Expert Cleaning Tips for Tinted Windows at Home
There are many great reasons for tinting some – or all – of the windows in your home, from improving privacy, through to helping regulate the temperature in your home and thus reducing energy consumption. But to ensure that the tints continue to provide the benefits that appealed to you most, it is important that you follow a few essential steps when cleaning your windows. And even if you use a professional window cleaning service, you should alert them to the fact that your home windows have been tinted so they can ensure they don’t use any cleaning solutions or methods that could damage the window film.
Timing is Important
While car window tints cure and dry within a matter of days, home window tinting needs longer – up to three months, depending on the film used. This means that you cannot clean the side of the window the film while it is still curing, though you don’t need to wait three months for this to happen. It is usually safe for you to clean for the first time after 30 days have passed, and if you’re unsure, ask the installer.
Timing is also important when it comes to the time of day you clean the windows, with the film heating up throughout the day, making early morning and the evening the ideal time to clean them. Try cleaning them when they are too hot, and you’ll likely end up with streaks across the window as any fluids you use evaporate.
Only Use Soft Cloths
New microfibre or lint-free cotton cloths work best, anything else could scratch the film, weakening the effectiveness of the window tint. Use a minimum of two clothes, depending on how many windows you are cleaning: one to wipe the window after applying a gentle cleaning solution, and one to wipe the window dry. Replace as necessary with new cloths that are clean and dry as soon as they become too wet or have too much dirt on them. Hard particles of dirt can, again, scratch the window film. Brushes of any type should never be used, even for stubborn dirt, and if you do use a squeegee make sure it is made using rubber, is always clean, and doesn’t have any damaged edges that could scratch the film.
Use Gentle Cleaning Solutions
Most commercial window cleaning solutions contain harsh chemicals such as ammonia which will damage window tinting film, particularly the adhesives in window tint. The best solution is simple distilled water and a small amount of mild dishwashing liquid – half a teaspoon of dishwashing liquid to two cups of distilled water. For stubborn dirt you can also occasionally add no more than three tablespoons of white vinegar to the same solution, but this should not be done too often as the vinegar can also weaken the adhesives if used too frequently.
Remember too that the first time you clean your new window tint, you might notice small bubbles under the film. This is quite normal during the curing and drying phase and they should disappear completely after three months. It also helps to only ever use a professional home window tinting company who offer a warranty on the film and the installation against any flaws not caused by incorrect care and maintenance.