Etched Glass Window Film

5 Etched Glass Window Films That Enhance Curb Appeal

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Etched Glass Window Film

Etched glass window films provide an excellent option for both aesthetics and functionality. Not only can these unique films add a layer of privacy, sun control, and energy savings, but they also offer a tasteful option that can enhance the curb appeal of any building or dwelling.

Etched window film and glass finishes come in many different styles, so it can be difficult to choose a certain product for a given application. To help provide some inspiration and direction, below are five products from the 3M™ FASARA™ series worth considering.


Whether for conference rooms, private offices, partitions, or verandas, Yamato delivers a semi-frosted, etched glass look that’s ideal for windows that require additional privacy. Yamato is perfect for spaces that have classic and historic charm, but can also suit more contemporary and modern applications.

Etched window film fasara yamatoThis decorative glass treatment is constructed from durable and flexible polyester materials, which provide easy and accurate application to a variety of glass substrates. Yamato is a great option for a uniquely-textured look that adds character to any glass window or door.

Prism Silver

Prism Silver is one of many different geometric designs that’s ideally suited for decorative applications. Next to its counterpart Prism Noir that has a greater shading effect, Prism Silver provides a visually-stunning option that’s suitable for both interior and exterior windows.

Etched window film fasara prisim silver

In addition having 3D design effects that stands out among certain backdrops, Prism Silver is a functional option that blocks almost 50% of solar heat transmittance.  


For a more linear design, Seattle is an etched window film option that’s uniquely tailored with faded vertical textures and an edgier personality. Its wavy style is reminiscent of sandy beach waves but in a congruent, dissolving effect that provides uniformity and consistency.   

Etched window film fasara seattle

While the applications for Seattle might better suited for select retail and commercial environments, this product offers a creative way to enhance the look of standard glass pains.  

Mat Crystal I

As a popular option for privacy applications, the Mat Crystal I is also one of 50+ different 3M™ FASARA™ Glass Finishes that transforms plain glass into the look of cut or textured glass at a fraction of the price. It’s counterpart, Mat Crystal II, offers a slightly different fade effect that provides great transparency.

Etched window film fasara Mat CRYSTAL i

This decorative finish can be used to control sunlight and privacy while enhancing interior aesthetics. The versatility of this window treatment also allows you to tailor the level of privacy a space possesses. Both Mat Crystal products are some of the best choices for a frosted window film with faded transparency.


As a level-up from Yamato, Altair is an etched window film that defines frosted privacy glass. Altair truly captures the frozen-over look and feel of textured glass with random etches similar to that of an ice surface. 

Etched window film fasara altairAs a slightly more powerful option for heat control and energy savings, Altair provides 60% solar heat transmittance and visible light transmittance, which is a step up from some of the products above that offer less of a barrier.

For more etched glass window film ideas, check out our architectural films page. Or for help determining the right product for your application, contact Window Film Depot at (866) 933-3456 or visit our contact page to learn more.

Best Window Film for Bathroom Privacy

Best Window Film for Bathroom Privacy: 5 Tasteful Style..

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Best Window Film for Bathroom PrivacyBathrooms are one area of a home or business that demands ultimate privacy. And given the high humidity nature of bathrooms, sometimes conventional window treatments like blinds and drapes don’t make for the best options. In turn, bathroom window privacy film can provide the best of both worlds.

When looking for the best window film for bathroom privacy, the options might feel overwhelming. From frosted and opaque window films to mirror and texturized glass finishes, aligning both the aesthetic and functionality is important for any application. While privacy is of the utmost importance, sun control and heat blocking qualities can provide added benefits and noticeable energy savings.

At Window Film Depot, we’re experts in helping homeowners, building owners, and business owners alike pinpoint and install the best window film for bathroom privacy and performance. To shed light on a few effective types, we’ve highlighted some of the best privacy films for bathroom windows. 

3M™ Mirror Film

As the name implies, 3M™ Mirror Film offers high reflection qualities to give a mirror-like appearance on the outside. A great option for interior and exterior bathroom window applications, 3M™ Mirror Film is a versatile and flexible choice that adds privacy from outside viewers while still providing transparent vision from the inside looking out.

3M™ Mirror Film for Bathroom Privacy

Contrary to popular belief, 3M™ Mirror Film is applicable to both residential and commercial applications. Homeowners and apartment occupants don’t have to rely on curtains or drapes for privacy in the bathroom. Furthermore, added sun control properties help minimize the amount of heat gain that passes through windows during peak warm seasons.

