What’s the Buzz: Hello darkness, my old friend

Following the new vehicle window tint regulations announced by Transport Minister YB Anthony Loke, it has effectively made darker tints for the rear windows legal for private vehicles.

According to the new regulations, the legal Visible Light Transmission level (VLT) for the front windscreen is set at 70%, front side windows at 50% while the rear windows and windscreen can be had with any VLT percentage. Consumers have long championed for darker window tints (tints with lower VLT) citing hot weather protection and security reasons hence the Minister’s new ruling is definitely a welcomed move.

However, don’t just go full black on the rear windows just yet because it doesn’t mean the darker the tints, the cooler the car will be because the law of physics dictates that darker objects absorb the most heat.

It all boils down to the quality of the tints and its heat rejection and dispersion capabilities. The higher the heat rejection and the better the heat dispersion, the more effective it is in keeping your interior cool. A good quality tint with high VLT can also achieve the desired effect of keeping the cabin cool.

Illustration of various VLT levels, not to scale

Besides that, consumers should also be informed of the risks involved in having dark tints as it reduces low light visibility, making it tricky to drive at night especially when reversing or observing on-coming traffic from the rear.

That said, if you think the benefits of having darker tints on your car outweigh the cons, by all means.


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