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Category: Frequently Asked Questions

Best Window Film For Privacy?

This article is not about which brand of film is the best for privacy, but rather which type we think is the best. The best window film for privacy ultimately depends on the individual taste of the person having the film installed, but there are 3 main categories of varying privacy to choose from – frosted, reflective and “limo”.

In our opinion the best privacy films are of the frosted variety. They allow all of the light through the windows, and offer privacy 24 hours a day. The only drawback is no longer being able to see out of the windows. If your situation demands privacy over a view – this is the way to go.

Some people don’t want to block the view through the glass and still get privacy. This is possible using super reflective films, but the privacy ends as soon as the sun goes down and your lights go on – people will easily be able to see inside. There are some ways to “stretch” the privacy through the night, but you need to be in control of carefully placed lighting outside the windows you are trying to add privacy to. As long as the light level outside the windows is brighter than inside – privacy is achieved. Some of our clients have set dimmers in the room in question and placed flood lights outside. This allows the owner to see anyone that might be lurking outside without them being able to see in.

As a side note, if you are only interested in daytime privacy there are many 60%-65% films that aren’t reflective that might be able to do the job for you.  Using these films works best in situations where there are only windows on one side of the room and light is not being shined in from rooms on the opposite side of the house. The privacy isn’t that great if you stand close to the windows, but this method allows plenty of light into your home and still allows you to easily see outside.

If you are willing to block most of the light that comes through the windows to achieve privacy, you can always have a “limo” tint installed the outside of the glass. You will have some idea of what is going on outside, and as long as the light level is kept low no one will be able to see in day or night. This still works better with a light outside the window – but the advantage to this scenario is that the windows will not look like mirrors, just dark. It’s best to go this route if the windows are in a bedroom as the film will double as glare reduction in the morning.

It’s entirely possible that none of these films achieves privacy on the terms you were looking for. Sometimes shades or blinds are the best solution. If you are mostly interested in night-time privacy and want to enjoy your view through the day, then window film is not the solution you need.

If one of these films sounds like it will work for your situation and you live in the Chicago area, visit our main website at where you can arrange a free estimate and see samples in person.

Window Film Cabinet Doors?

Many of our customers want to window film cabinet doors! The most popular films we install on cabinet doors are of the frosted variety. There are many advantages to using window film on your cabinet doors:

  • Can achieve the same look as etched glass and obscure cabinet contents
  • Much cheaper than hiring a glass company to fabricate and cut custom sizes
  • Eliminates the need to completely replace the doors or glass of your cabinets
  • Faster turnaround than custom glass
  • Window film can easily be changed with a new design to suit your needs

The most popular applications are the simplest. White matte frost film is usually applied to the entire face of the glass, or each piece of film is cut to leave a clear border anywhere from 1/2″ to 1″ from the edge.

Frosted window film hides the mess in the cabinets, but still allows the lights inside to glow through. We have also applied dark window films to glass on wine coolers to cut down on the light getting to the bottles.

Whether you’ve been researching this process for some time or have just started, we have the expertise to help your vision quickly come to life. We guarantee a great looking installation and offer a 7-year product warranty. If you live in or around the Chicagoland area, visit our website to take a look at some of the frosted film styles we have available, or just click here to request a free estimate.

How Much Energy Does Window Film Save?

Window film energy saving performance is based on the amount of visible  and infrared light absorbed or reflected by the film. UV light also contributes to heat gain, but because most window films reduce 99% of the UV, we’re not including this factor as a variable.

The more visible and infrared light you reject, the more energy you save. The maximum available performance for architectural window films is around 80% heat reduction. These high-performance films have a reflective exterior appearance and are usually only applied to commercial windows and skylights.

Most residential window films reduce around 55% of solar heat from entering the home. These products are designed to have a subtle appearance (lighter in color and less reflective than high-performance films) and sacrifice performance for aesthetics.

Spectrally-selective films can reduce the same level of heat as traditional home window films without being reflective or dark. These films reject a high level of infrared light, so homes in colder climates will get the added benefit of increased heat retention in the winter months. The combined energy savings throughout the year comes to around 35%-50%.

There is no way to accurately calculate how much energy window film will save you in your specific application. The compass orientation of the glass, the number of windows, size of the windows and type of glass you have are all factors that affect your bottom line energy savings.

If your windows face north and you get little or no direct sunlight through them, window film will do little to help save energy. Heat issues in these situations are more often caused by poor circulation and/or the room being located on the top floor of a multi-level home.

If you have windows that face south and get direct sunlight for most of the day, you will quickly notice a significant difference in energy expenditure. Similarly, a “wall” of windows that face east and/or west will also exhibit a high energy savings after the application of film.

As a general rule, energy saving window film will pay for itself in energy savings between 2 and 5 years after you have it installed. Review our article on what window tinting costs to get an idea of how much your project will be.

If you live in the Chicago area and would like to know exactly what your installation will cost, you can request a free estimate. If you would like to see how popular window film styles will perform and look right now, visit our web site at

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