Window film

Solar window film compared to external shading – how to choose the best solution?

Most of the information on the web compares the solar gain reduction of solar window film to internal shading, so we have put together a simple comparison between solar window film and external blinds.

  • Solar Heat Gain & Energy Savings – If your main concern is dealing with overheating from solar gain then external blinds perform much better than solar film.  Solar gain heat transmittance is reduced by up to 90% using external blinds compared with just 50% using window film. Reducing solar gain is not the only energy saving benefit of external blinds, however, as contrary to solar window film; external shading also reduces heat loss and therefore heating bills in winter. In the winter months external screens can be raised giving benefits of natural light and heat from solar gain neither of which are offered by solar window film.
  • Light & preservation of outside views – Traditionally external roller blinds and shutters blocked out a large amount of light when in use compared with window film which effectively reduces glare whilst still letting in natural light. However, the development of external screens in new fabrics including polyester and glass fibre allows the sunlight through, retaining the view outside whilst reducing the glare and heat from the sun.  An additional benefit of external screens compared to solar window film is that they are retractable and can be raised and lowered as required for light and passive solar gain. Solar window film, however, can be a good option particularly for listed buildings where external shading is not permitted by planning.
Shading comparison table