How to Choose the Right Window Tint Shade for Your Car

Window tint shades span from pitch black to super subtle. To enjoy your film to the fullest, it’s essential to pick the right tint shade for your style preferences, lifestyle, and needs. It must also comply with your state’s window tinting laws.

The window tinting specialists at Red Rocks Tint are here to offer our expert guidance. Use this comprehensive guide to pick the best window tint shade for your car. 


Understanding Window Tint Shades: The Basics 


What is Visible Light Transmission (VLT)?

How much sunlight can pass through the film determines the tint shade. This is measured in visible light transmission (VLT) percentages. The lower the percentage, the darker the tint shade will be. 

For instance, window tint with 5% VLT blocks out 95% of sunlight, making your windows appear blacked out. Picture the windows on a limo. Films with 90% VLT let 90% of the sun’s rays shine through, appearing to be almost transparent.

Each state has specific laws when it comes to window tint VLT percentages. Here in Colorado, for example, your front, side, and rear windows must have more than 27% VLT. 


What are the Legal VLT Limits of Each State?

Check out the chart below to learn what your state’s VLT requirements are.


State Front Sides Rear Sides Rear  Windshield
Alabama 32% 32% 32% 6″
Alaska 70% 40% 30% 5″
Arizona 33% Any Any AS1
Arkansas 25% 25% 10% 5″
California 70% Any Any 4″
Colorado 27% 27% 27% 4″
Connecticut 35% 35% Any AS1
Delaware 70% Any Any AS1
District of Columbia 70% 50% 50% 5″/AS1
Florida 28% 15% 15% AS1
Georgia 32% 32% 32% 6″
Hawaii 32% 35% 35% 70% light
Idaho 35% 20% 35% AS1
Illinois 35% 35% 35% 6″
Indiana 30% 30% 30% AS1
Iowa 70% Any Any AS1
Kansas 35% 35% 35% AS1
Kentucky 35% 18% 18% AS1
Louisiana 40% 25% 12% AS1
Maine 35% Any Any 4″
Maryland 35% 35% 35% 5″
Massachusetts 35% 35% 35% 6″
Michigan 4″ Any Any 4″
Minnesota 50% 50% 50% None
Mississippi 28% 28% 28% AS1
Missouri 35% Any Any AS1
Montana 24% 14% 14% AS1
Nebraska 35% 20% 20% 5″/AS1
Nevada 35% Any Any AS1
New Hampshire None 35% 35% 6″
New Jersey None Any Any None
New Mexico 20% 20% 20% 5″/AS1
New York 70% 70% Any 6″
North Carolina 35% 35% 35% AS1
North Dakota 50% Any Any <70%
Ohio 50% Any Any <70%
Oklahoma 25% 25% 25% 5″/AS1
Oregon 35% 35% 35% 6″
Pennsylvania 70% 70% 70% None
Rhode Island 70% 70% 70% AS1
South Carolina 27% 27% 27% AS1
South Dakota 35% 20% 20% AS1
Tennessee 35% 35% 35% AS1
Texas 25% 25% Any 5″/AS1
Utah 43% Any Any AS1
Vermont None Any 32% 32%
Virginia 50% 35% 35% AS1
Washington 24% 24% 24% 6″
West Virginia 35% 35% 35% 5″
Wisconsin 50% 35% 35% AS1
Wyoming 28% 28% 28% 5″/AS1


3 Things to Consider When Choosing a Tint Shade 

The tint shade you choose will largely depend on your aesthetic preferences, privacy needs, and driving habits. Here are a few things to consider when selecting tint shades.

  1. Personal Preferences

Do you prefer super dark windows or want a subtle hue difference? What are your privacy preferences? The darker the tint, the less visibility people will have inside your car. 

  1. Driving Habits

Do you spend hours behind the wheel during the day? Or do you drive at night? If you’re a daytime driver, you might want to invest in darker tint shades as they repel more UV rays, protecting your skin from sun damage. This also keeps your car’s interior cooler, making driving more comfortable on scorching summer days.

  1. Your Needs

Think about the reasons you’re tinting your windows. Is it for privacy, comfort, or looks? Knowing your “why” can help you determine the best tint shade for you. 


XPEL Window Tinting Options 

Not only should you choose the right shade for your needs, but you should also invest in high-quality film. At Red Rocks Tint, we’re proud to use XPEL window tint exclusively. We believe that XPEL is the best option because it blocks 99% of UV rays and 98% of infrared heat, never fades or turns purple, and will last for years.

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends XPEL window tint as an effective UV protectant, drastically reducing your risk of skin cancer.


 XPEL Window Tint Lineup

We offer several different XPEL tint options at our shop, including:

  • XPEL PRIME CS: This dyed, color-stable film provides comprehensive solar heat rejection and will never fade or turn purple.


  • XPEL PRIME XR: This film is made from nano-ceramic particles that block infrared heat and UV rays. The black-out film makes your car look sleek while providing superior privacy and security.


  • XPEL PRIME XR PLUS: This multi-layered ceramic film blocks up to 98% of infrared rays, significantly reducing your risk of skin cancer. It will never interfere with your phone, radio, or Bluetooth signals.


If you’re struggling to choose the best XPEL tint for your car, our experts are happy to help. After learning about your needs and goals, we’ll offer personalized product recommendations. 


Top 3 XPEL Window Tinting Benefits 

Tinting your windows with XPEL film has countless advantages. Among the top benefits of XPEL window tint include:

  1. UV and Heat Protection

XPEL window tint will block nearly 100% of UV rays. This is the equivalent of using 1,000 SPF sunscreen! Plus, it keeps your car from turning into an oven on hot, sunny days.


  1. Increased Privacy and Security

XPEL window film reduces sun glare, allowing you to see better while driving during sunsets. However, it will never impact your visibility at night. XPEL tint also prevents thieves from seeing into your car, reducing theft risk.


  1. Preserves Your Car’s Integrity

Since XPEL tint blocks out most UV rays, it will prevent your car’s interior from fading and cracking.


Trust Golden, Colorado’s Leading Window Tinting Experts 

No matter what tint shade you choose, Red Rocks Tint provides the fastest installation process and best results in Golden, Colorado. We are the area’s exclusive XPEL dealer with over 18 years of industry experience. You can trust us for superior results the first time around.

Let us enhance the look and comfort of your ride. Contact Red Rocks Tint today at 303.261.7384 to book your window tinting appointment. We look forward to hearing from you soon!