3M™ FASARA™ Ceilo Film

As part of the 3M™ FASARA™ series of glass finishes, Ceilo is wonderful option for those looking for a bathroom window privacy film. Cielo, which means sky or heaven in Italian, offers the appearance of an overcast sky. As such, FASARA™ Ceilo film provides ample privacy without sacrificing available light and the sense of openness in your space.

Bathroom Window Privacy Film 3M FASARA Ceilo Film

Also fringing on the category of decorative window film, FASARA™ Ceilo Film is aesthetically pleasing option for bathroom windows. It’s polyester film with pressure sensitive adhesives, which makes installation a breeze for bathroom windows, partitions and any other glass surfaces. 

3M™ FASARA™ Milky Milky (San Marino)

More opaque than other FASARA™ films from 3M™, Milky Milky San Marino offers a pleasantly clouded appearance while still providing optimal translucency from the inside. For those looking for a frosted window film for bathroom applications, Milky Milky San Marino delivers both privacy and sophistication.

3M™ FASARA™ Milky Milky (San Marino) Bathroom Window Privacy Film
Both Ceilo and Milky Milky San Marino are just two options in the FASARA™ series of privacy and decorative glass finishes. This collection makes for some of the best window films for bathroom privacy, offering a variety of styles that lend elegant, clean, and functional characteristics. They’re also budget-friendly window films that deliver distinctive visual appearance and energy-saving sun control performance.

3M™ CRYSTAL Glass Finishes

With 3M™ CRYSTAL Glass Finishes, customers can invest in frosted and dusted window qualities that provide the same appearance of sandblasted or etched glass but at a fraction of the cost. Serving as the ideal bathroom window privacy film for interior and exterior applications, CRYSTAL Glass Finishes capture the look of cut or texturized glass with stunning visual appeal.

3M CRYSTAL Glass Finishes Bathroom Privacy Film

CRYSTAL Glass Finishes are available in different types: Frosted Crystal in translucent white and gold and a Dusted Crystal finish in translucent white. These bathroom privacy films also offer both customization and personalization options, as digital printing on dusted materials can be executed on most installations.

3M™ Blackout Film

Intended for a wide range of exterior surfaces, 3M™ Blackout Film is particularly useful for bathroom windows in commercial and retail environments. Blackout window film is the ultimate choice in privacy film, maintaining the view from inside while the reverse side is colored almost entirely black. 

3M™ Blackout Bathroom Window Privacy Film

Unlike other bathroom privacy window films, it absorbs most light rather than reflecting it. This allows customers and occupants to enjoy the same UV protection and heat blocking benefits of sun control window film, but with trusted privacy.

For more help finding the best window film for bathroom privacy, contact us Window Film Depot at (866) 933-3456 or visit our contact page to learn more.

riot glass protection

Riot Glass Protection: 3 Window Treatments That Minimiz..

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riot glass protection

During times of civil unrest, masses of passionate individuals can quickly escalate to collective acts of vandalism and damage. In turn, being equipped with riot glass protection, whether in the form of shatterproof window film or reinforced window glazing solutions, is vital for storefronts and building owners who are susceptible to such activity.

When it comes to protecting glass against riots and destructive situations, having the proper systems in place is crucial to minimizing damages. From preventing graffiti, etching, and shattered glass to mitigating the impact of blasts and armed threats, there are several products designed to handle these problems. Here are three of the top treatments that protect against window and glass breakage amidst riots, civil unrest, and active shooter events.

1. 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film

Offering a range of benefits, 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film is primarily used to fortify glass doors and windows to provide resistance against intrusions, forced entries, and catastrophic events. 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film can be beneficial for:

  • providing added resistance for glass in the event of an active shooter or forced entry.
  • protecting vulnerable entry points with anti-smash and grab capabilities.
  • mitigating blasts and explosions that can cause major harm and devastation.
  • serving as an effective deterrent against graffiti and vandalism, eliminating the need for replacing expensive glass.
  • shatterproofing glass windows and doors to minimize threats from natural disasters, riots, and even bomb blasts.
  • working to reject UV and electromagnetic energy, and better moderate indoor temperature and save energy.

Equipping glass windows and doors with 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film and other riot protection measures can offer a sound solution for many applications, including commercial, residential, educational and governmental buildings. Learn more about Safety & Security Window Film products and solutions.  

2. DefenseLite™

DefenseLite is an advanced forced entry glazing solution that’s designed to protect against intruders and minimize damage from break-ins and vandalism. Tested to be 250 times stronger than glass alone, DefenseLite is engineered using unbreakable, UV-coated polycarbonates and a proprietary anchoring mechanism that can be mounted onto existing window glazing. 

