Attic - Walls - Floors - Basement - Crawl Space - Insulation
Oct092012

What is Spray Foam?

Published by Rease at 5:14 PM under Blog

Many people have begun to hear the word spray foam as a buzzword in the insulation industry. This high-quality insulation is great for many applications and in some cases can be very cost effective. However, it's important to know what you are buying and in which situations this high-performance insulation makes sense.
 
 

What is Spray Foam?

 

This polyurethane foam is an expanding substance. It sprays on thin and expands to create a barrier. Open cell foam will expand more than closed cell, but that does not necessarily mean one is better than the other.
 
Closed cell foam only expands a little bit, but it creates an airtight barrier. It acts as an air barrier, thermal insulator, and moisture boundary. This type of spray foam is great for ceilings, but not for roofs. When used for roofs, it can trap moisture from leaks and condensate, which will lead to mold growth.
 
Open cell foam expands much more than closed cell because it is not airtight. The open cell foam allows air and moisture to travel through it, making this foam ideal for attic or roof decking. Instead of trapping the moisture like a closed cell foam would, this type of foam allows the moisture to travel through and dissipate, preventing rotting.
 

When Should Spray Foam Be Used?

 
Spray foam is an expensive material, so you certainly do not want to spend money on it unless you are going to see a return on your investment. Spray foam is great for new construction, or modifying homes in areas such as the ceiling, attic, or roof. Due to the high cost of the material, it is best to combine the foam with another type of insulation. Affordable Comfort created a Hybrid System that uses a small amount of spray foam paired with Cellulose insulation. This system allows you to get the high performance benefits of the foam without breaking the bank. If you were to insulate your entire home in spray foam, the cost would be too high to ever see a return on your large investment.
 

When Shouldn't Spray Foam Be Used?

 
Spray foam should not be used exclusively to insulate an entire home, due to the aforementioned high cost issues. You also wouldn't want to add spray foam directly on top of existing insulation.
 
Overall, spray foam is an excellent choice for insulating a structure. It is just important to know when and how to use it, as well as how much should be used in order to save money without sacrificing results. We here at Affordable Comfort are more than happy to walk you through the process.

 

 


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