You may have read somewhere that residential window tinting can save you money on your cooling costs. Well, according to the website energy.gov, this is certainly true. Window tinting is listed as an energy-efficient window treatment. 40% of the heat buildup in the home comes in through it’s windows. Window film helps by blocking the heat and harmful UV rays that cause furniture and carpeting to fade or look bleached in spots.
During summer one of the biggest expenses of the month is your cooling bill. One of the best ways to lower your cooling costs is to not use your air conditioner as often, but that may be an impossible task depending on where you live. Of course the less you use of something, the less it costs. What you can do, if you can’t turn off your air conditioner completely, is to lower the thermostat a few degrees during the hottest part of the day. Covering sun-facing windows in the afternoon blocks heat and keeps down humidity making your cooling system work more efficiently.
Most consumers never consider window tinting as a energy-efficient tool for saving money. Tinted windows help keep your car’s interior cooler in the summer, why wouldn’t it do the same in your home? Residential tinting comes in different shades and degrees of tint so you can customize your windows to your liking. Popular shades include gray, brown, clear, frosted and mirrored. Tinted windows are also harder to see through from the outside adding a feeling of security for occupants alone in the house.
Another type of window film increases your home’s security by making windows resistant to breaking. This type of film adheres to the glass and bonds with it making it stronger and more resistant to shattering. If for any reason the window does break, the shards are held together by the window film so there is less danger of cuts from picking up broken glass. This added layer of protection keeps intruders out as well as the excess heat.
Here are a few ways that residential window tinting helps lower your seasonal cooling costs:
Homeowners spend hundreds if not thousands of dollars during one cooling season (depending on how much you use your air conditioner and temp settings) and 60% of those costs can be attributed to heat gain through the roof and windows of the home. By shading these areas, not only does your home stay cooler inside, but your overall cooling costs for the season will be much less.
For more tips on cooling your home naturally and saving money, this resource from NREL.gov gives some helpful information for money-saving home improvements.
June 19, 2015 | regularlink
You may have already heard that residential window tinting can give your home more privacy and a greater sense of comfort.
While that’s true, residential films can also lend an aesthetic quality to your home and allow you to customize the particular tint and hue that goes with your room’s layout. A residential film can also give you more privacy while reducing glare and harmful UV rays.
The really surprising thing about window film, though, is its ability to reduce your utility bills 365 days a year.
Going Green with Residential Window Tint
Residential window tint is a great way to help save the planet and your own personal financial ecosystem at the same time.
As Americans spend, and in some cases squander, hundreds of dollars on heating and cooling during months of more extreme weather, something needs to be done to put more money back into homeowners’ pockets. The solution is coming from an unconventional player: residential window film.
The Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Energy have both come to the conclusion that over half of a home’s heating and cooling efforts are undercut through heat gain and poorly sealed windows. Coupled with the fact that the average homeowner spends over $2000 on heating and cooling annually, there’s some serious money at stake when it comes to eliminating heat gain.
Fortunately for homeowners, there’s a very affordable yet effective solution in residential window tint. Most residential films reduce glare by approximately 90% and the sun’s damaging UV rays by 97% or higher, which translates to more comfort and safety for your entire family.
Many films are also specifically formulated to repel the most harmful UV rays – UVB rays – and keep your furniture from aging prematurely. Installing window film isn’t even that difficult, and it can usually be sized and applied in under an hour. Ensuring that your rooms are glare-free and safe for your family is definitely worth the effort.
Window Tint Beats Alternatives
When you consider the cost and expense of replacing single-pane or poorly ventilated windows compared to the ease and affordability of simply installing window tint, the latter option turns into a no-brainer.
Estimates show that window tint is actually 10% the cost of replacing an entire window. In light of the fact that window tint comes with so many stock benefits – glare reduction, improved energy efficiency, etc. – there’s really no compelling reason to spring for a replacement when you can have such great energy efficiency with residential window tint.
Here’s another important fact that you might want to consider – the United States Department of Energy recently found that just under a quarter of a home’s outer exposure is made up of glass. Homeowners around the country infuriated by their escalating utility bills probably already understand that windows, even with drapes, offer poor ventilation in the winter months.
