Advice on 24/7 Back Lit Window Graphics

Customers often ask, does one-way window film work at night? While conventional white on black perforated window graphics suffer from “burn-through” at night when the inside is illuminated. This occurs when there is not enough external light to properly illuminate the graphics and they are overpowered by interior lighting, so the graphics fade and become see-through. Contra Vision® Performance Translucent White provides a solution for achieving 24/7 perforated window graphics but careful consideration needs to be given to the back lighting to get the best see-through window graphics.

Ambient lighting from inside a building is enough to provide some illumination of the graphics. The light transmits through the translucent material of the perforated window film to brighten the printed image. This effect can be enhanced by removing point sources of light from directly behind the window and adding spot or flood lights from outside the field of vision. Even if the internal lighting is sub-optimal, the night-time visibility of the window graphics will still be better than with conventional perforated window film.

The daytime view out through Performance Translucent White is still remarkably good and natural light is allowed into the building. The eye will tend to focus on the outside view and ignore the ghost image of the print that is visible on the inside of the film. In some settings the ghost image has been used as a design feature to enhance interior décor.

TWPAG30 Performance Translucent White 2
Privacy window film that works at night ideal lighting

Ideal situation

Ideal lighting conditions for Performance Translucent White deliver exceptional results. Directional lighting should be positioned beyond the line of sight through the applied graphic from the outside and directed onto the graphics’ reverse side. Other interior lighting should be switched off if the interior surfaces are light in color, but may be left on if the surfaces are dark or the directional light is sufficiently powerful.

Privacy window film that works at night acceptable lighting

Acceptable situation

Acceptable lighting conditions for Performance Translucent White deliver variable results but a considerable improvement over conventional see-through graphics. Directional lighting beyond the line of sight through the graphics to the interior should be directed onto the reverse side of the graphic. If walls and other surfaces are light in color and other lighting can’t be extinguished, the results will lack the contrast and impact achieved in ideal conditions.

Privacy window film that works at night non-ideal lighting

Non-ideal situation

In situations where the environment behind Performance Translucent White is lit with heavily diffused illumination sources that can’t be turned off and the walls and other surfaces visible are lightly colored, or if point and diffused light sources are visible through the graphic from the exterior, results will be less than perfect and other means of illumination should be explored.