LESLIE: Chris in California needs some help with windows. Tell us about it.
CHRIS: I’m thinking about putting the window film on my windows …
CHRIS: … and I was wondering if it was worth the investment and if it really does reflect the sun. And if it does reflect the sun for fading, what happens in the winter? Does it keep the sun from warming my house?
TOM: That’s a good question because I’ll tell you, I remember years ago when I was a home inspector and I was called to do this inspection on a house. The complaint was that the homeowner had installed brand new, energy-efficient windows and she didn’t think they were working very well. And I said, “Well, why don’t you think they’re working well?” She says, “Well, before I put these in I used to sit at this chair at my kitchen table every morning and have my coffee and I really felt the warmth of the sun coming in and warming my whole body.” (Leslie chuckles) And now I’m just cold all the time. (Chris chuckles) I said, “Well, that’s the point of low-e windows.”
LESLIE: (chuckling) It’s working.
TOM: You see, it is working because it reflects the heat back outside.
CHRIS: I have the low-e and the dual pane but I have – what is it; the west-facing side of the house? – wherever the sun beats in in the afternoon and the late afternoon – it just really – it fades the furniture and I don’t have drapes on these windows and sliding glass. So I’m looking for an efficient way to block some of the heat and keep the furniture from fading.
TOM: Well, in that particular situation, you sound like a perfect candidate for window films. You know, applied properly, they can give you good UV protection; they can prevent some of the fading of the furniture. I don’t think it’s going to have a tremendously adverse effect in the winter, in terms of your comfort or your clarity of the windows. I know that 3M has a big line of window films. They seem to the be the market leader on this. I do know, however, that the application is really, really critical: it’s got to be done right; the windows have to be super-clean; you’ve got to get great adhesion. But if it’s done well, I think it could be very effective in this situation.
CHRIS: Oh, great. Well, I appreciate your help. Thank you.
TOM: You’re welcome, Chris. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.