There are six common types of window tinting.
One of them is ceramic window tinting.
Let’s review the advantages of ceramic windows vs. other types of tinting.
Ceramic Window Tint is the highest quality and most expensive film on the market. It provides the best possible levels of Heat Resistance, UV Protection, and Sun Glare Protection. Ceramic Film does not contain any dyes, metal, or carbon making it non-conductive and non-metallic for high visibility.
What are the benefits of Ceramic Window Tint?
Ceramic window tint film has many benefits including UV Protection, Heat Resistance, and Sun glare protection. It also comes in a wide range of charcoal shades allowing you to create the precise look you desire while still maintaining a very high level of visibility while driving.
The best ceramic window tint films come with a highly durable coating made to last for a very long time if installed and maintained properly.
This style of window tint film offers a high-level glare control which means you may longer need to wear sunglasses while driving. It also provides UV protection and scratch resistance so you can be sure that your film and also your interior will not be destroyed by the sun. Also, as an added bonus, it’s metal-free, which means there’s no interference with electronic device signals.
What are the Different Types of Window Tint Film?
Although Ceramic Window Film provides the best results for the money and is worth the extra price you will pay, there are 6 main types of Window tint films:
- Ceramic Window Tint
- Dyed Window Tint
- Metallized Window Tint
- Metal/Dyed Hybrid Window Tint
- Carbon Window Tint
- Crystalline Window Tint
Dyed Window Tint Films represent the least expensive option on the market but also tends to have a lower functionality compared to other types. Although Dyed Window Film blocks UV rays and absorbs heat using a colored dye, the results are nowhere near the results that Ceramic Window Tint provides.
Dyed window films are most often used for cosmetic purposes and are usually the go-to option for “$99 tint jobs”. The reason this tint can be applied to most vehicles for so cheap is because the film doesn’t cost much money and the quality of the install is usually not that great. We recommend that you avoid the infamous “$99 tint jobs” unless you are simply applying window tint for cosmetic purposes and don’t mind the potential for a low-quality tint.
When viewing your car from the outside, this window film appears flat and opaque which can provide a high level of privacy. One downside of this type of film is that it often fades or turns purple over time. The level of heat-reduction provided by this type of film isn’t very high.
Ceramic vs dyed window tint
If you are deciding between Ceramic window tint and dyed window tint you need to understand that you will basically be getting what you paid for. The only time we would recommend getting dyed window tint installed on your car is if you simply can’t afford ceramic tint and are mainly installing the tint for cosmetic purposes. Ceramic film beats dyed film on all levels except for the price. Although you get FAR more VALUE in a ceramic tint job, it can easily cost 3-5x more than a dyed window tint job. If your heart is set on installing dyed window tint you can get it installed at just about every tint shop or you can try to do it yourself with a DIY window tint kit and
pre-cut window film for your specific car model.
Metalized/Metallic Window Tint film contains tiny metal particles, invisible to the eye, that are used to effectively reflect the sun’s UV rays while providing the least amount of visual restriction possible. This ensures a high level of safety and privacy while still allowing for a very thin film.
The advantage of using this type of film compared to most others is that it provides advanced safety and privacy without having limitations of visibility from the inside of the tinted windows. This film is very useful in vehicles in which being able to efficiently see through the windows is important to your safety.
Metalized/Metallic film contains tiny sheets of metal particles that are embedded in the film which can actually help to strengthen the window. This type of film gives a mirror-like look to the windows when you are viewing them from the outside.
The Heat resistance properties of this film are very high due to the high reflectivity of the metallic particles in the film. The mirror appearance provides one of the highest levels of privacy for those inside the vehicle without affecting your vision. This film is the same type of film that is used on 2-way glass that you will likely see used for security rooms which allows the individuals inside the room to see outside of the room while making it near impossible to see what’s inside the room from the outside.
Although there are many benefits to Metallic Window film, there’s also a downside. The metal in the film has the potential to interfere with cell phones, GPS, radio receptions, and other electronics. Although this may not be noticed by many people, it can cause issues for some
Ceramic vs Metallic Window Tint
If you are deciding between Ceramic window tint and Metallic window tint it will usually come down to 3 factors. How much can you spend, do you want a metallic look and feel to your tint when viewing from the outside, and do you have a problem with the potential interference to your mobile devices. Metallic window tint can be attractive from the outside and comes in many colors, whereas ceramic usually only comes in charcoal shades. Ceramic window tint can be more expensive than metallic window tint but has many more benefits. If price isn’t an issue we would highly recommend that you choose ceramic tint over metallic/metalized tint.