DefenseLite has been independently tested with several different blunt force objects, including batons, hammers and hatchets. Common applications include schools and universities, corporate offices, retail storefronts, governmental agencies, and other buildings exposed to large populations of people. For a bullet-resistant version of DefenseLite, there’s BulletShield – an impenetrable layer of clear glass protection. 

3. 3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems

The installation of 3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems is proven to significantly outperform window film-only treatment, providing additional assurance and dependability against riots. These systems effectively integrate the properly installed window film to the window frame itself, creating a powerful shield against vandalism, smash and grab events, and forced entry. 

This riot glass treatment optimizes the resilience and toughness of 3M™ Safety and Security Films for added glass protection. In addition to riots, 3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems can protect against the impact energy from catastrophic earthquakes and enough strength to even handle serious bomb blasts. 

Protecting Glass Against Riots

Whether a building demands anti-smash and grab capabilities or more advanced forced entry and ballistic protection, there are a number of treatments that can better reinforce glass against riots and catastrophic events. For more information about products and installation, contact us at Window Film Depot or call us at (866) 933-3456.


Residential Solar Window Film

Is Tinting House Window Worth It? Pros and Cons of Tint..

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Residential Solar Window FilmWhen it comes to shelling out the money for another home improvement project, is tinting house windows really worth it? Sure, tinting home windows might cut down on glare and heat gain during warmer months, but is the ROI worth the cost? 

As experts in different types of window treatments, we can help you weigh the pros and cons of tinted home windows. Of course product selection is crucial when it comes to maximizing your investment. But what many homeowners overlook is the importance of having the window treatment installed professionally. This can be the difference between decades of savings or a few short years before the tint needs replacing. 

Pros and Cons of Tinted Home Windows

Are the windows in your home old, weak, or energy-inefficient? Treating windows with the right window film is one of the easiest and most economical ways to boost energy efficiency. But that’s not all. Certain types of window films are equipped with additional benefits for added reinforcement, UV protection, and daylight redirecting properties. Here are some of the pros of tinting home windows with the proper type of film. 

The “Pros” of Tinting Home Windows

  • Prevent fading of interior furnishing and upholstery – Have you ever noticed how curtains, drapes, and upholstered furniture near the windows fade over time? This damage is the result of prolonged UV exposure from the sun. To combat this from occurring, some window film products deliver 99.9% UV blocking capabilities.
  • Block infrared solar energy that causes heat gain – It’s no secret that if you sit by a window receiving direct sunlight, it’s going to feel warmer. That is unless the window is equipped with a sun control film. Such products are designed to block 97% of infrared light, which in turn can minimize AC-taxing heat gain all while enhancing comfort.
  • Control energy leaks and heat loss – With products like 3M™ Thinsulate™, low emissivity capabilities improve the insulation value of a typical single-pane window close to that of a double-pane window, and of a double-pane comparable to that of a triple-pane. This advanced yet invisible insulation technology helps retain heat keeping you warmer during colder months.
  • Improve visibility to the outdoors – Another common feature found in certain types of 3M™ Window Film is lowered interior and exterior reflectivity. In essence, this feature enhances outdoor viewing from the inside while maintaining an attractive look from the outside.
  • Redirect natural sunlight deeper into your home – With daylight redirecting window film, as much as 80% of sunlight can be redirected up onto the ceiling, casting light as deep as 40 feet from the window into a room. In fact, according to 3M™, there’s a link between enhanced natural light and increased productivity. Hospitals have even shown improved patient recovery with daylighting effects from such window film.
  • Enhanced safety and security – Taking the “pros” one step further, some window treatments are equipped with all of the latter benefits as well as added protection against forced break-ins and natural disasters. Not only do these safety and security films prevent shattering, but in the instance there is a break, the film helps hold the glass together, thereby preventing flying shards from causing injury. In many instances of forced entry attempts, these films will deter threats immediately.
  • Take advantage of energy tax credits – While a lot of homeowners see the energy-saving benefits of investing in window tint, they don’t always take into consideration additional opportunities to recoup their investment. Under current legislation, the US Department of Energy allows you to claim up to 30% of the cost of a qualified product, including installation fees. To learn more, visit our post on window film tax credits.

