Vinyl window films have many applications for homeowners and business people alike. Some of the critical uses include adding a decorative or branding element to glass, glare and heat reduction, boosting safety and security, among many others. With all these, it’s only natural for key concerns about their durability to often arise among many users. So how long does vinyl window film last? Well, there’s no definitive answer to this question since vinyl window films are tweaked in various ways to match their look and performance in their relevant applications.
Their longevity will depend on various factors, such as their type and application on the inside or outside. For instance, perforated vinyl window film is expected to last a maximum of only 2 years as they are applied on the outside, thereby getting constant exposure to the elements. To learn additional details about perforated vinyl window film, you can visit the Printmoz website. Most internal vinyl window films, on the other hand, are more durable as they have minimal exposure to the elements. For instance, well-installed decorative vinyl window films can last anything between 10-20 years.
As you can see, there’s an extensive range in expected life spans, yet they are nearly similar products. This article will discuss several factors affecting the longevity of vinyl window films. It will also highlight signs to note that may indicate when your vinyl window film has come to the end of its lifespan and need replacing. Read on!
Factors Affecting Vinyl Window Film’s Longevity
Being aware of the factors influencing the lifespan of vinyl window films, in general, is a great way to know what measures to put up to mitigate rapid deterioration. Below are some of them;
- Quality Of Vinyl Window Film
Vinyl window films have varying qualities depending on the manufacturer. The final quality will depend on the quality of the manufacturing materials such as dyes, adhesives, and laminates. A low-quality vinyl window film will start showing signs of deteriorating in no time. Ensure to do diligent research on quality when buying vinyl window films.
- Installation Process
A botched installation process will cause the film to last a shorter period than expected. It’s pertinent to vet the background of a potential installer before handing the responsibility to install vinyl window film in your home, business, or car. Ensure they have the relevant installation experience. You can ask to see gallery evidence of their previous works to ascertain their expertise claims. A sound installation should be smooth and completely free of bubbles that trap moisture and air.
- The Local Climate
Intense weather conditions like frequent exposure to extreme heat and cold hurt vinyl window films and may significantly reduce their longevity. Window films in cooler and average climate areas last longer than in hot regions. Notably, there isn’t much you can do about your area’s weather conditions.
- Orientation Of The Windows
Long hours of direct exposure to sunlight and moisture contribute a great deal in significantly reducing the longevity of a vinyl window film. Your home or business premises’ windows oriented towards the sun will absorb more sunlight and may degrade at a faster rate. Just like the local climate, you can’t do much about your window’s orientation either.
Tell-Tale Signs You Should Replace Your Window Film
Your vinyl window film may have come to the end of its lifespan and needs replacing when you notice signs like;
- Bubbles Have Started To Form
Bubble formation clearly shows that the film’s adhesive has started giving in, probably due to heat exposure. However, it is also often a sign of poor film material used or poor installation process. It’s always pertinent that windows be appropriately cleaned before installing to eliminate contaminants like dust and grease that may cause bubbles. The installer should also make sure not to leave excess mounting solution during installation as it could lead to the development of air pockets when they evaporate.
- It Has Began Fading Or Turning Purple
Frequent and long hours of exposure to direct intense sunlight will cause your vinyl window film to start fading and change color. The color change is often dark gray or a light shade of purple, depending on the dyes used. The fading and discoloration often occur gradually and randomly across the windows.
- It Has Started Cracking And Peeling
Another indicator that your vinyl window film is nearly at the end of its life is cracking and peeling. Years of heat and UV exposure will turn the film brittle and susceptible to cracking. The loss of its adhesive will lead it to lift and start peeling at the edges and at the points where cracks emerge.