Apply the tint
Now that you have the car cleaned and any door panels removed you need to measure the glass front to back. First, make sure the window is rolled down about 1 inch.
On front doors especially the rear edge of the door is angled back but your film will be square so, as you measure along the the bottom edge make sure to extend the ruler to include that extra length you will need to cover the top corner. Add about 1 inch to that number so you have a little excess for handling purposes. Cut that much film from your roll.
Alternatively, you could just hold the the tint up to the glass and unroll enough to cover the glass plus a little extra. (This isn't practical if you're working with 100' rolls the way most pros do).
At this point you need to figure out which side of the tint is which. The film is made in layers. The adhesive side is covered with a clear cellophane like material which will be removed later. This needs to be facing out. The best way to determine this is to separate one corner. Do this by laying the top edge of the film against some wet glass and use your fingernail to flick the edge of the film until it separates. No fingernails? Use your Olfa knife or even put it between your teeth and work the layers back and forth until they separate. If the clear layer is facing you you're good to go. Otherwise, flip it over. Now proceed with the tint application.
Roll the window up all the way and spray the outer surface of the glass liberally with your solution - this allows the tint to slide. Align the bottom edge of the film with the bottom weatherstrip, letting it drop about 1/4" below the top edge of the rubber. Adjust the film left to right to make sure the edges of the window are overlapped. Using your hard card, squeegee an area in the center of the film to hold it in place. Cut the film top to bottom along the long edge first, then slide the cut edge about 1/8" over the rubber weatherstrip. This will ensure that your film extends under the rubber when installed. Trim the short side of the window top to bottom.
At this point you have to roll down the window about 1 inch. Be sure to lift the bottom edge of the film so it doesn't catch and roll the window down 1 inch. Make sure the film doesn't move up or down relative to the glass.
Take your Olfa snap blade knife and poke it through the film right above the top edge of the glass about 2 inches from either end. Carefully run the knife along the glass. Let the body of the knife press against the film so that it holds the film against the glass. This prevents an uneven cut. Continue to the end then go back to your starting point and, holding the knife firmly against the glass, cut in the other direction to remove all film above the glass. Run your cuts out to the edges of the tint to remove the excess film. Extend any other cuts necessary to remove all the excess.
Tip: I refer here to the Olfa brand of knife. They really are the best brand. In particular, the blades are high quality. Similar knives that you might find at the hardware store just won't cut it (sorry). Olfa can be found at craft and hobby stores and online.
Now slide the cut edge of the film about 1/8" forward (left, if you're on the driver's side) being sure to keep it aligned. Proceed to cut the trailing edge making sure to hold the tint tight against the glass. The portion that extends above the window opening will have to be cut separately. Don't cut against the painted door frame - lay it against the glass and cut straight up from the original cut.
Lift the film and re-wet the glass then position the film about 1 inch below the upper edge. Separate the the film as before and spray a little solution under the clear.
Open the car door and respray the inner glass liberally. Squeegee from side to side starting at the top. Flush the edges with solution and re-wet the glass generously.
Make sure your hands are CLEAN. Carefully pull the clear layer about 3/4 of the way off the film and immediately spray the exposed surface liberally with solution. Lifting it by the trailing edge pull it away from the glass and get one hand under it while moving to the inside. Lay the film against the wet glass and slide up to about 1/8" of the top and side to side as needed to center the film.
Spray the film lightly then using your rubber squeegee gently squeegee from the center to one side then the other along the top edge. Use your other hand to hold the film from sliding. Work down the film until you reach the remaining clear. Respray and repeat with more pressure. Work the edges especially well.
Roll the window up watching that the the top edge of the film doesn't catch and peel back.
Lift the bottom edge and carefully pull off the remaining clear taking care not to let the film drop. Spray under the film very heavily and into the edges then lay the film down and tuck it behind the door frame. Spray lightly and continue to squeegee from the center down and to the sides.
Re-spray and squeegee very firmly to press out all the water. Switch to the hard card, wrap it with paper towel and squeegee very firmly from top to bottom and deep into the side channels.
Dry off both sides of the window and inspect for any pockets of water and work them out with the hard card. Roll the window down and remove the tape from the gaskets and re-squeegee the top edge. Inspect the glass from the outside to see if you have a nice clean job. If there are any imperfections that you can't live with remove the film now, before it sticks, and start over.
Congratulations! You're done. Or at least you will be when you reinstall the door panels.
Don't want to try it yourself? Call Doug at 860-930-3618 for a quote on your car.
Unionville Auto F/X
32 Depot Pl. Unionville, CT 06085
A division of Unionville Auto Body
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