Results 1 to 28 of 28
  1. #1
    brianmiller's Avatar
    brianmiller Guest

    Default Spray foam insulation

    Does anyone have a spec sheet for the spray foam insulation R-value?

    I did a house yesterday where the builder sprayed the foam on the roof decking to the level of the 2x4 truss wood rafters. So I was wondering what the effective R-value would be for 4" of this foam.

    Sure was comfortable in the attic, the stuff works great!

    Brian

    Similar Threads:
    Member Benefits1

  2. #2
    chris mcintyre's Avatar
    chris mcintyre Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Closed cell or open cell?

    As a general rule (from what I have been told), the R value for open cell is 3.5 +/- per inch and closed cell is 6 +/- per inch.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    389

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Spray on foam like a poly iso has an R of 7.0/inch and degardes ~1% per year.


  4. #4

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    I am not sure of the specific R-Value of the spray on Icynene Foam, but typically see it applied at about 8"-10" for an R-34 target.

    In Austin, TX, several builders in specific neighborhoods, "Green Nieghborhoods", have begun to use this stuff and I am not convinced it is such a good idea. Every one of the houses I have been in built by one company have been swampy water retaining mold traps. I can't blame it entirely on the foam insulation, but rather the entire approach to sealing the building envelope. In an attempt to completely limit air transfer, they have created a major problem with water vapor management in our hot humid climate.

    The one builder I mentioned used the spray foam in the attics (unventilated by design) and the walls of the homes to get a 5 Star Rating. Yes, this stuff claims to be vapor permeable, but I am not so sure to what actual degree. ALL of these houses did not have an air exchange system or dehumidifier. ALL of these homes were swampy, had massive condensation on all the windows, and mold growing on the drywall around the windows. The residents told me they were beginning to have respiratory problems, particularly the children.

    This begs the question of Indoor Air Quality vs. Energy Conservation. Does it make sense to completely seal the building envelope and limit vapor permeability and necessitate the use of electromechanical air exchange systems and dehumidifiers in the quest of saving electricity?? It is counterintuitive.

    I just began construction on a new home for myself and my family. I will not be using spray foam. I am going to go old school, because I know it works and how to do it so it will also be energy efficient.

    Richard Craycroft
    Hill Country Inspections
    Austin, TX

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,243

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Craycroft View Post
    The one builder I mentioned used the spray foam in the attics (unventilated by design) and the walls of the homes to get a 5 Star Rating. Yes, this stuff claims to be vapor permeable, but I am not so sure to what actual degree. ALL of these houses did not have an air exchange system or dehumidifier. ALL of these homes were swampy, had massive condensation on all the windows, and mold growing on the drywall around the windows. The residents told me they were beginning to have respiratory problems, particularly the children.

    This begs the question of Indoor Air Quality vs. Energy Conservation. Does it make sense to completely seal the building envelope and limit vapor permeability and necessitate the use of electromechanical air exchange systems and dehumidifiers in the quest of saving electricity?? It is counterintuitive.
    But works well when done as a system.

    It is like EVERYTHING else ... when done half-arsed it does not work as intended.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  6. #6
    Mary Beth Yannessa's Avatar
    Mary Beth Yannessa Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Hi Brian,

    Question - open or closed cell?

    Question - Demilec? BASF? NCFI? Certainteed? BioBased? Who was the Manufacturer of the product because each manufacturer has their own specific testing and their own specific R-Value results.

    Also, need to look for the aged R-Value.

    Hope that helps.


  7. #7
    Rocky Boyer's Avatar
    Rocky Boyer Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Depending on the manufactuer, Icynene LD-C-50 is R-13 with 3.5". I have the ESR report for several of the manufacture's. The spray foam insulation should have closed soffit system and closed ridge vents.

    Go to Icynene® Spray Foam Insulation & Air Barrier Material – Energy Smart Foam Insulation or Dem Ilac and check out the spec sheets.


  8. #8
    Rocky Boyer's Avatar
    Rocky Boyer Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    If the house feels musty then the a/c unit is not sized for the space correctly. Its is not the foam as much as the a/c not cycling enough to pull the humidity out of the air.


  9. #9
    Rocky Boyer's Avatar
    Rocky Boyer Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    For Icynene spec sheet ESR report go to www.icynene.com and click on LD-C-50. Look for the spec sheet and then aslo look for the ICC ESR -1826 repoprt. Icynene has independent studies perform on each of their products.


