As energy prices rise and the summers get warmer, you may be looking for ways to keep cool without breaking the bank. Window film is an energy-efficient upgrade to your existing windows that cuts the amount of heat that enters your home. If your aim is to reduce heat and increase your comfort this summer, you may be wondering: is window film worth it?
Types of Residential Window Films
To understand whether window film is a worthwhile addition to your home, it’s important to first recognize the various types available and their specific benefits:
Solar Control Films
Solar control films are designed to block ultraviolet (UV) rays, reduce glare, and lower solar heat gain. They come in a range of colors, shades, and reflectivity levels to suit different preferences and requirements. These films can help to:
- Protect your furniture, flooring, and artwork from fading due to UV exposure
- Reduce glare, making your home more comfortable for activities like watching TV or working on a computer
- Lower energy costs by reducing the need for air conditioning
Privacy films are designed to limit visibility into your home from the outside, providing an added layer of security and privacy. These films are available in a variety of colors and patterns, including:
- Frosted films, which offer a semi-opaque appearance and soft, diffused light
- Mirrored films, which provide a reflective surface that obstructs outside view while still allowing natural light in
- Decorative films, which feature patterns or designs for an aesthetic touch
Safety and Security Films
Safety and security films are thicker and more robust, designed to hold glass together in the event of breakage. These films can:
- Protect your home from intruders, as the film makes it more difficult for them to break through the glass
- Prevent injuries from broken glass during natural disasters or accidents
- Reduce the risk of damage to your home from flying glass shards
The Cost of Residential Window Film Installation
The cost of window film installation varies depending on the type of film, the size and number of windows, and the complexity of the installation process. On average, homeowners can expect to spend between $6 and $15 per square foot for professional installation. DIY installation of professional grade film is now an option with ComforTech™ Ceramic Series window film which is less than $3/square foot to install yourself. Read our full article on window film cost.
Is Window Film Worth It? Potential Savings and Return on Investment
One of the main reasons homeowners consider installing window film is the potential for energy savings. By reducing solar heat gain and blocking UV rays, window films can help to lower energy costs, particularly during peak cooling seasons. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, window films can save homeowners between 5% and 15% on their energy bills.
While these savings can be substantial, it’s important to consider the upfront costs of window film installation. The payback period for a residential window film installation will depend on the size of your home, the type of film installed, your local climate, and if you install the film yourself or hire out. If you install yourself and live in a high-heat area, the payback period can be as short as 2 years. If you get window film professionally installed, depending on your climate, it could take up to 10 years to recoup your initial investment.
In addition to energy savings, the increased comfort, privacy, and security that window films provide can also contribute to a higher quality of life and potentially increase the resale value of your home. These benefits, while harder to quantify, should also be taken into consideration when evaluating the overall value of installing window film.
Factors to Consider Before Installing Residential Window Film
While the benefits of window film can be significant, there are a few factors to consider before deciding to invest in this home improvement:
Window films are designed to adhere to the glass surface, and the condition of your windows can impact the quality and longevity of the installation. Older windows with damaged seals, cracked glass, or other issues may not be suitable candidates for window film installation. In such cases, it may be more cost-effective to replace the windows altogether rather than invest in window film. Use Concord’s evaluation checklist to see if your windows are good candidates for film.
While window films come in a variety of shades and patterns, the appearance of your windows will be altered to some extent. It’s essential to consider your aesthetic preferences and how the film will impact the overall appearance of your home. If you’re unsure about the look, get samples to test in your space. Concord offers a window film sample kit with all five ComforTech™ shades plus our Matte White privacy film.
Professional vs. DIY Installation
Professional window film installation will cost you more money than installing it yourself. If you have the time, doing it yourself can be a great way to save money. Choosing a high-quality film with a dry adhesive like Concord, with easy-to-use step-by-step videos and instructions, will make the job a breeze. If you have difficult-to-reach or odd-shaped windows, it may be worthwhile investing in a pro for installation.
Residential window film can be a valuable addition to your home, offering numerous benefits such as increased energy efficiency, enhanced comfort, improved privacy, and UV protection.
ComforTech™ Ceramic Series is a great choice for people who want a professional quality film and want to save money on installation by doing it themselves. Our five performance shades offer options for everyone and our easy installation makes everyone a pro. Learn more at www.windowfilm.com.