There will come a time when you will need to replace window tint films in your home. Window films generally last for several years, if they were originally high quality films and were installed correctly to start with. When tint films begin to look faded, streaked or peel at the edges, it’s time to replace them.
Much like the window tints used in car windows, home window tints will break down over time. How long it takes for the film to show problems depends on the quality of the film, the amount of time the film was exposed to direct sunlight, and how well the film was installed. Dyed window tints can show fading and streaking in a little as a few months if it is poor quality material. A better quality hybrid type film can last as long as five years before beginning to show wear. The best made window film, which is metalized deposition tinting film, can last as long as ten years before needing to be replaced.
In order to replace window tint on your windows, first you’ll need to carefully remove the old films from the glass. There are several methods for removing old window tint films. While the tinting film used on car windows is often made similarly to home windows, the adhesives and installation methods are very different, and so removing home window tints is very different from removing the tint films from car windows. When researching methods for removal, be certain that you’re finding tips for removal of home window tinting.
How to Remove Home Window Tinting
Before attempting to remove any film from your windows, be sure that you are working when your windows are not in direct sunlight. One of the easiest ways to remove old film that needs to be replaced requires nothing but a bottle of water containing a few drops of liquid dish detergent, and a two inch wide straight blade paint scraper. Spray two coats of the water and detergent over the window film. After ten minutes, use the blade to test the edges of the film. If they are gummy and peel away easily, go ahead and scrape the film away using the flat edge of the blade. Be careful to keep the scraping blade flat to avoid scratching the glass. If, after soaking for ten minutes, the film doesn’t remove easily, spray once more and wait five more minutes. The film should scrape away.
Some stubborn films with extra strong adhesive may require a little more work to remove. Using a mild mixture of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle, spray the window film to saturate it. Apply a layer of one sheet of newspaper over the wet glass, pressing it against the glass and into the edges, where it should stick to the water mixture. After the newspaper is stuck to the glass, spray again over the top of the paper, totally soaking it, and then allow the windows to soak for 30 minutes. Leaving the paper on the glass, use the straight edge of a razor to work under the film, which should easily pull away from the glass. If the film is still too sticky to remove, soak the paper and wait another 15 minutes.
Before you attempt to replace window tint films over the glass, check for any leftover residue from the glue of the old film, especially around the edges. Use a strong commercial glue remover such a Goo Gone to soak away the last of the adhesive. Leaving any old glue on the edges of the panes will cause the new films that you install to curl up prematurely.
Replace window tint as soon as it begins to show damage and whenever it pulls away from the glass. While it may take some elbow grease and time to remove the old film from your windows, the end result and benefits of UV protective window tint films will make it worth your time.