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Which is Better: Low-E Glass or Tinted Window Film?

Posted by Jimmy Hawley on Jan 21, 2015 1:30:00 PM
Which is Better: Low-E Glass or Tinted Window Film?If you've lived in Florida for any amount of time, you know how hot your home can get in the middle of summer. Even with air conditioning, light that comes directly into your home can make any room feel much warmer than it actually is. There are few things worse than sweating in your own home while you're paying for the air conditioning to run. When it comes to keeping your house cool, you have a few options for your windows. The two most popular options are low-e glass and a tinted window film. So, which one is better?

The Case for Low-E Glass

Low-emissive glass, more commonly referred to as low-e glass, is window glass that has been treated with an invisible metal or metallic oxide coating. This coating creates a surface that reflects heat while still allowing light to pass through. Low-e coatings help to minimize the amount of ultraviolet (UV) and infrared light that can pass through glass.

Low-e glass improves energy efficiency by letting in light while reflecting the heat outside. This reduces your home's cooling costs, and your air conditioning won't have to run as hard to keep your home cool. Additionally, low-e glass helps to reduce glare in a room, meaning you'll no longer have to deal with that annoying glare on your TV when you're trying to watch your favorite show. Low-e glass also protects your home from damaging rays from the sun that often cause discoloration of fabrics, photos, carpets, paint and more.

The downside to low-e glass is that you'll have to install new windows, which can be costly if you're replacing all of the windows in your home. However, if there are certain rooms in your house that are affected by direct sunlight more than others, you have the option to just replace those windows with low-e glass.

The Case for Window Tinting

The cost of installing tinted window film on glass is often less expensive than installing new windows with low-e glass. If you live in an old or historic building, it may not be possible to have replacement windows that will match the originals. In this case, tinted window film may be the only cost-efficient option available.

Tinted window film can help increase privacy so that people can't see inside your home. This is helpful if you have electronics or other expensive items that are visible from the outside. Window tinting can also help to reduce some of the heat coming into your home so your air conditioning won't have to work as hard. However, window film doesn't provide the same energy efficiency as low-e glass, and it doesn't address inefficient window frames.

It's important to understand that applying tinted window film to your windows may void the glass manufacturing company's warranty. This will void the warranty for the glass only – not the entire window. Always check with the manufacturer before applying tinted window film to see if you're going to void the warranty.

Low-e glass and window tinting both have their benefits, and it really comes down to preference. However, in Florida, low-e glass does a better job at keeping your home cool during the hot summer months.

If you're interested in learning more about low-e glass, Storm Solutions offers a selection of the best windows in the industry and provides professional installation services. Contact us today to learn more!

Topics: Low-E Glass