Posted By Vinyl Frog On May 26, 2023
How To Remove Bubbles From The Window Tint?
Window tints look sleek and glamorous on a vehicle, however sometimes they get unsightly bubbles that have to be removed. The question is: How to get rid of them? You can remove bubbles from the window tint by popping them out after making the tint malleable through heat and soapy water. Let us tell you in detail why bubbles appear on your tint and how they can be effectively removed.
What Is A Window Tint?
A window tint is a strong polyester laminate treated in different ways to give it a tinted look. It enhances the aesthetic appeal of your vehicle, increases privacy, and lowers the amount of heat, glare, and sunshine that enters your car.
Different types of tint films can be used to produce a variety of effects, ranging from the lightest to the very dark tint. Sometimes, after we apply the window tint, bubbles appear across its surface that can be quite an eyesore. Let’s first see why bubbles appear on a window tint.
What Causes Bubbles In A Window Tint?
One of the main and most common reasons is improper installation. You should be well versed in how to tint car windows. To ensure that your tint film has adhered perfectly to the glass, it must be applied following a standard procedure. Bubbles may develop if the installer rushes the job or does not squeegee the tint out properly. It is always recommended to get the tint installed by an experienced professional.
Quality Of The Tint
Another reason for getting bubbles is the usage of poor quality window tint. A lot of people might buy a poor quality tint to save money. These low cost window tints might look good initially but they do not deliver in the long run. Problems appear in them within one to three years. They might crack or get bubbles on their surface.
In some cases, bubbles can also form due to environmental factors such as temperature and humidity. Therefore instead of going for a cheaper option, always prefer the best quality tint films, such as the ones available at Vinyl Frog, to ensure their longer, damage-free life.
Improper Window Prep Before Installation Of Tints
Air pockets are created in the window tint causing bubbles if the windows had debris on them from the road or dirt from the environment, and were not cleaned properly before applying the tint. Therefore always ensure that your surface is cleaned thoroughly. There shouldn’t be even a speck of dust on the windows. The car’s interior and the surrounding area should be vacuumed as well so that it is perfectly clean and will not contaminate the windows.
Change In Temperature
Low quality tints tend to crack and bubble due to differences in temperature. Throughout the day, the windows of your car experience different temperatures. In the afternoon it might be extremely hot, whereas at night, it might get comparatively cooler.
Window tint is made up of plastic, so the hot sun baking your car’s glass every day can play havoc with the film’s structure. Cheap, low quality tints give in more quickly then premium ones. Their adhesive breaks down and they fail to no longer conform to the curved shape of the glass. This causes them to stretch, crack, and bubble.
Tools Needed To Remove Bubbles From The Window Tint
In order to do the job efficiently, you will need the following tools:
- Heat gun or a hair dryer. Get the supreme quality professional heat gun from Vinyl Frog. It is perfect for the job and will heat up the glass evenly.
- Mild dish soap and water solution.
- Spray bottle.
- Squeegee. At Vinyl Frog, we have different types of squeegees in varying shapes that will smooth out the film without causing any damage to the surrounding surface.
- Air release pen. With a fine retractable pin, it is the ideal tool to pop bubbles in the window tint. Get the one available at Vinyl Frog at an economical price.
How To Remove Bubbles From The Window Tint?
Follow these simple steps to remove air bubbles from your window tint:
Step 1: Apply Heat To The Window Tint
Using the heat gun, apply heat evenly to your window tint. Heat makes the tint more flexible and enables you to remove any air bubbles that might have developed during application. If you do not have a heat gun, you can use a hairdryer for the job. Be cautious to not hold your heating source too close to the tint because this will cause damage to it. Avoid overheating the window tint at all costs.
If the weather outside is cold, make sure you have a heater plugged in your garage otherwise the glass window of your car will cool down quickly and this might damage the tint. Once the window tint is heated, it’s time to move on to the next step.
