How to remove bubbles from your car's tint

A quick DIY job
by Joey Bernardez | Apr 28, 2018

It happens, and just about all of us have noticed it: Window tint that’s formed bubbles underneath. It can happen to both new and old tints alike. If it’s new, the best solution I would suggest is for you to bring it back to the shop that did the work and have them fix it. If it’s an old job or you’re just too far from the shop, and you’re a bit adventurous with DIY projects, here are some tips that can help you.

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But be warned: The tips that we’ll be giving you here assumes that the adhesive on your tint has not completely dried out. If the adhesive has dried out, then these tips are temporary at best. Face it, if your tint is rather old, the adhesive behind it is failing, and the film is letting go as evidenced by the bubbles, then it’s time to get it replaced.

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1) Applying heat

Tint is easier to work on when it’s hot and both the film and adhesive are pliable. Heat will allow the adhesive to weaken and the film to soften so that you can manipulate it. You can leave your car out on a hot day, or you can use a hair dryer or heat gun.

2) Making the film and adhesive pliable

Aside from the heat, you’ll need to further weaken and loosen the adhesive by using a mixture of water and soap in a spray bottle and spraying it on the area to be repaired. The interaction between the heat and soapy water will allow the film and the adhesive to become malleable enough for you to manipulate it. 

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3) Taking out the air bubbles

Using a small sharp pin, prick and make a tiny hole at the center of each of the bubbles, being careful not to tear the film. Make sure that the film is adequately hydrated with your soapy water spray. You want that film and adhesive to maintain their pliability while you’re working on them.

4) Pressing out the air bubbles.

Using a squeegee or a piece of hard plastic like a credit card, you can now press out the air bubbles. Start from the edges of each bubble and press down with long, smooth, slow strokes towards the center where the pinhole is. This will drive the air out of the bubble and allow the adhesive on the back of the film to re-adhere to the glass. Be careful, as too much pressure could tear the film. Remember to keep the film and adhesive hydrated as you work.

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Good luck! 

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PHOTO: Paulo Rafael Subido
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