Closed-cell foam is a spray-applied plastic that forms an air sealant barrier in various areas of the home. It’s a great solution for reducing air infiltration and preventing heat transfer. One of the advantages it has over open-cell foam is that it has more mass, which makes it more effective for insulation.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has actually classified closed-cell foam insulation as highly resistant to damages caused by floodwater because of its ability to reject water.
Areas Where Closed-Cell Spray Foam Works Best
– Basement walls;
– Crawl areas;
– Exterior areas prone to humidity and water;
– The exterior of foundations;
– Retrofit for exterior walls;
A normal closed-cell foam insulation has a density of about 2 pounds per cubic foot. This means you can, for example, walk on it without having to worry it will compress or change shape. When the closed-cell spray foam is applied, most of the cell structures the foam is made of stay intact. So even if the foam expands, you will still get a hard material that provides air insulation and moisture protection. Close-cell foam can also help protect your home from extreme winds due to its’ high density.
Close-cell spray foam has an impressive R-value of 6 to 7 per inch, which is significantly greater than open-cell spray foam. Being up to 40 percent more effective than open-cell foam, it is also a better choice for areas that come into contact with water or high humidity. Other areas where you can use this type of insulation are roofs and standard walls.
Closed-cell spray foam comes in different sizes depending on how small or big the area that needs insulation is. Small cans are just enough for small areas and gaps.
Next, we have kits, which are used for rim joints and ducts, among other similar areas. The kits contain recyclable canisters, a hose, a gun, and 200 and 600 board feet quantities. If you purchase small cans and kits you don’t need to worry about mixing anything, as they are one-part formulations.
However, for larger jobs, you’ll need a two-part mixture. In such instances, a truck is required to mix the foam. The mixture is also applied with a hose.
The Advantages of Using Closed-Cell Spray Foam
– Offers great versatility and can be used to insulate many different property types.
– Ensures structural stability for walls and roofs.
– It’s not affected by rain or flooding.
– Prevents condensation and the growth of mold.
– Acts as a sound barrier.
– Prevents outside air from entering and indoor air from exiting the home.
– Makes the home more energy-efficient.
– Helps maintain an even temperature throughout the home.
Disadvantages of Closed-cell Spray Foam
– Heavier because of its density (but this is not always a problem).
– Covers less area than other types of insulation materials.
– Is more significantly more expensive than open-cell spray foam and other insulation materials.
– If not applied properly, can actually trap water.
– Most blowing agents in closed-cell foam have a high global warming potential.
– The chemical agent it’s made of can give off a temporary odor.