How to Maintain Your Tinted Home Windows
Tinted residential windows don’t only enhance the appearance of your home, they also improve privacy, and can lead to reductions on your utility bills. By blocking a significant amount of UV light and solar heat, your home is naturally cooler in summer, leaving you less dependent on fans and air-conditioners. And if your residential window tinting was professionally done, there’s little reason the tinting films won’t last for 10 to 15 years. But that is still conditional to you cleaning and maintaining them properly by following these tips.
Don’t be Impatient
Newly applied window tints can take up to 30 days to cure, and during this time they are especially vulnerable to scratching and lifting. The company installing your window tints will be able to advise you properly on how long to wait before cleaning the windows, so make a point of asking them. And once you are allowed to clean the newly tinted windows, do it in the morning or early evening, when the windows and tinting film are cooler.
Use a very mild solution to clean the windows, preferably a little dishwashing soap and water. Never use any abrasive solutions or any that contain ammonia, vinegar, or alcohol. Abrasive solutions will scratch the film and weaken it over time, while harsh chemicals such as ammonia will affect the adhesives and the film itself, resulting in faded areas, and even bubbles if the film starts to lift. Only ever use soft cloths and synthetic sponges to clean the tinted glass and avoid rubbing or scrubbing too aggressively. Brushes and paper towels should never be used. You can use a rubber squeegee to remove excess liquid and cleaning solution from the glass, but always check that it doesn’t have any sharp or exposed edges that could scratch the film.
Pay Attention to Joins
The edges and any joins are especially vulnerable to lifting, so be extra gentle around the edges, and on any sections where two pieces of film meet or overlap. Clean from the centre of the film to the edge, or in the direction of any joins to prevent lifting. Once the edge of the film lifts it is easier for moisture to get between the film and the glass, which will slowly affect the adhesives, causing the entire tinting film to start lifting or bubbling.
Dry Them off Before and After Cleaning
Even though you are going to wet the window and film when cleaning, the film shouldn’t be wet before you start cleaning. Use a soft, dry cloth to soak up any moisture, which will allow to also check for any visible lifting or damage to the film. And once you have finished cleaning the window, use another dry cloth – not the same one you used to clean the window – to dry the window, and to soak up any liquid around the window sill. You can also use paper towels for this, but only around the window sill, not on the glass itself.
By being mindful of how you clean your tinted windows you will be able to enjoy the many benefits they offer for years to come, but it is important to seek professional advice any time you notice any damage, or visible signs of wear, especially if your residential window tinting came with a warranty.