Now this next statistic might actually cause some readers to do a double take – the U.S. Department of Energy also found that over $30 billion in utility costs are squandered every year due to poorly ventilated windows!
Switching to Window Tint
The statistics referenced throughout this article should, at the very least, give homeowners pause. Most homeowners, though, are already a little peeved at having to spend upwards of $2000 annually on utility costs and are looking for ways to save.
Window tint can save you potentially hundreds of dollars during the winter months and have you saving significantly in summer as well due to tint’s ability to repel heat gain. Glare reduction, enhanced safety and UV protection is just icing on the cake.
April 14, 2015 | regularlink
Installing decorative window tinting can reduce glare, lower your utility bills and block harmful UV rays from entering your home virtually overnight.
Since residential window tinting comes in a spectrum of hues and patterns as well, you could easily apply a no-nonsense, dark tint in your living room and a stained glass tint in your bathroom, or mix and match to suit your aesthetics and home’s decor.
Decorative Window Tinting
Window tinting need not be dark and one-size-fits-all. You can find window tints that emulate stained glass or tints that have a frosted look and seamlessly create privacy in your home.
Stained Glass Window Tint. Mom and pop shops around the country already use these kinds of window tint to beautify their brick-and-mortar storefronts and create more privacy for customers.
Stained glass window tint is a great decorative option for home bathrooms as well. A lot of these stained glass films are static cling, which means that you don’t need to use any adhesives.
Of course, stained glass and frosted glass window tints also provide a ton of privacy for a tiny kitchen window or larger bathroom window. At the same time, you’re letting in natural light!
Some stained glass window tints even lend a sparkle and the appeal of having real decorative glass in your home. It’s just a win-win in that you’re getting a fantastic look and all of the benefits of year-round window tinting.
Frosted Glass Tint. A lot of homeowners automatically associate frosted or crackled glass window tinting with bathrooms. Although these style tints go great in those spaces for obvious reasons, there are other spots in your home where frosted glass tint is equally well-suited.
Instead of going with a bulky set of white or beige blinds to block neighbors sneaking a peek through your front door, consider putting up a decorative window tint to keep out prying eyes as well as glare and heat gain.
A frosted window tint can really work with the inbuilt windows on a front door since the neutral tone goes with the natural wood grain.
Crackled Glass Privacy Film. This option might afford homeowners the most options in terms of customizing the film’s look to exactly suit what you’re looking for.
Probably the most popular pattern for crackled glass window tinting features a silhouetted leaf pattern against a slightly darker backdrop. There’s something about this look that works perfectly to complement the steel, all-business look of modern sinks and shower doors.
Because crackled glass films come in a variety of sizes and can be applied to single-pane or double-pane windows with a simple static cling, there’s no justifiable reason to avoid checking these out for your home’s bathroom or business’ restroom.
Raindrop Decorative Film. A raindrop decorative film is even harder to pigeonhole as appropriate in only one area of your home. Homeowners often use this pattern for first-story windows, front-door windows or petite bathroom windows.
Even a lot of boardrooms situated in the middle of a business space incorporate this raindrop pattern because it gives executives privacy and simply looks beautiful.
This understated yet elegant pattern would also work very well in a modest apartment that overlooks the street.
If you need something functional, discreet and classy, a textured raindrop pattern can help you get all the benefits of window film without doing anything garish – or against the landlord’s wishes!
Benefits of Decorative Tint
Decorative window film might be the most affordable way to transform a room in your home. What other quick fix can enhance your privacy and safety while reducing your monthly utility bills?
March 11, 2015 | regularlink
Window film can be handy if you are looking to help control the temperature inside your home, or you are looking to block out light and add privacy to a space. It is not so handy when you are looking to increase the curb appeal of your home, or you are ready to make changes to your windows.
If you have window film firmly in place on your homes windows, you may be wondering if it is even possible to have it removed. The answer is yes. The good news is with a little work, you can remove the window film by yourself, leaving your windows looking sparkly clean.
