Window film versus air conditioning: which is best?

an office with window film

Business owners throughout the UK are facing a constant battle to keep costs down, especially when it comes to rising energy bills. During the Winter, they are high as they need to keep the premises warm. During the Summer, they are almost just as high as air conditioning costs aren’t cheap. So what’s the solution? Solar control window film.

When business owners think of window film, they think of dark tinted windows or one-way vision, but window film technology offers so much more. They can provide huge savings on energy costs all year round without sacrificing natural light or views. If you’ve ever said the words “Our air conditioning cools down the office just fine, why would we need window film?” this article is for you.

Here is solar control window film vs air conditioning.

Window film provides big energy and cost savings

It is widely known that air conditioning systems use a lot of energy for cooling buildings, so why solely use a method that puts unnecessary financial strain on the business? A better alternative is solar control window film.

Not only are installation costs a lot cheaper, but window film also requires minimal maintenance and repair (which are both specialist and expensive when it comes to A/C units). It is a product that actually reduces energy costs as it increases the energy efficiency of your existing window glazing: conserving heat during the cold winter months and reducing heat during the hot summer months. It does this all year round without any additional costs to ‘run,’ unlike A/C units, which are very expensive to operate and maintain throughout the year.

When it comes to increasing energy efficiency and decreasing business expenses, window film comes out on top!

a piggy bank to represent how solar control window film leads to cost savings

Window film reduces solar energy

Solar control window film prevents a significant amount of sun-generated heat from passing through office windows. In fact, it is known to reduce solar energy by up to 80%. This means that interiors are protected from heat build-up and also the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays.

What does this do? It:

  • Reduces hot spots in the workplace.
  • Protects interiors (e.g. furniture, flooring etc.) from fading.
  • Reduces brightness and, therefore, glare on screens by up to 87%.
  • Increases overall comfort in the workplace.

Reducing solar energy might not seem important, but that’s because you didn’t know this statistic. The Building Research Establishment (BRE) reported that as much as 40% of the load heaped on A/C units comes from countering heat gain from the sun shining through the window! What this means is, that your unit heats up due to the sun streaming through the windows and this makes it work harder/use more energy to cool down.

So, as well as reducing solar energy, window film can help your air conditioning to work more efficiently too!

sun shining through trees to represent solar control window film

Window film increases comfort and improves productivity

While air conditioning does reduce interior temperatures and it reaches the desired temperature quickly, it doesn’t do this efficiently when it comes to energy usage and it doesn’t combat the other negatives of solar energy.

For example, window film enhances thermal comfort (either reducing heat in the Summer or conserving it in the Winter) AND it reduces a significant amount of heat generated by the sun. This means, almost complete protection against the sun’s harmful UV rays (99% of rays can’t pass through the film) and it minimises glare.

Glare from the sun causes discomfort, it strains the eyes and even leads to headaches while using computers next to windows. Heat build-up from the sun can also cause drowsiness so, as you can imagine, both glare and heat can negatively impact staff performance.

With solar control window film, you can create the optimal environment where employees can work at their best.

a desk right by the window

You can use window film and air conditioning together

Solar control window film is a fantastic cost-effective solution that allows business owners to achieve the two biggest goals that they have: to increase efficiency and decrease expenses. What’s more, is that the product can also be used with air conditioning!

Window film reduces interior temperatures and eliminates up to 80% of the heat from the sun…

As we mentioned previously, this creates optimal conditions for your A/C unit to cool the room further and using less energy to do so.

We don’t know about you, but that sounds like a win-win to us!


We at Applied Products offer one of the widest ranges of high-performance architectural window films in the UK…

If you need any help or advice on what types of window films are best for your house, company or office, don’t hesitate to get in touch; we’d love to help! Applied Products has a large range of specialist window films, so we can help you transform your room into a comfortable and productive space.

Applied Products – [email protected] / 01792 895730


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