How Does Spray Foam Insulation Work?
Spray polyurethane foam (SPF) is unique because
it can expand many times its original size to
cover surfaces, creating a seamless barrier that
fills gaps, holes and air leaks.
Specialized equipment is used to apply the spray
polyurethane foam and proper technical
training is required to ensure that it’s applied
Benefits of Spray Foam Insulation
- Comfort - Helps prevent air
leakage from the outside, improving the
comfort of the home.
- Improved Indoor Air Quality - A
tighter home envelope contributes to lower
levels of humidity, dust and pollen inside
- Energy Efficiency - Less energy
required for heating and cooling resulting
lower utility costs and long-term savings.
Different Types of Spray Foam Insulation
Spray foam insulation can most commonly be found
as either open-cell or closed-cell.
Open-cell foam is a low-density, spray
polyurethane foam that can be used to insulate
home. Open-cell foam is also known as ½ pound
foam, as it weighs 0.5 lbs. per cubic foot.
Since open-cell foam is made up of fine cells of
air, the R value is typically between
3.5-3.7 per inch. Due to its relatively low
density, open-cell foam stays somewhat soft and
flexible after curing.
Open-cell spray foam is often applied to garages
and rim joists (where applicable). Due to
the soft texture and open-cell structure, it
makes for great sound dampening properties for
your home. Open-cell foam cannot be used for
external wall applications.
Closed-cell foam is a medium density,
polyurethane foam that is 4x higher in density
open-cell. As a result, it is more rigid and
difficult to crush than open-cell foam. It is
also called 2-pound foam, as it weighs 2 lbs.
per cubic foot. The R-value (LTTR) per inch of
closed-cell foam is typically from 5 to 6 per
inch since it contains a captive blowing
agent. The high R-value/inch saves valuable
living space. Closed-cell SPF is an insulation
and can function as a vapour barrier and an
air-barrier system for your home. It is commonly
used as continuous insulation, interior wall
cavity fill, and for other applications
throughout your home.
It serves as high-performance insulation that
can be installed virtually anywhere in your
home. It is often used where there is need for
higher effective R-value, making it a good
solution for Canadian climates.
What is R-Value?
R-value measures the resistance of heat flow.
The higher the R-value, the greater the
Spray polyurethane foam (SPF) can be applied at
different thicknesses depending on the
R-value that you need to achieve within the
different areas of your home and required
R-value. There are many factors that determine
the required R-value, including building
codes and climate zones.
What is Long-Term Thermal Resistance (LTTR)?
In Canada, the long-term thermal resistance
(LTTR) value is the only recognized R-value used
in design and architectural insulation R-value
requirements, with only one test method
approved in the building code.