  10. #10
    Rocky Boyer's Avatar
    Rocky Boyer Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Icynene spray foam insulation works best when there is 5.5" applied to the roof deck and 3.5" on the walls. Icynene is the only foam product that can be applied to vertical walls in the attic space and not have to apply an intumescent paint. Be sure when you are inspecting houses with foam to obtain and identify the proper manufacturer. Color variations with each manufacturer.

    "Based on testing in accordance with ASTM E 283, Icynene LD-C-50 at a minimum 3.5"(89mm), is considered air-impermeable." ICC ESR -1826


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,243

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocky Boyer View Post
    Icynene spray foam insulation works best when there is 5.5" applied to the roof deck and 3.5" on the walls. Icynene is the only foam product that can be applied to vertical walls in the attic space

    I'm trying to understand what you are saying: That you when you spray the roof deck with 5-1/2" you only need to spray the walls with 3-1/2"?

    The walls of an attic are required to be the same R-value as the roof deck or the rating of the insulation on the roof deck is effectively no better than what is on the walls. The walls of the attic are still part of the attic, regardless what they are insulated with (on uninsulated).

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Omaha
    Posts
    143

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocky Boyer View Post
    If the house feels musty then the a/c unit is not sized for the space correctly. Its is not the foam as much as the a/c not cycling enough to pull the humidity out of the air.
    That is not necessarily true. Depending on amount of humidity in the air the ac might not be able to remove the latent heat. The higher SEER ratings have the A coil run at a higher temp for efficiency. This alone will remove less moisture than a colder coil. Now if the house is very well insulated the AC may not run much to keep the temp down. What has happened is you have changed the sensible and latent cooling ratio.

    It may not seem right but a dehumidifier may be needed to make this system more efficient. The dehumidifier removes the bulk of the moisture and the a/c removes the heat.


  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Omaha
    Posts
    143

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Craycroft View Post
    I am not sure of the specific R-Value of the spray on Icynene Foam, but typically see it applied at about 8"-10" for an R-34 target.

    In Austin, TX, several builders in specific neighborhoods, "Green Nieghborhoods", have begun to use this stuff and I am not convinced it is such a good idea. Every one of the houses I have been in built by one company have been swampy water retaining mold traps. I can't blame it entirely on the foam insulation, but rather the entire approach to sealing the building envelope. In an attempt to completely limit air transfer, they have created a major problem with water vapor management in our hot humid climate.

    The one builder I mentioned used the spray foam in the attics (unventilated by design) and the walls of the homes to get a 5 Star Rating. Yes, this stuff claims to be vapor permeable, but I am not so sure to what actual degree. ALL of these houses did not have an air exchange system or dehumidifier. ALL of these homes were swampy, had massive condensation on all the windows, and mold growing on the drywall around the windows. The residents told me they were beginning to have respiratory problems, particularly the children.

    This begs the question of Indoor Air Quality vs. Energy Conservation. Does it make sense to completely seal the building envelope and limit vapor permeability and necessitate the use of electromechanical air exchange systems and dehumidifiers in the quest of saving electricity?? It is counterintuitive.

    I just began construction on a new home for myself and my family. I will not be using spray foam. I am going to go old school, because I know it works and how to do it so it will also be energy efficient.
    Richard

    What I would say is that builders and home owners need to understand how to equip and operate a house that is built very tight. Todays higher SEER ac's operate differently than lower SEER ac's. They have larger A coils that are more efficient but operate at warmer temps. This reduces thier ability to remove moisture from the air.

    The proper use of an ERV will help. A right size AC is important too. A dehumifier may also be needed.


  14. #14
    Rocky Boyer's Avatar
    Rocky Boyer Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    As far as the havc system goes, it is very important for the HVAC contractor to perform the Manual J and also Manual D and perform the heat loads using the computer software and inserting the r-value of foam. Most HVAC contractor are not versed in foam and oversize the HVAC system on a contiuing basis. A 90 - 95% furnace best to be sued in a foam attic.

    As far as inspecting a foamed attic: It is very important to become familiar with the concentric piping for the intake air and CO return air from the heater. If a water heater is located in the attic and is supplied with gas, then the water heater has to have a concentric pipe for the combustion air and co return air.

    I anyone wants information on Icynene, Demilac, Bayer, Certainteed foam products, let me know. I can email the ESR report or the spec sheet.

