Most metropolitan areas have an abundance of tint shop choices. In
the San Francisco, CA area alone, there are 30 different tint shops within
a 30 mile radius. How does a discerning consumer choose the tint shop that does
quality work? What is the difference between a "Dr. Tint" and a "Quality
We at TintCenter.com Window Tinting Guides
suggest that you do a little research. First, compile
a list of 5 potential tint shops that are likely to do good work.
Ask your friends an co-workers who have tinted their cars which tint
shops they chose, look in the Yellow Pages and mark down the tint shops
with large professional advertisements, or come to TintCenter.com and
get price quotes from a local tint shops.
Once you have this list in-hand, its time to interview each dealer:
How long have you been in business at this location?
Do you have other shops in the area?
Good tint shops prosper despite local competition by offering
good service at reasonable prices. We suggest that you find a tint shop
that has been in business for 5 or more years at the same location.
This shows a stable business that will be there years down the road
if somehow the tint goes bad.
Often times, successful tint shops open car tinting branches
in neighboring cities. Although the installers of the branches may not
be the master tinter of the bunch, since opening new shops means training
new employees; however, branches are a sure sign of a successful
What types of films do you carry? What warranty do you offer on
Quality tint shops carry complete lines of window film from
one or multiple window film manufacturers. They should carry
dyed, hybrid, and metallic window films in
a variety of colors and darknesses. Beware of tint shops that only
carry one or two lines of film, and sells them aggressively. They may have acquired
this film on sale, and may not be thinking of your unique requirements and
The warranty on the car tint varies depending on the window film you choose.
TintCenter recommends that you install only window film backed with
a lifetime warranty for materials and labor. Most films don't
guarantee color and fading, it is recommended that you also choose one that does.
For the warranty to take effect, remember to get only
legal window tint for your car. Illegal tint
can nullify any manufacturer's warranty. When you purchase your tint,
be sure sure you get a manufacturer's warranty card from the dealer
with the date, the window film used on each window, and
the total cost of installation as well as the receipt.
Can I visit your tint shop? Can you show me a sample of your work
when I'm there?
Tint shops can sound like the best shop on the phone, but
15 minutes on-site should tell you all you need to know.
Good dealers pay attention to customer service. They should be
happy and willing to spend the time to talk to you and explain
how their shops work. Remember, if they don't spend time with you know,
will they spend time with you when there is something wrong with
your tint job?
A tint shop's work area should be indoors and clean. Their tools
and window films are organized in a professional manner. If the tint shop
is outdoors or in a parking lot, this is a negative since it is
critical to remove all dust and dirt from the windows before
applying window film.
Now take a look at a car they have already tinted, and look at the rear window.
Is the window film applied in a single piece or is it cut into strips that surround the defroster
lines? The most skilled tint shops always apply film in a single piece.
Now look at the borders of the rear window, in many cars there is a black
'frit' edge on the window, Make sure the window film looks securely
attached to the frit as well.
Pay attention to side-windows. The window film should be applied to the inside and
be completely flush against all 4 edges of the window. Now look at the
window film itself. Don't worry if the film itself
looks slightly streaky and discolored, window film takes a couple weeks to dry out and become
completely clear. If there are bubbles of air under the film or the film
itself is not complete flat against the window, this is a sure sign of sloppy tinting.
Get price quotes from each dealer for the exact darkness, color, and type of
window film you want. Never compromise because there are plenty of other
dealers out there that will offer your perfect tint. With these price quotes
and your research on each tint shop, make the decision.
Refer to the cost of car tint article to
help you rank the dealers.
After you make your decision, remember to always make an appointment
with the tint shop before you tint your car. Even if they say
"drop-ins accepted" or "bring it over any time", you want you tinter
to be calm and prepared for you when you arrive and not rushed.
Tinting may take a couple hours to half a day, so either arrange a
ride or go to a nearby coffee shop with a good book. Enjoy!
About the author:
Harrison Hung is the founder of TintCenter Window Tinting Guide. http://www.tintcenter.com TintCenter aims to educate consumers about the window film industry, and make tint purchases easy and straightforward.
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