Are you thinking about installing window security film on your home? IF so, good for you!
Not enough people take their home security seriously. At least not until it’s too late.
But there’s important research you must do first before you buy.
To ensure you get and install the PROPER window security film for YOU.
That’s why in today’s post we’ll cover in detail all the aspects of security window films, specifically:
- What Exactly Is Security Window Film?
- 2 Critical Reasons For Installing Window Film To Your Home
- Best Locations To Add Window Security Film
- Key Features To Look For In Quality Window Film
- Best Security Window Film On The Market Today
- Some Alternative Window Security Options…
- How To Install Security Window Film
WHAT EXACTLY IS SECURITY WINDOW FILM?
Window film is a thin but strong piece of transparent plastic. One that’s designed to adhere to the inside of your windows to create a stronger bond.
We all know if you hit a glass window with a baseball bat it will shatter. And it will leave a gaping hole in the window. Making it easy to blast out the remaining shards hanging from the windowsill.
But security window film holds all the shards together. This helps avoid a fast forced entry AND flying shards of glass.
Turning a 5 second forced entry situation into over a minute delay (or longer).
That may not seem like much of a delay, but here’s the thing, burglars always take the path of least resistance.
Every second in delay can mean the difference between getting loot or getting caught. So even a few seconds of delay is a significant deterrent!
The bottom line is: security window film makes your home much harder to enter. Thus, safer.
Watch this excellent overview video below, to catch up on Security Window Film Basics:
2 CRITICAL REASONS FOR INSTALLING SECURITY FILM IN YOUR HOME
One of the most overlooked home fortification upgrades is securing your windows.
But home fortification doesn’t just mean protection against forced entry. There’s also another crucial reason to invest in security window film.
So, let’s go over both now.
1 – Prevent Break-ins And Forced Entry
Of course, preventing forced entry is the most obvious “reason” and it’s a good one!
Windows are one of the most vulnerable entry points in any home. Why? Because professional burglars are not stupid.
They know doors have alarms systems and are often reinforced. And that’s why they target windows.
A burglar can break an unprotected window (one without security film) in mere seconds.
Quietly using tools like a window punch to shatter the glass. Or blasting the window out using a hammer or baseball bat.
And once a window’s glass is gone, it’s easy to slip into and back out of a home undetected. Especially any windows that have ground access and are in the hidden backside of homes.
Want some proof? Watch this video to get an idea of the power of installing window security film on your home.
This isn’t rocket science. Your unprotected windows are extremely vulnerable to burglars.
2 – Safety From Flying Shattered Glass Shards
Glass is fragile. Anyone with kids learning how to hit a baseball know this firsthand.
Any hard object (bat, ball, rock, etc.) can break a windowpane. And what happens when it breaks? It shatters into large chunks of razor-sharp shards.
These shards are extremely dangerous to anyone nearby. Especially during inclement weather, during a natural disaster, or even a bomb blast.
For example, high winds from a hurricane or tornado can easily break windowpanes. The shattered glass creates flying shard bullets.
These glass shards can cause serious injuries and even death…
Earthquakes can blow out windows and rain down knife-like shards on anyone below.
And a bomb blast can blow glass shards inward into unsuspecting occupants. Bomb blast shards can even cause permanent blindness.
The bottom line is this:
Adding security window film is a massive home fortification upgrade. And even more important, at a fair price without sacrificing aesthetics.
BEST LOCATIONS TO INSTALL WINDOW SECURITY FILM
If you can afford the investment, then it makes sense to add security film to all your home’s windows. This is especially true for small homes with only a handful of windows.
But what if you have a larger home with lots of windows and don’t want to pay to add security film to them all.
Well, then you should focus on the MOST vulnerable windows first. Ok, but which ones are those?
Ground Access Windows
For break-in prevention, it’s any window someone can access from the ground unassisted. These are the windows that don’t need a latter to access. Thus, making them more susceptible to burglar entry.
This goes double for any windows that happen to be in hidden locations (usually behind a house). These are locations someone could enter undetected away from public view.
Those are the windows you should install security film on FIRST.
Now let’s look at it from a safety standpoint. You should consider adding security film to all bedroom windows. Especially those that are apart of a small child’s bedroom.
You don’t want shards to fly towards anyone sleeping during a storm, earthquake, or bomb blast…
Roof Access Windows
Next would be any windows with roof access.
Some homes have dormer type windows or unique rooflines.
If a burglar can get on a roof and access the windows – you should add security window film on those as well.
All remaining windows are a lower priority. But if you want ultimate security then you may want to just do them all.
KEY FEATURES TO LOOK FOR IN A QUALITY WINDOW SECURITY FILM
There are several aspects to investigate when trying to pair the right film for your home’s windows.
First up is the film thickness.
There are different thickness options to choose from. They come in thicknesses from 100 micrometers (or 4 mils) through 525 micrometers (or 21 mils).
The film thickness effects the level of protection. The thicker the film the more window strength and protection they afford.
As a rule of thumb, manufacturers recommend 100-micrometer film for glass up to 3mm thick (or 1/8 inch). And 175-micrometers for glass over 6mm thick (or ¼ inch).
And while thickness is important there are a few other aspects to consider as well, such as:
- Adhesive bond strength of the film
- Quality of the application
- Window structure and frame construction
BEST SECURITY WINDOW FILMS ON THE MARKET TODAY
The good news is there quite a few security films to choose from. The bad news is it can be overwhelming to decide which is best for YOU.
