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Residential Window Films

June 23, 2020

Window Film - Arlene's Interiors

You may think that window tint is an attractive way to improve privacy for your home, but did you know that aftermarket residential window films are a great way to save energy while improving your home’s aesthetics?  For the most part, residential window films can be applied easily and offer many benefits, but they may or may not be right for your home.  Let’s take a closer look at residential window films to determine if they are a good investment for you.

First of all, we’ve alluded to the fact that window films can enhance aesthetics, privacy, and energy efficiency, but it’s important to note that not all films are the same.  Indeed, there are many types of residential window films, but the three primary varieties are solar, security, and decorative.

  • Solar window films are designed to improve energy efficiency. These films feature medium-thickness and are designed to absorb or reflect sunlight so that indoor temperatures are more stable.  Additional benefits of these films are that they reduce glare and prevent fading of indoor furniture and decorations.  Solar residential window films are available in a variety of tones from silver to copper.
  • Security residential window films are the thickest window films available. While they are not designed to moderate temperatures, they provide extra strength to windows so they are less likely to break during storms or from intruders.
  • Decorative window films tend to be the thinnest and offer some of the benefits of solar window films as they minimally reflect or absorb heat. However, the primary function of decorative films is to improve privacy and curb appeal.  You can find these residential window films in a wide range of tones and patterns included stained-glass designs, frosted designs, and even completely opaque tones.

If you what type of window film you want, you’re on the right track.  The next thing to consider is whether the residential window film is compatible with your window.  Solar window films are often not suitable for certain types of window glass as they may cause cracking.  Clear annealed glass windows thicker than 3/8 inch or with heat absorption rats greater than 50%, tinted annealed glass thicker than ¼ inch, and insulated glass installed over 10 years ago are likely not suitable for solar window films.  Always review manufacturer’s recommendations before purchasing or installing residential window films.

Finally, while residential window films can usually be installed easily by the homeowner, you should check your window warranty first.  Many warranties are voided when you install residential window films – regardless of whether the films have been installed by a professional or not.  Most aftermarket window modifications void window warranties, so be sure to carefully review your warranty before making any modifications.