Not surprisingly, and despite issues regarding its use, automotive window tint film has become big business in Malaysia. These days, protection from harsh temperatures as well as from potential crime has seen a significant growth in sales of window film – take a look around you and you’ll notice that just about every car has some film protection slapped on.
This of course has also meant that the number of window film brands has grown. There are plenty of names about, but not every film is the same in terms of quality – some, while impressive when new, don’t last the distance, something that buyers should be aware of before making a purchase.
That’s the core message Raytech CS is trying to put across to consumers. The Seri Kembangan-based company is currently one of the leaders in the business, with a comprehensive automotive film line-up comprising more than 10 dedicated products in five solar and five safety categories, all made in the USA. Today, with the best quality and durable products, along with a strong marketing focus, Raytech has no less than 27 window tinting specialist shops across Malaysia.
The company found that most of the window film retailers in the market were selling Korean-made film, sourced via local suppliers. All went well with these films initially, but over time customers began to complain about issues, performance and cosmetic-wise. Seeking to provide its customers with a premium quality window film without problems such as bubbles and waviness appearing in the product prompted Raytech to source its own window film, with quality and performance being the main criteria.
Raytech began collaborating with Commonwealth Laminating and Coating (CLC), a US window film manufacturer based in Martinsville, Virginia. Initially, Raytech imported off-the-shelf films from CLC, but then decided to take things further by customising its product line-up by specially developing a series of Raytech premium products together with CLC, products that would be suitable for use in Asian markets. It took eight to nine months to develop these, with significant cost involved.
The company is presently one of the few local outfits that offer US-made products from an accredited International Window Film Association (IWFA) member. And, it’s not just selling the products here, but exporting them as well – Raytech’s presence and reach has expanded to China, Thailand, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand, Albania, and Kuwait.
The marketing manager states with pride that Raytech was the first local company to work directly with a manufacturer to develop products for the local market, but it hasn’t been smooth sailing. “It has been a struggle over the past 10 years, primarily in terms of building brand awareness, but more people are now aware of our products and the quality it offers. We’re not the cheapest, but you are assured of long-term quality,” he says.
“But, there’s a long way to go in terms of awareness about window films themselves. Window film is a piece of paper – it’s easy to get it wrong, but difficult to get it right.”
“It’s very hard for consumers to tell the quality, especially from just looking at specs and brochures. A high infrared rejection rate isn’t the only thing to look at. And, many companies tout a product saying that it’s made in the US when it is not, deceiving consumers into parting their money for a product that isn’t what is claimed,” he explains.
“Unfortunately, low-grade films are the common choice of consumers in today’s market. They sell well because consumers are always looking for the lowest price with the best quality, but do not know how to identify a good window film. Due to a lack of knowledge about tinting, consumers are easily cheated with low-grade films.”
“Normally, the symptoms of low-grade film provide temporary heat rejection functionality, but the heat rejection will depreciate more than 50% after one year, and aside from colour fading, peeling, purpling and bubbles appearing, the car interior will also suffer from odour issues from low-grade film laminating,” the marketing manager states.
Raytech is confident about its products and their ability to stand head to head with the best out there. To best explain their performance, the company uses a solar testing meter and a infra-red heat-emitting product booth to highlight the workings of a window film, primarily by offering consumers a first-hand experience in aspects of a film’s heat rejection.
Buyers can also get an idea of how a particular film shapes up tint-wise on any car’s exterior colour, accomplished virtually through a tablet app.
Its current safety film lineup consists of Centurion Series (in 6 mil and 4 mil thickness) as well as the less pricey CS 85, CS 75 and CS 60 Series. In terms of solar films, the Raytech Premium V97 and Ultra 70 lead the list, followed by Raytech Natural, Pro Series, Ex Series and Classic Series films.
As for aftermarket installations, the marketing manager says the ceramic Ultra 70 and Centurion Series safety films are strong sellers for the brand. The company, he adds, does around 2,000 installations a month, and has 27 dealers nationwide.
All Raytech products are covered by a warranty – dealers file an online registration in an e-warranty programme, and consumers are given a hologram-secured warranty card denoting the particular film model/s installed on their vehicle to ensure that they’re getting exactly what they paid for.
Find out more about Raytech products via its website at www.raytech.com.my or call its customer careline at 1-800-88-3339.