How much does it cost to tint home windows?
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Home Window Tinting Cost Guide
Updated: Jan 01, 1970
Although window tinting is typically associated with car windows, it can be applied on almost any glass surface. It’s a thin laminate film installed on the interior or exterior glass surfaces for a wide variety of purposes such as reduction of heat and glare, thermal insulation, UV, filtration, privacy, safety, decoration, branding, and more. Some of the factors that affect the tinting cost are the size of windows, their shape, the material used, and the story where the windows are located.
The national average cost to tint five double hung 24" x 36" windows is $330 to $570, with most homeowners spending $360 to install a solar window tint. Having a professional spray window tint to five flat windows can cost as low as $150, while installing a smart glass film on five double hung 24" x 36" windows can cost up to $1,350.
Cost of Window Tinting
|Home Window Tinting Cost|
|National average cost||$360|
Window Tinting Cost per Square Foot
The size of windows is another major factor in the tinting cost. Typically, the window tinting price range with professional installation is between $5 and $19 per sq. ft., depending on the quality of the film that will be used. Some factors like the location of the windows (ground story, attic, etc.) and their shape also influence the overall cost.
|Window Size||Cost (Materials and Labor)|
|2’ x 3’ (6 sq. ft.)||$30 - $114|
|3’ x 4’ (12 sq. ft.)||$70 - $228|
|3’ x 6’ (18 sq. ft.)||$90 - $342|
|4’ x 6’ (24 sq. ft.)||$120 - $456|
|6’ x 6’ (36 sq. ft.)||$180 - $684|
Window Tinting Cost per Window
Home window tinting prices range between $5 and $19 per sq. ft. In most cases, companies don’t do small projects and have a minimum rate of around $250 to cover the cost of travel and equipment. The overall cost to apply tint to windows may be lower if more windows are to be done or a larger surface to cover. Make sure to clearly state the number of windows and their type to determine the exact cost of tinting them. Below is a table with the average cost to tint double hung 24" x 36" windows.
|Number of Windows||Cost (Materials and Labor)|
|1 (6 sq. ft.)||$30 - $114|
|2 (12 sq. ft.)||$70 - $228|
|3 (18 sq. ft.)||$90 - $342|
|4 (24 sq. ft.)||$120 - $456|
|5 (30 sq. ft.)||$150 - $570|
Home Window Tinting Cost by Tint Type
The average cost of tinting spray is $5 to $11 per square foot, while tint film costs between $7 and $19 per square foot. The main difference between the two, as you may guess, is that one is sprayed on the glass surface, while the other one is applied on the glass surface by using an adhesive. Both have their advantages and disadvantages in terms of application and price, so you should analyze which option is better for your glass needs.
When comparing window tint spray vs. film, the first obvious difference is the application. Window tinting spray is sprayed onto the glass, while the tint film is glued to the surface using a heated adhesive. Because of how they are applied, window sprays are cheaper to install than window film but aren’t as durable. Both come in a variety of colors so you can customize the look of your glass surfaces.
|Tint Type||Cost per sq. ft. (Materials and Labor)|
|Spray||$5 - $11|
|Window Film||$7 - $19|
Spray to Tint Windows
Window spray is applied by spraying the surface. So, the tint is easy to install on any size and shape of the window without worrying about adhesive failure, bubbling, or peeling off. Because of this, window tinting with spray is cheaper than window film tint but isn’t as powerful against UV rays and heat. Another downside is that if the glass gets scratched, it’s extremely difficult to repair it since the spray is permanent. The most common solution is to replace it, which can turn out to be quite costly. It is installed at the cost of $5 to $11 per square foot.
Coming in at $7 to $19 per square foot, the window film installation cost compensates for some of the downsides of window spray tint. While spray tint can be a DIY project, it takes a professional to install a window film tint. This is because the application involves using an adhesive that is heated and integrated with the film. A common issue that appears during the application of a tint film is bubbling, which is why a trained professional must do the job. Tint films are not permanent and need to be reapplied once they start peeling off. Since it is to peel them off, if there is any damage to them, it can easily be replaced.
House Window Tinting Prices by Window Type
The window type, location, and shape contribute to the tinting project’s price, typically $5 to $19 per square foot installed. If the windows are flat, ground-level, and easy to access, the cost will be lower. Windows that contain many separate panes might cost more than windows of the same size that feature two larger panes of glass. If you have skylight windows, or the windows are on a higher level, the cost will increase.
