Bottom line: If you're going to use closed cell foam, using only the minimum amount needed for dew point control and using lower impact fiber (or open cell foam) for the rest is going to be nicer to the planet and usually quite a bit less expensive too. In Zone 6, a 2x4 wall needs at least R-7.5 for the exterior foam layer. This insulation material is popular for its high R-value and good air-sealing and vapor-blocking properties, but cost, health, and environmental concerns cause some builders to have second thoughts. Become a GBA Prime member and get full access to GBA articles, enyclopedia, videos, CAD library, and more. For more information on this concept, see "Calculating the Minimum Thickness of Rigid Foam Sheathing." The next step is to apply petroleum jelly to the area, cover it with a glove, and let the jelly soak in. Its amazing to me how the residential building industry has never developed some mandatory education requirement minimums like many other professions, not that it would solve all issues, but at least elevate the base knowledge and performance. 2. Once it cures, you'll have to scrape or sand off unwanted … (Even the additional air films of the air gap would get you there on a U-factor basis even if discounting the low-E facer.). It's really an exercise in determining how much the property is worth in comparison with their neighbours. Thus, it made our decision easy: We use densepack cellulose and exterior rigid on all of our building envelopes. I'm not really advocating ANY closed cell foam (response to #8) In new construction, we fill this cavity with a special window and door foam to ensure these small areas are filled. framing assembly, the same member represents a 4.9% framing factor. Closed cell spray foam in particular is valued for its high R-values, which fall between 6.5 to 7 per inch. RELATED: Airtight House: Can Spray Foam Make My House Too Tight? Christopher, Even OPEN cell foam isn't the greenest or most sustainable solution. framing assembly have a center-of-wall framing factor of 7.3%. “This leads to a sizeable amount of heat and central air loss.”, Misconception: Foam Insulation is Way More Expensive than Fiberglass or Cellulose, Something to consider is that traditional insulation needs to be constantly maintained and eventually replaced. Foam insulation actually saves you more money in the long-run on monthly energy bills because it creates an air seal. 2x6 frame They almost always go by appraised value, with the size of the dwelling being one factor. closed cell followed by open cell RELATED: What is Closed Cell Spray Foam Insulation? Note the Icynene open cell foam does not hold moisture in walls or attic assemblies. I've never heard of property taxes being primarily driven by house size. Steve, I understand that requirement may be under threat in the legislature, but for now, good things are happening. Are there any other similar techniques ? When removing spray foam insulation, it may not necessarily work out smoothly, so be prepared to call for help. Looking at interior insulation and thinking Chris's argument for flash and batt (closed cell 2" open cell 3") in walls makes sense. “Once the leak is fixed, the foam will act much like a wick in an old-style lantern,” said Josh Hammond, project manager at RetroFoam of Michigan. You wrote that you are "leaning towards flash-and-batt + some exterior insulation." Something to consider is that traditional insulation needs to be constantly maintained and eventually replaced. Simply fill your spray bottle or hand-pump sprayer with acetone, then apply it to the spray foam you wish to remove. “Foam insulation doesn’t soundproof, but it can dampen sound up to 80 percent,” said Joe Skelton, project manager at RetroFoam of Michigan. RELATED: Can I Be Inside My Home During the Foam Insulation Installation? If the Zip R sheathing was properly fastened, according to the nailing schedule provided by Huber (the manufacturer of Zip), your wall doesn't need any more "stiffness." Put on goggles, a mask and protective clothing. Remove enough siding to jimmy the foam out, probably 2-3 pieces per story, per wall cavity. Open cell foam insulation is a pliable material, which means it is easy to work with if you need to do any rewiring in the future. Can I Be Inside My Home During the Foam Insulation Installation? Almost any amateur foam installer can install closed cell but it takes a professional to install open cell foam properly. Researchers from Oak Ridge National Lab have said open-cell spray foam is risky — but what did they miss? From a dew point control point of view you would still be OK with 2" of EPS (R8.4) on the exterior per the chapter 7 prescriptives (https://up.codes/viewer/wyoming/irc-2015/chapter/7/wall-covering#R702.7.1 ), but that too would underperform R13 cavity + R10 continuous. ft - or 0.8%. The modified wall that your GC is recommending is 1. not 'green' 2. barely meets code (insulation) 3. violates the rule of thumb for minimum thickness of exterior rigid foam for a 2x4 and 4. unnecessarily expensive- especially given the lackluster performance of such a wall. It is intended to provide general information to professional persons who may be involved in installing spray polyurethane foam. this increase won’t cause damage to your shingles. Misconception: Foam Insulation Can Completely Soundproof a Room, Reduce Airborne Noise Through Walls with Foam Insulation, Misconception: Closed Cell Insulation is the Only Way to Go Because of its Superior R-Value, The Internet and many contractors might say the same thing, but closed cell isn’t always the best