Window tint will inevitably break down over time in the same way your vehicle will do. Just as your vehicle will get a certain amount of mileage during its lifetime, so will your window tinting. Some determining factors that could play a role in how long your tint lasts might be:
• The amount of sunlight that your windows receive
• The quality and brand of window tint that you use
• The installation of your tinting (including the skill level of the person who installed it)
Under extreme and constant sunlight, as in the southern and southwestern states, a poorly dyed and installed tint can begin to show signs of deteriorating in as little as three months. More common and standard window films should be able to withstand conditions for about 5 years, while high end metallized or deposition window tint can have a life expectance of over 10 years if maintained properly.
When tinting is applied poorly, or if a lesser quality brand is used, your window tint can bubble up, causing ripples to appear on your windows. This can also be caused by scorching temperatures and coming in contact with direct sunlight over a prolonged period of time. Your window tint may even become discolored during this process, meaning that a lower quality dye was replaced with a more “cost-friendly” alternative for the installer.
In order to prevent your tint breaking down or wearing out within a short period of time, you will want to be prepared before you actually have your tint installed. Asking installers certain questions will give you a good idea if they are the best person for the job. You may want to ask:
• What brand of film that they use
• What type of dye is used in their film
• What kind of experience their installers have with window tinting
• If they can provide positive references
• If they have pictures of some of their most recent installations
Any professional installer should be able to answer these questions with confidence, giving you reassurance that they are the best ones for the job. Make sure they are only using brands that come with lifetime performance warranties, or if your budget doesn’t allow for the top tier brand, set yourself up to get one that will last at least 5 years if properly installed.
Professionally Installed Tint vs. Do-It-Yourself Installation
Choosing the right option for you can save you a lot of unwanted headaches and hassle when trying to repair or replace your window tint in case something goes wrong. If you go through a dealer, you are covering yourself if you install the tint poorly yourself. Choosing the right dealer makes all the difference in the world.
Make sure that the dealer who installed your window tint offers a warranty as well. This may be either a five year or lifetime warranty that will just serve as an added protection to you and your windows. The warranty should cover the overall performance of the tint and the coloring as well. Having a dealer install your tint may cost a little more, but you will be protected in the event that the tint begins to peel or discolor in a very short period of time.
Taking the do-it-yourself route is fine as long as you know what you are doing. This option, however, does not come with any warranties, and you could end up suffering for that if your tint isn’t installed properly. It is the much cheaper route, but can also be filled with more inconveniences.