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What is Spray Foam?

Since the late 1990s, spray foam has become one of the hottest insulation products on the market. Its effectiveness has displaced even traditional insulation materials like fibreglass batts, demonstrating a superior R-value per inch and air-sealing ability.

But if spray foam is that good, then why isn't everyone using it?

Why Spray Foam is the insulation of the future

For years, the traditional insulation for any home or business property included such products as fibreglass and cellulose because they were cheap to install. While effective, they also absorb and retain moisture, creating dampness and eventually mildew. Not to mention, their porous surfaces causes leaks that make heating and air conditioning systems ineffective. Rather than waste money on their constant maintenance and replacement, we're happy to offer a more effective product known as spray foam.

What is Spray Foam?

Spray foam (SPF) is an insulation material made from polyurethane foam or plastic. It's remarkably adaptable and the mixture is easy to adjust for any customer's requirement. Spray foam's semi-solid nature makes it suitable for pipe work, roofing and other solid structures. Despite being sprayed out as a liquid, this foam is flexible and non-porous, making it ideal for roofing and wall insulation. It's also lightweight, making it useful for flotation for docks, boats and ships. Finally, spray foam is strong enough for a number of industrial applications, from walk-in freezers to the structural strength of airplanes.

Areas where Spray Foam is used

Our versatile product has a large number of domestic and industrial uses. Spray foam insulation is ideal in any kind of building, as well as inside refrigerated units and large transports. It's been proven to be effective as a part of flotation devices, as an adhesive for construction and packaging and as an insulation material for common venues like spas, movies and theatre sets.

Types of Spray Foam

Open Cell Polyurethane Spray Foam

This type of spray foam insulation is fast becoming the most popular choice for residential applications like underfloor insulation, roof insulation and wall insulation because it is significantly cheaper than closed cell spray foam whilst offering many of the same great benefits. There are, however, several key differences.

Open cell spray foam insulation is still just plastic that is heated up and sprayed in place. The difference between open and closed cell foam is that open cell foam has a lower R Value per inch therefore requiring a higher volume of foam within a cavity to reach code requirements.

Open cell spray foam is approximately half to three quarters of the price of closed cell foam. It remains popular for this reason. When applied correctly, the energy savings for open cell foam are equal to those of closed cell foam whilst saving customers’ money.

Whether you choose open or closed cell foam, the outcome will be an airtight building that allows for optimal energy efficiency; from 30-50% more efficient than fibreglass and 10-25% more efficient than wall spray or dense pack cellulose.

With Icynene polyurethane foam products customers generally see clear savings on energy bills immediately and can expect to recoup the expense of installation within 5-7 years or less.

Closed Cell Polyurethane Spray Foam Insulation

This type of spray foam is considered the best because the multiple cells that make up the foam are encapsulated onto themselves. In other words, they are virtually impenetrable to moisture, taking care of any mould worries.

The word "polyurethane" is a fancy way of saying "plastic." So this insulation material is simple a 2 part plastic that when heat is applied and sprayed on a wall or ceiling (or anything), it expands to roughly 50 - 100 times or it's original size.

There are many varieties of spray foam, and each has a slightly different R-value. Any foam over 24kg is considered a closed cell foam whilst anything under 24 kg foam is considered open cell foam... which we will get to in a minute.

By using closed cell foam you may only need 1-2 inches (25-50mm) in a wall to meet all your code R-values in most parts of Australia. So if space is an issue this may be the optimal product choice.

Which Foam do you choose?

When choosing any insulation product, you'll need to consider such factors as the cost, how much you'll save in energy bills, how long you're holding your property and the improvements that come with energy efficiency.

We also recommend that you hire a professional to apply spray foam on your site, rather than waste your money on a Do-It-Yourself kit. And if you're still not sure about energy efficiency upgrades, you can always hire an energy consultant to inspect your building, give you a report on areas for improvement and inform you about any rebates you might be eligible for (depending on the state where you live).

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