glass door security film

Glass Door Security Film to Better Protect Schools, Businesses, and Homes

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glass door security filmIt’s no surprise that glass doors are one of the most vulnerable points of entry for looters, burglars, gunmen, and other potential threats. Likewise, glass doors are also one of the most common entryway systems for businesses, schools, and even homes and residential living spaces. 

While many glass doors are designed to be structurally sound and strong enough to withstand minor impacts and abrasions, in the attempt of forced entry, glass doors are a weak deterrent against anyone willfully seeking unwarranted entry.  

Glass door security film has been designed to help provide a protective solution to this growing problem. Not only is security film a cost-efficient investment that can be installed on virtually any type of glass door, but it’s also highly effective in deterring threats. Of course, this is just one of several solutions that we offer here at Window Film Depot. So in this post, we share a number of options and their benefits for protecting glass doors for various applications.

Protecting Schools Unwarranted Entry and Threats

One of the biggest concerns in maintaining safety and security in schools is preventing unwarranted entry from threatening intruders. Over the past decade, school shootings have been a tragic recurrence in the news and many educational institutions are investing in ways to keep students and faculty safe. While there are many solutions to help prevent school shootings, security window film is a viable option for glass doors.

Among the most universally-applicable options for glass doors is 3M™ Scotchshield™ Safety & Security Window Films. This line of products significantly mitigates shattered glass from high-impact forced entry attempts as well as blasts and natural disasters. Not only are 3M™ Scotchshield™ Safety & Security Window Films easy to install, but they’re also fully transparent by using a clear, micro-layered, and tear-resistant design. In the instance of an attempted break-in, the film keeps the broken glass in place, making it difficult for intruders to penetrate the glass and get through the door.

A level-up from 3M™ Scotchshield™ Safety & Security Window Films are more advanced products like DefenseLite™ and BulletShield™. While these solutions are technically not a film, these retro-fit security shields are mounted onto existing window glazing to provide a reinforced barrier that’s 250 times stronger than glass alone.

Preventing Looting, Burglaries, and Smash and Grab Attempts

Businesses, particularly retail storefronts, are susceptible to all types of threats. Among the most common are burglaries, smash and grab attempts, and looting amidst chaotic riots and protests that escalate out of control. Glass door security film provides a convenient option that’s both budget-friendly and highly-effective in preventing these occurrences. 

The added value in installing products like 3M™ Scotchshield™ Safety & Security Window Film is that they also offer additional benefits for businesses and retailers alike. Among the most valuable is energy savings. Because these films have UV blocking sun control capabilities, dramatic temperature swings caused by solar heat gain can be prevented, thereby reducing the drain on air condition systems. The same UV blocking features also prevent fading that can occur with furnishings, inventory, and upholstery over time.

Glass Door Security Film for Residential Applications

The versatility of 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film provides homeowners and living complexes a simple way to keep residents safe. Whether as a sliding glass door security film for an outdoor deck entryway or as a protective security measure for an apartment building’s main entrance, security film delivers essential reinforcement while giving occupants added peace of mind.

As a unique advantage compared to residential window tinting, opting for a security window film for glass doors makes these entry points far more difficult to penetrate. In turn, this can prevent windows from shattering from both human and natural causes. For the former, security films are effective in deterring intruders while giving you more time to take action. And like mentioned above, the sun control capabilities deliver added benefits for energy savings and UV protection.

At Window Film Depot, we are the #1 3M Window Film installer in the U.S. We specialize in both commercial and residential glass door security film installation, and we work with all types of customers to help them choose and install the ideal product to best meet their needs. Ready to get started? Contact us online or call us at 1-866-933-3456.   

prevent school shootings

3 Infrastructure Improvements to Help Prevent School Shootings and Keep Students Safe

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prevent school shootingsIn the wake of school shootings, governments at the local, state, and federal levels have put significant attention and resources into making schools safer to avert future tragedies. All too often, however, these critical resources are leveraged to integrate more rigid security measures in schools, such as hiring school resource officers (or “SROs”), installing surveillance systems and security devices, and even arming educators and faculty with guns.

