your end goal in mind, and you’ll be choosing your tint in no time
Do you often have passengers? – This will help you decide which windows to tint. Not everyone wants a tinted window. And some people only want tinted windows. If you know who your passengers generally tend to be (spouse, kids, friends), you can base your decision on what you know they prefer. If you don’t have consistent passengers to worry about, then just go with whichever tint you like best.
2 door, rear-wheel drive, 4-cylinder engine, 6-speed manual transmission -these are the specs of a dream.
Or more practically, a fast and sleek sports car.
When you’ve got a beauty like that, it’s only sane to want to protect her. To keep her safe and ever-happy. To keep her in mint, pristine condition.
And today, we’re going to tell you how you can do that.
Hold on to your hats, because one of the biggest hacks for keeping a sports car beautiful is… installing window tints!
Tinted windows are often thought of as an extraneous aesthetic. But the truth is that tinted windows actually help protect your car and keep it looking almost as good as you.
Here’s what you need to know:
What is a window tint?
When you get a window tint installed, you’re essentially getting a thin ceramic film placed on the insides of your car windows. This film is tinted to your preference and regulates light, temperature, and privacy.
It does not affect your ability to see out through your windows.
Window tints come in a variety of options -the higher percentages being darker and the lower percentages being lighter.
What are the benefits of window tinting?
Damage control – If you’re living in a place like Philadelphia, it’s simply impossible to ignore the harsh weather. If you’re lucky, you might have a garage to park your sports car in. But, if you’re unlucky, your car is going to have to weather some bad weather conditions. And unfortunately, some weather like hail can really put some damage on your car.
In this case, window tints can actually act as a second layer of defense for your car. Although the tint film is placed on the inside of the window, it reinforces the glass windows from behind. The tint film then gives your windows a little extra strength when heavy weather comes flying at them.
Temperature control – Also related to weather, window tints help with temperature control inside the car. The temperature inside the car may not sound like a big deal. But, it can in fact really affect your car’s performance. Not to mention, that nobody wants to get buckets of sweat seeped into their car’s fabric.
Protection from U.V rays – Harmful U.V. rays from the sun don’t only hurt your skin. They also hurt your car. Given time, the sun’s rays can actually fade your sports car’s interior. This means dull-looking seats and dull-looking fabric. Which, in our opinion, completely ruins the aesthetic of a beautiful sports car.
By adding a tint to your car windows, you can help your car stay fresh and neat looking. Window tints block up to 99.9% of U.V rays, keeping your car clear of sun damage.
How can you get window tints for your sports car?
Find a reputable window tint installer in your area. Here at Car Pretty, located in central Philadelphia, we always help our customers find the tint that’s best for them and their cars.
Then we measure, cut, and install the tints with our high-grade technology.
So that you can have the tints you deserve.
Thinking to clean your windows before the winter weather hits?
Here are 5 easy tips on how to clean car windows tints!
Wait until the tint is dry.
If your window tints are newly installed, this step is incredibly important.
Window tints can take up to 30 days to fully dry after installation. And, if you touch them wrong before they have completely cured, you can end up with a smudge, or a scratch, or worse. So, no touching until the tint is done!
The tricky part, though, is that different tints cure at different speeds. It can depend on the percentage, the size, the material, etc. And, it’s hard to know on your own, if you’re not familiar with tinting.
So, the best way to avoid any mishaps is to ask your window tint installer what their recommended drying span is. If you went to a good professional, they should be able to give you a pretty good estimate about the tints they use.
Do it on a still day.
Cleaning your window tints on a windy, breezy day is just not going to be productive.
Because, while you’re wiping away all the dust, the wind is just picking up more and whipping it back at your windows.
Not only that, but your hands might get extra cold from being wet and getting accosted by the wind. And, we don’t need anyone catching a cold over their window tints!
Just wait for a day when the wind factor is low. It shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes to clean your windows, so you can pretty much just wake up, check the weather, and run outside to clean if it’s a good day.
Use a soft, microfiber cloth.
Window tint is made of tough ceramic material. But that doesn’t mean we need to rough it up needlessly.
When you’re cleaning your windows, try to find a soft cloth or a flexible sponge. Small, microfiber wash cloths work great. Just stay clear of anything that might have rigid particles. Because, those rigid particles could scratch or weaken your new tints.