    Foam is here to stay. It is considered the new insulaiton and provides a cleaner and better environment in the home.


  15. #15
    Rocky Boyer's Avatar
    Rocky Boyer Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    sued == used. typo


  16. #16
    Rocky Boyer's Avatar
    Rocky Boyer Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Robert Hronek,

    When you are referring to a house which is completely sealed with foam, the envelope is a sealed system. Traditional homes have fiberglas insulation in the walls and the attic floor. The insulation on the attic floor is to create a barrier for the hot or cold temps in the attic. When foam is applied to the roof deck, the insulation on the attic floor can be completely removed. This is because the +/-5.5" foam is applied to the roof deck and stops the radiant heat and the convective heat from passsing through the roof deck. On vertical walls, such as gable and demising walls in the attic, the thickness is reduced to +/-3.5" since the heat load is not as great. Inside the envelope, the only way humidity is going to enter the inside is when a door is opened or a window. If the house is sealed correctly with foam, the amount of humidity or moisture in the home is greatly reduced. Since the amount of humidity is not in the envelope, the HVAC system should be reduced.


  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Omaha
    Posts
    143

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Rocky

    There is a lot of moisture introduced by occupants. Bathing, breathing. perspiring, cooking, plants, etc.

    There is sensible heat (tempature) and latent heat (phase change of moisture). Higher efficiency units are not as good at removing moisture because the coils operate at a higher temp. Combine that with a more efficient shell and you lower the need for ac. So you have an ac that runs less and is less effctive at removing latent heat. This is not a bad thing but creates new challenges. If you run the ac longer to remove latent heat then the house gets to cold. Now you need a way to remove latent heat and not drop the inside tempature. You can accomplish that with a humdifier.


  18. #18
    Darrell Thomas's Avatar
    Darrell Thomas Guest

    Question Re: Spray foam insulation: How to inspect?

    I have read most of the post about spray foam insulation, they were all very informative and interesting. I do not know anything about spray foam. So with that in mind: How to inspect? Get MFG spec sheet and installation instructions. Gauge R-Value (measure foam). See if it is good for area I am inspecting in. I also need to look at the ventilation recommendation of the Mfg. The main concern that I don't grasp is; Why does the attic floor not get insulated? So basically you are now heating and cooling the attic? This just doesn't make since to me. Any Ideas?


  19. #19
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Hronek View Post
    Rocky

    There is a lot of moisture introduced by occupants. Bathing, breathing. perspiring, cooking, plants, etc.

    There is sensible heat (tempature) and latent heat (phase change of moisture). Higher efficiency units are not as good at removing moisture because the coils operate at a higher temp. Combine that with a more efficient shell and you lower the need for ac. So you have an ac that runs less and is less effctive at removing latent heat. This is not a bad thing but creates new challenges. If you run the ac longer to remove latent heat then the house gets to cold. Now you need a way to remove latent heat and not drop the inside tempature. You can accomplish that with a humdifier.

    It is all pretty funny. We do everything we can to tighten up the shell to only add outside air to the HVAC system.

    Also the tighter the home the more moisture that stays in the home from cooking showering, evaporation from toilets etc etc etc. Hence the need for AC to help remove this moisture. Having the heat on does not remove the moisture in the home. The AC does significantly.

    I am certainly not an AC guy but the fact you have all this moisture trapped in the home and you are bringing exterior air into the home that needs the moisture drawn from it I would say the need for AC is much greater than the need for heat. You can heat a SIP home with just a couple large TVs on. When I say sip I am also talking of the roof. You have very little need for heat in a SIP home and greater need for AC. Certainly not greater than a standard home, I meant the need for AC is greater than the need for heat. The less need for heat the less need for a humidifier. Adding a humidifier to a SIP home is fruitless but of course I am not an AC guy but I have worked on many SIP homes

    Just an opinion here. Also the newer systems draw the air slower over the coils so in general it works slower but more efficient to remove the moisture and cool the home.

    Who knows. Maybe I am all wet here but these are just observations over the years. I should say that every home is different.


  20. #20
    Darrell Thomas's Avatar
    Darrell Thomas Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    One thing that came to mind after posting and pondering on this idea of no insulation in the ceilings is when you go into a garage of an existing home and the sheet rock is wavy due to it drawing moisture and no insulation above it. Will these new homes do the same? Most problems arise from moisture! No venting of the attic? Soon they will be selling; Attic Deodorant.


