How to Install 3M Safety Film

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Makers of the 3M safety film would like you to leave the installation work to the experts, specifically trained to achieve a flawless finish with your window that untrained hands may not accomplish otherwise.


If you’re untrained but full of confidence, you can try to install the safety film yourself by following an expert’s example, keeping in mind that before the actual installation, some serious preparatory work would first have to be done. As you observe this and the correct 3M safety film installation procedure, the outcome will hopefully be one that any expert would be proud of.

Things You'll Need

  • Towels/drop cloths for furniture, wall and floor protection
  • Razor scraper
  • Joy dishwashing liquid and water solution (mild)
  • Special squeegee
  • Snap blade knife
  • Trimming tool
  • Drape towels/drop cloths over your floor, walls and furniture.

  • Clean window glass and frame using a razor scraper and the Joy solution. Wipe and clean as thoroughly as possible, making sure that all debris is completely eliminated.

  • After cleaning, remove the release liner and apply the safety film to the clean glass. Try the “back-rolling” technique when you apply the film by rolling it onto the glass in one smooth step, minus wrinkles or creases.

  • Squeegee the film to “tack” it in place and to remove some water. On first squeegee, take out as much water from under the film and inspect the entire film for cleanliness. At this point, you can still lift the film and rinse out any remaining debris.

  • Next, trim the film with the snap blade knife and trimming tool, to fit exposed glass and achieve the correct edge margin size of approximately 1/16 inch wide. A proper job will make the border hardly noticeable.

  • Squeegee out the remaining water well. Less water under the film will help it dry faster. Next, inspect the film for the last time. At this point, the film can still allow lifting, rinsing and touch ups.

  • After inspection, seal the edges of the film tightly by wrapping a towel or a diaper around your trim tool. Use this to push out any moisture near the film’s edges to ensure clean edges and proper film bonding.

  • Rinse the installed safety film and do a final inspection.

Tips & Warnings

  • Improper window cleaning could lead to trapped debris under the film.
  • The film will look awful the day after and may look blurry and bubbly. Don’t worry; this will clear out in a few weeks to one month.
  • You cannot make a mistake in cutting the edge margin. One mistake and the film could be ruined beyond repair.

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References

  • Photo Credit Window image by FJ Medrano from Fotolia.com
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