This time of year we are all focused on the changes in the weather. It’s getting colder, and summer is over, so it’s natural that we’re trying to get used to that. But with the changes in the weather we also see that the sun is lower in the sky and with that comes another problem – glare from the sunlight can have an impact on our workplace, whether that is in healthcare, education or a commercial business.
Anti-glare solutions can really help to reduce these problems and we’ve put together a two-part series for the blog on two great solutions – anti-glare film and blinds that make our spaces fully useable at any time of year.
First, in this blog, we are going to focus on anti-glare film for windows. Our next one will focus on anti-glare fabrics for blinds which can really transform your space. Whatever you choose, the days of un-useable meeting rooms or moving round an office space with the sun are over.
What is anti-glare film for windows?
The British sunshine is a wonderful thing, but trying to work in extreme heat whilst also being dazzled by UV-rays is not so great! More and more companies are investing in the installation of anti-glare window film as an alternative to more laborious and expensive options such as complete window replacement. Anti-glare window film is an affordable, versatile and innovative solution to the problems of glare, brightness and excess heat in buildings exposed to sunlight.
Anti-glare window film is a low maintenance solution to problems caused by excess solar heat and sun glare. Window film can be applied to the vast majority of windows to provide protection against UV rays without hindering light levels or clarity of vision. The effects of dazzle are drastically reduced through the application of a non-intrusive thin-film material. Coming in an array of finishes, there is a kind of anti-glare film for every type of business, building and organisation, including tinted, non-tinted and mirrored.
Why do you need it?
Schools, businesses and other organisations struggle to cope with the heat during the summer, but sun glare both during the summer and throughout the year can exacerbate the problem. This can often be compounded by the existence of surrounding buildings which reflect UV-light from their own windows, this is worsened if your office is in a high-rise building.
Applying anti-glare window film helps to minimise the amount of excess heat being transferred through windows and decrease the intensity of sun glare. Without the cost of replacing windows or the inconvenience of having roller blinds or pleated blinds fitted, which often make office areas dark and unappealing. Anti-glare film helps to create a welcoming and comfortable workspace for clients and employees, whilst also potentially reducing your energy bills!
What are the benefits of using anti-glare film?
Anti-glare window film can be used in a wide variety of settings as an anti-glare and climate control solution. There are five major benefits from using anti-glare window film, so continue reading to discover why this sun glare solution would be the perfect addition to our building.
Reduce sun glare
The most obvious benefit of installing anti-glare is to reduce the amount of ultraviolet light able to penetrate through windows and into your work or office space. Sun glare comes in two main forms, the first is the temporary blinding effect of enormously bright sunlight. This type of sun glare is often briefly debilitating, but it can also cause headaches and migraines when it occurs repeatedly. The second and most common type of sun glare is the persistent low-level glare caused by ambient UV-rays. Sun glare of this type leads to an extremely bright work environment, which can make using computers, laptops and other screens incredibly tricky.
Not being able to see a screen properly because of sun glare is inconvenient and causes decreases in employee productivity, but with constant exposure, it can also cause eyestrain, fatigue and headaches. So, if productivity and workplace morale is important to your business, reducing sun glare should be a top priority.
Of course, you may think that by installing roller, vertical or roman blinds you will be solving the problem once and for all. You would be wrong! While blinds are able to block out some of the light entering your workspace, it will not prevent heat being transferred – in fact it may even increase the amount of heat in a room because blinds may inadvertently block window air vents which allow for the escape of heat.
On the other hand, anti-glare film will not prevent air from entering or leaving the building, which means you get to benefit from any architect-installed cooling measures, but it will reduce sun glare by a whopping 82%! This kind of reduction in sun glare will have a massive effect on workplace comfort, mainly when the majority of work is done on computers.
Sun glare and window displays
Aside from causing an uncomfortable environment for employees and clients, sun glare can also cause issues for retailers and businesses which have window displays and advertisements to attract customers. Sun glare can be a major inconvenience to retailers when sunlight and/or UV reflections mean that passers-by cannot see into a shop window to learn what products are on offer: this decreases shop footfall and reduces sales. Anti-glare window film can dramatically reduce the amount of glare inside a shop, but it can also make it easier for customers to look into a shop window and not be blinded by the reflection of the sun!