The “Cons” of Tinting Home Windows

  • Not all home window tints are created equal – Selecting the right window treatment is critical. Not only is it important to choose the proper window film for your climate, but going with a budget tint can provide limited benefits in terms of heat retention, sun control, UV blocking, and other aspects that might be important to you. In short, choose a window treatment wisely, ideally with the guidance of professional.
  • Certain products can invalidate the window manufacturer’s warranty – Home window tinting might help create an energy-efficient home by regulating the inside temperature, however some tints and films might void the window. For this reason, it’s important to work with a dealer who offers a window film that replaces the window manufacturer’s warranty.
  • Depending on the size of your home, it might cost you – Of course with any home improvement project there’s going to be a cost. Window tinting is no exception. For larger homes, a professional installation might cost several thousands of dollars when it’s all said and done. However, when you factor-in the long-term energy savings with such an investment, the payback can be as soon as just a few years. Just see some of our case studies for proof.

So, Is Tinting Home Windows Worth It?

When weighing the pros and cons of tinted home windows, the choice should be obvious. From improving the energy-efficiency, safety, and security of your windows to enhancing UV protection, daylighting, and visibility to the outdoors, the advantages heavily outweigh the disadvantages. However, this is only the case with certain window film products that deliver on these capabilities and provide years of ROI.

To learn more about whether or not residential window film is right for your home, contact us at Window Film Depot or call (866) 933-3456.

solar safety window film

Solar Safety Window Film: Combine Security with Energy ..

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solar safety window film

When we look at sun control window film and safety window film, we often think of two very different products. For some window film manufacturers, that may be the case. But with products from  3M™, you can have the best of both worlds. That is, a solar safety film that provides reinforced protection against forced entry break-ins and severe weather damage, as well as advanced sun control benefits that regulate indoor temperature and save on energy costs. 

What’s the Best Solar Safety Film on the Market?

While most safety and security window films from 3M™ also offer UV blocking and temperature regulating capabilities, one product line that gets the spotlight is 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film Solar Safety Series. This solar safety window film comes in a commercial and residential line, but offers advantages for a number of applications, including:

  • Retail storefronts – With large glass windows and doors a common design for retail shops, not only are they vulnerable to smash and grab events, but the sunlight alone can cause damage. The sun’s UV rays can cause products, fabrics, and upholstery to fade over time, not to mention the heat gain and heat loss that occurs with conventional storefront windows.
  • Schools and educational institutions – From elementary schools to major universities, student safety is of critical importance in today’s educational institutions. The right window treatment can help prevent unwarranted entry, all while blocking the sun’s glare, UV rays, and heat. This not only improves comfort, but also productivity.
  • Governmental buildings –  Also a sensitive target to threats and unwarranted entry, governmental agencies and offices can be vulnerable to both security threats and solar concerns. Security window film can help mitigate blasts and provide RF attenuation (or anti-eavesdropping) capabilities.
  • Corporate office buildings – Large, glass-exposed office buildings are susceptible targets to both solar and safety concerns. High rise office buildings are prone to heat gain and AC overuse during sunny warm months, not to mention security and vandalism threats.
  • Homes and residential complexes – Be it a home, apartment building, or condominium complex, all of the same solar and safety window film benefits apply. Not only can such films provide added safety from intruders, but the energy saving advantages can make a big difference on the utility bill.

Of course other types of businesses and organizations are no exception to the list of possible applications. This hybrid-natured solar safety film delivers benefits for just about any building and its occupants.

To learn more about the 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film Solar Safety Series, visit the residential or commercial product pages, depending on your desired application.

3M™ Safety & Security Window Film Solar Safety Series

In terms of security, not only does the Solar Safety Series help prevent intruders immediately upon forced entry break-in attempts, but in the instance of a blast or natural disaster, the film maintains the integrity of shattered glass, thereby preventing flying shards from harming occupants (this being one of the most common causes of blast-related injuries and fatalities.)

As for sun control, the Solar Safety Series from 3M™ is an energy-conscious window film that significantly rejects heat gain during warmer months. In addition to regulating temperature and minimizing AC unit overload, this film also provide anti-glare capabilities for improved visibility and increased reflection which helps enhance exterior privacy.

The Solar Safety Series is available in silver or neutral tones which allows customers to create a more uniform exterior appearance with that of its application. The film can be applied with 3M™ Attachment Systems which provides additional safety and security in areas of need. And if you’re concerned about voiding any warranty associated with the glass windows and doors themselves, rest assured knowing that the Solar Safety Series comes with a comprehensive warranty from 3M. 

Interested in learning more about solar safety window film options. Reach out to us at Window Film Depot by visiting our contact us page, or by calling (866) 933-3456.

