Mistakes With Spray Foam: Avoiding Them

Construction & Contractors Blog

After years of being irritated by cold drafts and high utility bills connected with poor insulation, you may have landed on spray foam insulation as a possible solution. This substance can be effective, but if you attempt an insulation project, consider these spray foam recommendations.

Protect Yourself

Dry spray foam is challenging to remove from surfaces; after all, it's meant to stay in place. Therefore, remember to protect yourself by covering your skin as much as possible. Long pants, long sleeves and goggles are smart choices. 

Respirator masks are also important. Spray foam can have a strong smell and it can interfere with your ability to work without a lot of breaks, so wear a mask.

Avoid Wet Surfaces

Spray foam will have trouble adhering to wet surfaces, particularly wet wood. If you're using foam because there has been water damage or leaks inside the basement or attic, waiting until the lumber is fully dry is vital. If you're unsure about moisture levels, secure an inexpensive moisture meter for guidance.

Use Plastic to Protect Windows and Electric Panels

No matter how steady you think your hand is, you can't guarantee that some spray foam won't splatter. Before spraying begins, look around and identify windows, electric panels and other areas where you don't want foam. Cover those spots with plastic and duct tape.

Ensure Thick Layers

If your layers of spray foam are too thin, cold air can blast through it. Ensure that you're spraying layers at least a few inches thick.

Look for Leaks

You might miss some spots as you work around the space. This is fine; you can simply reapply foam when you notice gaps in insulation. Don't assume your eyes will catch every missed spot, however. Use thermal cameras or a fog machine to look for cooler, unprotected areas.

Let Foam Cool Before Re-Applying

There are two reasons to allow foam to cool completely before reapplying it to close air leaks or places you missed. First, if you spray already hot foam, the odor can be persistent and lingering for days, if not weeks. Secondly, allowing cooling to occur will help you notice if any shrinkage of foam has happened. Shrinkage is not common, but can happen if chemicals aren't mixed well or incorrect temperatures were used.

Your spray foam work can insulate your house well. If questions remain or the job seems overwhelming, however, insulation contractors can handle the work and give you confidence that the job was completely and professionally done.

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23 December 2018

Construction Needs in Times of Disaster

I live in the middle of the desert, so I never thought that flooding would be a problem. However, a few months ago my town was hit with a huge storm. These freak storms are called "Hundred Year Storm" because the chances of them happening are once in a hundred years. Needless to say, no one was prepared for the aftermath--especially not the city sewage system. All this extra water had no where to go, and suddenly, I found my basement flooded. It wasn't a fun experience, but we dealt with it the best we could. Since then, I have spent a lot of time looking into different options for sewage, water lines, and other related things. We're now even looking into building a new house. This blog is the result of my ongoing research.