Note: This may be redundant to say, but never use sharp blades, knives, or razors on your tint. Even if you see something sticking to your tint. Sharp objects will scratch the film, and it’s just not worth the hassle later on.
Don’t use harsh chemicals.
In a similar vein, don’t use harsh solutions or solvents.
All you need is a bit of water and some ammonia-free cleaner. It may not sound like much, but water and gentle solution can really go a long way when it comes to getting those tints squeaky clean.
And remember: we never want to use rough materials on window tints.
Wipe in the same direction.
The same way that you’re supposed to color or paint in the same direction, you should clean your tints in the same direction too.
This just means, either go in horizontal motions or vertical motions, but don’t switch back and forth. Cleaning in all directions won’t harm your tints in any way, but it makes wiping the solution off a little harder. And, can lead to some smudgy cleaning lines.
So, for best results: pick a direction and stick with it.
If you’ve read some of our other window tint care articles, you know that you never ever want to use any kind of harsh material on your windows.
No knives, no scrapers, not even rigid cloths.
Why? Because all these things scratch windows. And you want to avoid scratching your windows so you can avoid having to pay extra money to fix it.
Plus, it’s difficult to see out of a window that’s all scratched up.
Which is why, we’re going to warn you about another thing that most people don’t think of, but can also very much scratch your windows. And that thing is… hail!
When talking about window care, hailstorms aren’t often mentioned. But with the cold Philadelphia weather, we want you to be fully prepared. So that you can keep your car windows looking fresh and new.
Because when hail comes flying down in a hailstorm, it can easily scrape against your windows and cause some unruly damage.
Now, when it comes to protecting your home windows from hail, the easy solution is installing storm shutters. Or, covering your windows with wood. But, when it comes to your car windows, it’s not quite as simple.
There’s no way to install storm shutters.
So, here are some quick tips to keep your car windows safe from heavy hail this winter!
Park your car somewhere safe.
The best protection against hail, is simply parking your car someplace where it can’t get hit.
If you have a big garage, now is the time to use it!
But you can also get creative with parking spots, and try to find spaces that could lessen the hit of the hail a bit. Places like right near a wall, or between buildings. So that you at least lower the chances of your car getting hit.
Get a cover.
If you don’t have a garage you can safely park your car in, not to worry. There are other ways to protect your car from the onslaught of hail.
Like… a car cover. A cover for your car.
These are relatively easy to buy. They usually come either in a cloth material, or a plastic-y tarp material. And they should protect your car pretty well. The only downside, is that if the hailstorm comes with strong wind, the cover could fly away.
So, just be sure to tie it down well before the storm hits.
Use window tints as reinforcement.
Another way to protect your windows against hail, is by reinforcing them.
You can do this easily by installing window tints.
Now, that may sound silly, but window tints are made of a tough ceramic film. And this ceramic film, when adhered to the inside of your window, can actually help bolster your window. As a layer of reinforcement.
So, installing window tints to your car before the ugly winter weather hits, can really help your windows stay strong and solid when the hail comes down hard.
Great! Because tinted windows reduce glare and protect your car’s interior. Two things we car owners certainly cannot do without.
And, that just leaves one question to be asked: how do you actually get your car windows tinted? Well, there are two options: DIY or hire a professional.
Here are four reasons to go with the professional option.
Guarantee of the job done right.
Unless you are an expert at wallpapering, laying on tinted film may not be for you. Especially, since DIY material is flimsier and harder to work with. In contrast, the higher quality material used by professional car window tinters is less prone to wrinkles, creases, and air bubbles.
You might also find it difficult to keep debris and dust particles from sticking to the film. And if you mess up, which can happen with the lower grade, temperamental DIY tint, you can’t just peel it off and start over. It’s very difficult to remove. Think about the tedious and cumbersome job of removing wallpaper. Not fun!
Which is why it’s highly recommended to hire an experienced professional from a reputable company who will guarantee a job well done.
State law approved.
In addition to regular federal laws surrounding car window tinting, every state has its own set of rules and regulations too. Because traffic police want to be able to see into your car in the event of a traffic stop. And, they want to be sure to keep you safe.