Four Steps to Removing Residential Window Film
- The first thing you will want to do is get the corners of the window tint up. You may already have corners that are peeling and you can easily grab an edge, or you may need to use a razor or scraper to get the edges of the window film up.
- Once you have an end up you can start to peel back the window film. You want to pull the film up slowly. You can go from top to bottom or pull each corner towards the middle. Pulling slowly will help leave less adhesive to your window, giving you less to clean up once the film is gone. Keep in mind that the longer you have had the film on the windows the harder it will be to pull the adhesive up along with the film.
- It is likely there will be some adhesive left over. To get the adhesive off you can either use a specific product or you can make your own. To make your own create the following mixture in a spray bottle. Place four to five drops of dish soap in the bottle, then fill with water, shake the mixture up before using it. Spray the mixture on to the glass then use a small stainless steel razor to remove the adhesive. Be sure to push against the glass and only use one side of the razor, this is important because if you switch sides you may scratch your window’s glass. Press firmly with the razor, gently making strokes till you get all of the adhesive off. If you are looking to add more film to your windows, be sure that you have removed all adhesive and dirt from your windows before applying the film.
- Once you have all the adhesive off, use window cleaner, or vinegar and water, along with paper towel to get your glass clean. You should now have a sparkling clean window.
These four simple steps should have you enjoying clean, film free windows, in no time at all.
February 10, 2015 | regularlink
Car Tinting- For Your Information
For automobiles in California the legal window tint levels are measured by the VLT percentage. VLT stands for Visible Light Transmission, which is the amount of light that passes through a tinted window. For example, a 5% VLT is a very dark window that only allows 5% of the light from outside through the window. In California, the windshield can have no tint except on the top four inches, and the front side windows must have at least 70% of outside light in. All other car windows can be tinted to any VLT percentage.
Commercial and Residential Window Tinting
California has no laws regulating the VLT percentages of commercial and residential windows, so you can tint the windows at your home or office as dark as you want to. The best way to tint residential and office windows is to purchase window tinting film. This material adheres to the inside of your windows and provides many benefits including less UV radiation reaching you indoors, keeps air conditioning and heating in the building from seeping through the windows and wasting energy, and keeping intruders out.
Because you can tint your home or office windows to any VLT percentage, you can choose how dark you want your windows to be. Tinting film provides many benefits. It is a cheap way of tinting your windows and receiving all of the benefits of window tinting without the cost and fuss. Office buildings typically need a dark tint level to keep wandering criminal eyes out of a place of business. Another feature some protective films have is a reflective outer surface, which blocks out the sun’s harmful UV rays and makes it almost impossible to see through from the other side. Reflective film still allows you to see through the window from the inside, of course, but outsiders cannot see in.
Protective film is great for residential windows as well. If you need a high VLT tint on your home’s windows, window tinting film is an easy way to protect your home. UV rays are not only damaging to your skin, they are damaging to your furniture as well. Colors can fade from fabrics that are overexposed to the sun for long periods of time. High level tinting can block out harmful light while letting beneficial light in. In other words, you can still have a sun room without risk to your skin or your furniture.
The Best Window Tinting
A variety of VLR levels are available and offer special features like anti-graffiti covers, reflective surfaces, and decorative window films for protection and style all in one. Protecting your home and business while giving your interiors that intimate touch is our specialty. Window tinting film is a great option no matter what VLR level you choose. High level VLR tinting film is a cost effective way to cut down on UV rays and would-be burglars peeping into your home.
January 21, 2015 | regularlink
Light emitting diode (LED) lights are changing the way homeowners illuminate their back yards. These compact, affordable and energy-efficient lights are so versatile, they can be used for everything from fixed patio lighting to whimsical hanging lights. How you use LED lighting in your yard is really only limited by your imagination.
10 ways LED lights can enhance your outdoor spaces
1. To illuminate a patio or deck. One of the most useful things you can do with LED lights outdoors is to light up your patio or deck. Use these lights underneath the railing, atop the posts or wrapped around the individual rails to add a little sparkle and a lot of romance to your back yard.