Reduce solar heat
The main problem with installing blinds instead of anti-glare window film is that it will not help to combat the issue of excess heat. Blinds are also incredibly expensive to have installed across a building and are subject to breakage if customers, clients and employees are not instructed in proper usage techniques.
Anti-glare window film can reduce solar heat energy by up to 72%, making it the perfect choice for environments where keeping cool is a must! Long British summers and increased temperature all year round, meaning that offices, hospitals and schools are turning to anti-glare to help them ensure employee, patient and child safety by decreasing the risk of sun or heat-stroke caused by exposure to excess heat and sunlight.
Block ultraviolet light
Research shows that prolonged exposure to UV radiation is a leading cause of cancer and skin- ageing. Those who work in office buildings which receive either direct sunlight or sunlight which bounces off surrounding buildings (indirect sunlight) are at risk of developing skin problems if they are sitting near to unprotected windows.
This is a major concern for employers, especially as it may lead to legal action in the event of a health issue caused by an unsafe-working environment. Of course, the human costs and potential lowering of staff morale are of huge importance, and effective solutions need to be found to reduce these issues. Anti-glare film is able to block up a massive 99.99% of all damaging UV-light, meaning that the installation of anti-glare film will be able to minimise the effects of sun exposure by providing a safe and comfortable workspace.
Save money on bills
Anti-glare and heat reduction window film is not only fantastic for making home, business and work environments cooler and less subject to exceptionally bright light though! While the most obvious impact of anti-glare film installation will be seen (and felt) in the office, it will also have a positive effect on your wallet!
With less heat energy being absorbed into the building due to advanced reflective technology in the anti-glare film, the money spent on air conditioning will be significantly reduced. This will be good for your business account and also good for the environment since air conditioning contributes to global greenhouse gas emissions.
If your corporate policy involves a commitment to the environment, then having reflective anti-glare and heat reduction film applied to your windows is one way you can help to meet energy targets.
Provide added privacy
Some businesses and retailers require certain areas to be more private, so choosing an anti-glare window film which is tinted or even mirrored can help increase the level of confidentiality. For instance, retailers of expensive jewellery might want to deter thieves from snooping around and checking what items are in-store, an anti-glare window film will help to reduce glare and heat in the first place but also act as a deterrent for burglars.
If you are thinking of having anti-glare film applied to your windows, the chances are that you won’t have considered its added benefits such as the potential to increase privacy, security or make windows safer for building users. However, the benefit of increased safety is one of the system’s most unique selling points.
Anti-glare window film comes in a vast number of styles to suit your needs, but they will all increase the safety of your window. This is because of technology contained in the micron film which provides extreme protection against shattering. The design of the film is made to withstand a bomb blast, so you can be assured that the film will protect people in the event of an incident.
For buildings at street level, there is always a risk of a window being smashed by children playing football or a golf ball from a nearby golf course finding its way through to your building. With anti-glare window film, you never need to worry about glass shattering on impact, as many types of film will protect your property and the people inside.
Where can anti-glare film be used?
An anti-glare film can be used anywhere and everywhere! From public buildings such as hospitals, schools and governmental offices to private businesses, universities and hotels. Anti-glare and heat reduction window film will benefit the users and the owners, by creating a more comfortable environment and reducing utility bills by potentially thousands of pounds.
Buildings which are at a high elevation, particular skyscrapers, and tall block towers, are at particular risk of damaging levels of UV exposure. This can lead to unbearable heat for employees and create an environment which has far too much direct light to make for comfortable working. Inefficient methods of reducing these problems, e.g. blinds, can often lead to more problems down the road when they need to be replaced or when the heat becomes overwhelming.
Anti-glare window film controls the amount of heat and light coming through a window by decreasing the window’s absorption rate through means of reflection. Workspaces, homes, businesses and public buildings hugely benefit by making a space cooler in the summer, with diminished harsh light.