Apply and Clean Car Glass Tinting Film Like a Pro

Tinted car glass windows can do much more than making your vehicle look cool. For starters, they can reduce the amount of heat that gets into your cabin. Car tint can also reflect the sun’s damaging ultraviolet rays.

You can have car tint installed by professionals like A+ Plus Auto Glass, or you can do it yourself at home. Just follow the steps below and you’ll be applying car glass tint film like a pro in no time!


Before you attempt this DIY, make sure that you are aware of car tinting laws in your state. Arizona allows up to 35% reflective tint of any darkness on the side windows. Non-reflective tint can be used on the windshield as long as it is above the manufacturer’s AS-1 line.

1. Get a sponge soaked in a cleaning solution and use it to clean the glass. Wipe the gaskets and the gap between them. Dry the surface with a squeegee and a lint-free cloth.

2. Take two pieces of transparent tape and stick one on each side of the film’s corner. Only half of the tape should be attached to the film. The other half should extend outwards.

3. Fill a spray bottle with a mixture of soap and water. Spray the entire glass surface with it.

4. Stretch the film over the window with the liner side facing outward. Use a blade to cut off any excess glass tinting film. Position the remaining film so that the bottom part extends a quarter to half an inch below the top part of the inside car window seal.

5. Spray the outer side of the film’s liner with the soap solution. Again, make sure that the film is completely wet.

6. Take the squeegee and using its rubber edge, slowly smooth the film against the glass surface. Start from the top and work your way to the bottom. Work one with one side of the window and slowly overlap your strokes to the other side.

7. Cut along the vertical side of the glass. Apply light pressure on the blade and cut at a low angle to avoid scratching the glass. Try to accomplish this step with a single controlled movement.

8. Open the car door and gently lift the film from the bottom of the glass. Roll down the window by 2 inches and trim the excess film. Use the top edge of the glass as your guide, and run the blade across the top of the window.

9. Repeat step 1 but on the inside of your car window.

10. Use the two pieces of tape from step 2. Pull the tape attached to the liner upwards and away from the window. This will slowly expose the adhesive layer, which you will then spray with a soapy solution.

11. Generously spray the inside of your car window with soapy water. Lift the film outside the glass and place the wet adhesive against the wet glass on the inside car window.

12. Position the film on the window. Leave a 1/8 inch gap between the top of the glass and the car tint film. If there are any wrinkles, use your hands to smooth them out.

13. Fold the bottom edge of the car tint film upwards to prevent dust from sticking to it.

14. Spray more soap solution on the outside of the film. Use the squeegee to press it firmly against the glass. Again, start from the top and work your way down.

15. Roll up the window and use a lint-free cloth to dry off any water from the part of the window where the film has adhered. Re-apply the soap solution on the bottom of the glass and dry it again with a squeegee and cloth. Then spray it again with the soapy solution.

16. Unfold the film towards the glass and slip its edge under the window gasket. Use one hand to pull back the edge of the gasket, and the other hand to press the hard end of the squeegee against the film so it’s completely under the gasket.

17. Apply pressure on the film using short, downward strokes until all of the water under the car tint film is pushed out. If you see any bubbles, you should also push them out towards the nearest edge.

18. Wrap the hard edge of the squeegee with a lint-free cloth, and use it to dry the window with downward strokes. Remove any excess soap solution.

19. Allow the car tint film to cure for at least three days. During this time, you should avoid rolling the windows down.