How to Remove Bubbled Rear Window Tint
A bubbled rear window tint is a cracked or damaged piece of film on the rear window. This is more than likely due to age and long-term exposure to sunlight and extreme heat. Tint bubbling occurs most often in the 5% window tints because they are so light, and to prevent it from happening, you should apply a ceramic coating to help protect your tint film. Today I will discuss a process on how to remove bubbled rear window tint. So let us get started.
How Does Bubbled Rear Window Tint Happen?
When car owners have their windows tinted, they are usually told to protect them from direct sunlight for up to 72 hours while the film sets into the existing tint, sometimes longer depending upon your climate and time of year. It can be a natural assumption that you should keep your vehicle out of direct sunlight during this period;
however, when we factor in short trips with an occasional stop at a gas station or busy parking lots, we do expose our auto glass to sunshine without thinking about it too much (just as you don’t think about it in your home or office).
Over the past couple of years, I have seen a lot of bubbles and “sun-shatter” appearing on tinted windows within two weeks after the install.
Customers are paying good money for these services, and when they bring their vehicles back to the shop, many times being told that this is normal or there is nothing wrong with the film that was applied (and by law, this may be true if you are dealing with an amateur installer who doesn’t care enough to do things correctly), but what most people don’t realize is that they didn’t pay for a cheap job; they paid for a quality service which should last them long term without issues like this occurring.
Step-wise Guide on How to Remove Bubbled Rear Window Tint
Start by using a razor blade to cut away any air bubbles clinging onto the window tint. Cut along the edge of the bubble, but not too close, so you do not cause any damage to your car’s paint.
You should use some rubbing alcohol to soak in and cover up the air bubbles lightly. The alcohol will help thin down your rear window tint film and make it easier for you to remove affected areas on the window tinting without leaving behind any residue or damaging your vehicle’s paintwork through friction between working feet and car bodywork when applying pressure. Make sure that you do not saturate the alcohol more than needed, though, because doing so might run some drying agent into sensitive parts of the car.
Start working on the affected area of the air bubble by using a razor to cut away small portions from the tint film. Again, take your time and try not to make too many aggressive nicks into the window tint film because doing so will cause more damage or add more bubbles onto your rear window once you obliterate it.
You can also use some pulling force to remove larger tint areas in one swoop, but there is no guarantee that your final product would be perfect since any unwanted edges might remain with the remaining film.
Begin to peel off any bubble areas softened through moisture absorption from applying rubbing alcohol. If you encounter some adhesive material during this stage that results in a slight layer of film leftover from the tint, use a razor blade to cut into it and remove this extra adhesive layer.
Use some tape or any masking agency that you can find at home to cover up any unaffected areas of your clear car window. Be sure not to touch onto the affected area after it has been covered. Doing so might cause unwanted residue or fingerprints on your rear window tint film, which can potentially ruin your work done during the removal process.
After all bubbles are removed from the rear window’s tint, start peeling off what is left over with both hands to get rid of anything that was attached to the paint by rubbing alcohol earlier on during step 2. You would also want to get rid of any tape you used to cover up the untouched area as well.
Apply a layer of window tint on top of your rear car window once more to strengthen the weakened areas from using rubbing alcohol earlier on during step 2 and the removal process.
Precautions While Performing How to Remove Bubbled Rear Window Tint
- Mask of the areas that are NOT bubbled yet, such as the rear door glass, and the upper window trim, because you do not want to spread the bubbles from one corner to another or make more bubbles when removing it.
- If your car is a foreign brand with electric rear defroster wires (such as Honda Civic FD/FG), you should cover them up with tape too, so they will not get melted by the heat from a hairdryer. You can also use an old towel instead of taping it if you do not mind the cloth color touching there, but be aware that this means any dust on the towel gets stuck in there too…
- Do NOT set the hairdryer at high temperatures. As long as the rear window is clean and not yellowed, you may set the temperature to the same as or even lower than what you would use on regular glass.
- Do NOT remove the defroster wires or other things that attach to the glass. They are important for car safety, especially if your car’s rear window does not have a wiper on it.
- You DO want the hairdryer to heat your windows; just do NOT want bubbles spilling over from one corner of the glass to another! The best way is to apply the average amount of heat with high frequency from every angle possible and let the glue seep out from between the glass and tint rather than pushing the bubble towards the edge by pressure applied by hand or other tools. They will stay where you can clear them up without spreading them out more than necessary and should start to shrink as soon as the glue starts getting pulled out from between.
How to Keep Window Tint in Good Condition?
When Applying Tint to New Vehicles, You Must Keep the Following in Mind:
Several things must be considered for window tinting film to stay clean and enhance vision through your windows. Failure to do so can cause harm to your vehicle’s paint job and/or make the window film peel off faster than normal. These are just a few tips on how best to maintain any window tinting application:
One of the most important aspects of keeping your car or truck looking good and prolonging the life of the film is proper care and cleaning procedures. Window tint films should always be hand washed instead of being put through an automatic car wash which has been known to scratch certain films, even though this may vary depending on the tinting film you choose to install.
Use a mild, all-purpose soap such as dishwashing liquid or washing up liquid to clean the window tinting film. Be sure to avoid using soaps that contain oil or other solvents.
Avoid getting any water into the edges of your window tinting film since this can cause it to discolor over time. When drying, use an air blower rather than paper towels to prevent lint and dirt from being trapped under the edge of the window tinting film.
To remove stubborn stains and grime, try using non-abrasive cleaning products such as vinegar and water mixed 50/50 with a soft cloth or sponge and gently wipe down in circular motions without applying excessive pressure. Once a month, you can also apply an all-purpose cleaner or glass polish with a damp cloth to help remove built-up dirt and grime that may accumulate on the window film over time.
How Often Should I Wash My Car?
The perfect time to wash your vehicle is when it needs washing. How often you need to wash your car depends on the number of contaminants found in the air where you live. If you reside in an area with a lot of industrial pollution, more frequent washes will be required. On average, though, car owners should wash their cars every 2-4 weeks.
A new car will have factory-applied chemicals and dirt repelling coating, which over time might fade or wear out. Leaving this film intact helps protect your paint from minor scratches throughout the lifespan of your vehicle. Washing too infrequently may result in buildup on paint, making it difficult to remove by hand detailing techniques and/or by machine polishing methods such as those used by your local car wash.
Applying window tint is an easy way to increase the privacy and security of your vehicle. The film itself comes in various shades, so you can choose one that blends well with your car’s look or for maximum heat reflection on hot summer days. Window tint also helps protect the interior of your car from harmful UV sun rays and provides greater comfort for passengers by blocking heat transfer through windows.
For these reasons, window films should be part of all vehicles’ maintenance processes. But you must always be sincere about the bubbles created due to tint malfunction. I hope this article has been beneficial for learning how to remove bubbled rear window tint. Thank you and have a nice day!