Understanding Window Tint Visible Light Transmission

Window tinting has become very popular in recent years. One of the most significant benefits of having your vehicle’s windows tinted is to help keep the inside temperature cooler during the summer. However, some people because tint their car windows because it gives them a little more privacy. While many people have their car windows tinted, they don’t stop to think about how it’s done. There are several tools that window tinting professionals need to successfully complete their job. 

How are windows tinted

When it comes to choosing a window tint film, the most important factor is the amount of light that can pass through the tint. A tint can provide a certain amount of security, privacy, and also protection from UV rays. However, in automotive applications, it is important to know how dark you can tint your windows, since several states have laws that limit this. As a result, window tint film manufacturers have devised a method to calculate how much light can pass through a tinted window.

Before windows can be tinted, you need to purchase the window tinting film. This “film” is what really tints your windows. Most professionals select the degree of darkness and sometimes even the type of film for vehicles. Be aware of state laws before deciding on the shade of the film. You should also select one that has a lifetime warranty.

Visible Light Transmission (VLT)

Regardless of the application, all window tint films are measured by levels of visible light transmission (VLT) of materials. Tints come in a variety of colors. When professionals refer to a tint, they generally mention the tint color and VLT value. Each piece of glass, regardless of the application, blocks a certain amount of light. As a result, the glass also has its VLT value that must be taken into account to calculate the VLT value of the window tinting film

Professionals use this simple formula to calculate the final VLT value:

V1 (VLT value of glass) x V2 (VLT value of tint) = V3 (final value of VLT).

For example, the legal limit for a vehicle’s window tint is 30%, and the vehicle’s glass has a VLT value of 75%. In this case, we simply need to rearrange the formula to calculate the proper shade to install as follows:

V3 (final VLT value) ÷ V1 (glass VLT) = V2 (tint VLT value)

0. 30 (30%) ÷ 0. 75 (75%) = 0. 40 (40%) 

Professional installers use this formula to save their clients a significant amount of money not only on traffic fines (for illegally-tinted windows) but also on reinstalling the window shade that most traffic courts require when a driver receives a fine for illegally-tinted windows.