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Tinted windows recommendations. Good place in Austin?

totem

Member
Aug 22, 2015
31
0
United States
Hello all,

I've been reading and learning about Tesla and the Model S for the last couple of years and I finally went ahead and ordered the Model S85. Delivery is being set for Friday! Very excited!

It's been a while since I've gotten tinted windows and it looks like there's a lot of types to go with. I was wondering if you could point me to some good types and brands from your experience. The car has pano, and I was thinking of getting it tinted as well, not so much for the darkness, but for making the car less hot. Any recommendations for this?

For those in Austin, Texas, where did you take your car to get it tinted? I heard that Tesla owners have been happy with Sun Busters tint on 183.
Did you get pano done too?

Many thanks!
 

tstafford

Active Member
Jul 4, 2015
1,039
257
Nashville, TN
Do know anything about Austin.

I just had Llumar/Formula One done on my P85D. You can see the pictures in another thread.

Things I considered:

  • The Shop - got lucky. A highly reputable shop with excellent reviews and a 40 year history was right near me. They offered both 3M and Llumar so that narrowed things down for me.
  • Film - you can do some research but I think you'll find that for a high end car like a MS you will want ceramic based film. This is the high end stuff that claims to have the least interference with electronics. I don't think this is much of a decision - you want ceramic
  • Brand - they all seemed pretty good to me. Sort of like tires - people have opinions that differ. I think once you are in to the ceramic tint you will find they all are fairly good and have proponents based on past experiences
  • Percentage - of course the 64K question is how dark do you want it. Obviously the darker you go the more heat rejection you'll have but the more likely you are to get a ticket, not be able to see at night, etc. I debated b/w 50% and 35% (note the lower the number the darker the tint). I ultimately ended up going with the darker (35%) which is legal in TN and I'm very happy with it. You should do a google search to see the laws in your state - of course the tint shop will know them too
  • Shade - The tints don't all look exactly the same. I ultimately split the difference b/w 3M and Formula One because to my eye the 3M had a brownish tint to it that I didn't care for. I'm sure others would disagree. I'd try to see the tint on a window - from the inside and outside - if you can. My shop had a window with samples of each film they offer that I visited three or four times (different times of day) to see how they compared. That was really nice

Lastly - as a price point Llumar/Formula One Pinnacle-35 installed on all windows except windshield ran me $329+tx. Lifetime transferable warranty
 
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totem

Member
Aug 22, 2015
31
0
United States
Thanks for those details tstafford.
I called the place today and it looks like they do ~3 Teslas a day (give or take he said), and recommended the F1 Pinnacle (ceramic) one as well.
The verbal quote was close to what you provided. I see that you have Pano, you got that done as well? you also got 35% on it? They charge $100 extra for the pano - I'll see if I can get them to lower that.

In Texas, you can get the back windows as dark as you want, but the front windows must allow more than 25% of light, so maybe 50% would be good here (I worry about 25% or 35% being too dark for the front), and go with 35% on the back...not sure. I'll swing by this weekend to check the samples out.

Cheers
 

KidDoc

Member
Aug 6, 2014
348
431
College Station, TX
I went to Sunbusters and very happy with the work they did.

Here is the email from back in 2/2014.
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Thank you for your inquiry. We have done quite a few of the Teslas, they are amazing cars.


With all the modern electronics in that car you will definitely want to stay away from any tint that has metal in it. We recommend the Formula One Pinnacle ceramic which has the most heat block of all of our films but will not interfere with the electronics. The Pinnacle on a sedan runs $399 installed (also tax included). It will only take a couple hours to do the job so it will not be a big inconvenience for you to wait here while we do the work. There are several places around here to grab lunch, also I do provide wifi and cable TV in my lobby if that helps. I make the commute in from Bastrop myself so I understand you not wanting to back and forth. The only issue with you wanting to come in the afternoon is we will have a full bay when you get here, so finishing something else up to make room for your car may add a little to the wait.


Let me know if you have further questions or would like me to go ahead and set up the appointment.


Thanks Again


Paul
 

pjoseph

Member
Jan 15, 2013
118
111
Austin, Texas
After considering it carefully, i decided to go with Sunbusters (183 & Duval).

Llumar Formula One, Stratos, 30%, for side windows & rear hatch. This is the highest quality product they carry currently. And yes, the priciest.

Front windshield got Air 90, clear.

Total cost was $849

Sunbusters did an outstanding job. Car looks nice. Interior was ~ 20 degrees cooler today. i can finally bear the scorching Texas summers.
 
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mrod1975

Member
Oct 9, 2017
63
9
Austin, TX
Hi pjoseph,

I am picking up our 2013 Tesla Model S 85 tomorrow morning in Austin. I see that you got the tint that I am considering (Stratos + Air 90). May I ask, how do you like it? I see others went with Pinnacle and wonder if the Stratos is worth the extra expense. (I assume it is.)

Also, do you see any benefit in getting the pano roof done, too? I am also considering that.

Thanks!

Martin
 

TexasEV

Well-Known Member
Jun 5, 2013
7,650
8,911
Austin, TX
I’ve driven my Model S through five Austin summers and I don’t think there’s any reason to put film on the piano roof. I have 3M Crystalline 70 on the side and rear windows. I don’t like the ”tinted” look, I just wanted heat rejection and UV protection.
 
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brkaus

Well-Known Member
Jul 8, 2014
8,094
6,648
Austin, TX
Hi pjoseph,

I am picking up our 2013 Tesla Model S 85 tomorrow morning in Austin. I see that you got the tint that I am considering (Stratos + Air 90). May I ask, how do you like it? I see others went with Pinnacle and wonder if the Stratos is worth the extra expense. (I assume it is.)