2. To lead the way to a secret garden. Do you have a portion of your garden that’s tucked away in a corner of your property, a space where you go to get away from household stress? LED lights can be used to mark the way.
3. To highlight your landscaping. Wrapping LED lights around the trunks and limbs of your trees can create an after dark wonderland in your back yard. Such lights can also be used to highlight your favorite flowers or shrubs.
4. To create whimsical overhead lighting. LED lights can be strung overhead, inserted into mason jars or wine bottles or hung inside of paper lanterns for fun and exotic overhead lighting.
5. To keep your pathways safe in the dark. Relaxing outdoor after dark is peaceful and romantic. However, you still want to be able to see the pathways that wind through your garden. LED lights can mark the path without ruining the evening solace.
6. To light up steps. Downward shining LED lights can help illuminate your outdoor steps and keep them safe without marring the charm of the evening darkness.
7. To decorate your trees for the holidays. LED lights can transform your evergreen trees into outdoor Christmas trees. Use small white lights or multi-colored globes.
8. To back-light your house numbers. Help your guests find your house easily by installing LED lights behind your (raised) house numbers. The low-wattage, subtle lights will not only make it easier for your visitors to find you, but they will also add to your curb appeal.
9. To make your pool sparkle. Some LED lights can also go underwater to create a magical soft-lighted swimming pool.
10. To get a little crazy with your design. No one said that all outdoor lighting has to be white. In fact, LED lights come in a variety of hues, from neon blue to sea green to hot pink. If you’ve always wanted your back yard entertainment area to look like a cruise ship or a dance club, these lights can give you that effect.
LED lighting offers many benefits. These lights can adapt to most any space, are affordable and are energy efficient. If you haven’t worked a few LED lights into your yard, take a minute to find a place to tuck in a few of these lights.
October 20, 2014 | regularlink
The development of the incandescent light bulb was one of the most revolutionary inventions of the 19th Century. And yet, in the present, this lighting source does not hold up to modern competition. Light Emitting Diode (LED) lights are the newcomers to the industry. And, though LED lights are still more expensive than the traditional incandescent lights, in nearly every way, they prove the superior choice.
Although LED light bulbs and incandescent light bulbs fulfill essentially the same purpose, their construction is significantly different. Incandescent light bulbs rely on old technology. A metal piece attaches to a filament. The glass bulb surrounds this apparatus, and encases either a vacuum or gas. Electricity (or turning on the light) causes the filament to glow. Incandescent light bulbs produce more light if they command more electricity. By comparison, LED light bulbs use a semiconductor to release that electricity as light.
When it comes to energy usage, LED light bulbs are far more efficient than the old incandescent bulbs. A good portion of this energy difference relates to heat. Incandescent and even Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFL) expend more energy producing heat than they do actual light. Since LED lights do not produce heat, they use less energy to create a similar amount of light. Where an incandescent bulb might require 100 watts or more to sufficiently illuminate a room, LED lights may be able to do the same using only 10 watts.
When you think about how hot light bulbs can get, you realize the benefit of the LED technology. Hot glass bulbs are a burn hazard, and they increase your risk of a house fire. LED lights do expend heat, but in infinitesimal quantities. This makes LED lights far preferable in several venues, including:
- wall sconces
- outdoor environments
Without worrying that you will burn your skin on a hot bulb, you can feel more comfortable providing your home with a wide variety of lighting options.
The energy efficiency of LED lights translates into saving you a lot of hassle in the long run. Incandescent bulbs count their hours in the hundreds or low thousands, meaning you must replace them every year or so. LED lights measure output in the tens of thousands. As a result, you may use an LED bulb for many years before you need to buy a new one.
It is true that LED lights are generally more expensive than incandescent bulbs. LED is relatively new technology, so the initial outset costs will be higher as lighting companies produce new bulbs and fixtures to meet demand. But, even though incandescent bulbs are cheap, they are on their way out. Many manufacturers no longer produce the less-efficient bulbs, which makes replacements harder to find. With the variety of LED options and the efficient energy usage, LED lights and fixtures make for a wise long-term investment.
