What is the best spray foam insulation
6 Dec 2022
When seeking the very best insulation for lofts, walls and floors, most homeowners will discover spray foam insulation – often for the first time. Offering an alternative to traditional insulation materials, spray foam insulation equips properties with a superior air-tight seal to maximise performance.
In practice, the installation of spray foam insulation can save households noticeable sums on their monthly heating bills. By improving the thermal performance of a property and reducing air leakage, spray foam can maximise heat retention and reduce reliance on heating systems.
But when it comes to selecting spray foam for your property, understanding the different types is essential – as is engaging the support of a professional installer.
Here, we’ll explore the main types of spray foam insulation that are currently available, their best-suited applications and the benefits that could be unlocked for your home.
Different types of spray foam insulation
For homeowners discovering spray foam insulation for the first time, the first distinction to make is between the two types of spray foam insulation – open-cell and closed-cell.
The cells within the insulation determine how each type performs, enabling them to handle elements like warmth and moisture differently. In practice, this makes them suited to different applications, so it is always best to do your research and choose the right solution.
For domestic properties in the UK, open-cell spray foam insulation is the most suitable type of spray foam. With the cells within it left open once fully expanded, it can facilitate breathability, which promotes healthy internal environments, alongside protecting essential timbers and building materials over the long term. At the same time, open-cell spray foam can seal the building envelope to keep warmth and improve energy efficiency.
On the other hand, closed-cell spray foam insulation is made up of cells which remain completely closed. Typically resulting in a more rigid material once set, these closed cells prevent air and moisture from passing through. This makes it unsuitable for internal domestic applications where breathability is essential, but ideal for exterior use – often in commercial environments.
The benefits of open-cell spray foam insulation
There are lots of reasons to choose open-cell spray foam insulation for your home – from its unrivalled performance through to its ease of application.
Energy efficiency is a critical factor which makes spray foam a popular choice amongst homeowners, both in the UK and in countries such as the USA and Canada. The R-value of open-cell spray foam is greater than that of the traditional insulation on the market, including mineral wool and fibreglass. That means more heat is kept within the home, keeping it warmer and reducing reliance on heating systems.
Where homeowners are opting to adopt energy-saving systems on the whole, including air-source heat pumps and underfloor heating, a well-insulated home maximises the performance of all systems. This is because of the low operating temperature of such products, typically between 30-40C. Reliable insulation helps to keep warmth in, reducing bills and benefitting the environment.
Alongside the heightened thermal efficiency offered by spray foam insulation, homeowners will also notice benefits such as improved air quality, soundproofing and comfort. By sealing the gaps where air would ordinarily escape, fewer pollutants and sound can enter a building, creating more comfortable spaces.
Once installed, open-cell spray foam insulation will continue to perform for decades to come. Traditional insulation materials will likely degrade over time, compromising their ability to deliver optimum thermal performance. Spray foam does not suffer from the same degradation, enabling it to perform efficiently year and year. Huntsman Building Solutions backs this performance with a warranty of 25 years on products installed by authorised installers.
HBS spray foam insulation also boasts the highest levels of BBA and KIWA certification, demonstrating its safe and effective use.
How to install spray foam insulation in your home
When installing spray foam insulation, there is only one way – and that is to engage the support of professionals. This ensures are quality, reliable and safe installation which delivers a long-term benefit.
The installation of spray foam insulation is fundamental to the product’s performance, so it pays to get it right. After all, a successful installation will serve your home for decades to come. By engaging professionals, you can be sure you’re getting the right type of spray foam and that it’s being installed in the most suitable way to deliver long-term benefits.
The HBS Authorised Installer Scheme has been set up to simplify the process for homeowners, making it easy to find a reputable installer. To be listed within the scheme, the installer must have undertaken HBS’ dedicated, hands-on training modules, ensuring they can consistently deliver high-quality installations. In addition, they will carry out pre-installation checks and fully document the installation process, satisfying homeowners, lenders and installers of the quality of installation and the specific materials used.