Windshield Tint Buying Tips

It’s a fact! — Not all cars need a windshield tint. For this reason, factory-installed windows of brand new cars are not tinted. If you live in the icy North with only a few hours of sunlight, or in Iceland where there are only about 2 hours and 15 minutes difference between sunrise and sunset during the shortest days of the year, you don’t need a window tint at all, unless privacy is a big deal for you. But in hot areas like Phoenix, Arizona with 168 days per year of blazing hot sunny days with temperature above 90°F, or in Las Vegas where it can get as hot as 117°F, you definitely need to have window tints for your windshield.

Shopping for car window tints is, unfortunately, not as easy as grabbing a tire wrench on the store shelves. There are a couple of things you need to know first to make a wise call on your buying decisions. Here are a few car window tinting buying tips to get you started.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Windshield Tinting?

The windshield tint cost can be pretty expensive and quite costly if you go for premium materials. But if you know the benefits, you will realize that they are worth every penny you will spend. In order to give you a fair judgment during your buying decisions, we will point out the drawbacks, as well. So, here are the pros and cons of windshield tinting.

Pros: Reduces Health Risk

Most car owners install car window tints for one purpose, which is protection from sunlight. Long driving hours will inevitably expose you to direct sunlight even if it is cold inside and the air conditioner is turned on. Also, there are health implications associated with too much sunlight exposure. The windshield tint can significantly reduce the risks. While some states only allow a few inches of tint above the windshield, they are enough to provide glare protection when driving directly in front of the sun.

Pros: Protects the Dashboard and Leather Seats

Not only you and the passengers are protected by the windshield tint, but the car’s dashboard and upholstery, as well. Regular exposure to sunlight will soon take a toll on the dashboard and the leather seats, causing them to fade quickly and lose their luster. When it’s time to buy a new car, selling the old one will fetch a lower price due to accelerated depreciation of the car’s interiors. Thus, the absence of tint protection may affect the resale value of your vehicle.

Cons: Full Windshield Tints Are Generally Illegal

For most states, a full windshield tint is not allowed, while some may allow a few inches above the windshield, or at the top of the manufacturer’s AS-1 line.

Windshield Tint Percentage Options 

The windshield tint percentage is one of the things you’ll have to decide on when installing car windshield tints. This usually refers to the Visible Light Transmission (VLT) percentage, and it means the amount of light passing through the tinted window glass. Therefore, a higher tint percentage means more light passing through and clearer visibility. A clear windshield tint usually has a 90% VLT but it is seldom available because it’s like having no tint at all. Standard tint films usually have as high as 75% VLT maximum offers.

On the other hand, a lower tint percentage means the shade is darker and only minimal light passes through the car’s interior. On the downside, it is also hard to see through from the inside, posing some risks. The darkest tint you can get is a 5% VLT. However, this may be illegal in some states.

Some of the common choices for the tint percentage are 70 percent windshield tint, 50 percent windshield tint, 30 percent windshield tint, and 20 percent windshield tint. If you want privacy, the 20% VLT will do without causing too much visibility issues during sunny days. But at this level, it will still be too dark at night. That’s why a low tint percentage is not recommended for the front windshield tint. Some states may allow this low VLT percentage for the windshield tint strip.

Tips for Choosing the Best Tint Percentage Option For Your Car 

Choosing the best tint percentage requires proper referencing with the applicable state laws in your area. Fail to do so and you could end up wasting your money on window tints with a high VLT percentage not permitted by your state laws. Knowing the answers to questions such as “Should I tint my front windshield?” or “Is it legal to tint your windshield?” will save you time, money, and effort.

In some states like Delaware, Arizona, Maine, and Michigan, you have the freedom of choice on the tint percentage for the rear sides and rear windows. In this case, if you want complete privacy, you can go as low as 5% VLT on these specific windows only.

Is It Legal to Tint Your Windshield? 

In many states like New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota, it is illegal to tint your windshield. However, some states allow tinting of the windshield, with varying stipulations starting from 4 inches up to 6 inches. In other states like Idaho and Arizona, front windshield tint laws allow tinting to the top of the manufacturer’s AS-1 line.

So, can you tint your windshield? It’s a yes for the states of North Dakota and Idaho. They are among the few states that allow tinting of the windshield at no less than 70% VLT. In this case, a clear ceramic tint front windshield would be perfect. A ceramic windshield tint can have a darker shade, but from the inside, the outside visibility remains very clear for ultimate safety while driving. While a windshield tint visor is allowed, you must still take note of the specified tint percentage for the visor. Some do not allow metalized tint. Likewise, a green tint windshield and a polarized windshield tint are usually not allowed.

Best Windshield Tints Review

For most states, it’s perfectly okay to tint the windshield anywhere from 4 inches up to 6 inches, while some states allow tinting to the top of the manufacturer’s AS-1 line. Having a windshield tint can help reduce the glare from sunlight and prevent eye irritations. So, we’ve searched, tested, and reviewed some of the best windshield tints around to make your shopping easier. The front windshield tint cost will differ by brand.

