Smash and grab protection

Choosing the Right Security Film – 3 Essentials

Smash and Grab

Smash-and-Grab is a type of robbery where the windows of a vehicle, store, or building are broken in order to gain quick entry of an area. Once the windows are compromised the attacker is free to grab whatever is quickly available or continue to cause further damage or personal injury.


Security films are the quickest and lease expensive protection from smash-and-grab violence.

However, it’s a huge Red Flag if a security film doesn’t fit the following three qualifications.

When evaluating different options for security film, the number of options and suppliers can be a bit overwhelming. 

Selecting a high-quality security film that provides sufficient protection is an important decision. 

In this article, we have outlined three essential qualities that you need in a high-quality security film that will provide real protection from a heavily-armed intruder. 

Focusing on these three aspects of security film will help you make the right decision and ensure that your buildings have the protection they need.


1. Choose a Film that is at least 16 mil Thick

Many films on the market are labeled as “security” films. 

Some of these films may be effective against a timid burglar, but most will fail to stop a determined attacker.

We've had multiple law enforcement professionals tell us that most security films (which are 8-12 mil thick) only hold up for 10-20 seconds when attacked.

To ensure real protection, you need a security film that is at least 16 mil thick. Any thicknesses less than 16 mil most likely won’t be strong enough to stop the threat. At Vertrad, we actually recommend using films that are 18-21 mil for security applications.

Thicker films are more difficult to install properly and require a special team of trained technicians, which is one of the reasons that many companies do not offer films at higher thicknesses. 

Don’t settle for less than you need when it comes to security film.


2. Make Sure Your Film is Solidly Anchored During Installation

When a security film is installed, any good installer will make sure to attach the film to the metal frame of the glass with a high-strength adhesive. This is called anchoring.

It is extremely important for your film to be solidly anchored.

Once a pane of glass shatters, the security film will remain held in place over the window by its anchoring. If a piece of film is not anchored, it can be easily pushed aside as the intruder gains entry to your building.

Problems with anchoring can occur if your provider does not apply enough anchoring adhesive or does a poor job during the install. If your film is not anchored correctly, the anchoring will fail -- causing the film to tear free from the frame -- letting the intruder enter your building uninhibited.

On the flip side, having your film securely anchored ensures that you will not lose your layer of protection and your security film will stay solidly in place – a shield between you and the threat.

Anchoring adhesive is an expensive material for the installer to be using. It can be tempting for some companies to skimp on the anchoring adhesive in an effort to cut costs. 

Check with your film installer and make sure that each piece of film will be solidly anchored to the frame and that they will use plenty of anchoring material on each joint.


3. Your Film Must be Micro-Layered or Tear-Resistant

Security film is constructed out of one or several layers of polyester (and various other components). 

Just like plywood is made far stronger by stacking alternating layers of wood, micro-layered security films are far stronger than single layer films.

A security film will start to fail after it has been punctured multiple times and the film will start to tear as stress is placed on the existing punctures.

A micro-layered security film has multiple ply's (or layers of films) that make the end product far more resistant to ripping and tearing than a single layer. Micro-layered films offer much higher levels of security than other single ply films.

Just because a film is thick (i.e. over 16 mil.) does not mean it will provide adequate protection. A film should be both thick enough (over 16 mil.) and micro-layered.


In Conclusion

High-quality security film, when properly installed, can provide excellent protection for your department, school, or business. 

Regardless of who you purchase your security film from, ensure that it fits these three essential qualifications to provide real protection for your personnel and property:

  1. Your film should be at least 16 mil thick.
  2. Your film must be solidly anchored. 
  3. Your film should be micro-layered and tear-resistant.

Selecting film that fits these three stipulations should result in a high-security level of protection that will protect you and create time to react and respond to any potential threats.

Do you want to be safe with a security film that checks all three of these boxes? 

Check out Smash and GrabTM Security Film by Vertrad!!!


Back to blog
Security Film for Schools and Police Departments

Need a High-Strength Security Film?

Learn about Vertrad's unique Smash and Grab Security Film, and see if it's the right solution for your needs.

Learn About Smash and Grab
1 of 3