Shatterproof Window Film Installation

Window Protection Film: 5 Solutions to Reinforce Glass ..

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Shatterproof Window Film Installation

Window protection film comes in many forms and applications. From reinforcing glass storefronts subject to smash and grab events to preventing unwarranted entry and armed threats, protective window film can provide a combination of solutions for certain environments.

Like the many different purposes for window protection film, the variety of types are equally diverse. For instance, certain products are designed with shatterproof capabilities to mitigate hazards from broken glass. Similarly, other solutions deliver more advanced protection against human intrusion, including ballistic threats from firearms. 

Ultimately, the application and desired benefits will often dictate which protective window film products are most appropriate. Below we shed light on five different types of window protection film, and for which applications they’re best suited for.

1. 3M™ Scotchshield™ Safety & Security Window Films

Among the most universally-applicable options for window protection film is 3M™ Scotchshield™ Safety & Security Window Films. Available for residential and commercial applications, this product line mitigates hazards from shattered glass during natural disasters, blasts, or forced entry. As such, 3M™ Scotchshield™ Safety & Security Window Films deliver a wide range of protection for a number of possible occurrences.

Reinforced with 3M™ Ultra Series technology, the micro-layered and tear-resistant design of 3M™ Scotchshield™ Safety & Security Window Films increase security and provide added protection against smash and grab events. In addition to protecting against break-ins and flying glass shards, these films also provide solar and energy saving benefits as well. 3M™ Scotchshield™ Safety & Security Window Films are designed to significantly block the amount of UV rays that cause fading, as well as prevent dramatic temperature swings caused by solar heat gain. 

2. 3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems

Engineered to combine the resilience and protection of safety and security films, 3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems deliver some of the highest levels of protection. Designed as an adhesive or profile attachment system, this advanced glass protection solution provides assurance against impact energy from catastrophic earthquakes and forced entry events – with enough strength to even handle serious bomb blasts. 

In essence, 3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems integrate or attach the filmed window to the window frame, creating a powerful shield. This combination is proven to significantly outperform window film-only systems, providing added assurance and dependability. Learn more about about 3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems.

3. DefenseLite™ Forced Entry Glazing Solution

While technically not a protective window film, DefenseLite is a unique technology that offers similar benefits. DefenseLite is a retro-fit security shield that’s mounted onto existing window glazing, thereby creating the ultimate solution against forced entry. DefenseLite is a heavy-gauge architectural-grade polycarbonate and extruded framing system that’s 250 times stronger than glass alone. DefenseLite has been independently tested with many different blunt force objects ranging from batons, hammers and hatchets with amazing results.

As the name implies, DefenseLite is designed primarily for protection against intruders. Engineered using unbreakable UV-coated polycarbonates and proprietary anchoring mechanisms, common applications include schools, storefronts and buildings subject to break-ins and forced entry attempts. DefenseLite blends seamlessly with the existing window glazing, making for an invisible layer of protection without moving parts or unsightly reinforcements. DefenseLite is not a window film treatment at all and outperforms applied safety and ballistic film solutions exponentially. For more information, visit our DefenseLite page.

4. BulletShield™ Ballistic Panel

As a level-up from DefenseLite technology, BulletShield is also a transparent polycarbonate security shield that’s mounted over existing windows and glass doors. So while it’s not an actual film, BulletShield does provide a bullet-resistant, impenetrable layer that’s particularly designed to protect against firearm threats. It can be installed over existing glass windows and doors on either the interior or exterior of the glazing frame, which offers affordable retrofit protection.

Unlike most bullet-resistant window film treatment, BulletShield is the leading security glazing solution for schools, courthouses, government buildings, police stations, and businesses vulnerable to ballistic threats. It’s been independently tested to provide UL 752 ballistic ratings, preventing breach against 9MM, .44 Magnum, and AR-15 bullets. Used by thousands of customers throughout the U.S., BulletShield provides a transparent design that delivers unbeatable performance under attack.

5. 3M™ Anti-Graffiti Films

3M™ Anti-Graffiti Films are a form of protective window film designed to prevent scratches, gouges, abrasions, vandalism and graffiti tagging that occurs on storefronts and buildings. Unlike certain window treatments that require extensive installation, anti-graffiti films are a targeted solution that’s easy to remove and replace quickly – without the hassle of replacing your windows.

Damaged glass is often very expensive to replace. With 3M™ Anti-Graffiti Film, there’s no need to replace the entire window when instead you can leverage a cost-effective barrier that can be easily replaced. Not only does this protective window film deliver a money-saving alternative that’s a small fraction of the cost of new glass, but it also provides solar UV protection benefits. 3M™ Anti-Graffiti Films reject 99% of the UV rays that cause fading. For retail stores, this can help extend the life of display merchandise that’s otherwise subject to sun-induced fading.