Metal/Dyed Hybrid window tint film combines dyed and metalized layers which provide excellent protection from UV rays, glare and help reduce the amount of heat that passes through the film. The dyed layer helps to decrease the mirror life effect that the metal layers of the film provide.
This style of window tint ultimately provides a high-performing film that is only really beaten by its ceramic counterpart.
Ceramic vs Hybrid Window Tint
If you are deciding between Ceramic window tint and Hybrid window tint it will usually come down to just 2 factors: price and quality. Although some Hybrid films come close to matching the quality of Ceramic films, they are still not as good as Ceramic. Because there is metal in the Hybrid film there is always the potential of mobile device interference but not as much as Metallic film. If you are deciding between Ceramic and Hybrid film we would always recommend that you go with Ceramic because it does provide better UVA/UVB protection, heat resistance and glare protection. Ceramic films will usually always provide a better quality than Hybrid films.
Carbon tint film uses a patented nano-carbon technology to provide a true black appearance that is resistant to fading. It blocks 50%-70% of infrared heat so that your vehicle remains cooler and also prevents transmission of 99% of UV-A and UV-B rays to ensure you and your car are safe from the sun.
The patented nano-carbon technology creates hundreds of microscopic layers of polymer. This film doesn’t contain any metal. Thus, there is no worry about interference with electronics.
The black color comes from the carbon used in creating the film. This black film doesn’t have a mirror look, but still provides increased privacy. This tint is great for heat and glare reduction.
Ceramic vs Carbon Window Tint
If you are deciding between Ceramic window tint and Carbon window tint it will usually come down to just 2 factors: price and quality. Carbon films should be used when you are looking for that true “black-out” experience. If you are deciding between Ceramic and Carbon film we highly recommend that you go with Ceramic if you aren’t worried about cost and the “black-out” effect because Ceramic will perform far better all around and it provides better UVA/UVB protection, heat resistance, and glare protection than Carbon films.
Some individuals wish to tint their windows for the benefits other than making them dark. The manufacturing process of the crystalline window tint involves a proprietary method.
It uses a multilayer optical film nanotechnology. The construction involves combining more than 200 layers of an extremely thin film.
This film reflects more heat than many of the darker films. A light tint level offers up to 60% solar energy rejection and 97% protection from infrared rays. This helps keep the interior of your vehicle cooler.
Crystalline tint blocks up to 99% of UV light. It also offers a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 1000 for those inside the vehicle.
This increases your visibility and increases driving safety. Blocking UV light helps to protect the interior from sun damage.
It also allows visible light in while keeping the heat out. Since there is no metal in the film, you won’t have difficulty using electronic devices.
Why Is Ceramic Window Tint a Better Choice?
Ceramic window tint provides several advantages over other types of films. It has twice the heat absorption of dyed or hybrid films. The color remains stable over time and does not fade or turn purple.
Many consider this film the most technologically advanced. They base this on the fact that it provides both UV and Infra-Red reduction.
This prevents UV damage to your car’s interior and to your eyes. The infra-red reduction decreases the inside temperature of your car. It also increases the strength of the window and prevents shattering.
This type of tint is somewhat new to the market. Yet it’s already shown high performance and reliability.
It blocks up to 70% of solar heat and as much as 97% infrared heat. The ceramic film also provides better glare reduction and a high level of clarity. When considering all these benefits, ceramic window film offers a superior choice for window tinting.
Why Glare Is Detrimental
Glare can impact your vision and make driving more difficult. It causes discomfort and decreases your ability to see clearly.
Glare creates a poor distribution of light intensity. This causes extreme contrasts in space or time.
There are three main categories of glare. These include discomfort glare, disability glare, and blinding glare. All types of glare can increase eye strain, visual fatigue, and accident risk.
UV Ray Risk to Eyes
UV rays contain two types that impact humans. These include UV-A and UV-B. Continued exposure to these UV rays can result in eye damage.
UV-A impacts your central vision. Over time, you can develop damage to the macula. The macula lies in the back of your eye on the retina.
UV-B can damage the front of your eye. This part of the eye contains the cornea and lens. When they absorb UV-B rays, the eye can become more damaged than from exposure to UV-A rays.
