Window tint is a popular stylistic addition that many Australian drivers choose to add their vehicles. If the vinyl film is applied correctly to the interior of a window, tinting can make any car look more striking. Air bubbles are a common problem with window tint, however. These unsightly imperfections can be caused by a dirty window surface or improperly stretched vinyl film, which leaves air pockets between the film and glass. Even if the tint is put on perfectly, bubbles may develop as the vinyl ages. Luckily, there are ways for drivers to fix these ugly spots on the window.
Ways to Remove Bubbles from Window Tint
Method #1: Quick Fix with a Credit Card
This home remedy emulates what is done during tint application to keep bubbles from developing in the film. First, gather a hair dryer and a credit card. Use the hair dryer to apply heat to the air pocket while smoothing out the film with a credit card. Usually, the combination of heat from the hair dryer and massaging from the credit card pushes the air out and helps the film attach (without air pockets) to the window's surface. If this doesn't work, a more intensive method is needed.
Method #2: Soak in the Sun and Poke Holes
Working in the sun will make the window tint much easier to manipulate, especially if wet. Let the car sit in the sun for a few hours before beginning, as this will weaken the adhesive. Then, spray the tint with hot water from a spray bottle. Using a very fine needle, poke holes in the air bubbles to allow trapped air to escape. Next, wait for the film to naturally close over the hole, and it will look like it was never there. Finally, smooth the area with a credit card, applying heat with a hair dryer if the film needs to still be stretched a little.
Method #3: Remove and Reapply the Tint
This method is more laborious than the previous two but has a much higher success rate. Gather a large black plastic bag, masking tape, tarpaulin, a spray bottle filled with warm water, a razor blade and ammonia. First, spray the warm water on the inside of the tinted window. Then, cover the outside of the window using the black plastic bag and masking tape. Drape the tarpaulin over the interior of the car for protection and spry ammonia to the inside of the window. Park the car in the sun for 60 to 90 minutes.
Once the vinyl has softened, peel the film from the inside with a razor blade. Go slowly, being sure to start from the corner and being careful to avoid slicing the defroster line and the glass. If the film feels dry and isn't peeling smoothly, spray with additional ammonia, which should make it easier to remove. If the film can be removed all in one piece, it can be reapplied after thoroughly cleaning the window with a lint-free cloth and soap and water. If it's been cut a little, replace the tint with a new piece of vinyl film. When reapplying the tint, remember to use a heat gun and squeegee to ensure a smooth surface and prevent the development of air bubbles.