Window Film

Window Film

Ultraviolet light can penetrate through glass. It passes through windows at home and when in a car. Glass offers shielding against UVB rays, but allows UVA rays.

UV blocking plastic adhesive films can be applied to home and automobile windows. A number of companies offer UV light blocking films that can be applied to home and automobile windows. All window films typically offer up to 99% ultraviolet light reduction.

Window Film for Buildings
There are many types of window film intended for safety and the control of heating and cooling for commercial and residential building owners. These film products block UV solar energy (300-380 nanometers) that is allowed to pass through a window. Window films are composed of a coated polyester applied to the interior surface of glass. Professional installation is often suggested by the manufacturer. Film installed improperly or not used in accordance to specifications may result in product failure and/or warranty limitations.

Window Film for Automobiles
Before you invest a lot of money in a product, check for local regulations for car window films or tinting. Some places have laws that do not allow it.

US Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 205 specifies the amount of tinting that is allowed in new motor vehicles prior to the sale of the vehicle. Federal Standard 205 is silent with respect to the windows to the rear of the driver and the front seat passengers on multi-purpose vehicles; therefore, the purchaser of a new vehicle may specify unlimited tinting on the vehicles. Most places usually allow unlimited tinting on the rear of multi-purpose vehicles provided the vehicle is equipped with outside mirrors. Following the sale of the new vehicle, window tinting is regulated by the individual states.

High performance films available from a variety of window film manufacturers can block 45-55% of the heat and 95-99% of the ultraviolet rays.


International Window Film Association, Window Films 101, 2013.

International Window Film Association, Window Film Info Center, Legislation, 2013.  See: State/province legislation alerts and suggested model law for automotive window tinting

Skin Cancer Foundation, Why Use Window Film?, 2013.


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