Spray Foam Insulation: Its Benefits, Types & Things To Consider While Choosing One

With the need for good insulation in any building, spray foam insulation is inherently popular and among one of the most common types of insulation available.

Insulation aims at being energy efficient in the home and consequently reduces energy bills. By insulating the building, one is assured of preventing air leaks from around the house, which is commonly found around doors, windows and other small spaces that cause the air to seep in thereby increasing heat loss.

Spray foam insulation comes in handy in ensuring all the possible nooks and crannies where heat might be lost are tightly secured and protected. This insulation aids in preventing heat loss and ensuring that the building is tightly secured and provides the best possible comfort and performance for environmental protection.

What Is Spray Foam Insulation?

Spray Foam is made from spray polyurethane which is the same material used in couches and mattresses. This material aims in providing a barrier to the home, and prevent any movement of air, vapor, or moisture. Spray foam insulator usually forms its air barrier depending on how it is mixed. The insulator comprises two materials, the iso, and resin which are kept in separate containers and applied at the site by the certified professional. It is then used along the house walls, attic, and foundation as this is where elements seep into the home.

The thickness of the spray foam insulator hugely depends on the location of the building. For instance, buildings in colder areas require more insulators which can be from three inches thick. Warmer areas do not require many insulators and can spray around two inches thick. The thickness of the insulator is done to meet the energy codes of the area, to ensure the right parameters are set.

Types Of Spray Foam Insulation

Certain areas of the home require different insulation types. In spray foam insulation; there are two types of insulation available:

  • Open foam insulation

This type of spray foam insulation is light and spongy, with an R-value of 3.5 per inch. Open foam insulation is best used in dry areas such as the attic or along walls. Due to its light properties, this insulation does not insulate moisture, vapor, and water, and therefore should not be used in areas such as the kitchen, bathroom, or toilet.

  • Closed foam insulation

This is a much dense insulator than open foam due to the presence of a gas that expands to fill the spaces around it. Commonly known as two-pound foam, this insulator acts as a great barrier to vapor and moisture, making it ideal for use in the foundation and other areas. This insulator has a higher R-value of 6 per inch and is normally considered one of the best insulators due to its versatility and dense properties. Closed foam insulator normally costs more than open foam due to its additional characteristics.

Benefits Of Spray Foam Insulation

There are several benefits of spray foam insulators:

  • Durability

The extensive durability of the spray foam insulator makes it the ideal choice for use. When installed properly, spray foam insulation can last over fifty years. This provides the homeowner with value for money while making them comfortable with never feeling the need to insulate for a long while. However, choosing the right type of spray foam insulator is paramount in ensuring its ultimate durability.

  • Versatility

The use of spray foam as an insulator offers tremendous versatility by allowing it to fill any space in any shape form. This, therefore, makes it offer a higher R-value per inch making it ideal for the home’s insulation.

  • Blocks sound waves

Spray foam insulator also blocks sound vibration and waves and is great at deflecting them elsewhere. Therefore, it lessens the sound of floor movement by muffling excessive noises and soundproofing the entire building.

Choosing A Spray Foam Insulation Contractor

Spray foam insulator is best done by professionals to ensure the right technique and materials are used. They require the right certifications and techniques to be able to perform the job. However, how do you find the right contractor for the job?

It is advisable to research before hiring them, through a quick internet search or referrals. A background check will help you determine the experience of the contractor, and how long they have been in business. Experienced contractors will be well versed with the techniques and requirements of the house, and able to prevent common rookie mistakes that might cost you a fortune.

The right contractor will be able to ensure thermal resistance in the home by employing proper installation and air sealing. This prevents future leakage of air or moisture from the outside and helps provide the proper barrier for the home.

A good contractor will be well versed with how to handle the spray foam machinery without damaging other areas in the house. They will also advise on the right spray foam material to use depending on the location in the house.

The right contractor will have a portfolio of previous work done. The portfolio will assist you in checking on the work’s quality, and ascertain whether they will be the right fit for the job. This helps prevents future disappointments over the quality of work that will be done and gives the client satisfaction that the job will be done well.

As spray foam insulation is purchased from the manufacturer directly, its cost is considerably higher than other forms of insulation. The entire installation and curing process take around three to five days, depending on the size of the house.

Things To Consider

When choosing a spray foam insulator, it is advisable to consider the brand that offers low global warming potential levels. This helps to determine the blowing agent that is used in the foam is at minimal levels to protect the environment. Embracing green products will go a long way in preserving the environment and ensuring the components of the foam are recyclable.

When installing the insulator, it is best to vacate the house as the spray foam is prone to emit harmful compounds during the installation and curing process, therefore, insulation is best done without the presence of inhabitants to prevent any adverse effects.