TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker and becoming a Supporting Member. For more info: Support TMC

Window Tints: How can you tell if they are legit?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by kgb, Apr 13, 2013.

  1. kgb

    kgb Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2009
    Messages:
    605
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    I've been on this forum for a while, and I have been impressed by the depth and breadth of knowledge of the participants. In addition, I noticed that the background of the majority of the posters seems to be in the sciences, so I feel this is as good as any place to pose this question.

    I recently had my Model S windows tinted. I walked in to the shop and told the salesman that I needed tint (I already knew that I wanted ceramic). Before I could express a preference, he took me to their demonstration area and showed me their lines. He showed me cheap brand X 70% which had little heat rejection. Then cheap brand X 30% which had improved heat rejection. Then intermediate brand Y 30% which had better heat rejection. Then most expensive "ceramic" brand Z 30% which had the best heat rejection. At that time I told him I wanted the ceramic. Then I got to thinking, how do I know if I am paying for ceramic, yet getting cheap brand X? The salesman is the "expert," so I asked him. He said, there was no way to know, just that I my car would be a lot cooler.

    I didn't like that answer, so I did an initial search on the internet for "how can I tell if I have ceramic tint," but with no avail. Then I noticed that when I look out the tinted windows with polarized glasses, I get a rainbow effect. So then I did a search that included polarized lenses, and posters on other forums stated that this was a way to verify that you indeed have ceramic film, however the posters who said that did not seem to be well educated or knowledgeable, nor did they use references. That's why I want to use the well educated brains on this forum to help with this question for me and all future internet searches. How can you verify that the tint installer didn't do the switcheroo?
     
  2. Kaivball

    Kaivball Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2013
    Messages:
    670
    Location:
    Kalifornia
    Step one: start with a reputable window tint company.

    Step two: repeat step one.

    Seriously, pick a dealer that's been around for awhile, that people have used for years and that has great to excellent feedback.

    Company's that want to stay in business don't cheat their customers
     
  3. kgb

    kgb Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2009
    Messages:
    605
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    But how would you ever know? No customer would ever complain about being cheated, because apparently there does not seem to be a way to verify. Customers would complain about crappy service, but never about the tint.

    Although I do appreciate the effort @Kaivball, all I am asking is if someone knows of a SCIENTIFIC way to verify that the tint you have is, in fact, the ceramic variety, versus the non-ceramic variety.
     
  4. pete8314

    pete8314 Vendor

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2012
    Messages:
    2,206
    Location:
    DFW
    The 3M stuff comes with a bunch of little 3M logos all over it that have to be removed with a little rubbing alcohol. My installer offered to leave them on there until I picked it up (to prove he used the primo film). As it turns out, I said no, but still found a few of the logos. I do not have the 3M film on the screen, it's another brand who's name escapes me, but it has the same 'rainbow effect' you describe. Having said that, so does my wife's Q5 that has factory tints, and I doubt they used a ceramic film?
     
  5. andrewket

    andrewket Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2012
    Messages:
    5,699
    Not trying to hijack the thread here, but - do you find the rainbow effect disturbing? I wear polarized sunglasses and will be tinting my MS soon.
     
  6. pete8314

    pete8314 Vendor

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2012
    Messages:
    2,206
    Location:
    DFW
    Not at all. It's very subtle.
     
  7. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2011
    Messages:
    13,356
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    If it's a reputable installer you can simply ask to watch at least part of the install; "Hey, I'm really curious how you guys actually do this. Mind if I watch one window?...." The quality brands such as 3M and Llumar are marked up so you can see what they're using.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I have 3M Color Stable @20% and don't notice any rainbow effect with polarized glasses. I notice a slight purple appearance out the hatch window when I look in the rearview mirror; it's not disturbing to me.
     
  8. truman2038

    truman2038 New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2015
    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Boulder, CO
    If you're that paranoid, buy the tint yourself.
     
  9. Yoby99

    Yoby99 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Salt lake city, ut

    That don't work. I'm trying to do it myself and buy it myself but all the shops local to me that sell it to put it on say that the manufacturer won't let them sell it without them certified installers installing it. I can find it on the internet and eBay. But even thet they don't sell you a factory packaged roll. They just cut if off a bigger roll. So therefore I still wouldn't know what I'm getting. Hence, why I'm on here trying to find out how to tell if its ceramic.
     
  10. vwvannut

    vwvannut New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2018
    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Yorba Linda
    I've been trying to do the same thing. I purchased some Huper Optik from ebay but have no idea whether it's real or not and have not way to tell. You'll never know.
     

Share This Page

  • About Us

    Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.
  • Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


    SUPPORT TMC