Following the spate of moped crimes, smash-and-grab trend and carjackings in London we wanted to find out:
what is the best way to protect cars from moped gang crime?
Other than the purchase of armoured vehicles, we wanted to look into what can the everyday motorist do to provide better security for themselves and their families whilst driving around London.
We came across a Protective Security Film which can be installed into the inside of the car. Applied to the drivers and passenger door glasses it consists of a clear 7mil film, which can help to prevent the window from smashing. If breakage does occur the film will hold the fragments of glass in place, slowing access into the vehicle and allowing extra time to manoeuvre your car out of the situation and drive away.
We decided the best way to check it out was to go and meet the installers, who in London happen to be a lovely and very approachable family business, who explained all about the product and installed it into the 4 doors of one of our vehicles so we could see what it’s like.
Now it’s installed there is no visible difference to the glass, the windows still function as they previously did (although we do keep the windows up and the doors locked when we’re driving) and there are also no visible signs that the film has been installed.
The only change sensed is a notable feeling of being in a safe structure, knowing all 4 door windows are covered with the film, and wewere also pleased to learn that as well as providing safety the film protects from UV too!
So if you are considering having this done here are some of our questions and answers to help you:
Is this a specialist service I need to book in advance for?
Not really, it’s a bit like going to any garage, albeit this one is a nice one with very friendly staff.
The accessibility is what we liked, it was no different to going and getting an MOT or a tyre changed.
Why do you only add protection to the side windows and not the windscreen and rear window?
The usual route of entry for smash-and-grab would be through one of the door windows.
Due to the thickness of the Security Film, it cannot be installed on the curved front screen or rear window. The windscreen of your car is already laminated, which provides an element of protection. The rear window can have a thinner clear film applied which will hold the fragments of glass together in the event of breakage, but would not hold the glass in place in the same way as the Security Film.
How does it provide the UV protection too and what’s the benefit?
While UVB rays do not penetrate the side windows, most people are unaware that the sun’s harmful UVA rays actually do penetrate the glass. The Security Film provides 99% UV protection against these UVA rays, which are known to cause long-term skin damage and also contribute towards the fading of the car interior.
How long does it take to fit?
It only took two hours for our 4 doors to be completed so we just took the car and waited on site for it, so we were able to drive it back the same day. Jon who owns Autoshades who we went to in London advised us to park it in the sun to help the film dry out and there was nothing else required of us.
Who makes it?
Autoshades use LLumar Security Film which is manufactured in the U.S.A. by Eastman Chemical Company who are the World’s leading manufacturer of performance window films.
How much does it cost?
Every car make is different in shape and size but the general costs are around £180 for the 2 front side windows and in the range of £360 to £520 for all four side door glasses.
Personal Safety London does NOT run an affiliate scheme with the manufacturer, supplier or installer so if you think this would be useful for you then we’re glad our review helped and please just contact the installer yourself on the link below: