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After having their windows tinted, most people are pleased in the beginning. However, the initial satisfaction can quickly turn to outrage when window film begins peeling, cracking, or bubbling. Fortunately, it is possible to avoid this nightmare when you keep the following information in mind.

Choose a Reliable Company

The most important thing you can do to ensure quality work is to choose a reliable company. Avoid fly-by-night technicians or do-it-yourselfers who operate out of detail shops or gas station parking lots. Instead, select a company with a long history of business with its own professional shop. Ask questions such as:

  • How long have you been in business?
  • What type of guarantee do you offer?
  • May I contact previous customers to obtain a reference?
  • Are you familiar with local tinting laws? Can you guarantee my windows will be in compliance?

In addition to these questions, you should also review a company’s website to become familiar with its products and services. Look for online reviews so you can find out whether or not others are happy with them. Finally, check with your local Better Business Bureau to see if there are any recent complaints, and if so, to find out how they were resolved.

Visiting a Shop

If possible, visit a shop in person to get an idea as to how work is performed. The bay should be neat and clean to keep as much dirt as possible off of your windshield. It should also be well lit so workers can see what they are doing.

Once you inspect the work area, ask to see some vehicles that were recently completed. This will give you a general feel for what the finished product may look like. Some things to look for include:

  • Slits in the weather stripping alongside windows, which indicates a poor cutting job.
  • Tint that goes all the way to the edges of the windows or has only very tiny gaps.
  • Bubbles-even very tiny ones are a problem, as they will only become more profound over time.
  • Gaps on the back windshield near the defroster bars.
  • Poor visibility, or difficulty seeing through windows.
  • Glue along the “dot matrix”, or dotted border around the perimeter of your windows.

Look at Samples

A reputable dealer will not hesitate to show you window film samples and explain the differences between each one. Look for color consistency and the presence of metallic elements, which might weaken your radio or cell phone reception.

At a minimum, you should be offered at least two or three choices at the low, medium, and high ends of the price scale.  If a vendor refuses to show samples or offers only a limited selection, you may want to look for another shop.

Tinted windows can either enhance your car’s appearance or greatly detract from it. Which result you achieve will largely depend on the type of shop you use. Use the screening criteria above to local the perfect shop, and you are much more likely to be satisfied with your results.


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