Protective Window Film Installation

 Window protection film provides much needed resilience to help protect a building’s weakest link: glass windows and doors. Whether for greater resistance against mother nature, added protection against smash and grab attempts, or both, protective window film offers the best defense against a wide range of elements. Learn more about your options for window protection film, including professional installation services, and contact us at Window Film Depot or call (866) 933-3456.

best uv window film

Best UV Blocking Window Film for Solar Protection &..

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best uv window filmWith the various types of sun control and energy saving window films available, what is the best UV blocking window film? Well, that depends. 

Most residential and commercial window films are equipped with some degree of UV protection. However, some products (like those from 3M™) offer additional benefits for enhanced appearance, heat retention, or privacy. 

Most 3M™ sun control window films block 97% of harmful UV rays, several of which also block heat and prevent dramatic temperature swings. But when it comes to determining the best UV blocking window film, the choice often depends on what additional features are desired. To help shed healthy light on which product is best for your needs, below are several types of sun control and UV blocking window film products worth considering from 3M™.

3M™ Traditional Series 

As a commercial-specific window film for office buildings, retail storefronts, and other business applications, the Traditional Series from 3M™ is a UV blocking sun control film that’s designed to save energy, improve privacy, and enhance aesthetics – all on a budget. The Traditional Series includes P18 Classic silver and Affinity commercial-grade films. The darker tint options further helps reduce glare and eye discomfort, while the increased reflection of this film helps enhance daytime privacy and can create a more uniform exterior appearance.

The Traditional Series for Commercial blocks up to 99% of harmful UV rays and provides energy savings resulting in potential paybacks in less than three years. It also can be applied to over eight different LEED Certification credits.

3M™ Neutral Series 

With options available for both commercial and residential applications, 3M™ Neutral Series significantly blocks the amount of harmful UV rays while delivering ample heat rejection, energy savings, and improved comfort. This UV blocking film is also available in a variety of glare-reducing tint levels to better suit your preferences. Its soft hues give this film an attractive look that’s fitting for both residential and commercial windows.

3M™ Thinsulate™ Climate Control Series 

3M™ Thinsulate™ Climate Control Series is one of the most popular window film products for both commercial and residential applications. For buildings exposed to four season climates, 3M™ Thinsulate™ delivers insulating and temperature control capabilities. It also provides an effective and affordable alternative to replacing inefficient, single-pane windows, which is a common scenario for older homes and historic structures. 

3M™ Thinsulate™ can improve the sustainability, comfort, and appearance of new office towers, registered historic buildings, and every sort of building in between. With its UV blocking capabilities, it provides adequate fade protection while remaining virtually invisible. In short, its neutral appearance will not dramatically change the look of glass windows – inside or out.

3M™ Prestige Series

3M™ Prestige Series window films uses industry-leading, spectrally-selective technology that’s designed to keep building occupants cool, comfortable and protected. It’s available for residential and commercial applications, as well as a Prestige Exterior Series that delivers advanced Visible Light transmission.

The 3M™ Prestige Series uses non-metallized, multi-layer optical film and nano-technology to block up to 60% of the heat and 97% of the sun’s infrared light coming through your windows. As one of the best UV blocking window films, they also reject up to 99.9% of damaging UV rays to effectively reduce fading of your furnishings.

Prestige Series window film provides low interior and exterior reflectivity that enables occupants to enjoy views from inside, all while maintaining an attractive look from outside. Unlike other UV protection and sun control films, they can become carbon negative in as short as six months from install.

3M™ Ceramic Series

3M™ Ceramic Series window film is a non-metallized film that comes in a natural tone to provide optimal clarity. In addition to blocking 99% of UV rays, the Ceramic Series is also proven to keep occupants cool by rejecting up to 80% of the sun’s heat-producing infrared rays. It’s a popular window film when aesthetics and natural appearance is just as much priority as UV and sun protection.

Advanced ceramics allow these UV films to maintain their color and appearance over time. They’re designed with a scratch-resistant coating to ensure clear, unobstructed views for years, and they’re manufactured for both commercial and residential applications.

3M™ Night Vision™ Series 

3M™ Night Vision™ Series has been specially designed to deliver improved savings and comfort while providing enhanced sight at night. While not limited to nighttime hours, the Night Vision™ Series helps block the sun’s damaging UV rays, minimize glare, and reject up to 71% of the sun’s heat. 

