Modern homes must be insulated to keep outside air out and inside air warm or cool depending on the season. Older homes should also be retrofitted to add needed insulation to the floors, walls, and attics. The improved insulation saves the homeowner money on heating bills and allows the family to be more comfortable. There are different types of insulation to consider.
Different Types of Insulation
Home insulation comes in different forms including fiberglass sheet insulation, blown-in cellulose insulation, rigid foam insulation panels, spray foam insulation, and others. Especially for new construction or remodeling projects where the walls are open, spray foam is becoming very popular as a material.
Spray foam with closed cells is a spray insulation that has a better R-value per inch, air sealing qualities, and moisture reduction than traditional insulation types. Spray foam insulation is a perfect solution for damp areas such as the Pacific Northwest. Spray insulation can be used for attics, basements, crawl spaces, or the whole wall envelope of a house. It is ideal for new construction projects.
This insulation is sprayed on walls before sheetrock is added. It expands to fill the space between the wall framing eliminating air leaks and voids in coverage that other insulation might have.
8 Reasons to Choose Spray Foam Insulation
Here are 8 reasons spray insulation is a good choice for insulating homes.
1. Spray foam insulation seals off air gaps and provides an air-tight seal for the home. It is up to 24 times less permeable to air movement. It blocks water, air, heat, and cold.
2. It can reduce utility bills because it is so energy efficient and that will help pay for the insulation over time.
3. This type of insulation is impermeable to water so it helps keep water out of the home and it does not absorb water during floods and minimizes water damage.
4. Spray foam insulation is an inert polymer that does not provide a food source for mold and mildew or insects. It prevents bugs, insects, and small rodents from getting into the home as well as keeping out pollen, mildew, and mold.
5. This type of insulation has a very long lifespan so it is cost-effective. The initial installation cost is higher than some forms of insulation, but it makes up for the cost by lasting longer. It does not sag or break over time and does not lose its R-value.
6. Spray foam insulation reduces noise transmission from the outside.
7. Properly installed spray foam insulation actually makes the home’s walls stronger and more stable. It acts like a glue holding all the parts of the walls together.
8. Spray foam insulation is eco-friendly. It reduces energy consumption saving money and it lasts longer so it uses fewer materials. Spray foam insulation helps the furnace and the air conditioner to not work as hard and use less fuel.
Is Spray Foam Insulation Safe?
To make sure spray foam insulation is safe and healthy for your home, make sure it is installed by a well-trained professional who guarantees the product will be safely installed. Well-sealed homes should have a proper energy recovery system of ventilation or ERV to allow adequate airflow in the home.
It is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and safety procedures while installing the spray foam. It must have enough time to cure and off-gas before space is occupied. This time is about 24 hours after it is applied. One way to be sure the air is safe is to have air sampled and tested after application and curing are done.
After spray foam insulation has been applied and cured as per manufacturer instructions, it is considered mostly inert. It is considered safe and it is covered with sheetrock and undisturbed. When home renovations, plumbing, or electrical work is being done, the workers shouldn’t heat or grind the foam.
Spray foam insulation that has been properly installed and cured is generally considered safe. People with respiratory problems or allergies might want to talk to the manufacturer to be sure it will work for them.