1. LEXEN Windshield Sun Strip Visor Premium Vinyl Decal

Manufacturer: LEXEN | Brand: LEXEN | Color: Various Colors | Material: Polyvinyl chloride | UV Light Protection: YES | Item weight: 6.9 ounces | Package Dimensions: 13.11 x 9.96 x 2.13 inches | Film Shade: N/A
LEXEN Sun Strip Visor Premium Vinyl Decal Windshield Uncut 60"X12" (Matte Black)
  • Universal 12" X 60" Sun Visor Strip Uncut Vinyl
  • The Kit includes 12"x 60" long Blank Vinyl, Squeegee & instruction.
  • It needs a Trimming.

Last update on 2021-06-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The LEXEN Sun Strip Visor Premium Vinyl Decal is a do-it-yourself kit that contains a long uncut blank vinyl tint roll, a squeegee, and an instruction manual to assist you on how to tint the windshield. Unlike the standard tint that you stick to the glass from the inside, the LEXEN Windshield Sun Strip Visor should be installed on the exterior surface of the windshield. It is made of high-quality Oracal 651 vinyl, which is rated for years on durability for outdoor use.

Pros
  • Excellent DIY Kit with squeegee and a detailed instruction manual
  • Tested to last for more than 6 years without issues
  • Affordable price
Cons
  • Trimming is required for exact fitting since it is uncut
  • Razor knife not provided for the trimming

2. MKBROTHER Visor Strip Sun Window Tint Film

Manufacturer: MKBROTHER | Brand: Mkbrother | Color: 20% VLT | Material: N/A | UV Light Protection: YES | Item weight: 1.9 pounds | Product Dimensions: 13 x 5 x 5 inches | Film Shade: N/A

Last update on 2021-06-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

MKBROTHER Visor Strip Film Windshield is a great visor that blocks 99% UV light. The film shade has 20% VLT, which is allowed in most states that permit windshield sun visors. It is made by MKBROTHER, a trusted brand in the car tinting industry, known for their world-class quality window tints that contain no metal parts to ensure no signal interference.

Pros
  • Excellent UV light blocking capacity at 99%
  • Tint percentage is appropriate for most states that allow windshield visors
  • Trusted brand
Cons
  • Expensive price
  • Tools for the installation not provided

3. ATMOMO Dark Blue Chameleon Windshield Sun Shade Tint Film

Manufacturer: ATMOMO | Brand: ATMOMO | Color: Dark Blue | Material: Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) | UV Light Protection: YES | Item weight: 9.6 ounces | Package Dimensions: 20.12 x 1.5 x 1.5 inches | Film Shade: N/A
ATMOMO Dark Blue Chameleon Windshield Tint Car Window Foils Solar Protection Film Windshield Sun Shade Tint Film 19.68'' x 118''
  • Blocking UV, care of your skin.Effective protection car interior does not fade, not aging
  • Can be cut for many application such as window tinting, car tinting and etc
  • Can effectively block the sun or the car headlamps strong glare light

Last update on 2021-06-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The ATMOMO Dark Blue Chameleon Windshield Sun Shade Tint Film can block 99% UV light, provides 93% insulation, and 67% transmittance rate. The film is made of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) materials, which are known for good tensile strength while providing excellent clarity.

Pros
  • Excellent tensile strength for durability
  • Good insulation rate to deflect heat
  • A high transmittance rate of 67% VLT, allowed in most states where a sun visor is legal
Cons
  • High cost
  • Blue tint windshield is illegal in many states

Conclusion 

It’s easy to think that a windshield tint is no longer relevant considering that you have around 4 inches up to 6 inches of tint above the windshield. But when you are at the helm of the car, steering the wheel, always on the road, you’ll surely appreciate the sun glare protection provided by the windshield tint that acts as solar visors. After all, every inch of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Best Selling Windshield Tints

Bestseller No. 1
ATMOMO Dark Blue Chameleon Windshield Tint Car Window Foils Solar Protection Film Windshield Sun Shade Tint Film 19.68'' x 118''
ATMOMO Dark Blue Chameleon Windshield Tint Car Window Foils Solar Protection Film Windshield Sun Shade Tint Film 19.68'' x 118''
Blocking UV, care of your skin.Effective protection car interior does not fade, not aging; Can be cut for many...
$36.99
Bestseller No. 2
TRUE LINE Automotive Premium Nano Ceramic Precut Window Tint Film Kit Superior Heat Reduction (Full Front Windshield Only)
TRUE LINE Automotive Premium Nano Ceramic Precut Window Tint Film Kit Superior Heat Reduction (Full Front Windshield Only)
This item includes one precut full front windshield only.; Customize your shade between 5% 20% 35% and 50%.
$49.99
Bestseller No. 3
LEXEN Universal Size PreCut Curved Sun Strip Window Tint with 5% Darkest Shade
LEXEN Universal Size PreCut Curved Sun Strip Window Tint with 5% Darkest Shade
Universal Size Pre-cut Curved Sun Strip window tint is available in 5%(Darkest).; Sun strip film will be...
$12.95
Bestseller No. 4

Last update on 2021-06-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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