Incandescent bulbs were the best way to light a home for well over a century. But now, there is an option that saves money and time, reduces your risk of fire or burns, decreases your energy usage and increases the longevity of your purchases. With these benefits, LED lights may prove to be an invention that will remain the gold standard of lighting for decades to come.
October 20, 2014 | regularlink
Bathrooms are one of the easiest areas in any home to give a quick facelift. Today’s savvy homeowner can make even the smallest, windowless water closet feel like a modern throne room with the clever use of LED lighting. LED lighting is both flexible and environmentally friendly – providing a vast array of styles and low-energy options for virtually any requirement. Today we’ve lined up six top tips for using LED lighting in your bathroom to inspire you on your next home decorating adventure.
LED lighting can provide an excellent alternative to those kitsch globe lights your aunt Hilda had above her vanity mirror in the bathroom. By choosing a pair of lower-wattage sconces to grace the sides of the mirror over the sink, you’ll be thankful for the more balanced lighting and the healthier look that greets you in the mirror every morning.
Accentuate the Details
Accent lighting is often overlooked in smaller spaces in the home – but a smaller room, like the bathroom, is where accent lights can make an amazing difference. Consider recessed lighting in alcoves or storage niches, LED lights can be particularly useful for providing discreet spotlights on signature features or artwork in your space.
Feature the Fixture
Sometimes, you find a light that is so amazing it deserves to take pride of place in a room – and there are some phenomenal LED light fixtures for the bathroom. Whether you choose to hang a detailed chandelier above the bathtub or opt for a series of decorative wall lights, the nature of LED bathroom lighting allows you to craft a creative lighting display that is a feature in and of itself.
Crazy for Color
Color is a powerful tool for interior designers, and you can bring an amazing amount of color into your bathroom using LED lights. There are amazing faucets that appear to spill color as well as water into the basin, and clever shower heads that provide a cascade of changing colors to suit your mood. Careful use of recessed LED bathroom lighting can allow you to create a symphony of color in and around your bath – allowing you to soak in an ambiance of comfort for all the senses.
Night lights are an essential for many family bathrooms – but they’re also likely to be among the household’s top energy thieves. Luckily, LED night lights are available in a slew of fun and fashionable styles. LED night lights for the bathroom are more efficient and generally cool to the touch, so curious little fingers won’t be burned by exploring in the quiet hours of the morning. It’s also worth noting that all LED lights for the bathroom provide energy savings over their incandescent competitors.
Flexible and Creative
LED stands for light-emitting diode – in its purest form, LED technology allows for incredibly precise light emissions. Because of the compact nature of the technology, a wide array of truly clever and creative lighting options are available for those hoping to enhance their bathroom with LED lights. If you’ve always wanted to soak in the tub while staring at the night sky, a skilled interior designer can make your dream come true with an LED light installation for your bathroom ceiling.
Taking flexibility and function to the next level, zonal controls for your bathroom LED lighting can provide a truly personalized experience for visitors and members of your household. The only limit to using LED lighting in the bathroom is your imagination.
September 11, 2014 | regularlink
Getting residential window film installed on your home’s windows can do everything from slash your annual heating expenses to reduce glare and UV damage.
Window film is technically a laminate coating made from polyester. The reason polyester is used is that it blends with the natural clarity of your windows and retains its shape over time.
The film itself is only a few millimeters thick and it fits snugly on the interior side of your window with the help of some adhesive.
Dyed Window Film
A window film that is dyed (colored) prevents UV damage and glare just like sputtered or deposited film. The key difference is that dyed window film actually absorbs the harmful UV rays from the sun instead of deflecting or reflecting them.
There are many benefits to going with a dyed window film. Dyed window films come in a variety of colors to match your decor and their darker hue can actually prevent theft and enhance home’s privacy.
The downside to using a dyed window film is that by absorbing the sun’s rays instead of reflecting them the thermal heat (or thermal stress) can eventually wear down your home’s window and lead to breakage. This is very rare, though, and easily prevented with a professional installation.