Which means you need to know your state’s individual laws regarding how dark your car tints are allowed to be. Most professional tinting companies adhere to the regulations required by their cities and states and can advise you on what to buy and what not to buy. But, there’s no such assurance when it comes to DIY brands.
More money saved.
But isn’t a DIY kit much cheaper than hiring a professional?
Not necessarily. Especially, if you end up having to buy another kit. Which is often the case.
Hiring a professional will cost from around $120 and up, depending on the size of your car (a small car at the low-price end and a large van at the top). A DIY kit will cost somewhat less, it’s true. But if you aren’t satisfied with the job you did on your own you won’t have the option of simply rolling it back up and returning it to the store in exchange for another. Because once used, DIY kits are not returnable. Instead, you will have to buy another kit. Which equals time and money wasted!
A professional, on the other hand, is obligated to make sure the tinting is done to your satisfaction. For not much more, you will save time, money, and frustration.
You will probably want your new window tints to give you the comfort of shade as well as protect your car’s interior from the sun’s harmful rays. A DIY brand will provide some shade but will not prevent your car’s interior from cracking and peeling over the long term.
But, a mid- or high- quality window tint installed by a professional will protect your car’s interior and keep you protected from the sun. So, you can drive on safely.
Weigh your options and make the right choice when it comes to your car’s new window tints. Good luck!
Before the cold weather really hits, let’s talk about car window tinting.
Why? Because, if you’ve been thinking about getting your car windows tinted, now is the ideal time to do it. For a number of reasons. And these reasons have to do with the steps involved in car window installation and how each step functions.
Reason #1 – Cleanliness.
The first step when getting your car windows tinted is getting the tint measured and cut. This step can pretty much be done in any season. But, then comes step two.
The second step in the car window tint installation process is thoroughly cleaning the windows. Now, this can be difficult in certain weathers. In spring, you’ve got lots of tiny pollen particles floating around in the air. In fall, you’ve got all the leaf and plant debris flying around. And, in winter you’ve gotten ice, rain, and snow.
So, the best time to tint your car windows is in the summer. Or, right at the end of summer and before the fall season really hits.
Reason #2 – Temperature.
After your car windows are all squeaky clean, it’s time to set the tint.
Window tint is made from ceramic film. This film has then adhered to the inside of your windows. However, the film needs time to fully dry if you want it to stay on right. And this can prove difficult in the wrong climates. If it’s too cold or too humid out, it makes it much harder for the film to dry thoroughly. Plus, it takes more than just one day to dry. So, you need a set of consecutive days with the right weather in order for the film to dry satisfactorily.
What we’re getting at here, is that you have a much better chance of getting your window tints installed accurately if you have them done during summer or early fall temperatures. Because this way, you’ll have plenty of consecutive days where the weather isn’t too hot or too cold to dry the film.
So… What Now?
Now that we’ve laid out the two big reasons why it’s time to get your windows tinted (late summer, early fall), the next thing is for you to choose a window tinter and get those beautiful windows of yours tinted for safer, cooler driving.
A few things you’ll want to be cognizant of when going through the process:
You want a reliable car window tinter that knows all the ins and outs of window tinting. Particularly the laws of window tinting. Because tint laws vary per state. So, you want to be sure you’re getting a tint that works in your state.
That being said, when you get your windows tinted, the installer should ask you what percentage you want. Percentage here just means how dark or light you want your windows. Tell the installer your concerns, and he or she should be able to help you choose the tint that’s right for you.
You don’t want your fun new tints to go to waste, so be sure to ask your installer for proper maintenance and care tips. There’s not much to do, but generally right after the tints are installed you need to take a few precautionary steps so as not to upset the film.
Just like anything in this world, window tinting comes with a few rules.
They’re nothing too complicated, but it’s always wise to be informed on the things you buy and bring into your household.
So, before getting your windows tinted in Pennsylvania, take some time to review the facts: what you can and can’t do when it comes to window tinting. And, window tinting prices in Pennsylvania.
Let’s get you the best bang for your buck.
Window Tint Percentages
The first thing you’ve got to know when getting your windows tinted is that they come in different shades. Now, when we talk about tint shades, we’re not talking so much about color, but rather darkness.
