Last updated: August 7, 2021

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Nowadays, many businesses and also consumers are increasingly using window films to protect their privacy. One aspect that distinguishes window films from other protective measures is that they are inexpensive while having the same effect. The possibility of applying them oneself without much effort also makes the use of window films attractive.

In the meantime, there is a large variety of different types of window films on the market, as well as many areas of application for them. In addition to roller blinds, curtains and textile sun protection, these films represent another protection option for windows. In the following article, several models are compared with each other and the most important points are worked out.




Summary

  • In contrast to other protective measures, window films are less expensive, have the same effect and are sometimes easier to install
  • The prices of window films vary depending on their size and their

The Best Window Film: Our Choices

Buying and evaluation criteria for window films

In order to help you decide on the right window film, we have worked out some buying criteria below that could be relevant for your purchase decision. In this way, we would like to make it easier for you to choose the right window film for your home.

Criteria with which you can compare different window films are as follows:

Dimensions

When considering the dimensions of the window film to buy, it is important not to opt for products that are too small. Using a window film that is too small for a window that is too large can be dangerous, which is why it can make sense to opt for larger dimensions.

Especially when applying window film for the first time, it is very likely that mistakes will be made. In that case, an oversize material is very advantageous. In addition, the film can be easily adapted to one's own window with a cutter knife.

In the case of sun protection films, it is very important to cover the entire window with the film. Partial covering of the window can lead to glass breakage and tension on the window. This does not apply to other types, such as frosted glass film.

Design

If you decide to use a window film for aesthetic reasons, decorative films are very suitable. These are now available in a wide variety of types, from matt to coloured window films to decorative motifs.

The most common colour for decorative films is white. They are usually either matt, transparent or mirrored. It is also possible to order personalised films and have them made to measure.

Installation options

There are two types of window films: those with adhesive and adhesive films. For window films with adhesive, there is an additional film that is removed before application. Next, the film is sprayed with water and detergent and then attached to the window. To avoid air bubbles, the film must be smoothed.

Adhesive films can be applied without glue. The film adheres to the glass through the forces between the molecules of the film and the surface. Care must be taken to ensure that the surface to be covered is completely free of dust and dirt.

Light and irradiation conditions

Depending on the type of window film, the light and irradiation conditions are also relevant. With privacy films, for example, the view to the outside is completely unobstructed, while the view to the inside is prevented. Nevertheless, the difference in brightness is hardly any different when looking outside. Depending on the thickness of the privacy protection, the window can almost look transparent with the film.

There are different degrees of light transmission for sun protection films. However, most are completely transparent and do not affect the light transmission. They offer UV protection and protect furniture from fading, for example. Modern sun protection films, however, do not offer privacy protection.

Cleaning

When cleaning window films, it is important to use non-solvent cleaning agents. For example, scouring agents, cleaning petrol or edged tools can leave marks on the film.

Hot water and normal washing-up liquid are perfectly adequate for cleaning window films. An important detail is that a lot of water must be used to remove the loosened dirt. Otherwise the dirt particles act like sandpaper and can damage the window film.

Depending on how dirty the film is, this pass must be repeated, as no scrubbing or scratching is allowed. If cleaning is done too aggressively, small cracks can appear in the film, the water can get into these cracks and loosen the entire film.

Guide: Frequently asked questions about window films answered in detail

Here we would like to answer the most frequently asked questions about window films to give you a better understanding and general overview of the subject.

Who are window films suitable for?

If you want to protect yourself from strangers looking in from outside or if you want to protect your indoor objects from premature fading, a window film is the right choice. Sun protection films also offer you heat and glare protection so that heat regulation can be optimised.

UV rays can sometimes cause furniture to fade prematurely, which is why window films can be useful for more durable furniture (Image source: Ankita M / Unsplash)

They can also do a lot decoratively and provide burglary protection. Window films can be used both indoors and outdoors. Because they are easy to install, they are usually very attractive. However, care should be taken to apply the film thoroughly. They are used in many areas, such as medical practices, offices, swimming pools or even therapy rooms.

What types of window films are there?

Six of the most important types of window films are as follows:

  • Privacy film
  • Decorative film
  • Sun protection film
  • Security film
  • Anti-vandalism film
  • Cold protection film

Security films provide privacy protection by being opaque, while decorative films are used more for decorative purposes. They can also be customised, which makes them suitable for premises of different businesses.

There are also sun shades that reflect the sun's rays and thus offer UV protection. This can prevent the fading of furniture or clothing. Security films with splinter protection prevent burglars and reduce the risk of injury.

Another type of window film is cold protection film, which prevents the cold from entering the house and reduces heating costs.

What do window films cost?

The price is highly dependent on the size, type, protection factor, material and appearance of the window film. The higher the functionality, the higher the price. It is therefore very difficult to give an all-inclusive price.

Nevertheless, we will try to give you an overview below:

Price range Available products
Low-priced (20 - 40 €) Privacy film for an approx. 100*100 cm window, also splinter protection film for small windows
Medium-priced (40 - 80 €) Window film for large and old windows, tools are usually included with online orders
High-priced (from 80 €) Purchase of window film by specialist company

How can window film be removed?

To remove the window film, it should either be cleaned with glass cleaner or sprayed with water. It would be advantageous to cover the film with another, non-adhesive film and let the water get under the film. If you feel comfortable with a cutter knife, you can also use this to cut into the film a few centimetres. This must be done carefully.

In any case, the moisture should remain on the film for two to three hours. After the adhesive has dissolved, the film can be removed from the glass pane. A glass scraper can also be used to help.

Conclusion

Window films can be used for many purposes. Privacy protection, decoration, sun protection and protection against cold are some of them. Because they are so easy to install, anyone can do it themselves. When buying a window film, it is important that it is ideally purchased in a larger size so that the film can be perfectly adjusted afterwards.

In addition to the dimensions, the design, the installation options, the light and irradiation conditions and the cleaning are also important. Our research has shown that an average window film can be purchased for as little as 20 euros. However, the price depends greatly on the size required and the type of window film.

Image source: Fabrizio Verrecchia/ Unsplash

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