  21. #21
    Rocky Boyer's Avatar
    Rocky Boyer Guest

    Smile Re: Spray foam insulation

    I work with foam applications every day in Houston and Galveston. From the LD-C-50 Spec sheet : "Icynene LD-C-50 is an open cell foam and insulates and air seals for maximum energy conservatrion. It is considered an effective vapor permeable air barrier that can move with the building to maintain the air barrier characteristic against energy robbing air leakage for the life of the building".

    LD-C-50 provides more effective perfomance than the equivalent R-value of air permeable insulation materials. It is not subject to loss of R-value due to aging, windy conditions, settling, comvection or air infitration, nor will it be prone to traditional moisture intrusion via air leakeage".

    "Independent testing from Texas Tech University has confirmed that Icynene is not a source of food for mold; and as an air barrier, reduces the airborne introduction of moisture, and mold spores into the building envelope".

    For more understanding of the Icynene products go to Icynene® Spray Foam Insulation & Air Barrier Material – Energy Smart Foam Insulation amd check out the ICC ESR report 1826 and also the spec sheet.

    As far as moisture from breathing, showers, cooking etc., the moisture that emits from these sources is taken away from the air conditioning system or dehumidifiers such vent fans in bathrooms and exhaust fans over the stove top or ranges. The amount of moisture is minimal and should not be a prolblem.

    As far as attic insulation is concerned, once the building has foam on the exterior walls and applied to the roof decks, the attic floor does not need to be insulated since the envelope has been sealed. The attic temp of a sealed attic is 10 degrees higher than inside the envelope. The foam blocks the convective and radiant heat from the roof deck and does not allow the conductive heat to tranfer from the outside throught he soffits. The attic is considered a "sealed system".


  22. #22
    Darrell Thomas's Avatar
    Darrell Thomas Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    This is very helpful ! Thank you. Still hard to swallow, Hard to teach a new way of thinking. And I have to be 100% confident of all aspects of this product so I can inform my clients.


  23. #23
    John Sesic's Avatar
    John Sesic Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Insulating in the attic can be tricky. There is a pretty cool site, E:zero Spray Foam Insulation - A New Way of Life, that has a nice little guide that talks about insulating in the attic and the differences between joist and rafters. Hope that helps.


  24. #24
    Ken Bates's Avatar
    Ken Bates Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    UFFI. Titanic (1,500 believers suffered a horrible death)

    UFFI: Formaldehyde not a big deal ( Pathologists and Deiners alive & well but the fine powder it degrades to moves about some houses and is a REAL PROBLEM!)


  25. #25
    Eric Price's Avatar
    Eric Price Guest

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocky Boyer View Post
    Icynene spray foam insulation works best when there is 5.5" applied to the roof deck and 3.5" on the walls. Icynene is the only foam product that can be applied to vertical walls in the attic space and not have to apply an intumescent paint. Be sure when you are inspecting houses with foam to obtain and identify the proper manufacturer. Color variations with each manufacturer.

    "Based on testing in accordance with ASTM E 283, Icynene LD-C-50 at a minimum 3.5"(89mm), is considered air-impermeable." ICC ESR -1826
    The ICC ESR 1826 specifically says...
    3.2 Surface Burning Characteristics:
    When tested in accordance with ASTM E84/UL 723, at a thickness of 6 inches (152 mm) and a nominal density of 0.5 pcf (8 kg/m3), Icynene LD-C-50 has a flame spread index of 25 or less and a smoke-developed index of 450 or less. Thicknesses of up to 71/2 inches (190.5 mm) for wall cavities and 111/2 inches (292 mm) for ceiling cavities are recognized based on room corner fire testing in accordance with NFPA 286, when covered with minimum 1/2-inch-thick (13 mm) gypsum board or an equivalent thermal barrier complying with the applicable code.3.5 Intumescent Coatings:

    3.5.1 No Burn Plus XD: No Burn Plus XD intumescent coating is a latex-based coating supplied in 1-gallon (4L) and 5-gallon (19L) pails and 55-gallon (208 L) drums. The coating material has a shelf life of 12 months when stored in factory-sealed containers at temperatures between 40F (4.4C) and 90F (32.2C).
    3.5.2 DC 315: DC 315 intumescent coating is a water- based coating supplied in 5-gallon (19L) pails and 55-gallon (208L) drums. The coating material has a shelf life of 24 months when stored in factory-sealed containers at temperatures between 41oF (5oC) and 95oF (35oC).

    just add a mechanical room to fix alot of the issues.