Tint darkness is measured by the percentage of light that the window allows passing through the glass and into the car. So, a lighter tint will allow more light to get through, while a darker tint will allow less light to get through.
However, there are few regulations. Every state has its own laws when it comes to how dark a window tint is legally allowed to be. And, it also varies depending on car type and which windows of the car we’re dealing with.
In Pennsylvania, the rules are as follows:
For Sedans. The windshield, front side windows, backside windows, and rear windows all must be able to let in more than 70% of light into the car. However, the very top of the windshield, about a 3-inch rim, is allowed to have any amount of darkness for tint.
For SUVs and Vans. The windshield and front side windows must be able to let in more than 70% of light into the car. And, the windshield, once again, is allowed to have any darkness percentage for the upper 3-inch rim. The backside windows and the rear windows are allowed to have any percentage of darkness (that’s where it differs from sedan regulations).
Other General Laws.
For all sedans, SUVs, and vans, front side and backside windows are not allowed to have any kind of metallic or mirrored materials.
There may be some medical circumstances in which tints that deviate from the regular laws are allowed in the state of Pennsylvania.
Window Tint Pricing
Now, down to the fun part.
Window tint pricing can go per window, or by the package. If you tint your window one at a time, it could come out to more money spent than if you were to do a package deal of multiple windows. So, be aware of this when you are negotiating with your window tinter.
Tint pricing can also vary depending on what material and quality you are looking to get. The regular, non-reflective tint will be your base cost. It’s like the bare minimum of window tinting. Classic and safe.
Any other materials from there will increase in price. But they will also give you added benefits. And, whether you choose to get carbon or ceramic, high performance or color, will ultimately change the price of your window tint job.
From the material, to quality, to cost efficiency, there’s a whole bunch of decisions to make before you even have your tints. And once you do have them, there’s maintenance and care to think about as well.
Now, don’t let that psych you out. Because getting your windows tinted really is a good thing. Tinted windows let you drive safer, protect your skin from sun damage, and make your ride temperature friendly.
And, if you do your research and know what you’re dealing with, picking out your window tints and managing them is a piece of cake.
Stick with us, and we’ll help you through it.
Buying your window tints.
Do know your states tinting laws. Every state has its own laws regarding which windows are allowed to have tints and what percentage of darkness they are allowed to be.
Do get a warranty. If you go to a good place to get your windows tinted, you shouldn’t have any problems with them later on down the road. But, on the off chance that something goes wrong, you want to be sure that you can come back to the shop and have it fixed.
Do ask your window tinter if you have any questions about the laws. They are there to guide you through it. In fact…
Don’t be afraid to ask any questions at all that are relevant to the window tinting process. No question is a stupid question if you don’t know the answer.
Don’t buy without doing your research and checking reviews. Your window tinter can recommend the options they think will work best for you, but it can’t hurt to do a quick check yourself.
Getting your window tints installed.
Do go to a professional window tinter. You’ll find plenty of guides and tutorials for DIY window tinting online. However, there’s a lot that can go wrong when you do it yourself. And it’s a lot more comforting to rely on a professional when you can. Especially when it comes to driver safety and health.
Do look for a place that is clean. If the shop you go to is covered in dust and debris, you might find little particles stuck in your window tint when you are driving home.
Don’t go to a shop that is poorly lit. If you can’t see the difference in color and shade because there is just not enough light in the room, then neither can your window tinter. Which means, book it out of there and find a place that’s well lit. You deserve a job well done.
Caring for your new window tints.
Do let your windows dry fully before cleaning them for the first time.
Don’t roll down your windows for several days after installation to avoid scratches, bubbles, or smudges.
Do clean your windows with soft cloths or paper towels.
Don’t use hard chemical substances to clean your windows. Simple water and soap should do the trick.
Imagine this: It’s midsummer and the weather is HOT. You’ve just woken up and you need to hurry or you’ll be late for work. You throw on your clothes, grab your bag, swipe something quick from the kitchen, run outside, and quickly jump inside your car, ready to roll. The car is hot and you can barely breath, but you’ve only got another 15 minutes to get to work. So, you push through the stifling heat and put your hands on the wheel, and… OUCH. The wheel almost burns your hands. You can’t possibly drive like this, and now you’re going to be late…
Whether it’s to get to work on time, to pick up your kids from school, to make it on time for a date, or just to have a casual evening out with yourself - when the sun’s beating down on your car all day, it makes it almost unbearable to drive anywhere.
