The window tinting debate

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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby gorilla monsoon » Tue Oct 23, 2012 12:05 pm

Womble Squared, where are you getting your information from? You can't mount an argument with ad hoc evidence.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby The 2nd Womble » Tue Oct 23, 2012 12:22 pm

Thats part of the point of this. Do we have this all wrong, or is tinting the greatest evil to befall us since bird flu? I will post more links to the info being thrown around tonight.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby InTheWoods » Tue Oct 23, 2012 2:24 pm

Womble, re your photo. I could take a photo that looks pretty much like that at midnight, and I know you wouldn't use such a photo to prove that nobody needs lights at night :)

The camera merely adjusts the exposure to suit the brightness of the scene. So I would agree that not much can be determined from that particular photo. You would be better off having 2 identical objects or areas half behind the window and half not, and ensure that the photo is exposed for the *non*-tinted part of the image to avoid blowing it out. This will give you a relative difference between tinted vs non tinted, but not an absolute measurement of how much light is available. Parts of your photo are also "blown" ie. at maximum brightness in both the tinted and non-tinted sections, which means the brightness was so high the camera couldn't record any information about those parts apart from them being "bright as".

FWIW I got tinting on our new car and a couple of different T35 type tints gave different amounts of light transmission to my eyes. Perhaps they aren't all the same. It is fine during the day, but took a few drives to get used to at night and in some circumstances might reduce safety, eg a ninja cyclist at night.

ps. I'm a fairly serious photographer.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby gorilla monsoon » Tue Oct 23, 2012 3:10 pm

So we don't tint our windows so we can see things properly but then we get sun glare and can't see things anyway. So we use sunglasses. But wait! Are sunglasses not just another form of window tinting?

And night time? Headlight glare, street light glare, lighting distractions of all kinds.

It is not really the (legal) tinting that presents as an issue but the concentration levels of drivers and the distraction levels allowed by various tiers of government and you just can't legislate against that.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby GraemeL » Tue Oct 23, 2012 3:52 pm

gorilla monsoon wrote:So we don't tint our windows so we can see things properly but then we get sun glare and can't see things anyway. So we use sunglasses. But wait! Are sunglasses not just another form of window tinting?

And night time? Headlight glare, street light glare, lighting distractions of all kinds.

It is not really the (legal) tinting that presents as an issue but the concentration levels of drivers and the distraction levels allowed by various tiers of government and you just can't legislate against that.


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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby Oxford » Tue Oct 23, 2012 7:32 pm

gorilla monsoon wrote:So we don't tint our windows so we can see things properly but then we get sun glare and can't see things anyway. So we use sunglasses. But wait! Are sunglasses not just another form of window tinting?

And night time? Headlight glare, street light glare, lighting distractions of all kinds.

It is not really the (legal) tinting that presents as an issue but the concentration levels of drivers and the distraction levels allowed by various tiers of government and you just can't legislate against that.

Yes you can, make it mandatory for all vehicles to have a wheel mounted spike pointed directly at the driver's chest. Driver concentration will rise a little then I bet. :mrgreen:
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby maestro » Wed Oct 24, 2012 11:37 am

InTheWoods wrote:ensure that the photo is exposed for the *non*-tinted part of the image to avoid blowing it out. This will give you a relative difference between tinted vs non tinted, but not an absolute measurement of how much light is available.

I got tinting on our new car and a couple of different T35 type tints gave different amounts of light transmission to my eyes.

ps. I'm a fairly serious photographer.


Any chance of you posting some photos of this, taken as you described?
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby maestro » Wed Oct 24, 2012 12:00 pm

gorilla monsoon wrote:So we don't tint our windows so we can see things properly but then we get sun glare and can't see things anyway. So we use sunglasses. But wait! Are sunglasses not just another form of window tinting?

I see your point, but I don't believe it's a fair comparison because...
1) Your eyes are adjusted for the untinted windscreen, so when you look out of a tinted side window you are getting far less light. With sunnies in an untinted car there is no change in tint level so your eyes have already adjusted and you will be able to see properly during a quick sidewards glance.
2) In my opinion heavy tints are worst at night when you would simply have taken the sunnies off, butyou can't control your window tint based on light levels or time of day.
3) Sunnies only limit the light to the eyes of the driver where a tinted window will obscure the driver from being seen from outside. Despite the 2nd Womble's opinion, I still believe that being able to see another driver's body language is a valuable aid to road safety.

gorilla monsoon wrote:And night time? Headlight glare, street light glare, lighting distractions of all kinds.