    AND half pound foam is HIGHLY permeable but closed cell foam applied to 4 inches gets down to .001 perms is near a vapor barrier but it is still more of a vapor diffuser than "barrier". Make sure you know the differences between the foams and what a true "Vapor Barrier" is.

    Rocky is right that the icc code has to look to the manufactures for installation methods.

    Please get certified to do Spray Foam Inspections. I will be needing inspectors in your area for our national launch. (SprayFoamInspections.com)
    We are in the BETA stages on our foam "Estimator". please sign up and send me your suggestions that you would like to add. (The facebook button does not log in fully yet. just login with your email for now).

    And we have a facebook page with lots of info as well http://www.facebook.com/SprayFoamInspections

    Try this weblink Gaco WallFoam Eco-Friendly Spray Foam Insulation for Commercial and Residential Buildings for a foam that did pass and not need a fire coating.


  26. #26
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Omaha
    Posts
    143

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Craycroft View Post
    I am not sure of the specific R-Value of the spray on Icynene Foam, but typically see it applied at about 8"-10" for an R-34 target.

    In Austin, TX, several builders in specific neighborhoods, "Green Nieghborhoods", have begun to use this stuff and I am not convinced it is such a good idea. Every one of the houses I have been in built by one company have been swampy water retaining mold traps. I can't blame it entirely on the foam insulation, but rather the entire approach to sealing the building envelope. In an attempt to completely limit air transfer, they have created a major problem with water vapor management in our hot humid climate.

    The one builder I mentioned used the spray foam in the attics (unventilated by design) and the walls of the homes to get a 5 Star Rating. Yes, this stuff claims to be vapor permeable, but I am not so sure to what actual degree. ALL of these houses did not have an air exchange system or dehumidifier. ALL of these homes were swampy, had massive condensation on all the windows, and mold growing on the drywall around the windows. The residents told me they were beginning to have respiratory problems, particularly the children.

    This begs the question of Indoor Air Quality vs. Energy Conservation. Does it make sense to completely seal the building envelope and limit vapor permeability and necessitate the use of electromechanical air exchange systems and dehumidifiers in the quest of saving electricity?? It is counterintuitive.

    I just began construction on a new home for myself and my family. I will not be using spray foam. I am going to go old school, because I know it works and how to do it so it will also be energy efficient.
    You said no ventilation system system. There is a trade off when building homes that tight and its you now have to manage the moisture either through ventilation and possibly the added steps of dehumidification above and beyond AC. You have more control over the IAQ but you have to manage it.


  27. #27
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Omaha
    Posts
    143

    Default Re: Spray foam insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocky Boyer View Post
    If the house feels musty then the a/c unit is not sized for the space correctly. Its is not the foam as much as the a/c not cycling enough to pull the humidity out of the air.
    Have to disagree with you on the sizing. AC works on 2 components sensible and latent heat loads. Sensible is the heat or temp part and latent is the moisture load. The dynamics change when you up the insulation. Before you have lots of sensible load due to heat gain from low insulation and non glazed windows. In taking care of the sensible load the latent load was taken care of.

    Now you have reduced the sensible load so much that the latent load cant be remove without over cooling the home. On top of the the new higher seer units are different than the old lower seer unit. The coil temps in a high seer unit are warmer and thus remove less of the latent load. So now you are talking about having to dehumidify air but not lower the indoor air temps any more.

    Just like tight well insulated homes have created a need for mechanical ventilation it can also create the need for a dehumidifer.


  28. #28
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Melbourne Beach, FL
    Posts
    50

    Default Spray foam attic insulation inspection procedure

    Starting to see more homes with spray foam insulation applied to underside of roof deck. Like any other housing component, the quality of the installation can vary from the contractors that care to the ones with 'I can't see it from my house attitude'. So it stands to reason there needs to be an acceptable method of measuring the foam thickness without damaging or creating issues.

    I have begun to use my AC testing stem thermometers, to probe and try determining the thickness. Also, I have used my thermo imaging camera, but still learning to use it and not sure how to interpet the results.

    So I am asking for comments, recommendations and if there are acceptable testing method, it would be most helpful.

    ps Is there an spray foam insulation organization that has established spray foam standards, such as how thick should coverage be on the underside of the trusses top chord?


Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •