Today's product is virtually impossible to detect when properly installed and can carry a lifetime residential warranty for replacement. It is the outcome of evolving complex technological developments that have taken film from the dark ages into the sunlit vistas that are the norm of 21st-century homes.
Most homeowners are aware of the sun's damaging rays, but do not know what to do about them without blocking views and living in enclosed surroundings. They endure glare and heat build-up and are appalled at the way their new furnishings, floors and artwork fade. Yet all these detriments can be reduced with the installation of solar control window film.
VIEWS AND AESTHETICS
Modern solar control films act as a sun filtering system. They allow the homeowner to manage the sunlight's three principal components by blocking 99.9 percent of damaging ultraviolet light, by controlling visible light that passes through the window and by managing heat-causing infrared rays.
For architects and interior designers, window film can be a true friend. In the words of interior designer Jerome Hanauer, "When we go through the effort to create customized, costly furniture, upholstery and floor coverings, we have to ensure that damage and fading from the sun are kept to an absolute minimum. I see Vista window film as an investment for my clients. Compared with the price of replacing fabric and fine woods, including pianos, damaged by the sun, the cost of window film is a real bargain. Additionally the product has an enormous value for art collectors."
A Persian rug dealer in New Jersey found the installation of window film to be a highly rewarding investment. His unprotected showroom windows had allowed ultraviolet (UV) rays to destroy an extremely valuable carpet. Now he takes solace in the realization that Vista's UVShield is protecting his precious merchandise.
In most homes, in one room or another at some part of the day, glare is an aggravating and blinding problem. It can be simply eliminated with the installation of film that does not have to affect views or aesthetics. Even the ubiquitous Martha Stewart, as reported in New York magazine, has been challenged by the sun's glare. Staff members of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia found that the sunlight through the huge, dramatic windows of their new offices prevented them from seeing their computer screens. Solar control was urgently needed.
Glass is crucial to the energy efficiency of buildings. Windows typically account for a quarter of the total heating load and may account for over half of the summertime cooling load. The more than one billion residential windows in the United States account for 3.2 percent of the total U.S. energy consumption per year. Each day, more than a million barrels of oil a day are used to offset wasted energy, and with fuel prices rising as much as 30 percent this winter, it is clear that homeowners will look for increased window energy efficiency.
A Department of Energy study made a few years ago showed that energy and dollar savings through the use of window film in homes across the country could be significant. For example, the use of a solar window film in a typical single family home in Miami, FL, resulted in savings of 80 to 90 cents per square foot of window film—and that is well before the dramatic fuel price increases of recent months.
Windows typically account
for a quarter of the total heating load
and may account for
over half of the summertime cooling load.
Window film should not be perceived as a single-purpose product. It is, in reality, multifunctional. Today's range of films is vast, each with a different balance of properties varying in ultraviolet rejection, solar reflectance, light transmittance, heat rejection and glare reduction. The range continues to grow as research and development leads to new and increased solar control benefits.
For example, CPFilms recently introduced Vista UVShield®, a film that provides protection from 99.9 percent of all ultraviolet rays (UVA and UVB), which is the highest degree of UV protection ever achieved for glass. Ultraviolet light is the cause of most skin cancers, many cataracts and 90 percent of visible aging. Untreated glass does not provide any protection against the deep penetrating UVA rays that represent more than 90 percent of the ultraviolet radiation reaching Earth. This new film has earned The Skin Cancer Foundation's Seal of Recommendation for protecting skin against harmful ultraviolet rays.
Professional installation of window film takes a short time and causes little or no inconvenience. However, for reasons of aesthetics and longevity, it is critically important that film is correctly installed. CPFilms' installers are specially selected and highly trained in installation techniques. Moreover Vista and Llumar dealers work with interior designers and architects to help ensure energy efficient comfortable home interiors that are fully protected from the sun's predatory side effects.
Sales of solar control window film have grown at more than 10 percent per year over the last 12 years. CPFilms, the largest producer of solar control window films, believes the many and growing number of uses for window film and the growing sophistication of the product will continue to drive and increase sales throughout 2001 and the years ahead. In other words, the armored knight will continue to ride!
Virginia L. Kubler is director of sales and marketing, window films for CPFilms Inc. Martinsvile, VA; www.vista-films.com. The company has been producing high quality window film for the commercial, residential and automotive market place for almost 50 years.