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ACT joins the VLT party

The ACT has accepted the NTC recommendation and relaxed its VLT requirements for windows behind the driver for after market film.


As of December 2017, a coating or tint applied on windows rear of the driver must have a resultant VLT of no less than 20% (as opposed to the previous 35% rule).


WFAANZ confirmed with the ACT's Vehicle Inspection Technical Unit there is no tolerance allowance when it comes to this regulation. Windows with applied film that test any darker than 35% or 20% will be deemed illegal.


Details of the new regulation can be found in the Motor vehicle windscreen and window tinting requirements and standards page on the Access Canberra website, or on the WFAANZ website in the AUTO LAWS page. WFAANZ strongly advises all ACT tinters review this information and become familiar with the new requirements now in place.


Here's what you need to know:


  • The limit for front passenger side windows remains at 35% VLT
  • The 20% regulation includes the rear passenger side windows and the rear window
  • Any window film applied on any vehicle window must be non-reflective. Reflectance must not exceed 10% and must be uniform, without distortion or bubbling
  • Glazing used in the front windscreen must have a VLT of at least 70%
  • A strip on the upper 10% of the windscreen, or the area above the highest point of the arc of a windscreen wiper, may have applied window film at any VLT
  • No other coating or tinting is permitted on the windscreen, and that includes optically clear window film
  • Glazing used in an interior partition of a motor vehicle must be 70% VLT

WFAANZ joins forces with Sydney Build 2018

Sydney Build 2018 will feature over 200 international exhibitors, thousands of attendees and over 50 presentation sessions, one of which will cover window film.


Taking place March 15 – 16 at the Royal Hall of Industries, Moore Park, the Sydney Build Expo is launching two new summits containing valuable content and insight presented by highly qualified industry professionals.


One such professional is Rob Hamilton, who, on behalf of WFAANZ, will deliver a presentation - The Time & Place For Window Film, on March 16 at 4.20pm. It explains where, why and when to use window film, the cost and performance advantage of window film over glazing and how WERS For Film can help architects, designers, builders, etc. meet future and current energy requirements in the BCA. 


Sign up for your complimentary ticket to the main Expo, the BIM & Digital Construction Summit and the Future Sydney Summit here.  

Residential values

This is the news that WERS For Film accredited individuals have been waiting for – mandatory disclosure is closer than ever.


Mandatory disclosure requires energy efficiency information to be available when a building is offered for sale or lease. This impacts WERS For Film accredited individuals because it attaches a very real value to the energy certificates they issue to their customers.


The AWA has advised WFAANZ that the NSW government (OEH) is about to launch voluntary mandatory disclosure for rented properties, with SA expected to follow suite soon after.


A two-year voluntary mandatory disclosure period will kick off the program, then it’s expected to be mandated by 2020.


Developers/owners will be required to decrease energy cost, the residential values will advise how this can be done – film, blinds, awnings, etc. – which is why it’s vital WFAANZ has an official place in the discussion.


A committee convened by the AWA will represent the fenestration industry regarding setting/advising on these values. WFAANZ will have a member on that committee.


WFAANZ members will be kept abreast of developments. In the meantime, it’s time to think about accreditation. Click here for more information.

Energy efficiency overhaul

The 2019 National Construction Code public comment draft has been released by the ABCB. It includes significant changes to energy efficiency regulations for new builds across Australia.


WFAANZ will attend an industry technical forum on March 15 to review and highlight the significant key changes that are important to the industry as well as sample case studies. WFAANZ will report to members on the decisions made at that forum.

ABCB Public Comment Draft is now available until Friday, 13th April 2018. Supporting documentation and submission information can be found here. 


The stringency of this new framework means we can more sensibly and accurately rate the energy of new builds. The 2019 edition of the NCC will:

  • Strengthen the way the reference building verification method is used
  • Introduce spilt heating and cooling loads
  • Introduce a new verification method of building sealing (blower door testing)
  • Enhance prescriptive building sealing requirements
  • Introduce condensation management provisions including the adoption of substantially revised Australian Standard for building sarking
  • Provide enhanced clarity to numerous deemed to satisfy provisions

WERS 2.0

Major changes to the WERS rating system will occur mid 2018, designed to take WERS into the next 20 years. Members will be able to create real size ratings, in addition to the fixed comparative size ratings required for use in the NatHERS programs.