option to, Misconception: Existing Exterior Walls Can’t Be Re-Insulated Without Tearing Down Drywall, As a matter of fact, it can be done from the outside and the process only varies depending on the, How to Insulate a House Without Taking Down Drywall, Misconception: Spray Foam Insulation is Flammable. How Thick Does Spray Foam Insulation Need to Be? Using closed cell foam on the under side of the roof deck is a band-aid fix to a design screw-up, not a go-to solution. Servicing Michigan's Lower Peninsula & Greater Toledo, By: While I agree that "both types of wall (open-cell and closed-cell) benefit equally" from the additional R value provided by sheathing and drywall, I disagree on air films. Local practices for measuring the area of a house vary from town to town, and it may be worth bringing the topic up with your local tax assessor if your house has thick walls. You're right that a 1/2-inch air space has R-value. High-R properly vented cathedralized ceilings are cheaper and more resilient, if it's new construction with reasonably simple roof lines. “The lifespan of traditional insulation can range between 15 to 20 years before it will need to be updated, while foam will last the lifetime of your home,” Stacy said. I wasn't trying to debate that flash-and-batt is superior in general. You, your children, and even your pets can be in your home during the installation process.”. Good clean accurate cuts. It sounds like you are talking about the technique advocated by Stephen Bonfiglioli. I guess the "more" I was referring to was versus just using ccSPF. Spray foam insulation is versatile and can be used to insulation your roof, loft, walls and floor. The Froth-Pak™ Insulation Spray Foam fills, seals and insulates these kinds of gaps with ease and at a fraction of the cost of a drum and … You don’t want to remove the insulation yourself only to have to hire someone to fix the damage you caused. In the past, open cell spray foam had a reputation of retaining water like a sponge, luckily that isn’t the case now. The Internet and many contractors might say the same thing, but closed cell isn’t always the best option to achieve your goals. Dana Dorsett's suggested method -- spraying closed-cell spray foam against the underside of the roof sheathing, followed by a layer of open-cell spray foam on the interior side of the cured closed-cell foam -- is generally considered safe, especially if the thickness of the closed-cell spray foam layer meets the minimum R-value rules described in this article: Combining Exterior Rigid Foam With Fluffy Insulation. It can be designed out. At 1.5" foam you can get there with Dow Thermax polyiso, which would deliver more than R10 at tempertures that matter, despite only being labeled R9.8 @ 1.5" : http://msdssearch.dow.com/PublishedLiteratureDOWCOM/dh_09ad/0901b803809ad9ca.pdf?filepath=styrofoam/pdfs/noreg/179-04015.pdf&fromPage=GetDoc, If the shiny foil facer version is used with an air gap between the siding & facer it adds well over the R0.2 needed to make it a full R10. Applying Spray Foam Insulation. And yes, while Norwich is a pretty temperate climate- roughly a US Marine 4C climate though cooler in summer- it would have a 12 month heating season for a code-min house: https://weatherspark.com/averages/28767/Norwich-England-United-Kingdom . Sign up for a free trial and get instant access to this article as well as GBA’s complete library of premium articles and Misconception: Electrical Work and New Wires Can’t Be Run with Foam Insulation in the Walls. Does RetroFoam of Michigan Install Foam Insulation in All Weather Conditions? “We have no issues installing spray foam during the winter months,” said Ashley Bedtelyon, office manager at RetroFoam of Michigan. ZIP R with R9 on exterior We are affordable green builders and stopped using open cell foam as cavity insulation the day we finished our very first home with the product. Walls: Open-cell spray foam has an R-value of about R-3.7 per inch, while closed-cell spray foam has an R-value that may be as high as R-6.5 per inch. Otherwise, you'll be encapsulating your OSB sheathing (or plywood sheathing) between two vapor-impermeable layers. I'm assuming that you, Martin, will not be advocating open cell foam alone for that application now. If you want to continue your educational journey, check out the Learning Center on our website. And using rigid foam for dew point control is also greener than sprayed closed cell, but in new construction why use any foam at all? This works over an enormous range of whole-wall values and climates, since the interior OSB is a smart vapor retarder, and the fiberboard is vapor permeable. One minor critique hbspt.cta._relativeUrls=true;hbspt.cta.load(2621536, '830445d2-7349-491c-a2ec-b1be4d7b6405', {}); Amanda previously has worked as a breaking news and crime reporter, TV news producer, and editor in Flint and Detroit. What it’s Made of, How it Works, & More, Misconception: Spraying Foam Insulation on the Roof Deck Ruins the Shingles, That’s not the case, as the insulation is actually a barrier between two areas of different temperatures. It’s like playing “Telephone” when you were a kid. Foam insulation creates an air seal with a minimum of 3-inches of open cell or 2-inches of closed cell. Practical observation Get clear silicone calk and seal around the window and door trim to help prevent this.”. A false or mistaken view, opinion, or attitude. A non-cured material will usually... 2. Another method to remove spray foam from the skin is to rub a pumice stone over the dried foam insulation. Spray foam insulation comes in different forms, like in spray guns which can fill in gaps and crevices, that can be applied inside your walls. In US zones 5 & lower it doesn't even need the low vapor retardency of the interior side wood sheathing to meet code, only for structure. Once cured, the soft foam is easily trimmed flush with the studs (see illustration below). Get building science and energy efficiency advice, plus special offers, in your inbox. Closed cell is more expensive but is great for pole barns and commercial buildings.”. You must be a magazine subscriber to access this feature. This is part of why I personally like the idea of flash-and-batt more. “It’s been scientifically proven that the temp of the shingles rises only a couple of degrees when there is an unvented attic compared to a vented attic,” said Garry Barlow, project manager at RetroFoam of Michigan. With closed-cell spray foam, the plywood (as you noted) is trapped between two impermeable layers. “That area is extremely hard to access, and we wouldn’t be able to get a successful cavity fill from that far up. Misconception: Open Cell Spray Foam Absorbs Water Like a Sponge, There are some open cell foam products on the market that do, One of the benefits of open cell is that is doesn’t retain water and doesn’t promote, What is Open Cell Spray Foam Insulation? If you do that, make sure that your exterior insulation is mineral wool. Ethan, it depends on the Both products are environmentally safe, non-toxic, and are also safe to have in your home. Conclusion: I blame the wall insulation for the air leakage. Response to Charlie and Malcolm (Comments #9 and #10) Saw straight through the foam to remove the excess. This type of insulation can be more expensive than loose-fill insulation. Would appreciate any feedback on a better-performing, less risky and less costly alternative approach - flash and batt and no exterior insulation inside 2x6 walls is an alternate lower-cost approach that we feel would work. The amount of foam you really NEED in a new home design is pretty small (if any), and going without doesn't necessarily have to be more expensive or lower performance. Better yet, remove it completely. These are things that more resonate with me personally rather than a general argument as to its superiority, so I don't expect it to convince anyone. The thermal bridging through your 2x6 wall studs tends to undermine any advantage from using spray foam between the studs -- as noted in the article above -- so I would recommend cellulose. It’s easy to have misconceptions about spray foam insulation when there is so much information, and misinformation, right at your fingertips. 3. When installed properly in adequate conditions, the foam insulation we use does not shrink. Flash and batt - check your closed cell manufacturers ESR reports and you will see that the closed cell flash required to be an air barrier is at least 1.3 inches. RELATED: How Thick Does Spray Foam Insulation Need to Be? traditionally here they have used the framing dimensions from the plans and ignored siding, trim etc. 11 7/8" TJI's with the specs you note in a 16" o.c. The density of the trimmings tossed in the dumpster is lower still. UK Level 6 construction is all about sustainability, and it's fair to say that fiberboard & cellulose are far more sustainable than foam insulation. “Open cell is also cheaper for you. As a matter of fact, it can be done from the outside and the process only varies depending on the type of siding your home has. Response to Nicolaas Wilkens We are in climate zone 3 warm-humid coastal NC and are renovating our house, including air sealing and improving the roof insulation. Some of the other reasons why spray foam is being used include: Advantages of spray foam insulation. Cleans and removes all unwanted foam easily Roll insulation structural support, there! Understand what factors to consider is that is doesn ’ t retain water and ’... Own odds do n't just have to leave your home a sizeable amount of heat central... '' fiberboard on the exterior foam layer the benefits of open cell is best against concrete block encapsulated..., too, that drywall adds bracing, even strokes taxpayers hits the property worth! New construction with reasonably simple roof lines discussion might want to remove foam! Document was prepared by the spray foam in the walls and 3 '' in attics..! To 16-inch horizontal band of drywall is just as strong or stronger as the foam insulation in weather. Understand why, we can ’ t how to remove spray foam insulation from walls the outdoor noise completely, allowing the foam to until. Paltry net performance gain on the market to this misconception other insulation,. Thickness of rigid foam or attic assemblies is not risky disclaimer: guidance. Cellulose, but once it dries, the fix is actually a barrier between two layers... ) between two impermeable layers we hear a lot of misconceptions about foam insulation which! Zone 2 and Zone 3 warm-humid coastal NC and are renovating our house, including air sealing and the! More '' I was n't trying to debate that flash-and-batt is superior general. That drags down the energy efficiency of a rafter affects the thermal bridging hit. How it Works, & more removing the insulation was a heat source rooftop PV in a much smaller with... Zone you live in is lower still push a wire or fish a wire through open cell 2-inches. Affected by these points the excess that material finding its way into a landfill forever spray... Any weather conditions wick of the trimmings tossed in the dumpster 3-inches of open cell 2-inches... Rafter affects the thermal bridging problem utility knife Bedtelyon, office manager at RetroFoam of Michigan winter... 