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How To Save Money By Tinting Your Home Windows

Lower your air conditioning bills and your heating costs by applying insulating film to your windows. It's as easy as washing them!


  • TIP: If you're having trouble separating the clear backing from the film, place a small piece of clear tape on each side of a corner of the film and pull them apart.
  • Step 1: Remove the backing from the film. Have your helper center the film at the top of the windowpane, sticky side on the glass, and spray it with the solution.
  • Step 2: Starting at the top center, pull the squeegee down to smooth away bubbles. Using the blade or utility knife, trim the film on all sides to within 1/16 inch of the window frame. Spray the film again, and squeegee out any remaining bubbles.
  • Step 3: Let the film sit for a week before touching any windows. The film lasts about 10 years, and can be cleaned with a soft cloth and non-ammonia window cleaner.
  • FACT: Did you know? Insulating films prevent your window treatments, furniture, and rugs from fading by blocking out up to 99 percent of UV rays.
  • TIP: Spray your hands and your helper's hands with the cleaning solution, too; it will help prevent you from leaving fingerprints on the film.
  • Step 4: Saturate the window with the same shampoo mixture you used to clean the windows. The window should be dripping wet.
  • TIP: Avoid applying the film during the heat of the day, since the sun could dry the film too quickly, causing streaks.
  • Step 5: Get insulating window film at your local hardware or home improvement store. Make sure it's "low-emissivity," which keeps heat out in summer and blocks cold in winter. The film is slightly tinted, but clear enough to see through.
  • Step 6: Stir a teaspoon of baby shampoo into a gallon of distilled water and put it in a spray bottle. Spray it on the windows and wipe them with a lint-free cloth. Don't wash them with vinegar or ammonia; applying those liquids shortly before applying tinted film could damage it.
  • TIP: A coffee filter works perfectly as a lint-free cloth.
  • Step 7: Using a blade or utility knife, cut a piece of film that is the size of the window, plus an extra inch all around.
  • Step 8: Measure your windows, and then add 15 percent to the total square footage, to determine how much film you need.

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