This will have a huge positive impact on WERS For Film and window film as it means that in most cases the results will be more favourable when inserted in NatHERS, etc.


WERS members will be able to insert the size of windows and the film rating to get a more accurate energy value to disclose to customers. They will be provided with a single figure to enter into software programs and calculators to achieve the actual results.


Energy rating systems will be 45% faster and cheaper. 


Section J

In 2019 changes will be made to section J of the National Construction Code that will see massive increases in stringency regarding energy – especially for overnight buildings (hotels, hospitals etc.).


Following the 2019 NCC release for Public Comment, industry forums will be held to do case studies to show comparisons between 2016 and 2019 buildings. The goal is to have a consolidated industry response to the public comment draft.


A committee, managed by the AWA, will be formed to represent the fenestration industry and respond to the release. A WFAANZ member will be on that committee to ensure the interests of the window film industry are represented.


Explosions a plenty

As reported in the last newsletter, in 2017 Australia witnessed multiple cases of sudden glass breakage of toughened glass. In most cases, the cause appeared to be nickel sulphide inclusions.


Here’s a link to a new story reported by Seven News, where a family returned home to find their shower screen had shattered for no reason.


WFAANZ also recently reported on a KUTV story in the US, which claimed over 2,000 people had visited an emergency room in the past five years after a shower door shattered without apparent cause.


Catching rays

According to, sunrooms are going to make a big comeback this year as one of the year’s most prolific design and renovation trends. Sunrooms = windows = film.


Window heaters

Fridge computers, watches that count your steps, lamps that charge your phone and phones that do everything… technologically speaking, devices that serve more than one function is where it’s at.


Windows are following suit with researchers from the University of Gothenburg using nanotechnology to turn windows into solar-powered heaters.


Plasmonic nanoantennas absorb light and heat the surface onto which they’re placed. The beauty is that when they’re placed on glass, it remains transparent and colourless, even when completely covered in these tiny devices.


Lead researcher Alexandre Dmitriev told, "We've developed a surprisingly simple, cheap, and effective way to transform regular glass windows into solar-powered heat-screens that could significantly change the thermal balance of living and working spaces, especially if one thinks of the ever-increasing amount of huge glass surfaces used in modern architecture."


The trouble with Turkey

There’s no denying the VLT laws in this country are confusing. That’s why I like to include stories from around the world, which demonstrate that auto tint laws are confusing nearly everywhere you go.


Take Turkey for example.


1. For twenty years, auto film is banned in Turkey

2. The ban is lifted in 2016

3. Car owners rush to get their windows tinted

4. The ban is reinstated the following year

5. Car owners are forced get film removed

6. The President weighs in, coming down on the side of tinters, saying "I’ve ordered them to fix it".


Another example is Tajikistan in Central Asia (next to Afghanistan). The government had long banned dark windows as part of its war on gang crime. Since 2010, however, car owners have been allowed to apply window film if they pay an annual tax, which stands at 3,100 somoni, about $350. Read more here


A private matter

“My bedroom windows enable the neighbours to see in. Would a mirror reflective film afford us privacy without impeding my view?”. It’s a question we’re often asked here at WFAANZ, and the answer is not a simple one. Here’s our advice to end users to ensure they understand what's available and are realistic about the results.


There are films with different levels on reflection on either side – high external reflection and low internal reflection. They’re sometimes called one-way mirror films.


You know the police station interview rooms in movies? The suspect sits in a room with good lighting and a mirror on the wall. The police are in a dark room with no lighting, watching through the mirror. The ‘mirror’ is a double layer film. The highly reflective film faces one way, and is laminated to a low reflection film facing the opposite direction. The film is installed on the police side of the glass, with the more reflective side facing the suspect.


With higher lighting in the interview room, the suspect sees a mirror of themselves, and the low light level on the police side is washed out. The police can see through the glass clearly, as their side is low reflection and there is plenty of light from the brighter side transmitting through the film to them.


When it comes to one-way mirror films, there are many film types to choose from. What matters are your preferences regarding how reflective and how dark the film is.


For something as vital as an interview room, a very high reflection and dark film works best.


For something not so vital, where just a degree of privacy is required, a lower reflection and lighter film fits better. This will allow more light into the room and not darken it as much.


Selecting the right film is always subjective. The client’s idea of a dark or light room may vary from your own. That’s why samples are so important. The tinter quoting the job should always provide samples to enable the client to test the film and choose the best balance for them.


