A customer called us recently with a glare problem in the family room of her home. Direct sun from a nearby window was interfering with their new flat screen TV and making the room uncomfortably hot. I suggested installing Madico’s Sungard Optivision 5% as a perfect solution.
Optivision 5% is a dual-reflective film that is silver-reflective from the outside to reject maximum solar heat but the inside surface is a darker smoke color so it minimizes any interior back-reflection at night. Lighter 15% and 25% shades of this product are being used in other areas of the home.
We run across the same situation when the sun’s glare affects computer monitors. Especially when a window is behind the user’s back causing reflections on the computer monitor. Another alternative film that’s not as reflective is “high-performance automotive window film”. Automotive films are available in shades of light, medium, dark and extra dark. It’s best to stay with reflective or semi-reflective architectural films however.
There’s one word of caution. Do not apply dark window film on impact windows.
Dark window film can cause laminated impact glass to crack due to excessive heat absorption and expansion. This is often called a Heat Stress Fracture. Replacing this type of glass is extremely expensive. Ask your window film professional for possible options if you have solar heat or glare problems with impact windows.
Other options may include installing an “exterior film”. Exterior films perform very well however they have a shorter lifespan due to exposure to the outdoor elements. Exterior films carry up to a 3-year warranty at which time you can decide to have it replaced to maintain it’s appearance and performance.
As a last resort, a black colored pull-shade or dark lined draperies will do the trick.