The short story on spray foam insulation is twofold – it delivers proven thermal protection (the insulating component) and it provides a superior air barrier (the sealing component). When properly installed, this is an application that provides a seamless blanket that totally envelops a given space, including irregular surfaces and uneven protrusions. It has quickly become the favorite insulating product of professional contractors, and has proven its effectiveness in new construction builds, renovation projects and retrofits alike. And it’s all with good reason.
Beyond the insulating benefits, a spray foam application measurably improves air circulation throughout the premises, and contributes to better air quality and home comfort for occupants. Depending on the home, and the scope of the spray foam install, heating and cooling costs can be realistically reduced by as much as 50% annually. As well, residential HVAC equipment (heating, ventilating and air conditioning) is allowed to operate at full capacity and efficiency. And because the spray foam is such an effective sealant, a draft-free environment is created.
Residential spray foam insulation brings real-time, noticeable results to homeowners. Many routinely report reduced dust accumulation, and enjoy a practically “dust-free” environment. A good application also provides sound reduction – a sense of quiet inside the home, because the spray foam envelope actually absorbs sound. In addition, heating and cooling cycles are better balanced from one season to the next, with fewer occurrences of warm or cool zones. Finally, and likely the most important, is that energy bills are reduced within the range of 30% to 50%.
In residential applications, spray foam insulation can be used in every part of the home: inside wall cavities; for exterior foundations; in hard-to-reach crawl spaces; above ceilings (cathedral and flat); even around the doors and windows. It’s a stable compound that won’t deteriorate or decompose like many other insulation products. A spray foam application won’t settle over time, and won’t lose its R-value. In fact, this is a product that lasts a lifetime, without the need to replace or replenish. Reportedly, home re-sales are often higher with spray foam installed.
Project cost is always a concern for homeowners and spray foam insulation is no exception. It’s acknowledged as a more costly project than other products or product combinations, but its also recognized as a good investment. A basic cost-benefit analysis will readily show that the benefits derived from a good install make the upfront cost worthwhile. Spray foam insulation is clearly a premium product with premium product features – it’s particularly true when one assesses the long-term benefits and the inherent savings.
The popularity of spray foam insulation is huge. Annually, usage is growing at nearly 40%, and it’s primarily because of the proven performance of the product. With more homeowners considering this option, it’s critical for them to have a good understanding of the spray foam product and the installation process. Clearly, being knowledgeable and well-informed makes for better decision-making, and that includes choosing the right product for the job, and the right contractor to do the job.