Ever Hold a Window Tint Marathon?

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Cartunes-Santa-Rosa window tint

It was always Mike Meza’s goal to break 12 cars a day in window tinting, but he could never top nine.  That will change later this month when Cartunes of Santa Rosa, CA holds its first Window Tint Marathon.

Once each quarter, Cartunes of Santa Rosa, CA plans to hire extra installers to window tint 80 cars over a six day period. It will offer a discount on 3M film, the only line it carries.  The aim is “to create more goodwill, get new customers in the bay, and create a spike in cash flow,” said Meza, who owns the shop.

The store will have 4 tinters on hand, and Meza expects to net $7000-$8000 during the marathon after paying tinters. This doesn’t include any upgrade business from bringing customers to the store.  But the shop offers upgrades including a damage protection warranty for an extra $30.

The first marathon will be held June 26th– July 2. Customers will get the second-to-best 3M film available for $179 cash per car or $189 credit.  The typical price is $269 to $289.


After 4 days of taking reservations in May, 19 spots had filled up.  There are some rules for the Marathon.  Participating cars must be a 2005 model or newer.  And if a car is a 2005 and 2008 model there’s an extra $20 charge.

“I’ve always talked about doing this.  My daughter who started her own tint business in Maryland…will come here. I said, I’ll pay you $3,000 for the week and she went for it,” Mesa said.

Another daughter works as a tinter at the shop in Calif., so it’s very much a family affair.

“My experience over 32 years is female tinters are better. They work harder, they pay more attention to detail and that’s important in window tinting.  Women, I feel, have good hand-to-eye coordination and they are more loyal,” Meza said, adding, “One of the biggest problems with window tinting is, if the tinters are not related to you and you train them, they end up leaving and starting their own business.  That’s common.  My lead tinter is my daughter.”

Cartunes grosses over $1 million a year.  It has been tinting for 32 years. It owns a plotter and is able to complete a car in less than 40 minutes.

Window tint is about 35 percent of Cartunes’ business.  While it will employ 4 tinters during marathon week, it typically has  two full-time and one part time tinter on staff. All are women, including one of Meza’s daughters.

On the car audio side of the business, Cartunes has 5 employees not counting Meza.  It carries brands including Hertz, Audison, Memphis and Pioneer as well as Atrend, Audiocontrol, Audio Enhancers,  Clifford, ESCORT, JVC, Metra, MTX, Phoenix Gold, Scosche, Sony, Stinger, and Viper.

It recently hired a graphic artist who operates out of the Cartunes shop, but runs her own independent business. She can built web sites and is available for hire to other shops, as well.


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  1. I was told the cars are older and therefore dirtier and require some cleaning.

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