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Spray Foam Insulation FAQ’s

Did you know that spray foam insulation is so popular that there is a hotline to answer questions from homeowners and contractors? If you’re considering spray foam insulation, you probably have a couple questions and odds are someone has asked them before you. Look at the FAQ’s below for answers to some common questions.

1.) What is the difference between open cell and closed cell insulation?

Open cell or low density insulation is made with an open design where individual cells are broken open and allowed to fill with air. The result is a softer, more flexible foam. Closed cell insulation on the other hand is made up of microscopic closed cells that are filled with a special gas. The gas has better insulating power than air. Closed cell insulation is rigid and can be used to add strength to a structure.

2.) Does spray foam insulation provide a barrier against water?

Yes and no. Closed cell insulation will resist water, but open cell insulation will not. If you are insulating a wet area, choose closed cell insulation.

3.) How can I become a spray foam installer?

If you’re a roofing company or insulation contractor, you’ll need to contact a material Supplier, Distributor or Consultant that specializes in spray foam application training. These companies can give you more information on training requirements. Spray foam application requires a great degree of knowledge regarding how the material works. When you’ve completed your training, you’ll get a certificate stating that you’re a professional.

4.) Does spray foam insulation emit hazardous compounds once installed?

During installation, SPF insulation releases small amounts of chemicals into the air. If you read the directions on the package of insulation, you’ll see something called the occupancy time. This is the minimum time you need to wait before going around the insulation. After that point, it should no longer be emitting hazardous compounds.

5.) Do you need extra fire protection measures?

Like other building materials, SPF is combustible and can ignite easily. You should separate the spray foam insulation from the living area by a 15-minute thermal barrier, like 1/2-inch gypsum board.

6.) How much does it cost?

Prices vary depending on the insulation value desired, whether you do it yourself or hire a professional and which brand is chosen. In general, a high r-value of closed-cell insulation applied by a professional will cost you the most.

7.) Is it suitable for residential applications?

Yes! Spray foam insulation is ideal for unvented attics, crawlspaces and more.

Now that some of your questions have been answered about spray foam insulation, go ahead and find out how much you can save by having an expert come to your home and measure.