How To Clean Your Tinted Windows
Window film protects your family and furnishings. Panorama solar films keep ultraviolet rays from shining into your home. Tinting blocks about 99 percent of the light that causes fading and damage to furnishings.
Like sunglasses and sunscreen, film also protects people and pets from UV rays harmful to eyes and skin. At the same time, unless you choose a dark film, window tinting is nearly imperceptible. You’ll enjoy an unobstructed view when you install window film.
High-quality film with professional installation lasts for years. Just like any other window, you’ll need to clean tinted windows from time to time. Film is installed indoors where dust and fingerprints accumulate.
Using the wrong cleaning products may scratch and fade film. A harsh product will break down the film’s adhesive layers. This could cause the film to peel, crack and deteriorate. When the film degrades, it won’t protect as it should and will no longer provide a clear, beautiful appearance.
Since you want to protect your investment, be sure to clean tinted windows with gentle cleansers and soft cloths. The right products and techniques won’t harm tinted windows and will ensure that the view remains bright and blemish free.
How Long After Window Film Installation Should I Wait Before Cleaning?
Window film must be dry before you clean it. You might want to clean your windows right after we apply the film, but resist the urge. We clean windows thoroughly before application. When we apply your window film, we use an installation fluid. Our technicians remove as much of the fluid as possible, but a small amount will remain.
When window film is first applied, it’s normal to see minor cloudiness or water bubbles. These are side-effects of the installation fluid and will quickly disappear as the film cures. If you try to remove the bubble or wipe away the cloudiness, you’ll void the warranty and could damage the film.
Giving an exact time for the drying process is difficult. It varies from a few days to several months. The time is affected by the climate during installation and the type of film applied. Rest assured, these effects are short-lived and don’t mar the look of your windows. Once dry, you’ll see the full beauty of tinted windows.
What Kind of Cleanser Should I Use on Tinted Windows?
Hard water can leave mineral deposits on your windows. If you have hard water in your home, you probably already know it. It no doubt leaves traces on your dishes, glasses and plumbing fixtures. It’s hard to remove. Don’t clean window film with hard water.
The greater Portland area has soft water. On a scale of 1 to 300 (one being the softest and 300 being the hardest), Portland’s water is rated as a 9. Some areas outside of the city have a different water source and may have more mineral-laden tap water. Even if you live in an area with soft water, reduce the chance of water spots by cleaning with demineralized bottled water.
How to Mix a Safe and Economical Formula to Clean Tinted Windows
- Several soft cotton cloths
- Two spray bottles
- Demineralized bottled water
- Rubber-edged squeegee
- Baby shampoo or another mild detergent that does not contain alcohol, acid or ammonia.
Prepare the cleaning solution:
- Fill a spray bottle with water.
- Add one teaspoon of a mild detergent.
- Gently mix or shake until blended.
How to Clean Tinted Windows
It’s best to clean your windows in the morning before the sunlight warms the glass. Heat makes the film more susceptible to scratches. Use a soft cotton cloth and your homemade cleaning fluid. Don’t use paper towels. They contain wood fibers which may scratch the film.
- Spray your windows with the cleaning solution.
- Use a soft cloth to gently wipe away spots, dirt and dust.
- Don’t rub hard. If a spot is stubborn, spray with more fluid and wipe again.
- With a rubber-edged squeegee, wipe off excess moisture. Work from the top to the bottom of the window.
- Use another dry soft, cotton cloth to soak up any remaining moisture.
There’s one final step to ensure your windows are sparkling clean: Remove any traces of the cleaning solution. Repeat the steps above using a second spray bottle filled only with water. Use fresh cloths to rub and dry.
This gentle cleaning technique will give you clear, sparkling windows. It won’t harm your tinted film. You can use this same technique on all your windows, whether they have film or not. Besides being effective, it costs only pennies.
Pacific Window Tinting high-quality window tinting for homes and businesses. Contact us for more information or a sample of our products. For more window film cleaning advice, give us a call at 503-736-9000. We’re happy to help.
Updated Feb. 23. 2017. Orginally published Sept. 19, 2013.