How to remove scratches on car window tint

Written by eli laurens
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Car window tint film can scratch easily, and repair of the scratch will require partial removal of the film. Most window tint film has two layers, and even if the scratch only penetrates the top layer, the entire section containing the scratch must be replaced for a professional appearance. The average backyard tinter can finish the repair in about 30 minutes.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Razor blade
  • Distilled water
  • Spray bottle
  • Towel
  • Lint-free towel
  • Matching tint film
  • Squeegee

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  1. 1

    Cut into the tint around the scratch with the razor blade, penetrating both layers of the film and creating a section that can be removed. Deep, precise cuts will separate the film into sections.

  2. 2

    Spray the section with a liberal amount of distilled water, using the spray bottle. Don't use ammonia-based cleaners, as they will dissolve the glue. The area should be saturated but not dripping wet. Daub any excess with the towel.

  3. 3

    Work the razor blade underneath the lower layer of tint film at one corner, starting at the edge. Spray more water if the tint film begins to dry. Continue to lift the film with the edge of the razor blade until the entire section can be removed delicately. Once one half or more of the film comes up, it may be instinct to pull the rest away. This leaves glue and tint residue behind. Remove any latent glue particles with the razor blade. Wipe the glass with a lint-free towel.

  4. 4

    Cut a section of the new, matching tint film that is slightly larger than the section removed from the glass. There should be about half an inch of extra tint on all sides.

  5. 5

    Spray the glass with water, then peel the clear backing from the new tint film. Quickly place the glue side of the film against the glass and position it to the section's shape. Squeegee the tint from the centre out, squeezing all of the air bubbles that may be trapped in the film to the edge. Spray the tint with water if necessary.

  6. 6

    Cut the edge of the tint film along the old tint border, as closely as possible. The closer this seam, the more imperceptible the repair. Cut the edges from the tint so that it matches the edge of old tint along the glass. Check for any air bubbles and squeegee them out quickly if required. Allow the tint film to cure overnight before cleaning it.

Tips and warnings

  • Don't lift the film and try to "restart" the process. This will leave large amounts of glue on the glass and you will have to clean it off.
  • Use ventilation when applying tint film, as it can be pungent.

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