Exterior Wall Insulation Contractors Long Branch, Ontario |

Most of the energy costs spent to keep a Long Branch home warm in the winter and cool in the summer end up leaving through the attic. In the summer, the sun’s heat pours in through the attic and in the winter, warm air rises past the ceiling and out of the home. Saving on energy costs starts in the attic, but how much insulation is enough?

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Although spray foam insulation as we know it today truly emerged in the 1980s around the Long Branch area, spray foam actually has its roots several decades further in the past, beginning with the development of polyurethane foam in the 1940s by Otto Bayer. Otto Bayer, an industrial chemist, actually began working with polyurethane in Germany during the late 1930s. This technology was brought to the United States in the early 1940s by David Eynon, the president of Mobay, a war effort conglomerate created from the partnering of two chemical industry giants, Monsanto and the Bayer Corporation.

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Although spray foam insulation as we know it today truly emerged in the 1980s, spray foam actually has its roots several decades further in the past, beginning with the development of polyurethane foam in the 1940s by Otto Bayer.

Otto Bayer, an industrial chemist, actually began working with polyurethane in Germany during the late 1930s. This technology was brought to the United States in the early 1940s by David Eynon, the president of Mobay, a war effort conglomerate created from the partnering of two chemical industry giants, Monsanto and the Bayer Corporation. Although Otto Bayer worked for Bayer Corporation, he was not related to the company's founding family.

During the 1940s, polyurethane polymers were used primarily in military and aviation applications. The production of war machines for the World War II conflict drove most of the applications of these high-grade plastic polymers for the duration of the war.

It was not until the 1950s that polyurethane began to be used in home insulation. It was the invention of the "Blendometer" that allowed for expansion of polyurethane application to the home insulation realm. The Blendometer was the first machine able to mix components for the creation of polyurethane foam and was created by Walter Baughman in 1953.

The 1980s and early 1990s saw a great deal of controversy within the spray foam insulation industry as different marketing schemes from various companies promoted the benefits of closed verses open foam insulation and as some companies tried to market water blown foam application processes.

Though there has been much debate within the industry, R-value standards, used as a measure of determining energy efficiency, have cleared up much of the controversy. R-value ratings clearly define closed foam as the most effective means of making a home as energy efficient as possible.

Closed cell spray foam has additionally been added to the list of building requirements for making homes in hurricane and earthquake zones more structurally sound. The improved stability of homes insulated with spray foam technology makes the use of spray foam a smart move for any homeowner regardless of geographic location. 

How Much Attic Insulation is Enough?

Movement of air in and out of a home can be a leading cause of escalated energy bills. Air can enter your house through holes, cracks and crevices. You can stop unconditioned air from entering your home and indoor conditioned air from escaping outside by adding an advanced insulation system to achieve optimal building performance.

Insulating A Basement

Spray Foam Insulation is a two-component system typically consisting of petroleum oils, plastics, and resins. The polyurethane foam comes in two different forms, open cell and closed cell foam. The polyurethane spray foam is an extremely versatile material that is available in a variety of final physical properties and densities. Although the two types of foam are very similar in their chemical structures their characteristics and capabilities differ in many ways, which makes it necessary for the user to understand the differences of the two materials so he or she can determine which is the right foam for their particular application.

The open cell spray foam insulation contains a density of 0.5lb. per cubic foot. The greater the density of the foam the heavier, or stronger it will become. This particular type of polyurethane foam is referred to as "Open Cell" because of the nature of the chemical reaction during the installation process. When the polyurethane foam is being applied the tiny cells of the foam are broken causing air to fill the "open" space inside the material, resulting in a soft or spongy material. The open cell foam carries an R-Value of 5 to 5.5 per inch (R-Value is the measure of thermal resistance, which can be found by identifying the ratio of the temperature difference across an insulator and the heat flux). 0.5lb. foam products use significantly less material than 2lb. foam products do when completing the same sized job, making them attractive to an individual concerned with conserving the foam material. Due to the fact that open cell foam requires less material, the cost of the project is much cheaper than it would be if you were to apply closed cell foam. Although, Open cell foam is an efficient and economical product it contains some disadvantages in regards to closed cell foam. One of the open cells disadvantages is it has a lower R-Valuer per square inch than closed cell foam does and open cell foam is vapor permeable requiring it to be covered with a vapor retardant material. Although, open cell foam has some advantages and disadvantages it has been recognized as an excellent insulator, air sealant and sound barrier.

There are many things a home or building owner should take into consideration when considering the type of foam that should be used for their particular application. Although both types of foam are by far the best insulators on the market, each type of polyurethane foam possess its own characteristics and capabilities. It is imperative for the user to identify which foam is right for them before applying the product.


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