Can Spray Foam Insulation Decrease the Danger of Mold?
October 21, 2015
Most everyone realizes that a mold infiltration in a home or building can cause health problems. That includes everything from mild symptoms like sneezing and coughing to more serious issues like lung damage. Beyond the health risks for occupants, removal and remediation of mold is both stressful and costly. Worst of all, mold is sneaky, and oftentimes the spread can't even be seen. Inside a home, the dynamic interaction of warm and cool air can result in unwanted moisture collection - especially in places like the attic and basement. Moisture is the breeding ground for mold, and building materials provide the required nutrition for mold growth. In short, once mold starts to develop, the home is actually under attack. Clearly, prevention is key to avoidance. Most every residential home suffers from air leakage - it allows warm air and cool air to mix and create moisture. Preventing this means creating an airtight seal throughout the attic, basement and other parts of the home. Simply put, totally sealing a space prevents moisture accumulation, which then robs mold of a comfortable environment to live in, to grow in, and to spread out. Spray foam insulation (referred to as polyurethane spray foam insulation) is the only product of its kind than can completely seal a space. Once applied, every hole, gap and crack is completely sealed. And in the attic, nothing can compare with the envelope of insulation that is installed with spray foam. Sealing the attic is probably the most critical, in terms of counteracting moisture. As a product, spray foam insulation does not attract mold. And unlike wood or metal, spray foam does not rot, rust or deteriorate. This means that an area properly sprayed with foam insulation will never become a food source or a hospitable environment for a mold colony. As a result, spray foam has become an ideal installation option for spaces like the attic, basement, and garage. Given that spray foam insulation is an exceptional sealing agent, its still only part of the solution. Proper ventilation, especially in an attic, will assure appropriate air circulation to avert moisture accumulation. And depending on the home, this may include roof vents; soffit vents; even exhaust fans. The whole idea is to combine airtightness and air circulation in a well-balanced system. Clearly, spray foam insulation does much more than just insulate. It will control indoor humidity and condensation, and therefore prevent mold from growing and spreading. It will allow for a more balanced operation of the HVAC system in the home, and will save considerably on seasonal heating and cooling costs. Best of all, the threat and danger of mold is forever avoided. More and more, mold-consulting firms are noticing that when spray foam insulation is installed, the area remains unaffected by mold. This includes the high-risk areas like the attic, basement, and any awkward crawlspaces. It's no wonder that for the team at Great Northern Insulation, spray foam insulation has become a preferred option, and continues to be highly recommended.