How Does Smart Window Tint Affect Building Aesthetics?

How Does Smart Window Tint Affect Building Aesthetics?

An empty modern room with large glass windows offering a panoramic view of the mountains, potentially featuring smart window tints for optimal lighting and privacy

In recent years, smart window tinting solutions like those offered by ElectraTint have become increasingly popular among architects, builders, and property managers looking to control heat/glare while preserving aesthetics. Smart window tints allow users to instantly switch glass from clear to tinted with the click of a button. This technology not only provides comfort and energy savings, but also introduces exciting new possibilities for building design. 

In this post, we’ll look at how smart window tints can enhance a building’s appearance.

The Problem with Traditional Window Tint

While traditional tinted windows do help manage heat and glare, they come with some downsides aesthetically. Once standard window film is applied, it’s there 24/7 regardless of conditions. The darkness of traditional window tint can make interiors feel dim and gloomy when activated. 

Externally, darkly tinted glass facades can feel imposing and cold rather than transparent. In addition, lower quality tint films are prone to bubbling, peeling, and creating an inconsistent look over time.

How Smart Tints are Different

Smart window tints like ElectraTint offer a much sleeker, customizable aesthetic compared to traditional films. Offering nanometer-thin layers, smart tints appear virtually clear when inactive. Users can instantly activate the tint with the click of a button, with no waiting time. Within seconds, the glass transitions seamlessly from transparent to tinted. 

This enables building owners to control when and how much tint is needed, creating dynamic facades that enhance exteriors. Smart tints can also be zoned, with some windows or sections of glass actively tinted while others remain transparent as desired.

Key Benefits for Building Design

There are several key benefits smart window tints offer for aesthetics compared to traditional films:

  • Subtle tinting – The tint is subtle when activated, avoiding an imposing darkened look. Offers over 1,000 tint levels between 0.1% to 60% to customize the exact degree of shading desired.
  • No visibility issues – When not in use, is completely clear and offers unobstructed views. Traditional dark tints can make a building’s interior feel closed off.
  • Zoning abilities – With zoning, architects can actively tint some glass walls or windows while leaving others transparent. This creates depth and visual interest.
  • Dynamic facades – Building facades can now dynamically change their sun shading abilities instantly. This introduces exciting new potential for interactive architecture.
  • Preserves views – Unlike external shading devices, smart tints allow wide unobstructed views when off while managing glare/heat when activated.
  • Sleek, modern look – Layers produce a smooth, consistent tint appearance. No bubbling or visual imperfections.

Smart Window Tint Applications

Some examples of how smart window tints like ElectraTint can enhance aesthetics include:

Office Buildings

For office towers, smart tints allow clean, modern glass facade designs without glare issues. Facades can shift from transparent to subtly tinted to reduce solar gain during hot periods. Tint levels can be adjusted to allow optimal daylight while avoiding overheating. 

Zoning abilities also allow different exposures to be controlled separately. For low rise offices, being able to manually or automatically activate tint only when needed prevents the imposing look of dark tinted windows 24/7.

Museums & Galleries

Museums often require extensive daylight control to protect sensitive objects. Rather than relying on small skylights or exterior shades, smart tints make it possible to use larger window walls and glass ceilings to get desirable diffuse light – then tint accordingly to control intensity. 

For galleries seeking a refractive quality, the ability to zonally tint different pieces of the facade opens up interesting architectural possibilities.

Residential Buildings

For apartments and condos, smart tinting can provide occupants with the ability to customize their daylighting and views. Zonal control means tints can be lowered only in areas like bedrooms when needed for sleep. 

Kitchens, living rooms and balconies can remain transparent. For multistory residences, upper units can activate more tint to prevent overheating while lower units go lighter.

Educational Facilities

Schools and universities can benefit from the ability to tune classroom daylight levels by adding smart tinting to windows, clerestories, or skylights. 

Teachers gain the ability to adjust indoor environmental conditions via a control panel without sacrificing views. For libraries and reading rooms, heat and glare can be reduced with the touch of a button.

Correctional Facilities

For correctional facilities, smart tints offer the ability to control visibility in and out of windows for security purposes, while modulating daylight levels for occupant well-being. Tint activations can be automated on set schedules or zoned separately per exposure.

Other Applications

From healthcare facilities to retail stores, the ability to toggle glass facades from transparent to subtly shaded offers innovative possibilities. For a retail store, clear glass allows attractive displays to be visible during the day, while night-time tinting provides after-hours privacy. 

In a hospital, upper floor recovery rooms can activate tinting as needed while first floor areas remain transparent for aesthetics.

Achieving the Optimal Aesthetic

While smart window tints introduce new aesthetic capabilities, careful design is still needed to maximize visual appeal:

  • Avoid overuse – Generally, it is best to utilize smart tinting selectively in areas where heat/glare control is most needed rather than the entire building facade. Overuse of tinting can create a monotonous darkened exterior. Strategically placed tinting creates contrast.
  • Integrate with furnishings – For interiors, complimentary interior colors, tones and textures will prevent spaces from feeling cold when tint is activated. Warm woods, natural textiles, and pleasant lighting enhance spaces.
  • Consider reflections – Be aware of how the adjustable tinting may impact exterior reflections on the building. Softer natural reflections may become darker.
  • Review zoning layouts – Carefully model how fractured patterns of zoned tinting will appear both inside and out. Seek cohesive, intentional designs.
  • Choose control systems – Determine how the speed, frequencies, and patterns of tint activation could add dynamic qualities to the space. Controls can be manual, automated, or linked to other systems, like daylight sensors.

ElectraTint enables dynamic control over interior daylight, exterior heat gain, views, and aesthetics. The technology allows contemporary glass facade designs that adapt elegantly to occupants’ needs and environmental conditions. 

By modulating tint at the touch of a button, smart window films introduce new architectural possibilities for enhancing comfort, efficiency, and aesthetics in tandem.

Get a Free Estimate for Smart Window Tint Today

ElectraTint’s innovative electronically tintable windows can enhance your property’s aesthetics, energy efficiency, and UV protection. Contact us today for a fast, free estimate to see how our beautiful, adaptive smart glass can custom-fit your needs. Call 833-442-1329 or email to get started.