Saturday, June 16, 2012

Luxe Auto Lounge – Window tinting extraordinaire … ** updated Sep 2016 **

Update: I still love the tint. However, the eyebrow on the front window has gone blue / purple and thus was obviously done with the cheap film and not the metal stuff that is on the rest of the windows. A friend says it actually looks pretty good and who am I to argue :-) ... but, I would rather it had not done that. Just make sure you get what you pay for ... the workmanship is otherwise first rate.

My trip to the St. Lawrence Rowing Club a week ago (images coming in a post fairly soon) reminded me of why I got window tinting on my 2001 CR-V. When we get bright sunshine and temperatures around 30C, the car heats up to deathly levels. Even driving with the air conditioner on can be uncomfortable when the sun beats down our your face and left arm.

So I decided to treat myself for Father’s Day and tint my windows. I called Shades, the fellow who did my windows very, very well last time … but no answer. So I Googled “best window tinting Ottawa” and found a few forums where such things are discussed.

I found two recurring themes:

  • Derand is pretty good and they are very inexpensive, but several people had to go back to get things “fixed”
  • If you want the best work done right the first time, go to Luxe Auto Lounge

Well, that seemed odd, since Luxe had not come up at all way back when I did the initial search for the CR-V tinting. So I looked into them and they seemed like the real deal. Apparently, they use an independent contractor for the windows who just happens to be brilliant with this stuff.

And although they are a bit more expensive, we’re talking something that will affect your feeling about your car for many years to come. This is not something where it pays to “go cheap” … many owners of sexy Nissan Maximas with embarrassingly purple tint can attest to that. Dye film is cheaper by perhaps 50 bucks, but the end result is a disaster waiting to happen. And it will.

Luxe appears to be run by a couple of young brothers and a couple of other young fellows who clearly love cars. The fellow I spoke with over the phone was very personable, as was the guy at the desk when I arrived.

So I got up incredibly early yesterday (6:30am is early for me :-) and made the trek to the east end, about 30 minutes from my house. We quickly arrived at an appropriate package for me – 22% tint all around with a 5% (or thereabouts) eyebrow / sunstrip on the windshield plus shampooed carpets and mats in the front and wipe down of the dash with a quick cleanup of the outside of the car and dressing of the tires – some of this came with the tinting package, and my total, taxes in, was around $425 … so the value for your money is extremely high in my opinion. Checkout full detailing prices to see what I mean.

Let me now remind you of what my car looked like when new.

Those are D700 shots by the way.

And let me show you what I got back from them …

That’s a D7000 shot, by the way.

Yes, it’s gorgeous and it looks like brand new, only even cooler than before. The difference in internal temperature is dramatic, as I expected.

And the best part of all this is that they gave me a loaner and I was able to drive over to Petrie Island (literally a kilometer away across highway 174) and wander around the islands for 3.5 hours (images coming soon to a blog near you) until they called me that it was ready. Awesome.

So it you are in and around the Ottawa area and are looking to get a little work done on your car, you should give Luxe Auto Lounge a try in my opinion. I am really pleased and impressed, but don’t take my word for it … Google them.