Window Tinting 101
There are 3 basic film types.
- Sun and/or Heat control,
- Safety & Security
- Decorative and Privacy.
What do the numbers mean? Most people are confused about the numbers. Throughout our lives we have been taught the higher the number the stronger or darker or bigger the object or product would be. In fact, window film is the exact opposite.
Window film or window tinting comes in reflective and non-reflective. From there it goes to 10, 15, 20, 25, 35, 40, 50, 60, 70 and then to clear depending on the manufacturers. There are a few in between but this will help you when choosing the right window tinting for your home or office. Always remember the lower the number the darker the film. It represents the amount of visible light transmitted through the film. Different types of windows and glass cut different amounts of visible light. VLT is the acronym for visible light transmitted. A good rule of thumb to think about when choosing a window film/tint for your home or office is to go a shade darker than you are comfortable with. This information comes from 100’s of customers. Check out our window film visualizer here.
Visiting our showroom at 650 East Hwy 121 Business Suite 310 in Lewisville, Tx 75057 will give you a great perspective of window films.
To put visible light into perspective when it comes to home window tinting or commercial window tinting. Let us start with your home. If your home was built after 2002 in the state of Texas, your home has low-e glass with an approximate VLT of 50%. To observe how dark 50% VLT is go to the back of your home and look through a window close to your back door. In most cases your view looking out of your back door will be slightly lighter because the glass in your door is clear and your windows are low-e, that is 50% VLT versus clear.
We at Home Window Tinting & Commercial want to simplify the process and put some things into perspective for you, hence the first step, the paragraph above. What I have observed over my 35 years in the industry is people either have a preconceived perception of 3M Window Film/Tinting for their home or office or simply did not know the product even existed. Here are some of them; it is too dark, to reflective, will bubble up, turn purple, is not safe to put on double paned windows because it makes them crack or get foggy or voids the warranty. In a lot of cases people simply way over think when it comes to applying window tinting to their home because they don’t have all the facts. The National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) independently tests, certifies, and labels window films for their energy efficiency. Not all window films are created equally and all window films are rated by the NFRC and you can find this label on the packaging.
I have on many occasions heard this statement; Tim I don’t want that dark shiny stuff on my house, I just don’t like the look. Then I point to a house either across the street or down the road and say, what do you think about that one. The most common reply is, that looks great and my reply is that is that is our dark shiny stuff, which in most cases is 3M Night Vision 15. Our most popular product to date.
As you have already learned, window film comes in many different shades. We can achieve different goals for specific areas of your home and office by mixing films. Many homeowners make the statement, I want my home to look consistent especially on the front, yet they have white shutters on almost everything, dark shutters on the study and blinds in the garage. Does this sound familiar?
Home Window Tinting is almost always applied to the inside surface of the window. However, we do have exterior products to help to improve doors and master bath windows when the inside surface is to textured or rough to apply on the inside.
3M Window Film/Tinting has fantastic warranties for your home and office. Residential customers receive a Lifetime labor and materials warranty on sun control films and commercial customers depending on the film itself vary from 12 to 15 year warranty. See the complete listings of our warranty section here.
Thermal Fracture and Seal Failure
When it comes to thermal fractures aka cracking of your window due to the application of window film/tinting, there is simply nothing to be concerned about. Thermal fractures are covered by 3M company and us for up to $500.00 dollars per pane of glass and if we observe that you may have a higher dollar windows, we will offer you and extra warranty which is very affordable.
Seal failure aka foggy windows. Window film DOES NOT CAUSE SEAL FAILURE. This has been a thorn in our side for decades. If you ask anyone who claims window film causes seal failure to present their documented evidence, you will not hear back from them. It simply doesn’t exist. We hear this statement from many people who replace windows for a living. Ask them this; What percentage of windows that you replace have window film or tinting on them? If their answer is above 1% then they do not know what they are talking about because less than a 10th of 1 percent of all windows in the world let alone the Dallas Ft. Worth area have window film on them. If you have a current window warranty in place, the application of window film does void the warranty, but so do a lot of other things. 3M and Avery Dennison take over existing window warranties and match them concisely and you get a new piece of film on that new window at no charge.
Safety & Security Films
3M Ultra Safety & Security films as well as Madico 15 mil safety films is what we prefer to install for our customers to protect your family & valuables. We also hold patents for attachment systems to keep the glass in the frame. If you decide to choose safety and security with the intent of keeping the bad guys out, it MUST be attached to the frame. This is not open for discussion. Be sure to look at our latest YouTube video coming soon to our website to show you the wrong way and the right way.
Decorative Window Films
Decorative window films come in many different varieties, colors and designs. If you can imagine it, we can help you design it, produce it and make it come true. Click the picture below to go check out our decorative film visualizer.
Contact us today and schedule a complimentary consultation!