Fortunately, there are ways to solve this and make life a little easier on yourself.
And the best one is tinted windows.
Tinted windows coming in strong.
Before we get into the why and how tinted windows keep your ride cool, let’s make sure we’re all on the same page as to what tinted windows are.
Tinted windows are a product of window tints. This may sound redundant, but what it means is that tinted windows don’t just come that way. Tinted windows are made by placing an additional window tint onto the glass. The tint is a thin film that is precisely placed onto the inside of your glass windows. And it is often made from ceramic.
You can choose how dark or light you want the film to be. But the main thing is that you need to have it properly cut and adhered to your car, otherwise its effects may not work as well.
Now, the benefits.
The first thing that comes to mind when you see or hear about tinted windows is privacy.
If you’ve got darker windows, people can’t see in. Simple as that.
However, there’s more to tinted windows than meets the eye.
Keeping it cool - Window tints can block up to 65% of the sun’s heat. This means, that even when you’re not in your car, the tints are still working. So that when you do get in your car, you can place your hands on the wheel and go. And while you’re driving, the tints will continue to regulate and stabilize the heat entering your car, letting you drive without worry.
Keeping it neat - Tinted car windows don’t just keep the sun off of you, they also keep it off of your car’s interior. Which is a big deal. Because the sun’s rays have the ability to fade materials. When the sun is beating down strong on your car’s interior fabric all day, the material is likely to fade and discolor. As if you took bleach and poured it in your car. But car window tints protect against this, by keeping the sun off your seats.
Keeping it healthy - And, lastly, it’s not just about keeping the sun’s heat out of the car. It’s also about keeping the sun’s rays out. Specifically, harmful UV rays that can cause long term skin damage. Because tinted windows can protect your skin from up to 99% of UV rays.
With car window tints, you can drive safely knowing both your skin and car are being protected.
Whether you’re getting your windows tinted for a fresh new look, health benefits, or safer driving, you’ll have to make some big buying decisions.
You’ll have to choose things like material, cut technique, and which windows to get tinted. But, the most important thing you will have to decide is what tint percentage to get.
Now we know the choices can be overwhelming, but don’t despair! It’s not as bad as it sounds. And we’re here to help you out with a little advice and guidance.
What is a window tint percentage?
When you’re picking out your window tint, you’re going to hear a lot about the “percentage.” What this literally refers to is the percentage of light that is able to pass through the window. But what this practically means is how light or dark your tint is.
A higher percentage means a darker window tint.
A lower percentage means a lighter window tint.
It’s the same way that sunglasses come in lighter or darker shades, and you choose based on your own preferences.
What is the best window tint percentage to get?
There is no general “best” percentage to get.
There’s only what you like best and what works best for you.
But don’t worry, we won’t leave you hanging with a vague answer like that.
Because, even though there is no general best tint percentage, there are two things to consider that can really help you find the best tint percentage for you.
The first is your state law. Every state has its own regulations on how dark a window tint can be. And those laws vary depending on which windows you’re tinting. For instance, in Pennsylvania, you’re allowed up to 70% for front side windows, backside windows, and rear windows; but when it comes to the windshield, you’re not allowed to have any percentage of tint. So, knowing your state’s percentage regulations definitely helps in choosing the right tint.
Now, the second big thing that will help you choose your tint percentage is not so much a rule, but more of a tip. Many people, when getting their windows tinted, assume that whatever tint they choose, is the tint they must have for all their windows. But that’s not so!
You can have different window tints for different windows. Which means if you like a lighter tint but your passengers like a darker one, you can have a lower percentage for the front side windows and a higher percentage for the backside windows.
What else should you look for in a car window tint?
Aside for percentage, the second biggest decision you’ll have to make is about cut technique and where to get it done.
Here at Car Pretty in Philadelphia, PA, we use “precision cut” film technology in order to get you the perfect cut. Our advanced computer technology lets us accurately measure and install tints to your windows, so you never have to worry about DIY projects or troubleshooting.