Frequently Asked Questions
How do Sun Control Films work?
MSA Sun Control Films are designed to reduce the amount of solar heat transmission through window glass by increasing the solar reflection (not necessarily visible reflection) and solar absorption through the glass.
Typical colored or dyed films work primarily through increased absorption. The color absorbs the solar energy at the glass, thus reducing the direct transmission into the room. These films are not as effective as reflective films for reducing heat.
Reflective films are films that have been precision coated with metals. These metallized films are designed to increase the solar energy reflection of the glass. MSA reflective films range from moderate to excellent in solar performance (heat gain reduction).
All MSA Sun Control Films are made to be transparent and optically clear. The ultraviolet protection is built into the adhesive system to provide longevity to the film as well as provide UV protection for your home and office furnishings.
Most Window Films are protected with our abrasion resistant coating that provides long-term durability and maintained appearance.
How do Low E Window Films work?
Low E Films work much in the same way as the sun control films except that they offer an increased performance against cold weather heat loss. The patented construction of these films enables the metal coating to reflect more of the interior room heat back into the room where it is needed. This improves personal comfort by reducing cold spots near windows and can help save on fuel costs, especially in commercial buildings. These low-e films are also protected with our patented abrasion resistant coating for long-term durability and maintained appearance.
Why do commercial customers have MSA film applied to their buildings?
• Lower heating and cooling operating costs
• Lower utility demand costs
• Utility rebates
• Improved tenant comfort
• Improved aesthetics, uniform appearance
• Improved safety and security
• Extended A/C equipment life
• Valued alternative to adding more A/C equipment
Most often, our commercial customers will purchase MSA Window Films for tenant comfort and justify the purchase through energy cost savings.
What is the typical energy pay back for MSA Sun Control Window Films?
Simple paybacks will vary depending upon the amount of sunlit glass exposure, the type of film, the type of glass, cost of fuel, cost of application, and other variables. However, we have seen paybacks often range in the 2-5 year period, with some reported to be even less than 6 months. See your authorized MSA Window Film Dealer to analyze the potential energy savings in your commercial property.
How is MSA Window Film applied?
MSA films are professionally applied by skilled, authorized Dealers. Almost all of our films are designed to be applied to the inside of your glass.
The first step is to prepare the window area for the application; placing drop cloths on the floor protecting and/or moving furniture where necessary.
Next, the window glass is cleaned using simple cleaning solutions (often water and ammonia) and razor blade scrapers. Then the film is sprayed with a slip solution (detergent and water) for proper positioning, and applied to the window glass. Using a professional grade squeegee and following proper techniques, the application is completed by removing excess water, trimming the edges, and a final squeegee technique to dry the edges.
How long does it take for MSA Window Films to dry?
We suggest allowing thirty days for the film to fully dry and cure. During this curing process, it is normal to have small water bubbles and/or a hazy appearance. These will disappear as the film dries; depending upon the film type and weather conditions, drying may take as much as 30 (or even 45) days, or as little as a few days. Once dried, 3M Window Films will look great and perform for many years to come.
Can I install Window Film myself?
No, Window Films require professional application; our authorized MSA Window Film Dealers are thoroughly trained and experienced in performing high quality work. In this way, our customers will enjoy the benefits of MSA Window Films and have the comfort of the MSA warranty.