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How Anti-glare Window Film Keeps the Sun Out

By August 4, 2022Solar Window Film
Anti-glare window film on a commercial building

Struggling to ascertain the difference between numerous anti-glare window film options? You are not alone. It’s a bit of a science but we have a long list of engineers and sales professionals that know these products inside and out. If you still have questions following this article, reach out. We’re here to help!

Think Rayban sunglasses with mirrored lenses. Just as not all Raybans sport those snazzy reflective lenses, not all window films have that same mirrored effect. However, if you are driving by a building on your Harley and you can’t see in, but you can see your own cool reflection on your bike – that is dual reflective anti-glare window film. Having become popular for commercial buildings, this type of window film can come with a mirrored effect that affords a sleek elegant appearance to the exterior of any building. Yes, much like the “I’m too cool for you” vibe exuded by Tom Cruise in Top Gun.

Window film for sun glare

Anti-glare window film is made of numerous ultra-thin layers of film. These layers control the light that passes through them based on the wavelengths. Thus, affording a reduction in the amount of light being reflected, and consequently reducing glare.

Ultimately, you can’t have glare reduction without reducing visible light. Sometimes clients want reduced glare but aren’t fans of losing visible light. In other words, they feel it is too dark with the anti-glare window film. Meanwhile, others may be fine with that payoff as they have strong interior lighting. Ultimately, if you seek to reduce interior glare, the darker the window film, the better.

With this stated, the darker the window film, the more likely you should consider thermal stress fractures. This issue depends greatly on the type of glass you have in your building. This is one of the reasons why many anti-glare window film clients choose the window film that has the mirrored effect. It has a striking effect to the exterior of your building and there can be little to no risk of fracturing your windowpanes.

Anti Glare Window Film By The numbers

Below you will find a table that breaks down the difference in results when using base glass types without film. The column on the far left depicts 3 different types of anti-glare window film. Additionally, Affinity 15, a popular mirrored reflective window film is listed in the third column.

You will notice that the glare reduction percentage is similar in all of the options – no matter what type of glass you apply the film to. However, the visible light reduction (righthand column) is vastly different. Consequently, you may experience less visible light transmission, according to the type of glass you have as well as the window film option, even if the glare reduction percentage is similar.

base glass w Affinity 15 glare reduction (%) VLT reduction (net)
LowE 272 IGU 69.30% 9.80% 85.9% 59.50%
6mm Clear 88.40% 12.20% 86.2% 76.20%
Light Grey IGU 38.60% 5.30% 86.3% 33.30%

Additional benefits of Anti-Glare Window Film

Anti-glare window film is a layer of protection that affords numerous benefits to the user. This one-way window film not only reduces glare, it also rejects 99% of UV Rays, as well as rejects approximately 97% of infrared rays, thus reducing interior heat. Infrared rays cause the interior of your space to become hotter, thus forcing your HVAC system to work harder. Additionally, IR rays are responsible for the interior fading of furnishings such as sofas, chairs, drapes, or rugs.

It’s important to note that the non-metalized films provide notable clarity, so they won’t spoil your view from the interior of the building. However, if you are outside of the building during the day, and the owner has chosen a one-way window film, you won’t be able to see inside. This can add an extra level of securitythat  many commercial property owners appreciate.

3m anti-glare window film options

The following window film options all reduce interior glare. Each has its own special composition and set of benefits.

  • Night series: Offers enhanced views with low interior reflectivity, especially at night.
  • Ceramic series: Non-metalized film comes in a natural tone to provide amazing clarity.
  • Reflective (single and dual): Provides a mirrored effect. Reduces daytime visibility from the outside in. Whereas at night, you can see through it from the outside.

Get Raybans for your building

Now, are you ready to purchase Ray bans for your building? Do you want to be super cool or just kinda’ cool? We can help you choose just the right anti-glare window film that will meet all of your needs, as well as your cool level. To have our premier experience team answer any questions you may have, feel free to reach out today. At NGS, we know window film inside and out.

Improve Energy Efficiency and Security with Sun Control Window Films
Hosted by  James Beale
Learn how sun control window films help improve building energy efficiency, reduce costs, improve occupant comfort, and increase security.

Photo by Josh Calabrese 

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