Night Vision™ Series films allow 15% to 35% of the natural light into your rooms by day, and thanks to a low interior reflectivity, occupants can still enjoy a clear view by night. Also designed using 3M™ nano-technology, the film’s color stability is greatly enhanced so no distortion in outside view is evident. You can find this window film available in commercial and residential-grade options.

Honorable Mention: CoolVu Transitional Film

While all of the UV blocking films above are from 3M, we couldn’t conclude this post without mentioning CoolVu Transitional Window Film. These are some of the most functional, attractive, and advanced solar window film options on the market today. CoolVu Transitional films are known for their ability to adapt to the intensity of sunlight, dynamically optimizing your indoor environment.

In essence, CoolVu activates from a clear to a tinted state when exposed to sunlight. By adapting to the amount of sun exposure, CoolVu Transitional Films provide much needed sun control only when occupants really need it. They deliver 99% blockage of UV rays and up to 80% reduction in solar-induced heat gain, but without compromising the sun’s natural light. To learn more, visit our page on CoolVu Transitional Window Film.

These are some of the best UV blocking window films for both energy savings and solar protection against fading. For more information about these window film products, how much they cost, and other options, contact our experts at Window Film Depot.


prevent graffiti and vandalism

Prevent Graffiti and Vandalism: 5 Strategies for Retail..

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prevent graffiti and vandalismDespite the various ways to prevent graffiti and vandalism, very few options are reliably effective in deterring unsightly tags and property damage. Band-aid fixes like proper lighting and plant coverage may be marginally successful in warding-off vandals. But in most cases, retailers and business owners can benefit from having greater reinforcement installed to effectively prevent graffiti and vandalism.

We’re not saying solutions like a row of flowers or a well-lit and well-monitored property doesn’t help prevent vandalism and graffiti. Rather, it’s often a combination of measures that provide ultimate prevention against these threats. Here are five strategies that can be effective solutions for retailers, businesses, and any property owners subject to graffiti and vandalism.

Anti-Graffiti Window Film Installation5 Strategies for Graffiti and Vandalism Prevention

According to a report by the EPA, the annual cost of monitoring, detecting, removing, and repairing graffiti damage has been estimated as high as $15 to $18 billion in the United States. Establishments subject to this damage can help reverse these numbers by employing the following graffiti and vandalism prevention strategies.   

1. Anti-Graffiti Film

One of the most cost-effective ways to prevent graffiti and vandalism damage is anti-graffiti film. It’s widely used as a powerful way to discourage vandals and to mitigate tagging on windows and other surfaces. Nearly invisible after being installed, anti-graffiti film is not only a deterrent against vandalism, but it also reduces and even eliminates the need for costly glass replacement. Based on statistics from products like 3M™ Anti-Graffiti Films, a single window replacement can easily be 10-20 times more expensive than the cost of anti-graffiti film installation. 

2. Impact Protection Attachment Systems

Often combined with anti-graffiti or surface protection films for optimal vandalism prevention, impact protection attachment systems offer the highest level of protection for glass walls and windows. These systems attach to the glass surface and window frame, creating a strong shield that prevents not only vandals and forced entry, but also earthquakes, bomb blasts, and other catastrophic events.

3. Anti-Graffiti Paints and Coatings

Anti-graffiti paints and coatings are protective barriers that can prevent materials used for tagging from bonding to a building’s surface. Essentially these products work like special spray paints that create protective surfaces that graffiti tagging can’t penetrate. Anti-graffiti paints come in three different coatings: 

  • Permanent coating: creates a protective barrier that doesn’t allow spray paint to bond to the surface. If the surface is vandalized, only graffiti cleaner is needed for removal. Permanent coatings are often more expensive, but if properly cleaned and maintained, only one coat is needed.
  • Sacrificial coating: forms a clear layer over the targeted surface. If vandalized, the coating is removed or “sacrificed” with a pressure washer, along with graffiti. Once removed, another coating needs to be reapplied.
  • Semi-sacrificial coating: used to protect the surface pores of a wall. If vandalized, this coating can be easily removed with a combination of graffiti removal cleaner and a pressure washer. After the graffiti has been removed, an additional coating can be optional depending on its condition.

4. Barriers

Creating a barrier can comprise of many different possibilities, some more tasteful than others depending on the property. Barriers can range from dense plant life like hedges, ivy, and shrubs or more conventional solutions like gates and fences. Designed to prevent vandals from easily accessing walls, the additional effort it takes to climb over or around these barriers can deter the effort of vandals or turn their attention elsewhere. When combined with anti-graffiti films and surface protection coatings, vandalism and graffiti can be even more preventable.

