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Window Film: Frequently Asked Questions

If you ask the question we will give the answers. Heres some of the most frequently asked questions about window film. If your question about window film is not answered below, give us a call and well do our best to answer it for you.

Q: Is Solasafe Window Film "legal" for my vehicle? A: Yes: The film can be applied legally to your car as long as it is not darker than 35% VLT: (35% is the legal limit in SA). Q: Is Solasafe a "Do-It-Yourself” product? A: If you are good with your hands and pay attention to detail you can do it yourself but it is recommended to use a professional installation company. Q: Will Solasafe Window Film make my glass bulletproof? A: No: Bullet Proof Glass is made of several layers of glass and polyester, it is "thick" and heavy. Safety film will hold the glass together containing the dangerous shards. There are many recorded instances where certain types of glass with safety film on may have deflected a bullet. Safety film on glass is effective in smash and grab attacks, bomb explosions and where human impact is possible. Q: Will Solasafe Window Film stop break-ins? A: Solasafe will slow down break-ins. Even a door can be broken. The film on the glass will repel thrown objects etc. but continual hammering will get through. There is no doubt Solasafe film will make your house, office or car more safe in the case of a violent attack. Q: Is Solasafe Window Film installed on the outside or inside surface of the glass? A: Solasafe is installed to the inside in most cases. Q: How thick is Solasafe safety film? A: From 38 micron to 360 microns. Each film is made to its own specs which in turn varies the thickness. Q: How visually clear is Solasafe Safety Film? A: The film is "glass clear" although you can get tinted varieties. Some types of film cannot be seen on the glass where others may look like a mirror, graphics or even black out the window completely. Q: Is the Film tested? A: Yes: Both overseas and locally tested (SABS). Q: Will Solasafe window film cause my houseplants to die? A: In most cases, if a houseplant is already receiving adequate light the use of window film will not harm it. New growth or flowering may be retarded, and, for a few days, a plant may go into a state of shock while it adjusts to the light change. If a particular plant normally wilts by the end of a sunny day, it will actually thrive with film installed. Although there are some obvious guidelines in determining what, if any, effect window film will have on a plant (for instance, dark green plants need less light than lighter colored ones), there is one sample test which can be done prior to film installation; that is, merely move the plant to an area with less sunlight for a few days. In addition, most nurseries or local agriculture agencies can advise you whether a particular plant needs closer to maximal or minimal light. Q: Will window film cause glass to break? A: Glass breaks when stressed. There are five types of stress which may cause glass breakage: Thermal Stress - from absorption of solar radiation; Tensile Stress - from the weight of the glass itself; Mechanical Flexing Stress - from wind; Impact Stress - from flying objects, hail, baseballs; Twisting Stress - from building or window frame sagging or settling; The first type, thermal stress, is the only one which film may affect. The use of window films increases the thermal stress on the sun lite glass. However, there are also other factors which will increase thermal stress such as partial shading of windows from overhangs, tight-fitting drapes or blinds, signs or decals on windows, heating and cooling vents directed at the glass. In addition, different types of glass (annealed versus tempered, clear versus tinted) have different solar absorption rates and will withstand different degrees of thermal stress. The window film manufacturers have recommended film-to-glass tables for uses by factory-trained dealer installers. If a consumer is ever in doubt, he/she should request a copy of such guidelines. Listed are some glass types or conditions where the use of a solar control (ie. dark film, not clear safety) type of window film is not recommended without extreme caution. SINGLE PANE GLASS LARGER THAN 100 SQUARE FEET; DOUBLE PANE GLASS LARGER THAN 40 SQUARE FEET; CLEAR GLASS THICKER THAN 3/8 INCH; TINTED GLASS THICKER THAN ¼ inch; WINDOW FRAMING SYSTEMS OF CONCRETE, SOLID ALUMINIUM, OR SOLID Steel; GLASS WHERE SEALANT OR GLAZING COMPOUND HAS HARDENED VISIBLY; CHIPPED, CRACKED, OR OTHERWISE DAMAGED GLASS; Reflective, WIRED, TEXTURED, OR PATTERNED GLASS; TRIPLE PANE GLASS; LAMINATED GLASS Windows; It is best to inquire from a trained installer. Q: How long will film last? A: The effective life of window film will vary by the type of film, type of glass, window construction, compass orientation of glass, and in which part of the world the building is located. There are documented cases of film lasting 12 to 22 years or more in some instances. This should not, however, be assumed to be the normal expected life. All quality window films for residential and commercial use are warranted by the film manufacturers for a minimum of five years (certain products may have extended coverage). There are low-quality films on the market that will break down in a shorter period. (Refer to film structures). Q: How am I supposed to clean my windows after film is applied? A: Windows with film applied are easy to clean without damage to their appearance as long as a few common-sense guidelines are followed: Use soft, clean cloth, soft paper towel, or clean synthetic sponge; Use a soft cloth or squeegee for drying the window; Use any normal glass cleaning solution which contains no abrasive materials; Do not use alcohol based cleaners. The availability of scratch resistant coatings as a standard feature of quality films has virtually eliminated the extra special precautions in cleaning. Q: Will Window Film really stop fading of fabrics? A: There are six factors affecting fabric fading:

Ultraviolet Light; Visible Light; Heat and Humidity; Chemical Vapours (including ozone); Age of Fabric; Dye Fastness; Clear single pane glass (1/8" to ¼") will reject 23-28% of the ultraviolet light from the sun. Insulated glass is slightly better rejecting 36-41%. Window film installed on glass will reject 95-99% of solar ultraviolet light. Different types of clear glass and window systems will reject 13-29% of the solar heat. With window films, 80% solar heat rejection can be obtained. No window film can eliminate fading. It can, however, offer maximum protection from fading due to solar ultraviolet light and solar heat. Q: What causes fading? A: "As A Rule Of Thumb" Miscellaneous - Indoor artificial lighting, humidity, and poor dyed anchorage. Window film does not stop fading, they help reduce fading. Q: Does window film bubble and peal? A: There are many different grades of window film. Cheap varieties with inadequate (glue) adhesive may bubble and peal. You pay for what you get. Q: Can Solasafe window film cut out heat without darkening the room? A: Yes. Different film has different qualities that allow for different amounts of light into the room and will prevent a certain amount of heat. Q: Can Solasafe cut down glare without darkening the room too much. A: Yes. Glare is reflected light, Solasafe film can decrease the glare (strain on your eyes) without making the room into a "Dark cave".

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