In simple terms, window films are comprised of a thin, strong sheet of polyester laminate that is treated in variety of ways to improve the look or performance of existing windows when applied. Typically, the film is applied to the interior surface of existing windows as a retrofit. to properly adhere to the glass, one side of the film has an adhesive that bonds the film to the glass surface and the other side has a scratch-resistant coating for durability.
There are window films created specifically for everything from automotive, RV and marine applications to home and commercial building improvement applications. There are also window films designed for decorative glass enhancements and to increasing the safety and security of glass openings.
Popular Uses for Window Films
Window Films for Automotive Appearance & Performance
Automotive window films not only makes your car stand out in a crowd, it also helps reduce the interior heat, cut distracting glare and block dangerous UV rays. These films make your vehicle look better, be more comfortable and protect the interior and your skin from sun damage. What is not to like? Modern technology has even allowed you to receive most of these benefits without noticeably darkening the glass. There is an automotive film to fit every vehicle, desired look and expected performance.
Keeping a home or commercial building comfortable means utilization of a HVAC system. It is estimated that roughly 30% of the need for cooling and heating is as a result of heat passing through windows openings. Window films technology is such that it can actually act as an insulator on your window. Keeping the heat out in the Summer and helping retain the heat in the Winter. The result of this is that your HVAC system will not need to work as hard to keep the space at the desired temperature. By reducing the workload on the HVAC system, you are reducing the energy needed to keep your home comfortable.
Modern architecture often features large windows. While this opens up a space, often these large windows bring with them glare issues at certain times of the day. Window films can be used to reduce glare by up to 87%, relaxing your eyes and making it easier to do things like viewing a computer or television screen. Also, because modern window films are made with ultra-clear, distortion-free materials, other than the glare reduction, your views will be maintained and you probably won’t even know the film is there.
Preservation of Furnishings
First, let’s discuss what exactly causes this type of sun damage. A common misconception is that the sun’s UV rays are what cause sun damaged floors, furniture and furnishings. While these UV rays are certainly the largest component that causes fading, as this chart illustrates, they only account for 40% of the total. Solar heat, or the heat you feel passing through your windows and the visible light streaming in are also major contributors. These account for an additional 25% each of the causes of fading. The last factor is listed as “other” as it is comprised of a variety of things that are harder to control and are not major overall contributors. These are things like interior lighting, humidity, etc.
One of the first things you might realize from this chart is that you cannot “stop” fading completely. The fact is that unless the item you want to protect in a dark, climate controlled room, it will typically fade over time. However, if you plan to have the flooring and furniture in a place that will be exposed to these elements, the most you can do is attack the major contributors of fading. By significantly attacking these contributors, you can slow down this fading process and extend the life of your floors or furnishings. For these reasons, one of the best ways to attack the primary causes of sun damage and fading is with window film.
Add Decorative Element or Branding to Glass
Installing decorative window films to glass can provide privacy for the occupants of the space. The possibilities are nearly limitless as decorative window films come in frosted, tinted, or colored window film at various opacity levels to get the privacy you need without sacrificing natural light. In addition, decorative window films can be used to display company branding or to customize your space with unique designs, prints, or patterns, including styles that resemble cut or texturized glass. Finally, these films are easy to clean, durable and can be removed easily and inexpensively without damaging glass.
Safety & Security
It probably is no surprise to you that windows are the most vulnerable parts of any building. They represent easy points of entry for people who may mean harm to the occupants, the building itself, or its contents. In addition, in a natural or man-made disaster, flying glass from window is often a major contributor to injuries and death. However, when professionally installed safety and security window films are added, the glass doesn’t shatter, delaying the intruder’s entrance, and preventing flying shards of glass from harming anyone.
If you have any questions, would like more information on window films, contact one of our Window Film Pros for answers to your questions and to schedule a free, no obligation consultation and estimate.