Step 2: Use Soapy Water To Moisten The Window Tint
In order to make the film more malleable, prepare a mixture of dish soap and water in a spray bottle and apply it to the window tint. Make this mixture before applying heat to the tint so that when you spray, the tint is still considerably warm. Spray it generously on the whole tint as soon as you stop heating the window without wasting any time. The interaction of soapy water and heat will make the adhesive highly flexible making it easier for you to remove bubbles.
Step 3: Pop The Bubbles With An Air Release Pen
It’s time to use the air release pen to puncture the bubbles. If you do not have the pen, you can use a very fine needle or pin as well. Make a very tiny hole in the middle of each bubble. Have patience during this step and be very gentle. You do not want to tear the film or scratch the glass of the window.
Keep spraying the tint with the dish soap solution so that the window remains moist throughout the process. You just have to moisten it, do not make it soaking wet.
Step 4: Smooth Out The Bubbles
It's time to use the squeegee to smooth out the bubbles. If you don’t have a squeegee, you can use a debit or credit card as well but it is better to invest in the proper tool. Hold the squeegee at a 45-degree angle and starting from the outermost edge of the bubble, press down firmly and slide it towards the middle where you’ve made the tiny hole.
Your strokes should be long and smooth. Do not rush this step or you will rip the tint film. This will drive the air towards the hole and out of the window tint. Even during this step, you have to keep the film flexible. Your garage should be warm and the film moist. This way you can remove all the bubbles from the window tint.
Different Kinds Of Bubbles In A Window Tint
Window tints can get different types of bubbles but not all are a cause of alarm. Here’s what you might experience.
- Water bubbles: These appear when moisture is trapped between the tint film and the glass. These bubbles are normally seen after the first few days of installation. These disappear in two to three weeks as water evaporates and are not a cause for concern.
- Air bubbles: If you see a hazy hue on your window tints it is probably due to air bubbles. Large air bubbles that are usually an inch or more in diameter are caused by adhesive failure of the tint. Small air bubbles which are quarter of an inch or less can be caused by improper installation. You might have to pop these bubbles to remove them following the process mentioned above.
- Soap bubbles: These are not like water bubbles. They never disappear completely but shrink when the adhesive cures. Improper cleaning and preparation of the window can cause these bubbles.
- Dirt bubbles: These are caused by improper cleaning of the window before applying the tint. They get bigger with the passage of time and mar the whole appearance of the film. Unfortunately, there is not much you can do to remove these bubbles.
How To Prevent Formation Of Bubbles In The Window Tint?
Removing bubbles from the window tint is a tedious and time consuming process but you can avoid this hassle by preventing these from forming in the first place. Here’s what you have to do:
- Follow the standard procedure for tint application. Be very vigilant during the process. If you think you cannot handle the job, it is far better to hire an automotive window tint installation professional. Browse for the one who really knows the tricks of the trade. Read reviews and then hire one.
- Do not compromise on the quality of the tint. No matter how attractive and less expensive the tint might seem, if its quality is low, it is certainly not worth it. There are different kinds of window tints available in the market. Do your research and select the one that is durable, long lasting and gives you the best value for money such as those available at Vinyl Frog. Make a wise investment.
- If you have the right knowledge and experience, and you are applying the tint yourself, prepare the window thoroughly before tint application. You do not want dust or soap bubbles on it. Extensively cleaning the garage where you are working, the interior of the car, and the windows on which you are applying the tint is highly imperative. Use ammonia free cleaners as they might cause corroding and bubbling.
Frequently Asked Questions
Removing bubbles from the window tint is a fairly easy process that you can complete on your own with the right tools and a lot of patience. You can make sure your window tint looks fantastic and functions properly by following the steps mentioned in this blog. It is always better to get professional advice if you are unsure how to remove bubbles from your tint or you have any other concerns.
If you want to avoid the problem altogether, always buy the best quality window tints such as the ones available at Vinyl Frog. Visit our online store today to browse the amazing variety.