Sputtered Window Film
Sputtered window film is also known as metalized window film because the window film includes various kinds of metals to help reduce the amount of UV radiation and glare that makes it way into your home.
In effect, the copper or aluminum that’s encased in sputtered window film reflects the sun’s rays and keeps your home safe and cool.
A side benefit of using sputtered window film is that during the frigid winter months, sputtered window film will help your home retain heat since these metals are great insulators.
The infusion of metal in sputtered window film is evenly layered across the film and non-obtrusive. Sputtered film is very common in residential applications and increasingly used in office buildings to reduce glare and cooling expenses.
Hybrid Window Film
Although some sources will tell you that there are only two distinct kinds of window film – those that absorb the sun’s rays (dyed window film) and those that reflect the sun’s rays (sputtered window film) – there is one other type of window film on the market today.
A hybrid window film actually gives you the best of both worlds. By both reflecting the sun’s rays and absorbing the remaining solar stress that can be placed on your windows, you can get along with a more mellow tint that still reduces the amount of heat making its way into your home.
Interested in window film for your home or office? Try Daystar Window Tinting!
September 9, 2014 | regularlink
LED lights are an energy-saving and efficient light source that come in an array of colors to liven up any environment. Because LED lights are such a new technology, though, some people have questions about how the intensity or color temperature of LED lights compare to their incandescent counterparts.
What is Color Temperature?
LED Color temperature tells you the amount of pure white and other colors present in an LED light source. Although color temperature can range from roughly 1500 kelvin to 8000 kelvin, for most intents and purposes the range is 2000 to 6000 kelvin.
The light being emitted from a candle, for instance, is just under 2000 kelvin whereas the indoor light you’re used to seeing every day is probably closer to 4000 kelvin.
The color temperature of most LED lights is thought to be around 4600 kelvin, which is bright enough to give you a full palette of coloration.
The eye perceives the color temperature of LED lights as natural white. Color temperatures less than 4600 kelvin, or the color temperature of most LED lights, is the warm white color temperature of an incandescent light bulb.
Compared to LED lighting, the warm white of an incandescent is further away from daylight white. An example of daylight white, which is simply another color temperature, would be noon sunlight.
Ideal Color Temperature
Considering the fact that LED lights guarantee longer lifespans and more realistic color temperatures than incandescents, it’s important to pick the right color temperature for your next batch of LED lights.
If you’re considering purchasing LED lights for a reading room or study, then you might want to consider buying a more powerful LED light with a higher color temperature.
A color temperature of around 5500 kelvin is considered ideal for environments in which a lot of reading and writing goes on.
Picking LED Color Temperature
A big part of the color temperature you end up going with will be determined by the surrounding environment and what you have going on in the background.
For instance, an environment with a lot of reds and oranges leaning towards the lower end of the color temperature spectrum might benefit from an LED of a softer color temperature.
In an environment that’s dominated by brighter colors and blues, you might want to go with an LED skewed towards the higher end of the color temperature spectrum. This might mean going with an LED beyond the 4600 kelvin average for LED lighting.
Although the color temperature that you go with is entirely up to you, certain environments will dictate certain choices. Restaurants or kitchens normally benefit from softer LED lighting, for example.
So, although a color temperature of approximately 3000 kelvin would be ideal for a kitchen space, you might need a color temperature closer to 5000 kelvin for a study or living room.
A warmer color temperature that embraces the lower end of the color temperature spectrum gives off a more relaxed mood. Therefore, a warmer color temperature would be ideal for most dens and bedrooms.
For most applications, LED lights with a very cool color temperature of around 6500 kelvin would be too intense and off-putting as bedroom lighting.
Ultimately, selecting LED lighting and different color temperatures boils down to preference. It’s your choice whether to put warmer color temperatures in certain rooms or heighten the contrast by placing LED lights of a cool color temperature in an environment with a lot of red and orange colors (i.e., warmer color temperatures). Have fun with the process!
August 22, 2014 | regularlink