Frequently Asked Question The following are general frequently asked questions (FAQs) that relate to all window film.
Window films are very thin polyester-based products which are coated and laminated with different metals and dyes. These films are applied to the surface of the glass facing the interior of a building or home. The fastest growing use of window films are by home owners and companies engaged in energy savings, glare reduction, ultra violet protection, heat reduction and retention, safety, security and graphics.
There are basically five types of window films available on the marketplace, safety/security films, solar control films, spectrally selective solar control films, graphic designer films and automotive films.
Solar Control: When applied to residential or commercial windows, solar control window films provide control over solar heat gain, glare reduction, occupant comfort, fade reduction, shatter resistance, reduced energy costs and more.
Safety/security window film: Safety/security films are clear laminated polyester films that when bonded to glass, contribute making the complete window stronger. It hinders and slows down smash and grab burglaries, and during explosions or natural disasters keeps glass together to minimize human injury and destruction.
Glass Enhancement: Glass enhancement and specialty film come in numerous varieties such as; frosted, etched, blackout, and numerous graphic colors to name a few. These films can also be used with computer cutters for custom designs and logos and are a great alternate to the usual costly and time consuming elegance of specialty glass.
An objection often raised against the installation of window film is the reduction of the visible light being transmitted through the glass. Although different window films can reduce the different amounts of visible light being transmitted through a window (the darker the film the less light transmitted), it is not as much as one would perceive.
The reason is that the human eye is like a lens of a camera, it can adjust to the reduction of light and will offset a large portion of the light reduction. For example, a thermal or double pane window, lets in approximately 78% of visible light but the perception of the human eye is only 89%. When a 60% visible light transmission film is applied to the window the eye perception is 82%. Similarly, a 33% film is perceived as a strong 68% light transmission.
Most window films can successfully block at least 99% of damaging ultraviolet radiation. Conventional single pane glass lets in 150 times more UV radiation, the chief cause of fading and deterioration. UV radiation is not the only cause of fading, but it will delay fading more significantly than any other applied film currently available.
Ultra violet, visible light and heat make up approximately ninety percent of fabric fading. A window film with a visible light transmission of 15% stops almost 80% of fabric fading while a window film with a visible light transmission of 60% stops approximately 60% of fabric fading by confining the amount Ultra violet, visible light and heat entering through the window.
If a window that has had window film applied to it is broken, the film can help prevent the glass from falling into the room. In the event of broke glass, window film will limit injury and damage to people and property. Even if a window breaks, the window film will keep out the weather until the glass can be replaced. The thicker the film the better it is. In fact safety/security films have proven tested standards.
Almost all window films are coated with a durable, clear scratch resistant coating made of silicon.
Window film can be applied to most clear or tinted windows including insulated glass, however, some restrictions and limitations may apply. Window films are designed for application to glass only.
Glass breaks when it is stressed. There are five types of stress which may cause glass breakage:
1.Thermal Stress - from absorption of Solar radiation.
2.Tensile Stress - from the weight of the glass itself.
3. Mechanical Flexing Stress - from wind.
4. Impact Stress - from flying objects, hail, baseballs, etc.
5. Twisting Stress - from building or window frame sagging, settling or shifting (as in an earthquake).
TThe first type, thermal stress, is the only one which solar window film may effect. The use of window film will increase the thermal stress on sunlight glass. However, there are also other factors which will increase thermal stress such as: partial shading of windows from overhangs or trees, tightly fitting drapes or blinds, signs or decals on windows, heating and cooling vents directed at glass and more. In addition, different types of glass (annealed versus tempered, clear versus tinted) have different solar absorption rates and will withstand different degrees of thermal stress. LLumar solar control films have glass breakage and seal failure warranties available.
In most cases, if a house plant is already receiving adequate light the use of window film will not harm it. New growth or flowering may be retarded, and, for a few days, a plant may go into state of adjustment while it gets used to the light change. If a particular plant normally wilts by the end of a sunny day, it will actually thrive better with film installed. Although there are some obvious guidelines in determining what, if any effect window film will have on a plant (for instance, dark green plants need less light than lighter coloured ones), there is one sample test which can be done prior to film installation: that is, merely move the plant to an area with less sunlight for a few days. In addition, most nurseries or local agriculture agencies can advise you whether a particular plant needs closer to maximal or minimal light.