You’ve just found your dream car for an unbelievable price, and almost everything about it is as flawless as it has been when you shut your eyes at night, except for one thing. The previous owner had the gall to apply tint to the windows. Now you’re stuck with a “feature” that is borderline illegal (depending on how dark and where it is on the car).
Don’t worry too much about it though, as there are many options available to you that don’t involve going to a shop, and aren’t expensive. Some are more efficient than others and still cost some money, but all are just as effective. The tint is applied with a type of glue, so after you remove it be sure to use something to wash the window. We recommend Goo Gone as a highly effective, fragrant, and mostly safe solution.
Tried and true, a razor blade is your friend when it comes to removing window tint. Even other methods on this list will hearken back to the razor blade. Use it to peel the tint at one corner of the infected window, and pull gently and slowly, so as not to rip the film and have to restart the process. If you go with a different method on this list, keep a razor blade handy at all times. Occasionally the film might come off in pieces, and when that happens it’s good to be able to act with precision. Using soapy water helps with the razor blade method as well.
This is a very efficient method, more so than the razor blade obviously. The key to this method, or having an easier time removing tint at all, is heat. If the car has been in the hot sun all day then all you have to do is spray the film with ammonia and use something to keep it there. Try smoothing a trash bag on the film after spraying it down, or anything else that you can use to keep the window soaked in ammonia. Make sure the outside of the window is in the sun at all times.
If it can’t be in the sun you can always spray the outside of your window with some kind of soap and water mixture, and then smooth a black trash bag against the glass. The plastic will absorb a lot of heat thus simulating the same effect as the sun. The ammonia will loosen the film and after a while, it’ll be easy to pull off (starting with your trusty razor blade) in one piece. We can’t fully recommend this method because it can be inherently dangerous. If you do use this method, be sure to air out your car before you get in a drive it again. Throughout this removal process be sure to wear a mask of some sort. Breathing ammonia, after all, can lead to some formidable poisoning.
Again, the key to removing tint is heat. Using a steamer is safer than ammonia because all you’re doing is using steam to loosen the film and not creating toxic fumes. It does cost some money, but steamers are usually pretty cheap and after you’ve removed your tint you can always use it to steam other things like fabrics. You can celebrate the tint removal by throwing a party, complete with wrinkle-free tablecloths.
There are other, more complicated ways to remove tint involving newspaper and lots of soapy water, but these three methods are the least complicated while being the most efficient and not costing a lot of money. If you have less money than street windshield washers, just remember the key to removing tint without spending a lot of time is heat, the thinnest blade you can find, and some kind of cleaning solution. If you have those things and a little creativity then you’re ready to remove the tint.
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