Examples of eye damage resulting from UV ray exposure include:
Macular Degeneration which is a leading cause of decreased vision and blindness in older Americans
Cataracts develop from prolonged exposure to UV-B rays. This manifests as a clouding of the lens in the eye. This makes it difficult to focus light and impairs vision.
Pterygium is a growth on the eye caused by UV ray exposure. The growth starts on the white part of the eye and may spread to the cornea. Over time, this growth can block your vision.
Skin Cancer is a well-known risk of exposure to UV rays. This cancer can develop on the eyelids from looking into the sunlight.
Corneal Sunburn, also called photokeratitis, can occur after short-term, high-level exposure to UV-B rays. This often occurs following long hours at the beach or on the snow without proper eye protection.
Extensive driving without eye protection may also cause corneal damage. This condition is often very painful and can result in temporary vision loss.
Window Tinting’s Impact on Driver Safety
Vision impairment while driving can result in decreased driver safety. If you are struggling to see due to glare or “blinding” light, you risk of having an accident increases. Window tinting can decrease glare, improves your vision, and make you a safer driver.
Does Window Tint Help Reduce Heat?
Window tinting has proven very effective in decreasing inside temperatures. The window tint creates a barrier between the sun’s heat and the car interior.
The multiple layers in the window tint create a thermal blockade. At the same time, they allow the transmission of some light.
Window tint ratings describe their light transmittance. The terms used include:
- VLT% (visible light transmitted) describes the amount of visible light transmitted through the window tint
- VLA% (visible light absorbed) tells you the amount of light absorbed by the tint
- VLR% (visible light reflected) grades the amount of light reflected by the surface
In a car without any window tint, 90% of visible light is transmitted giving it a VLT% of 90. The VLA% is 5 because only 5% is of the light is absorbed. The VLR% will also be 5 because most of the light goes into the vehicle resulting in almost no cooling.
What You Should Know Window Tinting Laws
All 50 states have laws concerning the level of tint darkness and reflection. Violating these laws can result in fines. It’s important to know about your specific state law.
Most states allow up to a VLT % of 50% darkness. Window VLT%s less than 50% are still effective. Even a window tint of 90% to 80% can reduce glare and protect you from UV rays.
Here are the rules from the first and last states that enacted window tint laws.
You may choose any chosen tint level for all other vehicle windows.
The Rationale for Window Tinting Laws
So, why do states need to enact window tinting laws? Window tinting helps to increase the driver’s vision and decreases heat and damage to the car’s interior. Yet, a very dark tint can create both a safety and security risk.
Some individuals wish to put a dark tint on their car to protect their privacy. Yet, this can pose a public safety risk. The driver’s view through the front window and in the rear-view mirror can be decreased with darker tinted windows.
Heavy window tint decrease the police officers’ and emergency workers’ view inside the car. Police officers can’t assess the activity of suspects in the vehicle. This can increase their personal safety risk.
Emergency workers have trouble locating any injured people inside the car. If there’s significant damaged, it’s important to know where victims are before extrication procedures begin. Totally blacked-out windows may also cause other drivers to feel intimidated.
The United States has a high rate of road deaths every year. Eliminating illegal levels of tinting is a priority. Legal tint levels help decrease interference with the driver’s vision.
Advocates of the window tinting law encourage the enforcement of fines and vehicle confiscation without fear or favor. They also call for businesses that illegally tint windows to receive penalties as well. They state that it isn’t enough to warn the customer that the tint exceeds the law and then apply it anyway.
Are You Considering Tinting Your Windows?
Would you like to have your vehicle’s windows tinted? There are several factors to consider. Is your goal to have dark, mirror-looking windows that provide privacy inside the car?
Are you mainly interested in eye protection and increased driving safety? Do you want to protect the interior of your vehicle from sun damage? Is decreasing the heat inside your vehicle a priority?
This article has discussed six different types of window tint films and their advantages and disadvantages. One of the newest types, ceramic window tinting, has received high ratings on all beneficial features.
As you consider these questions, you must learn about your state’s window tint laws. Failure to follow these instructions can lead to fines.
To find accurate and current information about U.S. car window tinting laws, visit Windowtintlaws.us. All 50 states have now passed window tinting laws, but they are all unique. It important that you understand your state’s laws, rules, regulations, and guidelines.
When viewing our site, remember that specific districts, counties, and cities may have further restrictions, exemptions, and regulations. To ensure compliance, check your local Department of Motor Vehicle website. You do not want to pay for window tinting only to find out that it is illegal and have to remove it.
Check out our site today to learn about your state’s tint laws.