While the emphasis toward both visible and physical safety measures is a reasonable approach in the aftermath of such devastating tragedies, the adoption of these measures to prevent school shootings have not been proven to advance safety in education institutions. Additionally, measures like recruiting SROs and installing metal detectors create a less welcoming environment for students.

It is therefore important to look beyond conventional security measures and invest in proven, evidence-based solutions to make school safer. While approaches like violence prevention programs, peer mediation interventions, and teacher training are vital cornerstones, infrastructure improvements can also help prevent school shootings and keep students safe.

Rethinking and Renovating How Schools are Designed

Four years after the Sandy Hook Elementary tragedy, administrators and architects have evolved their thinking as to how schools are designed. In 2019, a story about a $48 million upgrade of west Michigan’s Fruitport High School went viral due to the design’s emphasis on school shooting prevention. While the renovation won’t be complete till 2021, the new design emphasizes curved hallways that are intended to reduce sightlines for shooters. Additionally, jutting barriers throughout the school are designed to help provide shelter in the instance of an attack. 

“If I go to FPH and I want to be an active shooter, I’m going in knowing I have reduced sightlines,” Fruitport Superintendent Bob Szymoniak told The Washington Post about the curved hallways. “It has reduced his ability to do harm.”

Every school will prioritize a safe environment before it can be a place for learning. However, in an era when educators are strapped for school supplies and have to raise money on their own means, the reality of tighter budgets will call for more financially approachable investments. 

Securing the Most Vulnerable Point of Entry: Glass Windows and Doors

There’s no question that glass windows and doors are the most vulnerable point of entry in schools. Over the years, there have been many developments to help reinforce glass and prevent unwarranted, forced entry. The most advanced of these solutions are products like DefenseLite™ and BulletShield™.

DefenseLite is a retro-fit security shield that’s mounted onto existing window glazing, which provides significant protection against forced entry attempts. DefenseLite is a heavy-gauge architectural-grade polycarbonate and extruded framing system that’s 250 times stronger than glass alone. It’s been independently tested with a number of blunt force objects like hammers, batons, and hatchets with amazing results.

DefenseLite blends seamlessly with the existing window glazing, making for an invisible layer of protection without moving parts or unsightly reinforcements. While this infrastructure upgrade can certainly improve the level of protection in schools, DefenseLite’s ballistic counterpart BulletShield delivers the ultimate solution.

In addition to keeping intruders out, BulletShield is designed to keep bullets out as well. It’s a UL rated retrofit ballistic shield that’s designed to protect against both natural and human disasters. Unlike other bullet-resistant window treatments, BulletShield has become a leading security glazing solution for schools, as well as other vulnerable applications like courthouses, government buildings, and police stations. It’s been independently tested to provide UL 752 ballistic ratings, preventing breach against 9MM, .44 Magnum, and AR-15 bullets.

Barricading Systems and Lockdown Solutions

Alongside reinforcing glass windows and doors, barricading these points of entry offers additional protection for schools and educational institutions. In fact, The Department of Homeland Security recommends having systems in place to lock and barricade doors when sheltering in place against active shooters. The fact of the matter is, not all barricade systems are created equal.

There are a number of emergency lockdown solutions on the market today, such as The Sleeve from Fighting Chance Solutions as well as Nightlock’s Lockdown units which affix to door frames to prevent access. These systems are effective in deterring forced entry on inward or outward swinging doors, on doors made of both wood or metal. Not only do these barricade systems withstand tremendous force from anyone attempting to enter, but they can be integrated along with additional reinforcements like DefenseLite and BulletShield.

If you’d like to learn more about how to prevent school shootings with infrastructure improvements like DefenseLite and BulletShield, reach out to use via our Contact Page, or give us a call at (866) 933-3456.

Does Window Security Film Really Work?

Does Window Security Film Really Work?

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Does Window Security Film Really Work?As a home or business owner, the safety and security of your property and its occupants is important to you. While there are many ways that you can safeguard doors and other access points, glass windows will always be the most vulnerable point in its security. 