One final thing that’s crucial to be upfront about when talking privacy with the end user. The film will only work when it’s brighter outside than inside, i.e. daytime. At night when the light balance swaps, the neighbours will be able to see in.


In the case of a bedroom, the low reflective side would be facing into the room. At night, the end user would not see a mirror on the glass, but the neighbours can see in. It would therefore be necessary to close blinds or curtains at night for privacy. There is no film that can provide night time privacy other than a frosted film. 



A bit of clarity

Can you apply a clear film over factory tinted glass?

The privacy glass is already approaching the VLT allowance for aftermarket film, which most is, then you cannot apply any film. Not even clear film.

Many tinters around the country tell their customers clear film on privacy glass is legal. It's not if the existing glass is already at the legal limit or below. Even a clear film reduces VLT by some degree, hence you are lowering the VLT and its below legal limit.

Tinters continuing to spread misinformation are doing their customers, their business and the industry a disservice. If you need any help getting your head around the requirements in your State or Territory, please contact WFAANZ. 


Too hot to handle

Is WFAANZ aware of any window films which are fire rated once applied to glass?

As far as WFAANZ is aware, window film products have not passed Australian fire codes.


Many years ago, Australian distributors unsuccessfully tried to test to Australian bushfire codes. Since then the requirements have become even more strict.


If a client asks about a film’s fire rating, try to determine the specific standard to which they’re referring and check with your supplier. To the association’s knowledge, some suppliers can provide information regarding the safety of a film inside a building on fire, but not the test results to confirm the film will resist fire ingress.


Hot tin roof

Do window films designed to reflect direct solar radiation, also reflect solar radiation that is then radiated onward from building elements such as colourbond roofing, roof tiling etc.?

In basic terms, the answer is ‘to some degree’.


Direct solar radiation is in the energy wavelengths from 300nm to 2500nm and that covers UV, visible light and near (or you could call it solar) infrared. When sunlight hits a colourbond roof, some will be reflected and some will be absorbed into the metal roof then reradiated.

Reflected: The amount of light that is reflected depends on aspects such as the colour of the roof, its cleanliness, material, inclination, etc. There is no simple answer here as there are many variables, but keeping it simple, a white coloured roof will reflect a lot more light than a dark coloured roof. That reflected light is then solar light (energy), so the film will handle that energy just as if it came direct from the sun.

Reradiated: The roof will absorb some heat and reradiate that, that’s why a hot tin roof is a hot tin roof, that’s the absorbed then reradiated energy. Imagine walking on a black tin roof. It’ll be hotter than a white one, because the black is absorbing more light than the white roof that’s reflecting it away. The energy that is reradiated is now different. It’s called far infrared (in the general wavelengths range of 2500nm to 25,000nm). Standard solar control films do not do much to act on this type of energy.

To work on the far infrared spectrum is where Low Emissivity (Low E) films come into play.


These films have direct solar control properties plus Low E ability. The heat you produce inside your home during winter from heaters and the like is far infrared energy, so a Low E film can reflect that back into the room. It works both ways though, so in the case here where it’s a hot tin roof outside absorbing and reradiating high amounts of FIR energy, then the Low E film will reduce the amount of that heat that enters through the glass.


Remember, typically the majority of excessive heat issues are to do with direct sunlight, so standard solar control films are great at handling that. Situations where the amount of reradiated FIR heat is great enough that it’s a major effect on the incoming heat gain are rare (it’s not ideal to have a hot tin roof close to the window). So, you’d need to evaluate whether it’s a solar or a reradiated FIR heat source that’s the major issue.


If you aren’t sure, then using a Low E film provides the best of both worlds as it will act on solar and reradiated heat.


Contractor directory goes live

The new online directory of tinters available for contract work has gone live, with tinters from around the country taking us up on the offer of a free ad.


The directory works like this. Say you score a large commercial job and need an extra tinter for a month. You can visit the directory, find tinters with relevant experience who are willing to work on a contract basis, and give them a call.


The opportunity to advertise for free on the page is open to everyone nationally - auto and flat glass tinters, WFAANZ members and non-members. Access to the page itself, however, is restricted to our members only.


If you’d like a free ad like the one pictured right, email here for a form.


Members can login to the members only area of the website and follow the prompts to access the directory. Contact Deb Knight at the WFAANZ secretariat if you’ve forgotten your login details.


