You could be wondering, how long does car window tint last?
The short answer is generally around 5 years or so. A window tint’s lifespan is largely affected by factors such as exposure, quality of tint, and quality of installation, among others.
Standard films on average last for 5 years or so. Higher quality ones, such as ceramic, metal and high-grade polyester tend to stay serviceable for up to 10 years. It’s worthy to note that as time goes by a tint’s quality degrades, and it can be accelerated by the amount of sun or heat exposure and cleaning solutions applied to your car windows.
For cheap films and DIY methods, the answer to how long does car tinting lasts will be a year or two. You’ll notice ‘signs’ that the tint material is sub-par when you see premature scratches, peeling, fading, and bubbles on the car window tint’s surface.
Signs That You Need to Replace Your Car Tint
Scrapes and Scratches
As car tints age they develop scrapes and scratches. This is true even for high-quality films because they’re subject to the usual wear and tear.
Scratches on the surface of a window tint may be unsightly, but big gouges can affect the adhesive material between the tint and the auto glass.
To minimize tint scrapes you should avoid bringing in items that could be too big, such as a bicycle, furniture, and large boxes that could tumble about and inadvertently lead to window tint damage.
One way to determine the question, ‘how long does car tint last’ is to check for signs of curling and peeling.
Why do car tints curl? The reason is simple- the adhesive that makes the film stick to the glass loses its effectiveness. A newly installed tint will lie perfectly flush to the auto glass even on the corners, then as time goes on the film peels and becomes more and more noticeable.
If rolling your window produces a screeching sound, then that’s also a sign that you need to replace your window tints as soon as you can.
You may notice that your car tint doesn’t have as dark a shade as before. While it’s only natural that exposure to the sun makes colors fade, the film tends to lose its shade.
Change in color may also occur, and it’s not unusual for your window to develop uneven coloring on the surface. Even the best quality car tints lose their hue, albeit longer than cheaper ones.
Air pockets in between the auto glass and the film indicate that it’s time for a car window tint replacement.
Bubbling is a more serious concern than scratches or peeling because it tends to bring more problems down the line, including distortion. It’s a sign that you have a low-quality tint, especially if it manifests itself in less than a year.
The Car Interior Gets Unusually Hot
Lastly, to determine how long does car window tint last you will need to feel if the sun’s rays are becoming hotter than before.
Car window films lose their heat-blocking properties over time, especially during the summer. If this is the case then you should call an expert to have your tint replaced.