In catastrophic situations, broken glass from smashed windows becomes a hazard by turning into razor-sharp projectiles. This is where safety and security window film products can offer a protective element to help mitigate such threats.

But when it comes to fully preventing breakage and shatters, does window security film really work? Below we delve into this important question and what customers should expect from their investment.

How Does Safety and Security Window Film Work?

Normally, when conventional glass windows break, the glass shatters into pieces with some falling to the ground and others remaining attached to the frame. In extreme situations, the loose pieces may fly off and potentially hurt someone or cause further damage. 

Safety and security window film is made up of a thin, micro-layered and tear-resistant plastic film that is applied over the surface of the windowpane and is designed to hold the glass in place when it breaks. Rather than separating into individual pieces, the windowpane stays in place. The film also provides extra strength and resilience to the windowpane which can help stop it from breaking in the case of less severe impacts.

An example of this type of product is 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film, which provides a budget-friendly solution to help minimize damage caused impacts or forced entry. While such safety and security window film provides a high level of glass protection, it’s debated whether or not it’s enough protection for extreme situations. 

Another product is 3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems which securely attach the film-coated window to the frame to stop it from being popped free. This is an essential feature as the window will often become flexible when it breaks. While the glass pieces would still be held in place by the film, the windowpane could potentially be pushed inward and freed from the frame giving an intruder easy access. The attachment system prevents this from happening.

Is Safety and Security Window Film Unbreakable or Shatterproof?

While these products from 3M™ offer adequate safety for most naturally occurring threats, the question remains: are these security window film products completely unbreakable and shatterproof? 

The short answer to this question is no. Although 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film and Impact Protection Attachment Systems are effective in minimizing breakage threats and delaying forced entry attempts, they do not make glass 100% unbreakable or shatterproof.

A stronger and more reliable solution to better prevent shatters and breaks is DefenseLite™, a window glazing solution that’s 250 times stronger than glass alone. DefenseLite™ is not an applied security film, but rather a heavy gauge architectural grade polycarbonate and extruded framing system that’s designed as a retro-fit security shield which mounts onto existing glazing.

DefenseLite™, along with its more advanced ballistic option known as BulletShield™, effectively transforms glass windows and doors into impenetrable shields. While most security window films can delay forced entry for about 30-45 seconds, DefenseLite™ has been engineered to prevent vandals, smash and grab threats, and forced entry attempts. It’s been independently tested with many different blunt force objects ranging from batons, hammers and hatchets with amazing results.

If you’re looking to make glass fully shatterproof and unbreakable, we recommend DefenseLite™ and BulletShield™ as reliable solutions for glass protection. These security window glazing solutions are optimal for schools, educational institutions, government facilities, and other buildings that may be vulnerable to armed intrusion, bomb blasts, and other outsider attacks.

What Situations Does Security Window Film Protect Against?

Although DefenseLite™ and BulletShield™ are the most dependable options to fully prevent breakage and shatters, security window film still has a place for many different applications. Here are a few situations where security window film can help protect your windows, your possessions, and your family from harm.

riot glass protectionVandalism, Break-ins, and Forced Entry Attempts

Burglars are always on the lookout for easy targets to rob. Windows provide easy access to the average home or business premises with a burglar just needing to smash the window and climb right in. By installing security window film, you make your windows a lot harder to break to provide an easy entry point for a robbery. This makes your home or business a much higher risk for the average burglar which means they will likely give it a miss and try to find a more viable target.

While riots and other forms of civil unrest aren’t a common occurrence, they do still happen. Vandalism is a far more common threat, particularly for businesses with large window fronts. In both cases, regardless of the intent of the person who caused the damage, your window has now become an open access point for anyone to enter your property and steal your possessions or business inventory. By installing security window film you limit the chance of your windows shattering entirely and leaving your property unprotected as a result.