5. Multi-Layer Surface Protection Film

As the name implies, multi-layer surface protection film is versatile option that can be used for a wide variety of applications. For some exposed buildings, it offers an easy way to prevent graffiti and vandalism. Easily applied in a matter of minutes, multi-layer surface protection film can be used in both vertical and horizontal applications, making it an ideal choice for virtually any type of smooth surfaces, like exterior mirrors and glass, concrete and ceramic tile walls and floors, vinyl surfaces, and other non-porous compositions like granite, marble, quarry, and porcelain.

Aside from these effective strategies for graffiti and vandalism prevention, other common measures involve security cameras and personnel, flood lights and other lighting designs, signage, preventative murals, and other obstructions that might deter vandals. For more information about some of the film products, contact Window Film Depot for more information.

Best Insulating Window Film for Winter Thermal Heat Retention

Best Insulating Window Film for Winter and Thermal Heat..

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Best Insulating Window Film for Winter Thermal Heat RetentionIf you’ve been considering options for window insulation film, then you’re probably well aware than not all products are created equal. There’s a number of different winter window film options that are designed for thermal heat retention, as well as weatherizing window film to retain cool air during the hot summer months.  

As for the former application for winter months, which window film options are best? Sure, there’s the classic solution of using plastic heat shrink films to cover windows during the colder months, but this quick fix option isn’t always applicable nor sustainable for certain projects, such as apartment buildings, condos, and offices with large windows.

When it comes to pinpointing the best winter window film for insulation and heat control, we’ve got you covered. Below are a couple of the best options we recommend for all types of applications, including the energy saving benefits customers can reap from their investment.

Insulating Window Film for Winter and Summer Months

It’s no mystery why one of the top choices for window insulation film is a product that offers the best of both worlds. That is, an insulating window film that effectively prevents heat loss during cold winter months while also shielding against heat gain during the summer months. 

This top pick is the Thinsulate™ Window Film Climate Control Series from 3M™. Available for both commercial and residential applications, 3M™ Thinsulate™ Climate Control Series provides additional comfort and energy savings during both seasonal extremes throughout the year. In fact, this low emissivity window film helps improve the insulation value of a typical single-pane window close to that of a double-pane window, and of a double-pane close to that of a triple-pane.

What makes this option better than conventional alternatives is that it maintains optimal window clarity while also blocking the sun’s harmful rays during peak times of day. This summer/winter window film hybrid delivers high visible light transmission with a neutral appearance to help maintain a building’s existing appearance.

In addition to offer insulating properties and optimal visibility through windows, 3M™ Thinsulate™ Window Film Climate Control Series significantly blocks the amount of harmful UV rays that cause fading, helping to extend the life of furnishings.

When professionally installed, 3M™ Thinsulate™ Window Film Climate Control Series provides total solar energy rejection of 47% during the summer months, and heat loss reduction of 40% during the winter months. Over the course of the season, this investment can help both residential and commercial customers realize their energy savings goals.

Window Insulation Film for Commercial Applications

Designed specifically for commercial office buildings, retail storefronts, and other business applications, 3M™ All Season Window Film is another great option to improve energy savings and occupant comfort.

Similar to the Thinsulate™ Climate Control Series, 3M™ All Season Window Film is an insulated window film helps saves energy and enhances comfort during the cold winter months as well as during the heat of summer. With case studies showing a potential payback of three years, building owners can recoup their initial investment and realize sustainable energy savings for many years to come.

What also makes 3M™ All Season Window Film one of the best window insulation films is that it offers advanced sun control properties, such as UV blocking and anti-glare capabilities. For commercial spaces that demand a high level of focus and concentration, these benefits can help improve employee productivity while keeping a space naturally lit without needing blinds, drapes, and other conventional sun blocking measures. 

This insulating window film treatment comes in two types: Low E 20 and Low E 35. The Low E 35 is slightly more advanced and provides greater solar energy rejection and visible light transmission. To learn more about this product, click here.

Final Thoughts on Winter Window Film

It seems like the cold season starts creeping in sooner than we can say goodbye to summer. For those located in northern regions, this couldn’t be more true. Instead of relying on quick fix solutions to help save on energy costs, consider a long-term investment that will pay for itself in just a matter of years. To learn more about your options, or to receive a free estimate for your project, get in touch with our team at Window Film Depot, America’s #1 3M™ window film installer.