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3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: decocritter
Date: December 12, 2009 05:22PM
How does this work? Do you have to cut slightly bigger for shrinkage with hair dryer? Does it work for paned windows (do you have to cut individual pains of plastic)

On amazon I read reviews and am wondering how folks put this OVER mini blinds and how it is supposed to work on patio doors?


Also is it visibly ugly?
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: freeradical
Date: December 12, 2009 05:34PM
I think that bubble wrap might work better, since you have a layer of air trapped in the bubbles.

It's ugly, but if you have a window that you don't need to see out of...


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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: kap
Date: December 12, 2009 05:42PM
I am wondering how that will work on our sash windows.



SoCal for now.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: S.Taylor
Date: December 12, 2009 05:55PM
We have a drafty 135 year-old house with drafty windows. The window film helps us avoid freezing to death. It's not terribly attractive, but neither is blue skin. It comes with double-stick tape, and you cut it big. Tape it around the whole window frame as snugly as you can reasonably manage, then hit it with the hair dryer. The stuff shrinks up and the wrinkles disappear and you hardly notice it from a block away. I kid a little, it's really not too terrible, and it *really* helps cut the draft. We've been below zero this week, and really need to get ours up (how did it get to be december already?)

Good luck, and watch that heating bill go down.



This remote controlled tree is a must for the person who wants to be on the cutting edge of Christmas technology.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: decocritter
Date: December 12, 2009 05:55PM
someone on this site uses it
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: decocritter
Date: December 12, 2009 05:57PM
I have metal casement windows and a big plate glass window with side casements. I am trying to picture tape on the "window frame"
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: S.Taylor
Date: December 12, 2009 06:08PM
We actually cover up the whole window opening--we stick it to the wood at the sides of the window (the casing, I guess?) It seals up the whole thing. Careful of paint, though, the tape's pretty sticky. On some windows we just stick it on the sash, making it a sort of double-pane window. Sort of. But covering the whole opening seems most effective for us. Again, ours are old wood windows set into an old brick house and your situation may call for a different strategy.



This remote controlled tree is a must for the person who wants to be on the cutting edge of Christmas technology.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: davester
Date: December 12, 2009 06:32PM
You can do it whatever way works for your particular window. The important things are:

1) Make sure there's a good air gap. The air is the insulator. Anywhere that the film touches the window, mullions or sash (especially a problem with metal mullions and sashes) the air gap is short-circuited and heat will flow directly through with no resistance.

2) Make sure that you plug any drafts before you start. The insulating film itself will stop some of the draft if you don't do it completely but the insulating effectiveness goes way down if you don't fix the drafts first.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: Jimmypoo
Date: December 12, 2009 06:35PM
It's actually a very nice product and has been around for about 2 decades.

While 3M invented it, it is made by a company called "Cryovac" - same one you've seen on meat
packaged for 100 years. Formerly a division of WR Grace, they are now owned by a company named
Sealed Air - the ones that make the balloons for packaging that come in various sizes.

3M and/or private label film is not made by anyone except Cryovac. The only exception to that is the
DuckTape version - by Henkel, and I can't speak for them because I've been out of the chem side of
biz for a while.

It is a very low temperature shrink wrap - that's all it is. It is an excellent draft insulator, and it comes with
a roll of two sided tape and varying packages are meant for windows or doors. You essentially trap the window
within the pillow of plastic, and that's that.

Outline your window to be sealed with the two-sided tape. Then drape the stuff that is either sized or you
have cut to fit the window. You'll want about 3" or so LARGER than the area. Make sure your tape seams
are tight and fully stuck to the plastic. The tape is probably the most important part, so if you got it on
where some wrapped around a corner, etc., just add some tape before you apply the clear "window."

Once you have all four sides of the "window" stuck to the tape, the hair dryer comes out, and shrinks the
plastic window no different than film that is used to seal video tapes, etc. The clarity is excellent, and the
pressure is maintained by the draft that is trying to get in as well as the tightness of the seal (so don't skimp
on the tape - you don't want any areas where the plastic window is not making full contact with the 2-sided
tape you've placed to box in a window/door, etc.).

I've had the stuff, in some windows, for 4 years. I adjusted the blinds how I wanted them for "permanence"
and that's it. Hair dryer out - and shrink them within the window, behind the plastic barrier. The plastic
mix used is not a tacky or sticky type, so you need not worry about it acting like food wrap as you
try to work with it. It is a very "dry" film, and the clarity comes out as it stretches and the heat is applied.

It is "biaxially oriented" - which means it has strength north/south and east/west directions, so it is not
inclined to tear, and the tighter you get it sealed the better you'll be. Don't overdo it though... probably
more than a minute is time wasted on an average sized window.

Start in the middle to get it tightened up (unless directions say otherwise) and don't forget to get all four
corners tight as well. Your 2 sided tape is what's important there (and everywhere).

The stuff is good for doors you don't intend to open during a season as well. You might wish to pre-seal
areas, such as along the floor, with real duct tape, and then apply the two sided tape to IT in order to
seal in the rest of the door jam. Don't worry about the door knob. Unless it is really a sharp lock area or
button, it is unlikely to poke through it. Also, don't shrink ultra tight around areas like that just to avoid
breaking through in a moment of clumsy vacuuming, etc.

Try one small window first - such as a small window in a bathroom. If you aren't sold after that, bang your
head repeatedly with a small "sign type" 16" sledge hammer (used by realtors) and try another window.

