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E46 Convertible
The E46 vert forum. Talk about dropping your E46 top here.

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Old 01-10-2013, 11:16 AM   #1
ganeshkrishna
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To tint or not to tint ... advice welcomed

Hey guys, I'm getting some work done at the shop on my 06' white M3 vert (pic below). I am considering tinting the windows.

Two questions for you:
1. Do you recommend I do it and
2. If yes, what % (I'm in NYC where cops have bigger fish to fry).

I have always loved white cars with dark tints. That said, I have always been slightly adverse to doing mine because the black tint won't match the black vert top and I hate that it wont be a clean look. And when the top is down the windows are usually down so its an issue only with the top up.

What do you guys think?
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Old 01-10-2013, 11:46 AM   #2
johnrando
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I went through the same thought process, as my top is down 90% of the time. However, tint does help in looks and protection so I went with 35%. My decision was based on: it provides a nice tint, but it's light enough to not attract LEO attention, provides a nice look, gives sun protection, and it's still easy to see out of at night. If you're looking for something that gives it a slightly edgier look with the same features, go 30% IMHO. 35% is pretty mild, but it works. If you're looking for a dark, more aggressive look, 20% or more works.

EDIT. BTW, this was for my sides and rear, and I prefer the same all the way around. Some people like to limo tint their rears, rear/sides which is legal. The car in your pic looks good to me. Just don't scrimp on the tint, and good job at a reputable shop with quality tint runs over $200 around here.
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Last edited by johnrando; 01-10-2013 at 01:43 PM.
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Old 01-10-2013, 11:54 AM   #3
ganeshkrishna
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Great advice. Thanks. Do you by chance have a photo with your top up and the tints readily available?

Also, being in NYC I have the top up at least 60% of the time (don't really drive it in the winter).
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:06 PM   #4
Blueandwhite85
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IMO tint always improves the appearance of the car and has a few slight benefits - go for it!
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:38 PM   #5
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You're welcome. Depending on the light/angle of viewing, here are 2 pics. The 1st one is more representative. It was actually taken to show some since repaired top damage. The 2nd pic was taken to show the drop after my H&R Cup Kit install.



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Old 01-10-2013, 02:26 PM   #6
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Sh1t, no you got me thinking of tinting my vert. Never really crossed my mind before. Normally I tint all my cars, however with a convertible I didn't really see the point, but yours looks good tinted.

I guess a light tint wouldn't hurt.

Too dark and it will look silly when top is down & windows are up, IMO.


Nice M3 by the way! It does look like there is a light tint already, is that possible?

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Old 01-10-2013, 03:41 PM   #7
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Old 01-10-2013, 03:48 PM   #8
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Old 01-10-2013, 03:54 PM   #9
ganeshkrishna
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@johnrando -- your car looks great. Thanks for posting the pics.

@poncho -- i think the stock glass has a slight polarization to it which makes it look tinted in some angles.

After doing a google search for white vert M3's with tints I am leaning toward no tint, I think it just looks cleaner without it and I do have to ride 60% of the time with the top up in NYC.

Check it out: https://www.google.com/search?q=whit...OO670QHSp4HIDw

I have attached a few examples of ones that I think just don't work with the black vert top. I have kept my car pretty much completely stock as I love the original look, so I may just skip the tint, but am still open to your alls opinions.
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Old 01-10-2013, 05:19 PM   #10
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Thanks. To each his own. I think it would look good if you found the right color, but of course it's what you think that matters. There are some that are more grey vs. black, so you might want to ask a professional tint person if you're still interested in options. I totally get keeping the OEM look. I don't think the right tint would hurt that too much, and it's removable. GL w/your decision.
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Old 01-10-2013, 05:31 PM   #11
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i say do 35% since you have dark interior... i have same color but IR inside so i went with 15% looks good
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Old 01-10-2013, 05:42 PM   #12
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I like cleaning my windows too much and would worry about scratching the tint...and also, in NJ, you can't tint front windows at all. Also, since I'm older than most of you guys, my eyes aren't what they used to be...I want to see as well as I can at night.
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Old 01-10-2013, 06:04 PM   #13
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I want to see as well as I can at night.
I read somewhere that your night vision diminishes by 1/2 for every 12 years of age. Can't remember (or verify) the source, but I can't see nearly as well at night as I could 24 years ago.

