The Pros and Cons of Spray Insulation

The Pros and Cons of Spray Insulation

Insulation
By Mateos Glen Hayes March 01, 2022

Insulating your home is an important step in maximizing energy efficiency and keeping your home comfortable. As such, it is a great investment that can boost your home’s value and make it a cozier place to live.

Come snow, sleet, rain, or tropical storms, good high-performance insulation will keep your home’s temperature comfy and will also keep out contaminants that could ruin your interior air quality. There are lots of different insulators out there, but spray foam is one of the most popular for a number of reasons.

As a multi-purpose insulator, foam sealant provides your home with an airtight seal and is one of the best insulation materials for increasing your home’s energy efficiency. Whether you’re doing a home retrofit or building a new abode from the ground up, you should consider expanding foam insulation. Of course, you might have some important questions, and wonder about the pros and cons, and those are also worth looking into. 

How Do I Choose the Right Spray Foam?

There Are Two Types of Spray Foam

There Are Two Types of Spray Foam

Whether you want to insulate your home or your stand-alone garage, foam sealant comes in two main types, namely open-cell and closed-cell — and they both have distinct characteristics. Open-cell foam spray is better at sound absorption thanks to its spongy structure that forms air pockets. These pockets provide both sound and thermal insulation.

Closed-cell foam insulation is rigid and solid by contrast and is, therefore, a better choice if your main goal is to keep air and water from getting into your walls. This is especially important if you live in a humid and rainy place. Either way, both types of foam sealant provide a very tight seal that will provide a decent level of protection against moisture and air; although closed-cell foam insulation will be better in certain conditions.

Ultimately, making the right choice will depend on what you value most in your insulation. If you live in a cold and dry place and need something to keep out the icy winds and city noise, open-cell foam is likely the best choice. For those in more humid places that can still get cold, closed-cell foam insulation is probably the better option.

When in doubt, consider consulting an insulation contractor. You’ll need to hire a pro in any case to apply foam sealant, so why not get some insight from those with the most experience? 

Is Spray Insulation Worth It?

Spray Foam Insulation is a Great Long Term Investment

Spray Foam Insulation is a Great Long Term Investment

In general, expanding foam insulation is consistently a good investment towards the long-term structural integrity and value of your home. While upfront costs can be prohibitive, spray insulation pays off this expense over the long term and so can be quite a good way to boost home value and make your home a nicer place to live.

It also goes without saying that we all would rather keep mold, pests, and other unpleasant stuff out of our homes, and spray foam is a reliable way of doing that. Plus, if the worst should happen, foam sealant can help reduce home damage by, for example, keeping fires from spreading too fast.

At the end of the day, there really isn’t an alternative on the market today that can do as thorough of a job as sealing all cracks and giving your house an airtight seal. A well-applied spray foam insulation cab, therefore, yields major dividends.  

Pros

Keep Your Home Cozy With Good Foam Insulation

Keep Your Home Cozy With Good Foam Insulation

Speaking of those dividends, let’s explore the myriad benefits of foam sealant. There are quite a few, and so it is no surprise that it is such a hit with homeowners throughout the country. 

Noise Reduction

This is especially true for open-cell foam insulation owing to the air pockets it creates, keeping sound out and hot air in. More importantly, this is a considerable benefit, given that noise pollution is only becoming a bigger concern as our world grows. White expanding foam insulation is generally the best at keeping out all that racket, making it quite desirable if you live in a bustling cityscape. 

Allergen Reduction

There are a lot of allergens out there: pollen, mold, dust, insects, the list goes on. While we can’t easily see them, these pesky allergens make their way in through your walls and by sneaking through cracks in your windows or doors. More and more of us have allergies nowadays, so that can be a considerably uncomfortable problem to deal with.

Foam sealant is one of the best weapons you have to defend yourself from these irritants since its airtight seal will keep out as many of these allergens as possible. After all, nothing is going to creep through an airtight seal, making your home’s air quality cleaner. Interior air quality is currently more important than ever, so it is important to make investments now that will benefit you in the long term.

Keeping Out Allergens Keeps Everyone Happy

Keeping Out Allergens Keeps Everyone Happy

Sturdiness

Spray foam also has considerable structural benefits for your home, adding sturdiness that will last a long time. This is because spray foam adheres to the structure of your home and will stay in place instead of sagging or settling as other insulators tend to do. This can also help to keep your basement’s structure in good shape as well. Fiberglass and cellulose insulation, for instance, have a tendency to sag over time, burdening your home’s structure rather than bolstering it. 

Long-Lasting

Arguably one of the greatest pros of spray insulation is just how long it can last. Foam sealant has such good longevity that you can expect its benefits to last for decades without any need for benefits. It is no exaggeration to say that spray foam insulation lasts basically forever and maintains its thermal efficiency and noise reduction benefits as well.

By contrast, other insulators such as fiberglass will lose their ability to be effective insulators over time. On top of this, fiberglass insulation can expose you to tiny pieces of glass that could cause long-term health problems given enough time.  

Cons

All Insulators Come With Pros and Cons

All Insulators Come With Pros and Cons

Of course, all insulators have downsides, and spray insulation is no exception. There are a few disadvantages to keep in mind if you are considering giving your home spray foam insulation. 

Complicated to Apply 

To put it simply, foam sealant is not DIY-friendly. It is complicated to install and it is, therefore, best to get experienced pros to do the job. Applying spray foam requires precision and improper application could cause expensive problems that are hard to fix once the spray foam has hardened.

Spray foam is also dangerous to be exposed to when it is still in foam form, and so technicians must take precautions to protect themselves with overalls, gloves, and masks to avoid getting it on bare skin or breathing it in. The best way to avoid these risks is just to get spray foam contractors with the right equipment to do the job for you.  

Expensive

The complexity of applying foam insulation means that it is fairly costly to install when compared to other insulation materials. Of course, high spray insulation costs can be a worthwhile investment, especially if you want to boost home value and increase energy savings. While the spray foam price of installation is high, you will likely pay it off with these benefits. 

Does Not Fill Every Cavity 

Spray insulation is a very effective insulator in a lot of ways. Of course, it is not without potential flaws, and one of these is that it can not always fill every cavity in your home. Occasionally, gaps can form in walls or ceilings that spray foam won’t always fill, and this can make your home less thermally efficient due to air leakage.

These cavities can also be a vector for water damage if you are unlucky enough to have excess moisture to find these gaps. Because this would be a slow process, the damage could become significant before you can notice it. However, proper spray foam application should head off this risk.

Written by
Mateos Glen Hayes

Written by Mateos Glen Hayes