Finally, some types of windows are naturally larger than other types, so the cost to tint them will be higher. For instance, picture windows, bay windows, or sliding doors may be more expensive to cover simply because they require a larger, continuous piece of film. Therefore, the type of windows you want to cover impacts the cost of the job.
|Window Type||Cost per Sq. Ft. (Materials and Labor)|
|Picture Window Tint||$5 - $10|
|Sliding Glass Door Window Tint||$5 - $12|
|Hurricane Window Film Cost||$7 - $15|
|French Door Window Film||$10 - $19|
|Skylight Window Film||$11 - $19|
Cost to Tint Home Windows by Purpose
The average cost of home window tinting ranges between $5 and $19 per sq. ft. but mostly depends on the type of tint installed or the purpose of installation. The most common purpose of residential house tinting is heat and glare reduction. On the other hand, commercial window film installation is typically done to reduce heat and protect the inside at the same time.
|Tint Purpose||Cost per Sq. Ft. (Materials and Labor)|
|Solar||$5 - $19|
|Decorative||$6 - $13|
|Security||$7 - $19|
Solar Window Film
Solar window film is the most common tint, which costs $5 to $19 per square foot installed. They have a reflective exterior surface that reflects the sunlight and prevents the light and heat from entering the interior. The heat-reflecting film doesn’t change the window’s appearance. It is an insulating window film that reduces the harmful UV rays and controls the heat, making them energy efficient. In addition to this, solar window films reduce glare, which protects the interior elements and furniture from fading. While all solar window tinting provides some level of heat reduction, protection against UV rays, and glare reduction, they can also be:
- Reflective: Decreases the solar energy and light that enters the interior. Doesn’t provide privacy at night.
- Mirrored/One-way privacy: Gives maximum privacy with a mirrored exterior while letting people on the inside see out.
- Dual reflective: Lets you see on the outside while allowing a bigger amount of light to get through on the inside.
- Ceramic & nano ceramic: A new technology that lets the light through while blocking infrared light and controls heat.
Decorative Window Film
Installing a decorative tinted window screen costs around $6 to $13 per sq. ft. Decorative window film gives the space in your home a whole new look and improves privacy, design, and brightness. They are mostly used on bathroom windows, front doors, or as decorative elements throughout the home.
Decorative tints can be made in various patterns, styles, colors, and shades, or even create custom designs. While they don't give UV protection and window strength like other films, they have vital privacy settings many homeowners look for, so many decorative window films are referred to as privacy windows.
The privacy window film cost varies if the window is obscure and obstructive, the two main privacy film types. Obscure and obstructive windows can then be patterned, textured, or frosted to prevent vision one way or both ways. Obscuring window films allow one-way vision through the glass, while obstructive window films prevent vision both ways. The most common designs used for decorative window tints are frost, texture, color, pattern, gradient, and specialty tints.
Window Security Film Installation
Residential window tinting cost with security film costs $7 to $19 per square foot. Aside from having the heat, glare, and UV reflection properties that solar films have, security films add a level of protection against intrusion, forceful entry, accidents, and natural disasters. The film comes in multiple thickness options that strengthen the window and prevent it from breaking during disasters, pressure, violence, or other outside effects. The thicker the window, the stronger it will be. Common options include:
- Natural disaster film: It is three to four mil thick. It protects against earthquakes and hurricanes and keeps shattered glass intact.
- Forced entry film: It is seven to eight mil thick and has the same strength as natural disaster film with increased protection from forced entry.
- High security film: It is 13 to 14 mil thick and has everything the previous two have. It also prolongs the time to get through glass significantly.
Professional Window Tinting Cost
Most companies have a minimum rate of around $250 and won’t take small jobs. The cost of installing window tinting is usually around $1 to $5 a square foot. The film itself may cost between $4 and $14 per square foot, depending on the quality. Costs, however, vary depending on the type of window. The average cost of installing solar window film on five double hung 24" x 36" windows is $360, from which $150 are labor and $210 materials.
The actual installation of window film is a pretty quick process. After cleaning the window, the professional sprays it with the cleaning solution, cuts the film to size, and peels away a few inches of the backing of the film. Then, they spray it with the solution and press it onto the window from top to bottom down the window, peeling the backing, spraying, and pressing. Once the film is on the window, the installer uses a squeegee to remove any trapped air bubbles and helps the film adhere more effectively. The film sticks firmly in about 30 minutes and continues curing to the window for another 4 to 8 days.
If you have the windows professionally tinted, most companies will need access to the windows. This means clearing a path and ensuring that the sill is free of plants, pictures, or other items. In most cases, you won’t be required to remove your curtains unless they cannot be tied back.
Window Tint Removal Cost
If you decide that you do not like the tinted windows, it is possible to remove the tint for a cost of $3 to $5 per square foot, depending on the professional who removes it. Removing a tint from your windows leaves residue initially, but it can also be removed, leaving your windows in the same condition they were previously. You can remove the tint yourself by spraying the film with ammonia and scraping it from the window with a razor blade. However, it’s recommended that you let a professional do it to avoid scratching or damaging your windows.
Tinted House Windows Pros And Cons
Many advantages may be noted to having the windows tinted in your home. It blocks the sun’s rays from entering your house through your windows, which will prevent certain rooms from heating up too quickly. Window tinting also makes the room more comfortable and reduces the energy costs needed to cool the space. Also, tinting your windows prevents glare, which can improve views and help with indoor activities that involve looking at screens.
Some types of window tinting improve the privacy of your home by making it more difficult to see through the glass without blocking any light. Security film is available, which can keep the glass from shattering when hit. It reduces the chances of a break-in because it is more difficult to see inside the home.