Also, do you see any benefit in getting the pano roof done, too? I am also considering that.

Thanks!

Martin
I also have the stratos / air 90 from sunbusters.

Definitely blocks more heat than our Acura, but I have no idea what tint is on the Acura.

I’m in Bee Cave area if you want to see it. PM me if your in this part of town.
 
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pjoseph

Member
Jan 15, 2013
118
111
Austin, Texas
Martin, It has worked well, and looks ok on the MC red. But i too am not a fan of the deeply tinted look.

Have Pinnacle on the older car. Not much of a difference. Saves ~ $300.

No need to tint the Pano. It blocks the heat (97% UV?) and looks good as is.

Front windshield is sweeping and definitely worth getting a film on.

The shop (Sunbusters) is very familiar with Tesla and machine cut all of their film which is great. They are professional and easy to work with.
 

mrod1975

Member
Oct 9, 2017
63
9
Austin, TX
pjoseph - Do I understand correctly that you are saying there isn't much difference between the Pinnacle and Stratos in terms of blocking heat? And thank you for the recommendation on the front windshield!
 

brkaus

Well-Known Member
Jul 8, 2014
8,094
6,648
Austin, TX
pjoseph - Do I understand correctly that you are saying there isn't much difference between the Pinnacle and Stratos in terms of blocking heat? And thank you for the recommendation on the front windshield!
The specs for the stratos are much better for blocking IR. That makes it perform much better in front of the demo heat lamp. But I could NOT tell you how much difference it makes in real life. Need a true apples to apples comparison.

I figured at this point what was a few hundred more for something that should last 10 years (and lifetime warranty). I just gave up on googling and seeing all the various comments on worth it or not.

It was a HUGE difference from untinted. And the dash is much cooler with the Air 90 on the front.

Wish I didn’t wait 6 months to get it done.
 
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mrod1975

Member
Oct 9, 2017
63
9
Austin, TX
Thank you, everyone, for all of the input. I dropped it off this morning for Stratos + Air 90 at Sunbusters.

Can't wait to pick it up this afternoon!

Quoted price: $849 out the door.
 

mrod1975

Member
Oct 9, 2017
63
9
Austin, TX
So, the tint came out nice but as I was pulling out I noticed a scratch on the leather steering wheel that was not there when I dropped it off. I went inside and the manager came out and looked at it. He took some pictures and advised me that they will look at security footage of the work area to see if something can be seen on film. I advised him that no matter what his security film shows, that scratch was not there when I dropped it off. He advised that he will speak with the General Manager and get back to me tomorrow. He questioned the location of the scratch, which would be on the back side of the wheel at about the 5 o'clock position. I advised him that accidents happen all the time and that I will wait to hear back from him tomorrow (Friday, October 27).
 

brkaus

Well-Known Member
Jul 8, 2014
8,094
6,648
Austin, TX
So, the tint came out nice but as I was pulling out I noticed a scratch on the leather steering wheel that was not there when I dropped it off. I went inside and the manager came out and looked at it. He took some pictures and advised me that they will look at security footage of the work area to see if something can be seen on film. I advised him that no matter what his security film shows, that scratch was not there when I dropped it off. He advised that he will speak with the General Manager and get back to me tomorrow. He questioned the location of the scratch, which would be on the back side of the wheel at about the 5 o'clock position. I advised him that accidents happen all the time and that I will wait to hear back from him tomorrow (Friday, October 27).
Ouch. Sorry to hear!
 
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buttershrimp

Click my signature to Go Mad Max Mode
Supporting Member
Jun 17, 2017
3,249
8,486
ATX
Nate at Bespoke in cedar park is probably the best in austin area. Dude is next level for wrapping and tint, though there are several good tint places.
 

mrod1975

Member
Oct 9, 2017
63
9
Austin, TX
Update:

The general manager called and asked me to take the car, at their expense, of course, to Leather Menders on Buell Ave for repair attempt. I am totally good with this option as Leather Menders has very good Google and Yelp reviews. We have tentatively scheduled a visit for sometime next week.
 
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mrod1975

Member
Oct 9, 2017
63
9
Austin, TX
pjoseph/brkaus,

I have the same front windshield film as you two. I have noticed that when it is dark outside (at nighttime) other car's headlights and taillights are very fuzzy and blurry, almost like when you first wake up in the morning and have to wait a few seconds for your eyes to adjust. My wife and all who ride it in noticed the same thing. Has either of you noticed this?

martin
 

Zaphod

Galaxy President (former)
Dec 10, 2015
2,160
1,996
Austin, TX
pjoseph/brkaus,

I have the same front windshield film as you two. I have noticed that when it is dark outside (at nighttime) other car's headlights and taillights are very fuzzy and blurry, almost like when you first wake up in the morning and have to wait a few seconds for your eyes to adjust. My wife and all who ride it in noticed the same thing. Has either of you noticed this?

martin
Sounds like you are now experiencing "ghosting". It can be a side effect when introducing another layer to the windshield that can diffract or distort the images like you are seeing. It could be just the extra layer itself or possibly the install was flawed.

Seeing as pjoseph and brkaus have newer model year car compared to yours, it's possible the actual windshield design changed over the years. I know there have been different coatings on the newer autopilot windshields compared to your non-autopilot car.

Next time you are driving at night, try looking through different areas of the windshield to see if it gets better or worse. This will get some more data points to determine what the root cause is.
 
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