Q. How long has spray foam been around?
A. Spray foam has been around since the 1960’s. It was used in military applications (insulation on submarines, etc.) It has been used in residential applications for the past 20 years and has redefined what insulation should be.
Q. Can I apply foam myself?
A. Our spray foam insulation begins as large drums of an “A” and “B” solutions that are mixed at a high temperature and extremely high pressure to form the substance known as “polyurethane spray foam insulation” (see photos of our equipment). The foam comes out of the specialized application gun at roughly 200 degrees. Our technicians wear protective clothing and respirators to avoid contact with solution or vapors.This process should only be attempted by skilled, highly trained technicians..
Q. What are the (2) types of spray foam?
A. Closed-Cell Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) is a much more dense, hard and rigid foam with an R-value of 6.8 per inch. It is often used in attics with metal roofs, attic floors, exterior walls, crawl space sub-floors and metal sheds. As with all foams, the airtight barrier that is created is what prevents dust, pollen, mold and mildew from penetrating the envelope. The tiny cells in this type of foam are literally “closed off” making it impervious to air and water. Once applied this foam expands to 20 times it’s liquid volume. It’s performance is superior to commonly used fiberglass insulation because of it’s ability to adhere to nearly any building material and it’s ability to provide a continuos barrier against air and moisture infiltration. The results of using closed-cell SPF are a cleaner environment, greater noise reduction, and substantial energy savings. Additionally, Closed-cell foam has been shown to increase building strength and wind resistance up to 300%.
Open-Cell Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) is an extremely lightweight soft foam with an R-value of 3.8 per inch. It is often used in attic roof-lines, exterior walls and basement ceilings. It can also be used as a sound barrier for theater rooms, bathroom and plumbing pipes. In attics, open cell is highly recommended for it’s performance due to the thickness, air sealing and insulating properties of the foam. At an average of 5.5 inches (R-value of 21), open cell foam applied to the underside of the roof decking will eliminate radiant heat from affecting the indoor temperature and HVAC unit performance. Basically, it keeps conditioned air inside the home/business while preventing un-conditioned air from entering the structure. On average your attic temperature should not see more than a 10-13 degree difference from the living space below it.
Q. Which type of spray foam is best for my home?
A. The best foam to use should be determined by the application.
- Closed-Cell Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF)
Crawlspace (ceiling and walls of crawlspace)
Basement (unfinished walls and ceiling)
Garages (ceiling of garage…when there is living space above)
Walls (exterior walls)
Metal Roofs (underside of roof decking)
- Uses for Open-Cell Foam
Any non-metal Roof (underside of roof decking
Soundproofing (interior walls, between floors)
Walls (exterior walls)
Q. How does spray foam insulation improve indoor air quality and comfort?
A. Spray foam insulation provides a sealed thermal envelope. When applied, the insulation conforms and fills each cavity, crack and void. This seals the home against wind, dust, moisture, pollen, mold spores, insects, and numerous allergens. Foam provides a healthier, quieter, draft-free, indoor environment.
Q. Are termites, insects or rodent attracted to spray foam?
A. No, there is no food value to the foam. In addition, by sealing off roof vents, gable walls/fans and all entry points, we eliminate the typical paths that these pests take into the home.
Q. How long does the spray foam insulation last?
A. Once applied and cured, the spray foam insulation is in place for the life of the structure. It should never have to be replaced.
Q. How long does it take to apply spray foam in my home?
A. The square footage of the application area(s) is the determining factor. Generally we can complete most resdiential applications within a day. Complete encapsulation (attic, crawl space, walls) projects will most likely take a few days. Our number one focus is to ensure quality of application vs. how quickly we can apply it.
Q. Do I need Attic and Roof Venting?
A. No. Attic and roof venting were developed because of the inferiority of non-foam insulation. In the winter in northern climates, moisture typically condenses on the interior side of insulation because the interior wall temperatures are relatively cold compared to the warmer air toward the center of the house. The only way to get the moisture out of the house was the creation of ridge and soffit venting. Unfortunately, this also results in the loss of heat. In the summer, venting is typically used to remove warm air from un-insulated attic spaces, one of the purposes of which is to protect the underside of roof shingles from excessive heat. With Spray Polyurethane Foam there are no such problems. The temperature of rooms in the winter is uniform throughout, thus eliminating any chance for condensation to occur. In the summer, the attic is just slightly warmer than the rest of the house, thus there is no potential for roof shingle damage.
Q. How can R-21 of Spray Polyurethane Foam outperform R-30 of fiberglass?
A. R-Value is one of the most misused and misunderstood measurements in the world. The test results are determined in a 75-degree (F) lab with no wind load and ideal humidity. In such conditions the two insulation types are identical with respect to heat transfer. However, once the insulation is installed in a home in real world conditions, the heat loss/gain of fiberglass and cellulose are outrageous since cold and warm air move freely about them through convection. Spray Polyurethane Foam is an air barrier AND it is physically adhered to the wood framing members of a structure thus minimizing air infiltration. Think of fiberglass as a screen and Spray Polyurethane Foam as a window. Coincidentally, most furnace filters are made from fiberglass. These filters are obviously designed to allow the free movement of air through them.
Q. What about mold?
A. For mold to exist and grow moisture, warm temperatures and a food source must be present. Polyurethane foam insulation has no nutritional value and is not considered a food source for mold. The use of polyurethane eliminates air movement within the wall cavity and eliminates condensing surfaces and reduces the potential to accumulate moisture. Other insulations are less successful at controlling air infiltration and at providing adequate insulation to eliminate condensing surfaces, thus increasing the likelihood of having and environment that is susceptible to mold.Closed cell foam is approved by FEMA for use in flood regions.
Have a question that you dont see answered above?? contact us and we will get an answer for you!