To cut through the noise and confusion, we’ve put together a shortlist of the best window security films.
BDF Window Film Security and Safety Clear
BDF is one of the best options for any window security DIY project.
This film will reduce property damage. How? By absorbing impacts and holding shattered glass together.
And you can buy with confidence. Why? Because all their window films have passed all necessary testing standards and requirements.
BDF film is also crystal clear. This ensures excellent transparency and gives you 99% UV rejection as well.
The film comes with very strong adhesives to slow down any intruders.
You can also find a ton of different BDF film sizes in each thickness to ensure you get the perfect size for all your windows.
VViViD 12 Mil Clar Safety Anti-Shatter Film
Now if you’re looking for a security window film that’s a bit thicker, then look no further than VViViD.
This security window film is 12 Mils thick! This means your getting superior protection – even for commercial store displays!
This film also helps save energy on air conditioning. These block sunlight and heat (90% VLT with 99% UV protection).
HOHOFILM Clear Safety and Security Window Films
Look, this is not the most secure window film available, but security might not be top of mind for everyone!
Now for some, the following might be hard to imagine. But sometimes people just want the cheapest option to meet code.
Some regions and locations require security film on certain windows. It depends on your municipality and your area’s hazard potential.
But if this happens to be YOU, then this very affordable 2 Mil window film may be exactly what you’re looking for.
SOME ALTERNATIVE WINDOW SECURITY OPTIONS
The way I see it, you have several options for window security but window security film is the best option for most.
But you shouldn’t just take my word for it. You should fully understand all your options before investing your time and money.
Alternative Option 1 – Burglar Bars
From a pure break-in deterrent standpoint, you can’t beat adding burglar bars. These bad boys will not only keep a burglar out, but they will prevent them from even trying.
This is target hardening. They see the bars and immediately decide it’s more lucrative to move on to easier targets.
But very few people think burglar bars look good. And most people prefer NOT to look out through a set of bars – like they live in a jail cell.
Functionally, burglar bars are great, but aesthetically, they are the worst.
Plus, burglar bars don’t prevent dangerous shards during high winds or explosions.
Alternative Option 2 – Riot Glass
Riot glass is amazing if (big if) you’re willing to spend A LOT of money.
This makes sense for places such as storefronts, especially stores with valuables inside. This type of glass is an upgraded way to prevent quick smash and grab jobs…
But these are best for commercial applications and are “overkill” for most homes.
Alternative Option 3 – Security Screens
This option might be appealing to homeowners.
Instead of adding a transparent film to your windows, you upgrade your window screens.
These are newer and a more proprietary option and are not a DIY yet…
Plus, I tend to worry about quick egress with these screens. How easy and quick are they to remove if you need to escape a fire?
I haven’t found a great answer to this question yet. But feel free to investigate yourself if these seem like a better solution for YOU.
Alternative Option 4 – Upgraded Window Locks / Alarms Sensors
Some people add security lock upgrades and alarm sensors to all their home windows. Sometimes these are in addition to and sometimes instead of security window film.
And these can be sort of helpful but not worth it.
Upgraded locks don’t provide as much security as people think. Why? Because preventing a window from sliding open is useless if a burglar can just break out the glass.
A wise burglar will break the window out and lay a thick cloth over the shards. This allows them to safely slip into the home with ease – with NO need to slide the window open at all…
But if a burglar can’t shatter the glass in the first place, they can’t gain entry or access to even the most basic window locks!
So, after considering alternatives, I believe window security film is the best home fortification option.
Not only do they provide protection from break-ins, but they’re also transparent. When installed properly, you can’t even tell they are on your windows.
With security film – the burglar will quickly realize; “this is not an ordinary window”.
They will likely shatter it, realize it has security film on it and get the hell out of there FAST.
There’s no way they’re going to risk all the noise necessary to bash it in over several minutes with a crowbar.
Burglars also know they can often get away will a single quick crash noise.
Someone might wake up to a single crash sound but quickly drifting back to sleep after a few minutes.
But quick and quiet entry is not possible with window security film.
With a window security film, you’re essentially buying a forced entry time delay.
A delay of anywhere from 20 seconds to over a few minutes AND preventing the quiet break-ins…
HOW TO INSTALL SECURITY WINDOW FILM
Like any DIY project, if you take your time and do the job right, you can do it as good as any professional. But if you rush the job and don’t take the time to do your research, you can screw it up big time.
Here are a bunch of videos’ showing you how to properly install security window film. Watch them all and you’ll have the knowledge you need to tackle this DIY project:
One important note – IF possible, try to secure the film all the way across the window AND to the window frame as well. Otherwise, someone can just bust out the entire window from its frame.
Sure, it won’t be as quiet or as easy to enter that way. But by securing the film to the glass AND frame, you’re making it a much stronger (harder to enter) location.
Try finding a strong bonding agent or strong caulk to run a bead along the frame.
Too many people only focus on their home alarm systems and motion lights. But if you want true home fortification and security you MUST protect your windows as well.
Windows are the most vulnerable entry points people forget to protect.
Don’t be like most people, do yourself and your family a huge favor and protect them with security window film.
Otherwise, you may end up wishing you had a “do-over”. But there are no “do-overs” in home security.
You either make it a priority today or wish you “shoulda” later…