It's airtight and probably a miracle that it isn't available ONLY though dealers who do the labor too.

I agree with the above comment - you can't leave an open hole blasting away at it, so patch up big draft
problems before sealing things up. Plenty of tools for that from duct tape to silicone to "Great Stuff."

And for those who wonder, YES, I do know most everyone in the company -- I was married to it for a long time.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/12/2009 06:42PM by Jimmypoo.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: decocritter
Date: December 12, 2009 06:38PM
Davester, I thought the window film was supposed to stick to glass and hair dryer shrinks it to fit on glass.

You are saying that in the instance of a deep set casement, you are putting the film on the wall (I have no frames. There would be a 5 inch gap between window and wall. Then I would see the tape on my walls - yuck.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: michaelb
Date: December 12, 2009 06:42PM
The only thing I will add to the tips so far is to double up the double sided tape in the bottom corners (and maybe the top too). The corners are pretty much always where it comes loose, and doubling up can make a big difference. Once shrunk with the dryer, there is little hope of getting the corners to stick again and be sealed.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: Jimmypoo
Date: December 12, 2009 06:54PM
For a window with a deep inset, I might be inclined to use a double row of two-sided tape about
1 " in from the wall. No reason, really, to think that the right angle will lift from the tape any
sooner than a 180 degree force, since it is light force, and the twin tape (or other patterns) will help
seal the plastic to the wall.

Think of this like you're placing a sheet over the window - one giant sheet, with a few inches between
the plastic barrier and the window itself. It makes no contact with ANYTHING except the 2 sided tape.
That's what makes it air-tight.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: Jimmypoo
Date: December 12, 2009 06:57PM
[www.youtube.com]

Not the greatest view- but for 90 seconds, hard to complain. There are longer ones there for viewing also.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 12, 2009 07:06PM
I used some King Frost film in an old apartment with drafty aluminium frame windows and it worked wonders, the only problem was that I sealed the whole bedroom window (I put the stuff on the wall) and I could not open the windows anymore, so all the fresh air was forced in from the living-room with a big fan every morning and evening. But I felt warm at night (before that I was freezing to death)
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: davester
Date: December 12, 2009 09:07PM
Quote
decocritter
Davester, I thought the window film was supposed to stick to glass and hair dryer shrinks it to fit on glass.

Absolutely not. You are confusing insulating film with low-e or reflectorized film. The insulating film with the hair dryer and air gap is what keeps you warm in the winter. The other kind of film that is applied to the window is to provide reflectance of heat to keep you cool in the summer, has a peel-off adhesive and is applied with a squeegee. The kind that sticks to the glass has zero insulating value of any kind.

Quote

You are saying that in the instance of a deep set casement, you are putting the film on the wall (I have no frames. There would be a 5 inch gap between window and wall. Then I would see the tape on my walls - yuck.

Actually, that wouldn't work well either. the gap should be around 1/2 to 1 inch. Any larger gap and you start getting too much convective air movement between the glass and the shrink-wrap, resulting in heat loss. If you have no frames and you are getting a lot of heat loss through the single pane windows it might be best to have someone make you up some inexpensive wooden frames with squishy weather stripping around the outside. Then install the shrink wrap onto the frame and press fit the frames into the casement.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: Jimmypoo
Date: December 12, 2009 09:24PM
That's a good idea - and indoor pseudo storm window of sorts.

I still think the interior of the 5" recess would work for the film, for the tape, but you are right, I didn't
think about the quantity of air that could cause movement and a peel. So doing it within an inch or 2
would be ideal.

As for the cosmetics - it's big money savings on heat, and those kind of windows are likely to frost up
on those days anyway - not something I'd be concerned about this late in the season. Tonight Atlanta will
be under 35 - so the time is really to act now, because most places, even new, are so poorly prepared for
those temps - even knew windows often have single panes. Double panes are in cheap aluminum framework
and there are no sills or areas which to tar paper on the sides and/or seal properly because it is a 4 screw
fit into space in many areas better served by glass block.

I'm here too (Atlanta rural), and the window above toidy is going into its 5th winter on the same job.
Could have used taped this year - but because any day could hit mid 60s, I can still do it in 15 minutes
when the mood hits.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: anonymouse1
Date: December 12, 2009 10:50PM
It works really well for us.

We take the Venetian blinds down, and then put the plastic up behind the blinds. It doesn't give us as much insulation space, but it looks better to us.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: Speedy
Date: December 13, 2009 04:13AM
Condensation on the window a problem?



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: Psurfer
Date: December 13, 2009 11:02AM
Don't forget there's an Exterior covering version, too.

Then it's completely invisible inside, no interference w/blinds, etc. -From outdoors, looks will range between hardly noticeable, to fairly crappy, depending on glare from the sun angle.

I've had the same piece on the outside of a 2nd story window for years now; no hairdryer shrinking necessary, either.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: anonymouse1
Date: December 13, 2009 12:22PM
No condensation here.

And we've done both inside and outside for our daughter's room--the difference is large.
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Re: 3m Insulation Window Film
Posted by: thermarest
Date: December 14, 2009 07:15AM
Quote
decocritter
On amazon I read reviews and am wondering how folks put this OVER mini blinds and how it is supposed to work on patio doors?

Also is it visibly ugly?

I've thought about this before and can't personally figure out any good way to put it on windows that have blinds.

Its definitely not ugly. Hardly notice it.
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