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Expanding Foam Insulation – Drawbacks

If you’re exploring adding expanding foam insulation to your home, you’re probably finding a lot of articles written by individuals with rose-tinted glasses. Spray foam insulation isn’t all fun and games followed by massive energy savings. In fact, there are a number of drawbacks that should be considered ahead of time so you can make an informed decision. Read on for some of the top drawbacks of using expanding foam insulation.

1.) The upfront cost is much higher than conventional insulation. You can expect to pay a significantly higher amount to install spray foam insulation in your home than you would for regular insulation. The reason is that the product is still gaining popularity and materials are rather expensive. You’ll also have to factor in installation costs by a professional that’s trained to use the foam sprayer. Not all contractors can do this, which results in higher costs.

2.) It takes 2 to 4 years for it to pay for itself. This is pretty self explanatory, but if you’re counting on seeing a dramatic cost-reduction with spray foam insulation, you may need to wait a while. The average home sees a payback in 2 to 4 years. If you’re planning to move in that time period, you may want to opt for cheaper insulation, which will take less time to pay for itself.

3.) It’s hard to install. Most people have a professional install their spray foam insulation because it’s hard to do it yourself. The process requires specialized equipment and a steady hand. Typically, installers need years of experience before they really get good at gauging how much product to use without causing massive amounts of waste.

4.) It takes longer to install than other types of insulation. While it may not take all that long to spray the foam on, it does take a long time to prep the area and let the foam dry. Before you can install spray foam, you’ll need to completely clean the surface it’s going on and let it dry. Then you can apply the foam and wait for it to cure. This can take about 24 to 48 hours, depending on conditions. Once cured, you’ll need to trim any excess foam if it’s in a wall or floor space.

5.) It’s messy to install. Think about this, you’re spraying a highly tacky material that expands significantly when applied. You’re spraying up, down and in every direction. How could that go wrong? Expect a mess. Use drop-cloths and tape and all types of protective materials for yourself and the room you’re working in.

Take these points into consideration when choosing the insulation product that’s right for your needs. Spray foam insulation is great, but it’s not always the best choice for every consumer. Always weigh the pros and cons when choosing a product and pick what’s right for you.