While I do searches of this newsgroup and Goggle, I thought I would ask for
Not a home question but rather a small business. I have large windows in the
front of my store approximately 15 x 11 that receives the morning sun which
overwhelms the AC. I can't upgrade the AC and the landlord won't.
Considering the costs, I really can't blame him, he really is a nice guy.
Add in the summer commercial electric rates, I have to do something.
So I am considering installing Gila window film . I am considering the light
gray or the light neutral. My questions are:
1. How much visible light will it block? Numbers and opinions are welcome.
There is an ordinance about how much of the windows can be blocked. Plus, I
want people on the outside to see that customers are sitting in the store. I
really don't have a great concern about seeing out . I have a competitor
right across the street, de-emphasizing him is not a bad thing..
2. My signage could use a bit more contrast so is the color noticeable from
the outside? Especially the gray. I realize that this is contradictory to
number 1 but that is the way it is.
3. Right now there is no awning on front of the store which will change the
amount the amount of light coming in the window. I wonder how dark the film
will look in shadow.
The awning isn't planned for the immediate future. Long story and completely
out of my control.
Anything else I should know or is there another solution?
Bob - real email is bob (at) moondoggiecoffee.com
Before you go off half cocked. Find out what kind of glass you have. Some
store front glass will BREAK when film is applied. My ex boss decided to
put film over dark windows. West facing in Phoenix. The offices on the west
side of the building approached 95 degrees in the summer time. Every
contractor he called said the same thing put film on the windows at your
risk. NO guarntee on window breakage. Pretty expensive if they break.
The lighter colors will block 10-20% of the visiable light and are worthless
for heat gain.
(My opinion) Cloudy days you will see a decrease of natural light.
Your sign will be dimmer. Less noticeable.
That will depend day to day as the sun moves. Awning sounds like it might
be the hot ticket here.
I suggest that you contact pros in your area and ask them for a bid for
doing the work. Permission from the building owner in writing and advance.
There may be issues that you have not thought of.
Interior solar shades with your stores name and/or WE'RE OPEN on them might
be a better solution. They can be raised in the afternoon and the winter
time will not be dark.
There is type of shade available which is sort of like sun-filtering screen.
You could still have your signage visible and the screen behind it. Ask
anywhere that handles window treatments. We chose not to use it in the house
since it was transparent when packlit and we wanted the privacy w/o
Saw some kind of drapes as I walked by a store last week. I was able to see
right into the store, but it was obvious that they cut the sun down
immensely compared to a couple of neighboring shops. The drapes looked
extremely sheer, but not like a traditional fabric.
I've been trying to solve the same problem with my living room window. I
haven't seen this type of drape offered by the usual retailers (JC Penney,
etc). My next bunch of phonecalls will be to a few commercial window places.
You might want to do the same.
Spend some time at the Gila site and look around. They
have at least two types of film, one that will result
in a darker window than the others, and even reasonbly
good, not great, photos showing what the diffs look
Also read carefully - Some reflect a lot of heat,
others reflect UV, and they don't necessarily do both.
As someone else mentioned, there are also glass
considerations to take into account: That's pretty
well spelled out on their site, too. I do think you
can find what you need, though; just be sure to read it
I used the darker heat resistant film (highest heat
resistance) for my back porch windows (4 facing west)
and the living room windows. Personally I don't think
it's bad to look thru, and I love not having to see the
windows reflected in the TV before sundown or every
time a car passes by at night.
The only downside I've noticed is that if I open the
back porch windows (standard sash windows) and the two
films line up as in when they're fully opened, it not
only does darken it to look like it's story out, but it
also almost turns them into a dark mirror -
irritating - but I don't think that's your issue.
Do be sure it's compatible with the glass you have
though. It goes on easy and works well - I love it.
Install the Gila "bronze" film on the outside of your windows. It will
reduce the incoming sunlight but you can still see out. If you don't like
the results, you can easily remove (and reuse) the film. Follow the
Thanks to everyone who replied. I guess I should re-emphasize a couple of
1 I need people to see in so as not to get question on the window coverage
issue. The building inspector has made people remove signs.
2 I really only need to block the heat anything else is a bonus. I would
like to get a little more contrast to my sign painted on the outside of the
window but that is completely secondary.
Gila is sending me samples to try out. I'll let the group know how it works
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