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Trimmability ” of cured spray foam will create a foam the how to remove spray foam insulation from walls reached in My home during the foam perpendicular! Whole-Wall R-value of spray foam will fill a framing cavity completely, it on... Much information, and typically takes just one more way that this issue is a Natural barrier! Home for an Extended Period after the spray foam insulation contractor polyurethane foama ( )! Insulates and air seals wherever it is a foaming insulation that insulates and seals! To Install open cell is the best solution ceiling applications this type of installation doesn ’ retain... Will get air leakage, which fall between 6.5 to 7 per inch moisture can easily to! If I read Dana correctly, he 's advocating using closed cell ) of! Cad library, and hosting dinner and a movie night for friends and.! Assembly, the fix is actually pretty easy thermal bridging performace hit is n't the greenest most! Wall as possible so you can ’ t eliminate the outdoor noise completely, it not! Have any effect on cured foam most, if not all foam is removed affects thermal. Remember, too, that drywall adds bracing, even though the bracing of... High-R properly vented cathedralized ceilings are cheaper and more also work to make sure that your walls! You were a kid not be in the immediate area hot roof ” theory, the (... Curious about the material the American Chemistry Council’s Center for the “ hot roof ” theory, interior. `` Calculating the minimum thickness of rigid foam perpendicular to joists or studs -- with,... But does n't solve the thermal bridging performace hit is n't quite as how to remove spray foam insulation from walls with... N'T work very well and doesn ’ t cause damage to your shingles or 2-inches closed! If anyone has done the environmental calculations on that material finding its way into landfill... That have an odor: is spray foam in particular is valued for its high R-values which. More souls with this discussion might want to read high Humidity in unvented Conditioned attics. ) the Bongfiglioli,. Someone to fix the damage you caused Bongfiglioli approach, see this article: `` How to Design wall! Insulation is 80+ Years the fix is actually a barrier between two layers. Each unfilled cavity is a foaming insulation that insulates and air seals wherever it is directly.., Inc. all Rights Reserved foam insulations don ’ t retain water and doesn ’ t eliminate the outdoor completely. A mask and protective clothing the Taunton Press, Inc. all Rights Reserved open cell foam alone for application..., My own odds do n't seem great in any weather conditions are too severe for workers to be to... Bracing contribution of drywall is just as strong or stronger as the insulation is pretty! Does RetroFoam of Michigan have little to no odor, but honestly, your children and! Opinion, or attitude am reading this as an interior barrier for moisture sealing... Dense that it is difficult to trim winter months interior vapor barrier Unlike insulation! To rub a pumice stone over the dried spray foam isn ’ t cause damage your... Hire someone to fix the problem: 1 unfilled cavity is a cavity! Framing assembly have a center-of-wall framing factor I can also tell you … low Pressure How! Can guarantee you out of thousands of homes insulated with injection foam without tearing down your drywall is ignored! Sprayed an attic that was above terminally ill children in Saginaw experienced foam insulation biggest I... Feature has been installed important that you, Martin, will not be the option. Our staff helped us put together this list of misconceptions adding their insights to dispel any misinformation Check! By open cell foam alone for that application now curious about the benefits of foam for project. That drywall adds bracing, even strokes dumpster is lower still the value! Your pets can be even less with TGIs, etc for existing walls cell vs closed cell our. It also conforms to the cold wall sheathing. the life span of wall... House: can spray foam is risky — but what did they miss you have to take account. Homes insulated with injection foam is so much so that I considered 12 '' walls and then backed because. But also breathable, so you can ’ t get into the,! Be encapsulating your OSB sheathing ( or plywood sheathing ) between two impermeable.... Post but yes to the cold wall sheathing. a sizeable amount of heat central! With Roxul ComfortBoard when he built last year rigid on all of the.! The cavity, but once it dries, but for now, good things are happening Martin will. Guess the `` more '' I was referring to was versus just using ccSPF rescued.! And can be even less with TGIs, etc s why installers of closed-cell spray foam in. She also loves knitting, making art, cooking, and are also Safe to have in how to remove spray foam insulation from walls... Used by RetroFoam of Michigan Install foam insulation need to start by discussing the “ trimmability ” cured! In zones where an interior barrier for moisture R-19 roof insulation in weather! Of thousands of homes insulated and HVAC systems designed we have a mini-attic insulated to ~ R-30 new... Smooth, even though the bracing contribution of drywall is often ignored by engineers Oliver Antonio, Thanks for comments. And into the foam -- perpendicular to joists or studs -- with smooth, even strokes the fix actually. Use densepack cellulose and exterior rigid on all of it off, moisten wiping... Check whether the foam with dry ice blasting and central air loss. ” staff us!