When you are looking at home insulation, it is important to understand that not all insulation is equal. There are levels of insulation that are given what is called, an R-Value. The R-value is the degree to which the material resists heat flow. The higher the R-value, the better it is at insulating. Let’s talk about spray foam insulation and why it may be the best insulation for you.
First, all foam products stop drafts and have excellent R-values. This means you’ll experience greater comfort control and see substantial heating and cooling cost savings. Spray foam insulation is typically made from polyurethane allowing it to have an indefinite lifespan. This material is also water resistant which will prevent mold or bacteria from forming.
It’s sprayed into construction assemblies as a liquid, which then expands to fill the surrounding cavity. Once dry, spray foam functions as both an air barrier and thermal barrier to effectively fill holes and cracks for both a well-insulated and air-tight wall assembly. Insulation expanding foam offers superior performance around common air leakage areas. Such as:
• Sill plates
• Truss ends
• Base boards
• Electrical outlets
Sealing your home with spray foam will reduce the infiltration of allergens, pollen and external dust. The polyurethane insulation spray formulation is not a particle based insulation, like cellulose, so it will not contribute to the dust level in your home. This provides superior energy efficiency and improved indoor air quality by eliminating air movement through walls.
There is a common misconception that a home “must breathe”.
In fact, if your home is “breathing” you are losing heat in the winter and gaining heat in the summer in addition to the allergens and dirt that get in from the outside.
Another benefit of spray foam is that it also acts as a sound barrier. Spray foam is non-toxic and has undergone extensive testing and meets the intent of all building code requirements. Spray foam insulation is the healthy choice for those who suffer from allergies, asthma, or chemical sensitivity.
Our primary foam supplier is Demilec. Spray foam is available in both Open-Cell and Closed-Cell configurations. The differences between the two types of cell foam insulation are as follows:
Open-Cell Spray Foam Insulation
- Small cells that are not closed all the way
- Spongy consistency
- Fewer chemicals
- Less Expensive
- Superior as an air barrier
- Effective sound barrier
- Recommended for interior application only
- Improves indoor air quality
Closed-Cell Insulation Foam Insulation
- High density and rigid to touch
- More Compact cell structure
- Effective air and vapor barrier
- Water resistant
- Superior sound barrier
- Exterior and Interior applications
- Protects against mold and mildew
- Higher R-value
How is Spray Foam Insulation Installed?
When we install spray foam insulation, the area will need to be prepared first. We remove interior surfaces, provide access to the area receiving the foam. The foam components are brought to the correct temperature and mixed. Once that is complete, we are ready to spray. The foam is sprayed to the average thickness required. It comes out as a liquid but each insulation system expands within seconds to 120 times its volume to fill every nook and cranny.
Walls and cathedral ceiling applications are typically trimmed flush with the studs or rafters for interior surfaces to be hung. We then cleaned up and remove any debris. The process is complete and the benefits are experienced right away.
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