You should consider a few cons when having your windows tinted. Tinting changes the color of the light and can potentially darken the rooms. If you find that this effect is undesirable, it can be difficult and expensive to have the film removed.
Window Tint vs Blinds
Window tinting is not the only way to improve energy costs, block UV rays, or enhance privacy. Window coverings such as curtains, blinds, and shades all do the same thing to some extent. While both options do a similar job and can be customized and designed to enhance the room’s appearance, there are many differences that you may want to consider.
For one, window tinting always stays in place. You cannot change or adjust it, something you can freely do with window coverings. Tints are low maintenance and can easily be wiped, which blinds have to be cleaned specially. Finally, the biggest difference and a major advantage of window film is that it protects the inside without blocking the view, which is not the case with blinds or curtains.
|Window Treatment||Cost per Sq. Ft. (Materials and Labor)|
|Blinds||$2 - $25|
|Window Tint||$5 - $19|
Enhancement and Improvement Costs
3m Bulletproof Window Film
3m is a popular manufacturer of window films with window tint options with a varying cost from only $5 to $100 per square foot, depending on the window type and film quality. A popular option is their security films designed to deter intruders from breaking in, keep the inside safe from outside dangers, and bomb blast mitigation. However, their safety and security window films are not bulletproof but rather designed to deter forceful entries.
Smart Glass Cost per Square Foot
If you want a smart glass installed, the overall house window tint prices will significantly increase. Smart glass panels cost around $50 to $100 per square foot with professional installation included. While window film is designed to block heat and light from entering your home, smart glass does this automatically with the click of a button. It’s installed between two toughened glass panels and can be made with added glass options like safety, fire-resistance, color, double-glaze, and more.
The smart tint cost per square foot typically goes between $30 and $45 per square foot installed. It’s applied the same way as other window tints on new or existing glass surfaces and doesn’t require replacing the whole window as the smart glass. The smart glass tint adjusts to the amount of light and heat it detects, so it can block more UV rays or open up to let more light in on overcast days.
Frosted Glass Film
Frost glass film costs between $6 and $10 per square foot. As its name suggests, it’s a smeared-like glass film that provides privacy during both day and night while letting the light through. However, it also prevents you from looking outside, which is why it’s mostly installed on front doors and bathroom windows where two-way privacy is needed. Frost glass film is also installed on surfaces where you want to add a personal touch.
Car Window Tinting
The cost to tint your whole car starts as low as $120 and goes up to $800 depending on the quality of film you will be using. The standard, non-reflective tint typically costs around $120 to $500, while installing ceramic, metallic, carbon, or colored tints can cost up to $800 for a whole car. In addition to frosted or etched appearing films, manufacturers offer several options, including patterns such as checks, herringbone, or weaves. Different colors are also available and, in some cases, a “stained glass” appearance.
Additional Considerations and Costs
- In some cases, window tinting may benefit the resale value of your home. If the windows are older or not designed to be insulating or energy-efficient, adding window tint can make your home more attractive to buyers.
- Tinted windows break less easily and are lower maintenance than standard glass. If the window needs repair, the entire pane with the film can be removed, meaning the film does not need to come off.
- Most costs factor in square or rectangularly shaped windows that are easy to cut the film to fit. Oddly shaped windows may increase your costs if they require more time to fit.
- Some companies may also offer a discount if you have a larger than average number of windows to cover. For example, at around 1,000 sq. ft., the cost drops dramatically per square foot.
- Most window tints are silver, gray, or brown, but it is possible to tint your windows in nearly any color, including stained glass patterns.
- An important thing to note is that installing window film in your home could void your window warranty. Make sure to check if this would breach the insurance agreement before installing a window tint in your home.
- You can also find DIY window tinting kits for $15 to $40, depending on the film size. The kits typically contain information about the installation process, which typically requires cleaning the window, spraying it with an adhesive, cutting the film to size, and sticking it onto the window.
- Window tint is very low-maintenance because it shows fewer streaks and fingerprints than glass. You can clean it with a mild dishwashing detergent mixed with water and a soft cloth. Avoid using vinegar or ammonia-containing glass cleaners that can damage the film.
- How much does home window tinting cost?
The average tinting house windows cost can range between $5 to $19 per square foot, although the most common house window tinting cost is $12 per square foot.
- How to remove window film from house windows?
Removing a window film can be done by heating the filmed surface and slowly peeling it from the glass surface while continuing to heat the film as you’re peeling it. Removing a window spray often leaves a residue, which can be removed with additional cleaning.
- Does window film provide privacy at night?
There isn’t a window that provides 100% privacy without obstructing your view from the inside. During the day, the light on the outside is stronger than the inside and is reflected in the film. However, during the night, the inside light is stronger, so people can see on the inside.
- What can I put on my windows to see out but not in?
A mirrored tint such as one-way window film allows you to see everything outside from the inside. At the same time, it keeps your privacy and prevents people from the outside from seeing anything on the other side of the glass.
The information provided by our cost guides comes from a great variety of sources. For more information, read our Methodology and sources.