And in my opinion, tinted windows make this even worse (makes less glary objects harder to see)

gorilla monsoon wrote:It is not really the (legal) tinting that presents as an issue but the concentration levels of drivers and the distraction levels allowed by various tiers of government and you just can't legislate against that.

I completely agree. It is 100% the drivers responsibility to ensure compliance with the law, therefore it is 100% their responsibility to ensure that they can see well enough to do so. In a perfect world you could rely on drivers to self regulate their tints to their capabilities, but we are not in such a world. This applies equally to mobile phone usage, yet this has been banned as people were unable to self regulate effectively.
As you said, we can't directly legislate concentration or distraction levels so we aim for what is achievable, which in this case is to legislate tint levels.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby sogood » Wed Oct 24, 2012 12:30 pm

The problem with window tinting debate is, what about trucks and vans? They have no rear and rear side windows and are still permitted to drive on the road. Should they all be forced to have direct visual built into them?
Last edited by sogood on Wed Oct 24, 2012 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby InTheWoods » Wed Oct 24, 2012 12:35 pm

maestro wrote:
InTheWoods wrote:ensure that the photo is exposed for the *non*-tinted part of the image to avoid blowing it out. This will give you a relative difference between tinted vs non tinted, but not an absolute measurement of how much light is available.

I got tinting on our new car and a couple of different T35 type tints gave different amounts of light transmission to my eyes.

ps. I'm a fairly serious photographer.


Any chance of you posting some photos of this, taken as you described?


On the weekend I will do that for you. Obviously I only have the one tint though, the variation between different tints was looking at samples at the dealership.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby ldrcycles » Wed Oct 24, 2012 1:08 pm

sogood wrote:The problem with window tinting debate is, what about trucks and vans? They have no rear and rear side windows and are still permitted to drive on the road. Should they all be forced to have direct visual built into them?


IMO something definitely needs to be done there, i hate driving the vans at my work as they have no side windows and the visibility is dreadful.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby sogood » Wed Oct 24, 2012 2:38 pm

ldrcycles wrote:IMO something definitely needs to be done there, i hate driving the vans at my work as they have no side windows and the visibility is dreadful.

That's the point. Their visibility is poor yet there's still more cyclists killed by cars that have surround windows. It's not the device, but how the device is used that's important. Window tinting has many other benefits including energy saving and reducing cancer/cataract risks. The driver of tinted vehicle just have to drive accordingly.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby maestro » Wed Oct 24, 2012 4:45 pm

sogood wrote:The problem with window tinting debate is, what about trucks and vans? They have no rear and rear side windows and are still permitted to drive on the road. Should they all be forced to have direct visual built into them?


My objection to tinting is only for the windscreen and the side windows at the front, and so applies equally to trucks and vans.
I don't see any reason why the rear side windows can't be safely tinted further.
I'm not sure about the rear window as I have no experience driving any vehicles without one (although such vehicles do tend to have larger mirrors).

As for the cancer/cataract risk... These are caused by UV light which glass will significantly block anyway so I don't see this as a factor in the tinting debate. The point on energy efficiency is a valid one, although I believe that it is a worthwhile trade-off for safety.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby maestro » Wed Oct 24, 2012 5:05 pm

InTheWoods wrote:On the weekend I will do that for you. Obviously I only have the one tint though, the variation between different tints was looking at samples at the dealership.

Thank you.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby Comedian » Wed Oct 24, 2012 7:02 pm

Fascinating.. tinting is a pet hate of mine. I'd like it to be banned outright.

My rule is if I can see the drivers and passengers area within a car I'll try and keep off the road and potentially ride within the door zone. If I can't see inside the vehicle, I have to treat it as though there is an occupant about to open a door on me so have to be out of the door zone. If this means I have to claim the lane then so be it. Cars that are tinted or when riding at night force me to do that.

So, I'd like to see tinting banned completely. But that's just me. :mrgreen:
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby GraemeL » Thu Oct 25, 2012 9:08 am

sogood wrote:
ldrcycles wrote:IMO something definitely needs to be done there, i hate driving the vans at my work as they have no side windows and the visibility is dreadful.

That's the point. Their visibility is poor yet there's still more cyclists killed by cars that have surround windows. It's not the device, but how the device is used that's important. Window tinting has many other benefits including energy saving and reducing cancer/cataract risks. The driver of tinted vehicle just have to drive accordingly.


Maybe it's because of the restricted visibility, those in vans and trucks pay more attention to their surroundings.

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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby sogood » Thu Oct 25, 2012 10:30 am

GraemeL wrote:Maybe it's because of the restricted visibility, those in vans and trucks pay more attention to their surroundings.

