A good quality tint is a useful vehicle accessory that blocks the sun's penetrating UV rays, reducing the risk of skin cancer, according to Cancer Council Australia. Furthermore, tint reduces the load on an air conditioner, contributing to fuel savings. Many companies offer tinting services, but it is possible to install tint film at home with a window tinting kit. The process is straightforward and does not require many specialty tools.
Preparing to tint
Getting ready for a successful tinting job involves gathering a few readily available tools and choosing a tint. The choice of tint is important, as it determines the look of the vehicle and the level of UV protection.
Choosing a tint
Pre-cut tint kits are widely available in a range of darkness levels. The darkness is known as the visible light transmission (VLT), and all states in Australia require a minimum VLT of 35 per cent, meaning a minimum of 35 per cent of light can pass through the glass. Drivers must be aware that a tint with a low VLT or with a reflective surface may result in poor night visibility.
Besides the tint, most of the other equipment required to complete a window tinting kit is readily available. Some kits come with everything included.
- Spray bottle
- Window tint solution
An alternative to window tint solution involves mixing a few drops of washing liquid with water.
Choosing a workspace
Tinting requires a dry, clean environment. A large, dust-free garage is ideal. If the only location available is outside, then it should be on a dry day when there is not a lot of wind to blow dust and dirt.
Installing the tint film
Applying a pre-cut tint involves care and patience to minimise the risk of bubbles and dirt getting caught between the tint film and the glass. Car owners should only attempt the installation if they are confident in their ability or if they have an experienced assistant.
Cleaning the glass
The first step is to clean the glass by spraying it with the tint solution and using the squeegee to remove the solution. This eliminates existing dust and particles as well as those that rags and paper towels leave behind after cleaning.
Tinting side windows
The side window tint film's small surface area makes it easy to avoid bubbles or creases. Installers should start with these windows to gain confidence using the film before advancing to the windscreens.
Preparing the glass
The installer starts by laying the tint film on the outside of the window with the clear film facing out and then spraying it with tint solution to hold it in place. He then sprays the inside of the window and rolls it down about 2 cm.
Preparing the film
The film has a clear backing that needs to be pulled halfway down to reveal the adhesive part of the film. The installer must spray the exposed adhesive side and then transfer it to the inside of the window.
Installing the film
The film is positioned approximately 3 mm from the top of the glass, and then the installer uses the squeegee to smooth the top 2 cm, using a downward motion to force the tint solution down. He then raises the window, cleans the bottom section of the glass again, completely removes the backing film, and then smoothes the rest of the tint film in place. Working from the middle outwards removes all air bubbles.
Windscreens are larger than the side windows and have an inherently increased risk of bubbles or scratches. The process is very similar to the installation of the side window film. The installer must remember to spray the inside of the glass with tint solution and may need to remove a parcel shelf, and anything else that causes an obstruction.
Installing the film
The installer peels away the top edge of the clear backing film and sprays the adhesive side with tint solution. He then transfers the film to the inside by holding it at the top edge, positioning it, and smoothing it with the squeegee.
How to buy tint kits on eBay
Working with window tint involves only a few essential tools, all of which are available on eBay. To find the equipment you need, simply enter a keyword phrase into the search box, which is located on any eBay page, applying filters based on price, condition, and location to refine the list of results. It is also possible to arrange the results by price or seller distance, in ascending or descending order, to make browsing for automotive accessories quick and easy.