I wouldn't tint my convertible either, but that's a personal preference. I've never liked dark tint.
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Old 01-10-2013, 06:14 PM   #14
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Good quality window tint is very resistant. On my DD, i have had tint on since 2007, no issues at all and I wash/detail my cars religiously. It all depends on the film used.

As for night visibilty, i am getting older as well, but its not too bad,again if a good film is used.

Aside from that it boils down to personal taste. On my other cars, I wouldn't have it any other way, however on a vert I still don't what I would do, or will do for that matter. But if I did, again it would be very light
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Old 01-10-2013, 06:20 PM   #15
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I started a thread just like this in the general forum a couple months back. I have since tinted mine and I wish I went with a lighter tint. Keep in mind what "dmax" stated when he said he wanted to see at night. The first night with my tints I hated it..... Having to put the windows down in New Engalnd in the winter to make sure there is no cars coming is a joke! I work nights and I'm going to be removing the dark tints as soon as I get time.

Just be careful on how dark you go if you decide to tint.
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Old 01-10-2013, 06:26 PM   #16
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Heard rumors that tinting over the "bubbles" on the window edges will cause more squeaks than you want. Its on the trailing edge of the front windows and the leading edges of the rear windows.

Did any of you experience this?

I'm debating whether to tint because of this.
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Old 01-10-2013, 06:47 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by E46er75 View Post
I started a thread just like this in the general forum a couple months back. I have since tinted mine and I wish I went with a lighter tint. Keep in mind what "dmax" stated when he said he wanted to see at night. The first night with my tints I hated it..... Having to put the windows down in New Engalnd in the winter to make sure there is no cars coming is a joke! I work nights and I'm going to be removing the dark tints as soon as I get time.

Just be careful on how dark you go if you decide to tint.
I got LASIK and my eyes are very light sensitive; can't stand a lot of light and can't see when its dark. I have 20% on my car and I can't back into my driveway without putting my windows down if its night time. I'm in Boston so this is really inconvenient when it's cold out. I put LED reverse lights in and it helps a little, but not perfect. If your eyes aren't that good, be prepared for this. In my opinion, its worth the hassle.

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Heard rumors that tinting over the "bubbles" on the window edges will cause more squeaks than you want. Its on the trailing edge of the front windows and the leading edges of the rear windows.

Did any of you experience this?

I'm debating whether to tint because of this.
I thought my tint was crappy because the tint looks weird over the window edges, but I took it to a few shops after and they said they wouldn't be able to do a better job because of the texture around the edges of the windows, its just how it comes out. Wish I had pics to show what I mean, but I don't right now. (Its cold out and I'm lazy)



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Old 01-10-2013, 06:58 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by adamdifilippo View Post

I thought my tint was crappy because the tint looks weird over the window edges, but I took it to a few shops after and they said they wouldn't be able to do a better job because of the texture around the edges of the windows, its just how it comes out. Wish I had pics to show what I mean, but I don't right now. (Its cold out and I'm lazy)

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I know exactly what that looks like. Something you have to deal with.

Did this tint on these edges increase your noise/creaking of the car? That's what I would want to avoid. Thx!
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Old 01-10-2013, 09:27 PM   #19
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My night vision is fine but seeing out of dark tinted windows is not easy for me, hence the 35%. I've had no problems with that. Oh, and I'm on the + side of older too, lol.
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Old 01-10-2013, 09:52 PM   #20
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I know exactly what that looks like. Something you have to deal with.

Did this tint on these edges increase your noise/creaking of the car? That's what I would want to avoid. Thx!
I haven't noticed any noise or creaking due to tint. I mean, the car is 12 years old, but I think the only creaking in the car is coming from rear seats not seated correctly. I'm 99% sure it is NOT due to the tint tho. Wish I could verify this for you, maybe this weekend I can give you a solid answer.

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