Part 4: Window Film Selection

Part 4

Part 4: Window Film Selection

In this section will cover:

  • How To Pick The Right Window Film
  • Get All The Facts, Even The Cons
  • How To Purchase Window Films
  • Which Window Film Manufacturer is Best?
  • Are There Financing Options Available? 
  • Selection of Window Film: How to pick the right window film

As a customer you may be confused by the overwhelming number of window films and performance specifications and industry lingo. We want to help guide you through the process of picking the right window film. We even encourage you to try our window film selector tool to see the various products available that might meet your needs.

We have a simple four-step process:

  • Evaluate Goals
  • Compare Performance Characteristics
  • Determine Aesthetics
  • Request In-Home Estimate

The first step is to understand the customer’s needs. We call this the goal elevation step. As you read in parts one and two of this article, window film can do amazing things, but there are some things it can’t.

What are you looking for? Are they looking to reduce the amount of solar heat? Or maybe you’re looking to improve the aesthetic look of your windows? Whatever the goal, it’s important to understand the window film options. I encourage you to go back and read part one if you have any questions.

Depending on your original goals, you’ll need to examine different performance qualities. We call this the comparison step. Here, you will need to understand the various performance characteristics of the window film options. Consumers wanting to apply energy-efficient window film will want to explore a spec sheet provided by the manufacturer. The higher the Visible Light Transmission (VLT), the better the efficiency. Additionally, low U-values typically yield more energy savings in colder months.

What is Visible Light Transmission (VLT)?

VLT is a window industry term that refers to the amount of visible light that passes through a glazing system (in this case, window film) and is expressed as a percent. A lower VLT rating tends to be better for glare control, while a higher rating is preferred for maintaining natural light.

What is U-Value?

A measure of the heat transmission through a building part (such as a wall or window) or a given thickness of a material (such as insulation) with lower numbers indicating better-insulating properties

Although functionality is one of the more important factors when choosing an energy-efficient window film product, aesthetics should also be considered. This is the determining aesthetics step. Plan ahead if a specific characteristic would best compliment your home, such as reflective, virtually invisible, bronze, or another shade.

Before beginning the installation process, finding a trained dealer to help you compare product performance is important. The more experienced the dealer, the better they can recommend suitable window film products for your home.

The last step before making the final decision on window film products is to compare in-home estimates. Once you’ve chosen which window film, have a trained dealer like ClimatePro further assess the home and give you a quote for film and installation. 

Get all the facts, even the cons

It’s important you have a full understanding of the benefits of window film and the goal you’re trying to accomplish. It’s also very important to understand any potential cons of window film. 

Not all films are suitable for all glass. The absorptance of the glass and the film, the size of the pane, the thickness of the glass, the construction of the window should be considered in terms of single pane, insulated glass, laminated or toughened.

Advice on the appropriate selection of film for the glass is vital to ensure that the glass does not crack as a result of thermal stress. However, it is possible that a pane of glass may break subsequent to the application of an appropriate film. One reason this happens is that the pane was damaged during the window’s glazing. Another reason is the result of the movement of the building or other physical stresses that are not apparent at the time of the application of the film.

Glass may crack subsequent to the application of signage.  Another factor could be heavy drapes hung too close to the glass, particularly if the edges of the glass are damaged.

The chances of glass breakage occurring subsequent to the application of film or signage or the hanging of drapes are very small. However, breakage can occur and it is impossible to predict the edge condition of the glass without removing it from the frame – an approach that is not practical.

Related Articles:

  1. Does Window Film Cause Seal Failures?
  2. Does Window Film Cause Glass to Crack?
  3. How To Purchase Window Films

Interested in adding window film to your home or building? ClimatePro is an authorized 3M window film company. We provide educational resources through our Learning Center and support for all of our customers.

Window films can make a great addition to any home or commercial building. These window tints are highly effective at reducing the amount of sunlight passing through the glass and can save you money in the long run. 

Which Window Film Manufacturer is Best?

As you probably understand from reading through the information in this article, there is a wide variety of window films and uses for window films. So what window film is the best?

Is there a specific manufacturer or brand of window film you should choose? The answer is simple and similar to most of the answers, it depends.

There are many manufacturers or brands of window film for you to choose from; here is a shortlist of the most popular;

  • Avery Dennison
  • Llumar, Suntek, and Vista – Made by Eastman Chemicals
  • Panorama and Solar Gard – Made by Saint Gobain
  • Johnson Window Film
  • 3M Window Films – Made by 3M Company
  • American Standard Window Film
  • Madico and Sunscape – Made by Madico
  • Huper Optik Window Film

As you can see, there are many options, even more than what we’ve included in this list. Which one should you choose? 

In our 40-plus years of window film installations, we’ve found that the answer depends on the situation and application. While on the surface and from marketing, it may appear that all window films are manufactured equally and provide the same value. We can guarantee that this is not the truth.

ClimatePro is an authorized 3M Prestige Window Film Dealer. Does that mean that we feel 3M Window Film is the best? Yes and no… again it depends on the application.

We do believe the 3M Product line is the best value we can provide to our customers in most cases, but not all. Sometimes, the 3M Window Film products do not fit the customer’s needs, budget, or desired end results. When that’s the case, we happily recommend other products to fill the needs. Such is the case with all window film manufacturers. They can not develop and make products that solve every possible problem or need. Some manufacturers have products that others don’t. 

It’s important to work with a professional that understands this so that you can feel confident you’re not being pushed into a purchase that will not fully meet your expectations.

Another factor to consider is the warranty offered by window film manufacturers. Almost all the manufacturers have very similar warranties and coverages, which is great for you as a customer. 

We would like to clarify that just because someone markets a similar warranty does not make it equal. What do we mean?

Oftentimes two manufacturers will offer a similar product with a comparable warranty. Remember, however, that the warranty time frame is a minimum of 5 years all the way to lifetime, possibly meaning as long as you own your home, your window film is covered under warranty. Think about that.

A lifetime warranty is only as good as the company that backs that warranty. That means the company needs to be in existence in the future to cover any warranty claims, correct? With that thought, it might make clear why ClimatePro has chosen to primarily represent 3M Window Films manufactured and warrantied by 3M company. 

Much of our competition reading this will say we’re being biased. The simple fact is we’ve made a business decision and feel there is a strong likelihood that 3M company will be in business far into the future. This means they will be able to provide warranty coverage to our customers, it’s as simple as that for us at ClimatePro.

Again, it does not mean that 3M window film is the right product for every customer and circumstance. We will happily recommend an alternative product if we feel it will deliver a better result and value for our customers. Any company you work with should be willing to do the same.

Related Articles:


Some customers prefer to finance their window film projects and visit their bank or credit union to check on options. Other customers may prefer a 12-month same-as-cash or traditional term loan financing through EnerBank USA. Apply for convenient 12-month same-as-cash or traditional term loan financing through EnerBank USA. The approval process is quick and simple and a good option for many of our customers.

Ready to get started? Call the ClimatePro team at 707.755.7337 or get a free quote online today.