Spray Foam Insulation
NOTE: Icynene is a brand name of a particular type of foam insulation. There are other similar products marketed under different names. Some products may appear to be similar but have different formulations and properties. Icynene is featured here because it is one of the first widely marketed product of its type.
Spray in foam insulation has many desirable characteristics, mainly complete air-tight coverage. Problems with foams in the past have included toxic off-gassing as the product cured, and shrinkage over time. What makes most insulation work is trapped air space. Foam has millions of microscopic air bubbles; when properly installed, the cavity is full, stopping air leaks both through and around the insulation. The manufacturers of Icynene claim no toxic off gassing and no shrinkage over time. The R-value of R-3.6 – 4.0 per inch is slightly higher than cellulose and fiberglass. The foam will not support combustion, but must be protected with an approved fire barrier, such as drywall.
Icynene requires professional installation. This eliminates the do-it-yourself market and will keep installation costs relatively high.
How it Works
From the Icynene web site:
The Icynene Insulation System®
Icynene®, the leading soft foam insulation and air barrier system, is becoming the industry standard for providing maximum building envelope performance. Icynene’s pour and spray formulations represent a breakthrough in the science of moisture and thermal management.
Icynene® is the leading 100% water-blown foam insulation that minimizes air leakage for increased energy efficiency, creates a healthier indoor environment, reduces airborne sounds and offers greater design freedom. Icynene® maintains its performance with no loss of R-value over time. It does not shrink, sag or settle. Icynene® adheres to most construction materials and is the perfect insulation for walls, attics, ceilings and floors.
Applied as a liquid, Icynene® expands to 100 times its volume in seconds to fill every crack and crevice while remaining flexible so that the integrity of the building envelope seal remains intact over time. Icynene’s spray formula has an R-value of 3.6 per inch. It acts as a complete insulation and air barrier to minimize air leakage and seal the building envelope for optimal airtightness.
Pour Fill Formula
Icynene®’s pour fill variation is an insulation and air barrier that injects the latest building technology into an older building to maximize energy efficiency while still preserving its original architectural details. Icynene® fills the wall cavity completely, starting at the bottom and slowly expanding upwards to 60 times its initial volume. Since Icynene expands in the direction of least resistance, it will not expand outward and damage the wall. The pour fill formula has an R-value of 4 per inch.
Must be installed by factory trained and authorized installers only. This is NOT a do-it-yourself product.
No cost information was available on their web site.
DEMILEC – Sealection500
From the Demilec web site:
SEALECTION® 500 is an open cell semi-rigid spay-applied polyurethane foam insulation system which is made up of million of microscopic cells that simultaneously insulate and air-seal. SEALECTION® 500 has been specifically designed to make homes more energy efficient, comfortable, quiet and less dusty. SEALECTION® 500 is applied as a liquid which expands into a semi-rigid mass; it automatically “SEALS” off those drafty areas such as baseboards, headers, sill plates, around windows, doors, electrical outlets, pipes, etc. It also minimizes uncontrolled air leakage throughout the building envelope (wall, ceilings,…), thereby reducing energy losses.
HEATLOK SOY® is a rigid (closed cell) spray polyurethane foam insulation system that uses recycled plastic waste and renewable materials, thereby efficiently and effectively utilizing the world’s non renewable resources. HEATLOK SOY® can increase comfort and savings while reducing excess waste and energy consumption in buildings by up to 50%.
HEATLOK SOY® is a two-component spray-applied rigid polyurethane foam green in color having a nominal density 2 lbs/ft³. This spray foam has been specially formulated to meet the intent of the U.S. Building Codes and is used primarily in air barrier and insulation applications. HEATLOK SOY® is an environmentally-friendly foam developed from recycled plastic materials, renewable soy oils; and possesses the blowing agent HFC 245fa.
6747 Campobello Road
L5N 2L7 Canada
Web site www.icynene.com
Demilec (USA) LLC Sealection500
2925 Galleria Drive
Arlington, Texas 76011
Telephone: 817-640-4900, 877-336-4532
Web site www.sealection500.com
Demilec -HEATLOK Soy
Web site www.heatloksoy.com
Source: Text and photos from the Icynene web site 11-2005; Intro and edits by Bob Fegan; Demilec Sealection500 and HeatLokSoy added 5/2008;