Also likely that riders pay more attention and keep a greater clearance with larger vehicles. Safety is never a single factor issue.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby wombatK » Thu Oct 25, 2012 11:24 am

Comedian wrote:Fascinating.. tinting is a pet hate of mine. I'd like it to be banned outright.

My rule is if I can see the drivers and passengers area within a car I'll try and keep off the road and potentially ride within the door zone. If I can't see inside the vehicle, I have to treat it as though there is an occupant about to open a door on me so have to be out of the door zone. If this means I have to claim the lane then so be it. Cars that are tinted or when riding at night force me to do that.

So, I'd like to see tinting banned completely. But that's just me. :mrgreen:

Totally agree. Dangerous to cyclists, pedestrians and to other motorist who can't see the head movement that tells
the owner is about to pull-out from the kerb or change lanes without using indicators.

Commercial vans with no rear windows don't present the same risk of passengers emerging from behind a visible front seat driver, although warning on unsignalled lane-changes can be as problematic. Why allow tinting to handicap passenger cars in the same way - they're far more numerous and would present a much larger risk.

Front seat side window tinting is detrimental to all other road users, and possibly to other drivers as maestro points out, so it needs to be banned outright or least reduced and better regulated.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby sogood » Thu Oct 25, 2012 11:42 am

wombatK wrote:Totally agree. Dangerous to cyclists, pedestrians and to other motorist who can't see the head movement that tells
the owner is about to pull-out from the kerb or change lanes without using indicators.

If a rider needs to see the driver's head movement to predict impending traffic movements and stay safe, then I'd contend the rider is riding too fast and close for the condition.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby maestro » Thu Oct 25, 2012 8:27 pm

sogood wrote:If a rider needs to see the driver's head movement to predict impending traffic movements and stay safe, then I'd contend the rider is riding too fast and close for the condition.


What does the rider's speed have to do with it?

If a driver is coming out of a side street and doesn't look, then how will slowing down help? In the accident I had, I could have been stationary and still been hit.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby sogood » Thu Oct 25, 2012 10:43 pm

maestro wrote:What does the rider's speed have to do with it?

"Speed Kills".
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby The 2nd Womble » Thu Oct 25, 2012 11:16 pm

Again, IMO if you think you can predict a vehicles movement by the behaviour of it's driver, you're either very gifted or a little hasty. If the average debatably aware driver doesn't know what they're going to do next much of the time, how will you?
As an exame, if I enter a roundabout I watch the vehicles speed and course, then turn signals and turn in of the front wheels, but never the driver. Never. Physics I trust, muppets who try to fight it behind the tiller I do not.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby wombatK » Fri Oct 26, 2012 6:00 am

The 2nd Womble wrote:Again, IMO if you think you can predict a vehicles movement by the behaviour of it's driver, you're either very gifted or a little hasty.

Not hasty or gifted - just requires average intelligence. The average driver does know what they want to do next, and it is well within most road users capability to read other drivers head movement well before the driver puts indicators or wheel movements into action. It's smart to do that because you can't trust indicator use, and you need as much warning as possible to effect evasive action. Vehicle speed and acceleration means waiting for wheel movements could be a fatal mistake. That's how heavy window tints on front windows hides valuable information and detracts from other road users safety.

It mightn't work that way for you, but it does for me - and I'm sure lots of other road users would agree.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby gorilla monsoon » Fri Oct 26, 2012 4:20 pm

Reading driver body language and understanding vehicle type behavioural predictability - that is, the general predictability of a vehicle type such as a truck or taxi - is easy. It just takes time and understanding to learn.
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Re: The window tinting debate

Postby maestro » Fri Oct 26, 2012 7:27 pm

The 2nd Womble wrote:Again, IMO if you think you can predict a vehicles movement by the behaviour of it's driver, you're either very gifted or a little hasty. If the average debatably aware driver doesn't know what they're going to do next much of the time, how will you?
As an exame, if I enter a roundabout I watch the vehicles speed and course, then turn signals and turn in of the front wheels, but never the driver. Never. Physics I trust, muppets who try to fight it behind the tiller I do not.


Speed, course and front wheels are excellent things to observe, indicators can be useful but should never be trusted (as I'm sure you are aware).

However, body language can sometimes make it blindingly obvious that a driver has their attention elsewhere and is about to do something stupid and you need to take extra care. This could be anything from turning around to talk to people in the back seat, being distracted by a mobile phone or GPS, applying makeup, and being so completely focused on traffic coming the other way that it's obvious that they have missed seeing you.

It's not about trying to be faster or more efficient, it's purely about looking for potential danger. I've slowed numerous times as I haven't seen a driver check properly and they still give way to me. That's OK, I'm not in a hurry... I just don't want to end up in hospital again.
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