It’s that time of the year when temperatures soar to uncomfortable digits during the day. Those with tinted glass on their vehicles get to enjoy some privacy behind the dark glass, and more importantly, shielding from the scorching sun as the mercury rises. Should you be considering a tint for your vehicle, here are some things to think about that could help you make a better-informed decision.


What are the advantages of window tint?

Window tints come in different shades, and how dark or light you would like to go is up to you. One of the perks of having a tint is the aesthetic appeal. Most vehicles simply look better with shaded windows, and if you get it right, it may even have a contrasting effect with the colour of your vehicle. Enhancing its overall visual appearance.


Beyond aesthetics, there are practical reasons why one would want to consider having tinted windows. As we’ve already mentioned, darker windows will shield you from being toasted alive as you sit in traffic, the sun blazing overhead. If you’ve ever had the misfortune of driving a car with no tint in peak summer temperatures, you’ll know how uncomfortable it can become. Privacy in the car is important for some people, and shaded windows enable you to have that. After all, your vehicle is your personal space – you don’t leave your curtains open at night, do you?


If you intend on keeping your vehicle for the long haul, a decent quality tint will not only protect you from harmful UV rays, but your car’s interior too. A tint will keep your interior surfaces like the leather seats, plastics and dashboard looking newer for longer.

“Out of sight is out of mind”. We’ve all heard about smash and grab’s, an all too common occurrence in South Africa and other parts of the world. What criminals cannot see they cannot steal (in most cases anyway). A tint keeps your valuables hidden from prying eyes, thus sparing you the inconvenience of having a window smashed by a criminal.


Limitations of a window tint

Window shades come in different grades, from 70% to 5% VLT (Visible Light Transmittance). If you intend on going incognito through a blacked-out tint, the kind where someone standing outside cannot see inside, we hate to break it to you but there are limitations to how dark you can go. The legal limit for how dark your vehicle’s windows can be in South Africa is 35% VLT.


Window film is not anti-smash and grab (safety film). The film used to protect you from ungoverned thieves will cost more to install than a normal window tint. Smash and grab film prevents the glass from shattering into a million small pieces if your window is broken. Broken glass can injure you or your passengers, and provide access to your vehicle. Safety film keeps the shattered glass in place in the event it is damaged.


Words: Gugu Masuku