Severe Weather and Accidents

The weather can get unpredictably intense at times, with abrupt windstorms and hail being a threat to the integrity of glass windows and doors. A tree branch blown against your window by a strong gust of wind can easily shatter it and send shards flying inside. This leaves the window open to the elements until you can get it repaired.

Accidents around your home can also be a threat to your windows. A backyard game of baseball or a similar sport can quickly get expensive if the ball goes through your window.

In addition to holding your window in place if it gets accidentally broken, safety and security window film can also provide added protection to potentially stop your window from breaking to begin with. A bit of extra strength and resistance can sometimes make the difference between temporary deformation and breakage.

Catastrophic Events

If you live or operate a business in an area that’s prone to earthquakes, hurricanes, and other catastrophic events, then one of your fears might be that such occurrences can result in window breakage in a severe way. This also includes mitigating blasts from human causes, such as riots or terrorist threats. Safety and security window film can help alleviate this concern as reinforced glass is less likely to turn into flying shards if your home is susceptible to violent catastrophic events.

Regardless of any other measures you may take to protect your windows, an extra layer of protection in the form of security window film is a smart investment to make. In addition to providing more protection against damage and theft, adding an advanced form of window protection film will likely help reduce your insurance premiums. Your windows will always be the weakest link in your building’s security chain, so every extra bit of protection you add helps keep you and your building safe and secure.

 

Safety & Security Smash and Grab Window Film for Retailers

How to Safeguard Your Store with Smash and Grab Window Film and DefenseLite™ Clear Shields

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Safety & Security Smash and Grab Window Film for RetailersRetail smash and grab events are occurring more and more often these days. Amidst times of pandemic and civil unrest, the prevalence of these events can escalate at alarming rates. 

Many types of businesses are at risk fir smash and grab occurrences, however retailers are especially vulnerable. A vast majority of these crimes happen through glass windows and doors. Within a matter of minutes, valuable possessions like computers, inventory, and even private information can evaporate. The idea that this could happen to any retail store is quite unsettling. Fortunately, there are measures that can help protect and reinforce glass windows and doors, and effectively prevent unwarranted entry.

Smash and Grab Prevention Solutions for Retailers

Various types of businesses around the country have invested in window film for its many benefits, including energy savings, enhanced customer and employee comfort, and protecting against the sun’s damaging UV rays. But now more than ever, optimizing the safety and security of a business, its occupants, and its inventory has become a critical priority.

safety security window film retailersAt Window Film Depot, we offer proven products and solutions to prevent smash and grab burglaries. Not only can we recommend the best smash and grab prevention solution, but certain products can also deliver on the various benefits mentioned above. In short, it’s an investment that pays for itself in more ways than one.

What are the best smash and grab prevention solutions for retailers? Below are three different products that we stand behind.

DefenseLite™ Forced Entry Glazing Solution

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 window glazing solutionDefenseLite 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. 

3M™ Safety & Security Window Films

When it comes to warding-off theft and vandalism, 3M™ Safety & Security Window Films is the best solution for retailers with vulnerable points of entry, such as glass doors and storefronts. In terms of anti-smash and grab window film treatments, 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film is the best measure next to DefenseLite™. 

smash and grab window film defenseliteNot only does it effectively prevent smash and grab attempts, but it mitigates hazards from shattered glass while holding windows and doors in place. In turn, 3M™ Safety & Security Window Film can significantly deter unwarranted entry, stolen products, and further harm to the premise or its occupants.

3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems 

3M™ Impact Protection Attachment Systems essentially “attach” the security window film to the frame of the door or window. Not to be used as a standalone smash and grab prevention solution, Impact Protection Attachment Systems bind together the glass, film, and frame to form a single, secure unit that’s designed to withstand repeated assaults.

Like other window film and glazing solutions, there are a variety of Impact Protection Attachment Systems available. Selection of the right attachment system is determined by your glass, frame type, and threat.

Protect Your Business and Its Assets

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

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.

Yamato

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.  

Seattle

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.

Altair

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 Styles That Work

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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 Minimize Damages

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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 Tinted Home Windows

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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 Savings

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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.