Window tints have become one of Ontario’s most popular car modifications in recent years. They reduce glare, prevent harmful UV rays from entering your car, provide privacy and security, and, of course, enhance your car’s appearance.

However, there are strict regulations as to their legality, which has been the cause of much confusion among Ontarian car owners because how much tint (if any) you are allowed to apply depends on which window you are looking at.

So, if you want to make sure that you adhere to all rules and regulations, read on to find the window tint percentages explained and find out how to pick the perfect tint for your car along the way.

What Do Window Tint Percentages Mean?

When researching window tints, you will likely come across two expressions. One is the VLT (Visible Light Transmission rate), and the other is the tint percentage. They are the same.

Window tinting involves the application of a thin laminate film to a vehicle’s glass to darken the window. The strength of the tint of the film will determine how dark the window will be. The tint percentage is measured in how much visible light will still come through, which is the abovementioned VLT. So, if the VLT rate is 70%, it will allow 70% of light to pass through.

It’s crucial to check the tint percentage to ensure the tinting doesn’t interfere with the vehicle’s operation. While the benefits of window tinting are clear, it’s essential not to overdo it.

Common Window Tint Percentage Levels

The most common window tint darkness levels are 5%, 20%, 35%, 50% and 70%, with benefits and drawbacks, so it’s critical to do research before choosing the right tint percentage.

Here’s an overview of the advantages and disadvantages associated with these specific tint levels:

5% Window Tint


Maximum Privacy: 5% tint is the darkest available and provides the utmost privacy, making it nearly impossible to see inside the vehicle from the outside.

UV and Heat Blockage: It offers excellent UV and heat protection, ideal for hot and sunny climates.


Limited Visibility: Visibility from inside the vehicle, especially at night or in low-light conditions, is significantly reduced, which can pose safety concerns.

Legal Restrictions: In Ontario, using this tint on the windshield (where no tint is allowed) or the front left and right windows (a maximum of 30%) is illegal.

20% Window Tint


Good Privacy: 20% tint provides a reasonable level of privacy while still allowing some visibility from the outside.
UV and Heat Reduction: It offers effective UV and heat protection without being overly dark.


Reduced Visibility: Although it maintains better visibility than 5% tint, it can still minimise nighttime visibility and make driving at night more challenging.

Legal Restrictions: In Ontario, using this tint on the windshield (where no tint is allowed) or the front left and right windows (a maximum of 30%) is illegal.

35% Window Tint


Balanced Visibility and Privacy: 35% tint offers a good balance between privacy and visibility, making it popular among many drivers.

UV and Heat Blockage: It provides substantial UV and heat protection while preserving reasonable visibility.

50% Window Tint


Enhanced Visibility: 50% tint allows for excellent daytime and night visibility.

UV Protection: It still offers some UV protection and reduces heat buildup without significantly darkening the windows.


Limited Privacy: While it provides some privacy, it may not be sufficient for those seeking more privacy or security.

70% Window Tint


Maximum Visibility: 70% tint is almost transparent and offers a minimal reduction in visibility.

UV Protection: It provides some UV protection and helps prevent heat buildup without noticeably darkening the windows.


Limited Privacy: It offers very little privacy, making it less suitable for those who value privacy or security.

Benefits of Professional Installation of Window Tints

It may be tempting to attempt to install a window tint by yourself, but it comes with some significant risks. You must pay close attention to the surface preparation, the right product and the application, which are not straightforward processes.

window tint and vinyl wrap

On the other hand, a professional installation offers many benefits compared to attempting to tint your vehicle’s windows yourself.

Here are some of the advantages of choosing professional window tint installation:

Expertise and Experience

Professional tint installers have the knowledge, training, and experience to apply window tint films appropriately. They’re familiar with the intricacies of the process, including selecting the proper film, preparing the surface, and ensuring a flawless application.

Quality Materials

Professional installers can access the highest-quality window tint films designed to last and provide superior UV protection, heat reduction, and glare control. They also have access to a range of different film options to meet your specific needs and preferences.

Precise Installation

One of the trickiest parts of window tinting is the installation. Professional installers have the skills and equipment to ensure precise and accurate tint application. This means no bubbles, creases, or imperfections in the tint, which can affect visibility and overall aesthetics.

Compliance with Local Laws

Professionals are familiar with local tinting laws and regulations. They can advise you on the legal limits for tint darkness in Ontario, helping you avoid potential fines or penalties for non-compliance.

Warranty and Guarantee

Reputable tint shops often offer warranties or guarantees for their work. This ensures that if you encounter any issues with the tint, such as peeling or discolouration, they will address it, providing you with peace of mind and potential cost savings down the road.


Professional installers can help you select the right shade and type of tint film to achieve your desired level of privacy, UV protection, and heat reduction. They can also offer decorative and aesthetic options like patterns or colour tints.

Time and Convenience

DIY tinting can be time-consuming and challenging for beginners, and professional installation is typically faster and more convenient. You can have your windows tinted expertly in a single appointment, saving you time and effort.

Increased Safety

Properly installed window tints can enhance safety by reducing glare and improving visibility. Professionals ensure the tint does not impede the driver’s ability to see clearly, especially at night.

Improved Aesthetics

Professional installation results in a clean and professional look for your vehicle. The tint film is applied evenly and seamlessly, enhancing the overall appearance of your car.


Professionally installed window tints are less likely to peel, bubble, or discolour prematurely. They’re designed to withstand exposure to the elements and daily wear and tear, extending the lifespan of the tint.

Maintaining and Caring for Tinted Windows

While window tints are designed to last, proper care and maintenance are crucial to ensure their longevity and function over time.

Here are some tips on how to maintain and care for your tinted windows:

Wait Before Rolling Down Windows

Right after installing your window tint, waiting before rolling down the window is crucial. The installer will give you a recommended curing time, which depends on the climate and type of film used. It can take a few days to a week to ensure the tint is fully cured and will not be damaged by rolling down the windows prematurely.

Use the Right Cleaning Products

Use a mild, ammonia-free glass cleaner or a mixture of water and a few drops of dish soap to clean tinted windows. Avoid using ammonia-based or abrasive cleaners, as they can damage the tint.

Use Soft Materials

When cleaning your tinted windows, use a soft, lint-free cloth or a microfiber towel. Avoid using abrasive materials like paper towels or coarse sponges that can scratch the tint.

Gentle Cleaning Technique

Gently wipe the window in a circular or up-and-down motion, being careful not to apply excessive pressure. This helps remove dirt and grime without damaging the tint.

Avoid Sharp Objects

Be careful when loading and unloading items near your tinted windows. Sharp objects like keys or tools can scratch or puncture the film.

Regular Cleaning

Regularly cleaning your tinted windows can prevent dirt, dust, and residue buildup. This will help maintain the film’s clarity and appearance.

Protect Against Scratches

Be mindful of objects that could scratch the tint, such as seat belts, jewellery, and pets’ claws. Take precautions to prevent these from directly contacting the tinted surface.

Avoid Harsh Weather Conditions

Extreme weather conditions like hail, snow, or ice can damage window tint. If possible, park your vehicle in a garage or covered area during weather events.

Tint Repair

If you notice any damage to the window tint, such as peeling, bubbling, or discolouration, address it promptly. Professional tint shops can often repair or replace damaged sections of the tint.

Regular Inspections

Periodically inspect your tinted windows for wear, damage, or deterioration. Early detection of issues can prevent more extensive problems.