What Are the Different Levels of Window Tinting?


You would think making a decision on tinting for your car windows would be easy; however, there are many different levels and materials to choose from. Your choice of tints depends on how dark you want your windows to be and how much you want to spend.


  • The level of tint is determined by how much light gets out of the car. The tint looks darker inside due to the light that is not escaping. Standard tint levels are 35 percent and 25 percent. Cars usually get 25 percent for the sides and 5 percent for the rear windows. Several states have a maximum level of tint, especially for the driver's side window, but have no requirement for the back side and rear windows. The higher the percentage, the more heat the tint reflects.

Types of Tint

  • The main types of tint are dyed, hybrid and metalized. Dyed is a lower quality and low-cost material. It is nonreflective. The tinting usually turns purple and forms bubbles over time. Hybrid is a midquality, high performance tinting that combines dye and metal materials. This is a best seller for many dealers. The tinting rejects more solar heat than the dyed material. Metalized is the highest quality of material tinting. The solar heat rejection is the same or slightly greater than the hybrid. The product usually comes with a lifetime warranty.

Caring for Tint

  • Never use ammonia-based cleaners, as these would remove the tint from the window. Stores carry tint-safe cleaners that do not have ammonia in them. Use soapy water and a soft cloth to clean the windows, then use clean water to rinse. Dry with a soft cloth.

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  • Photo Credit reflections image by Furan from Fotolia.com
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