Email me if you’ve used the directory and want to share your experience with me.


Sun knowledge

Here’s a handy tool for when you’re on site quoting a job.


The Sun Seeker app has a map view that shows solar direction for each daylight hour for a particular location. A flat compass view and an augmented reality 3-D view shows the solar path, its hour intervals, equinox, winter and summer solstice paths, rise and set times, twilight times, magic hours, etc.


It's on lots of high-profile websites including Sydney Morning Herald, Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post. It’s $14.99 on the App Store for iOS devices only.

Uber protection

Why are there more sun cancers detected on the right side of people’s faces in Australia? Because that’s the side exposed to the sun when driving a car.


According to the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 53% of skin cancers in the U.S. occur on people's left sides.


Have you considered marketing to local business people who spend a lot of time on the road? Couriers, delivery drivers, truck drivers, Uber drivers, etc. Create specific flyers explaining the benefits of window film to drivers, offer them special promotional rates, or establish a mutually-beneficial arrangement where you promote each other’s services.

Mates rates for light meter

The new VLT regulations for auto film in QLD and the ACT has prompted renewed interest in VLT light meters. Remember - WFAANZ members get a 20% discount on AutoLight meters from AutoTest, the same light meter used by highway patrol officers around the country.


Read more here


Getting it right for safety’s sake

Toughened glass explosions throughout Australia have thrown safety film into the spotlight – making it vital installers are aware of their responsibilities and considerations. As such, WFAANZ is working on an industry procedure document that provides information and advice about filmed toughened glass retention.


The PD will regard monolithic (non-laminated) toughened (tempered) glass with film applied. It will explain the potential risks that exist with filmed toughened glass panes dislodging from frames or fixings and falling, while offering some installation techniques and principles to help mitigate these risks.  


Loyalty pays

A reminder to members who’ve been with us for the long haul, WFAANZ has designed two loyalty logos – a five year and ten year version. If you qualify and haven't received a high res version, please email Deb King here.

In the loop

Members please remember to let us know when your contact details change. Incorrect details in your members directory listing or our correspondence lists could mean you’re missing out on jobs or vital industry news. Email Deb if you change email, phone, business name, etc. 

Searching for tinters

Job ads from our employment page:


Flat Glass window tinter needed in Brisbane and/or Gold Coast. Experience in frosted, solar, security and safety film. Work will also include graphics to glass and safety motifs. White Card and Children’s Blue Card an advantage. Looking for a positive, can-do attitude, full drivers licence, attention to detail and excellent communication skills. Remuneration based on experience and will be discussed one on one. Contact Vicky Francis, 0410 102 225,


SolarX - Mt Waverley Melbourne is looking for a trainee tinter with great work ethic, who is reliable, honest, punctual and polite. Has the willingness to learn and take on new challenges. Full drivers licence. Looking for a team player, with positive and friendly attitude. Contact Shelley on 03 8809 2711 or email


SolarX - Mt Waverley Melbourne is looking for a qualified tinter with experience in installation in solar/security/frosted films, graphics to walls/glass and signage work. Also prep work – taping/weeding. Skills required: Excellent verbal communication, well groomed, positive and friendly attitude, full drivers licence, white card (not essential) and strong attention to detail. Proven candidate will be eligible for company vehicle/fuel. Salary negotiable based on experience. Tools provided. Contact Shelley on 03 8809 2711 or email


Sunscreen in Artarmon, NSW, is looking for a trainee tinter with a great work ethic who is reliable, honest, punctual and polite. Has the willingness to learn and take on new challenges. Full drivers licence. Looking for a team player, who is positive and friendly attitude. Contact Shelley on 03 8809 2711 or email


Sunscreen in Artarmon, NSW, is looking for a qualified tinter with experience in solar, security, frosted films, graphics to walls/glass and signage work. Also prep work – taping/weeding. Excellent verbal communication, well groomed, positive and friendly attitude, full drivers licence, white card (not essential) and strong attention to detail. Proven candidate will be eligible for company vehicle/fuel. Salary negotiable based on experience. Tools provided. Contact Shelley on 03 8809 2711 or email


Keen to join the tint team?

Installers wanting to join WFAANZ can contact us here for more info about what's involved. 


There is a new member benefit document for anyone wanting to learn why WFAANZ was formed, what we do, fee allocations and what's involved with membership. Download here.


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