Homeowners looking for the many solutions that window tinting offers ultimately have to decide which film to pick. It looks like there are only choices in color and what would look good on the house. However, there are other factors to consider as well.
So many homeowners don’t know what to look for, so we’ve prepared this guide to help arm you with the questions that you should be asking.
- Which saves the most energy?
- Looks the best?
- Lasts the longest?
Here are a few tips to guide you along…
- The mounting adhesive. The adhesive, or glue layer in a film is how the product attaches itself to the glass. The quality of the adhesive can be a HUGE difference maker in the performance and life expectancy of the film. Brands such as Vista and LLumar, made by Eastman Chemicals who, coincidentally, are the #1 producers of films in the world, use a CDF (clear distortion free) adhesive. This type of glue lasts an extremely long time and has excellent optical clarity. Other brands, such as 3M, use a PS (pressure sensitive) adhesive. These are commonly used in car tint, and are not advised for residential use. This adhesive typically expires within 2-7 years and can turn color. Make sure you ask for CDF adhesive.
- The Warranty. While many brands offer a lifetime warranty, they are typically “limited” in nature. Use caution and inspect a warranty’s terms to make sure ALL aspects of film failure (bubbling, peeling, adhesive failure and discoloration) are covered. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
- Reflection=energy savings. Sometimes, when we think of tint, an image of a tinted car comes to mind. The primary difference between car tint and home window film, however, is that unlike car tint, home tint actually pays you back via energy savings. You may have noticed that city skylines are made up buildings with reflective tint or glass. The reason for this is because without it, these buildings would have energy bills into the tens of thousands of dollars. However, certain brands, such as Vista window film, offer “ceramic” films, which are designed to provide energy savings while providing a flat, non-reflective appearance.
- Stay away from dyes. “Dyes die” as we say in the industry. They inevitably change color and leave a homeowner having to reinvest in new film in a short time span. Insist that your film is “dye free”.
Hopefully these tips will help.
As always, GPS stands ready to answer any additional questions you may have at 407-331-3456 and we’re available for a free in home analysis and estimate.