Spray Foam Insulation – what’s the recipe?

Using High Performance Building techniques for a super-comfortable and highly efficient home
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Our Ennisclare project has passed framing inspection and is now at the insulation/drywall stage. As the exposure is Southwest facing on lake Ontario that means the home will be subject to prevailing winds and is more exposed to the elements. Although not NET ZERO this home will certify as Energy Star level 2. So what does that mean? Each component of the home’s energy efficiency is scrutinized to levels much higher than current code requirements. The end result is less drafts and cold spots and a healthy indoor environment! So let’s look at some key points in a good spray foam insulation job…

 

spray foam insulation
Spray foam insulation sampling by a certified inspector

The two main types of sprayed foam are open and closed cell. We exclusively use closed-cell foam as the insulation value is higher and the foam itself creates a vapour/ air barrier. Best practices ( and the building code ) dictate that spray foam insulation can only be used under strict quality control guidelines.

Although most municipalities don’t enforce this requirement, this standard requires applicators to be trained, job logs to be carefully maintained and certified testing carried out to verify the density and ensure the quality of the application.

This may seem like a trivial point but building science companies can give testimony to failed applications causing building damage and mould through unwanted condensation in the building envelope due to poor spray foam application.

Blower door testing ensuring a sealed envelope

In our job here at Ennisclare, we used a “HOT ROOF” application which means the whole home is wrapped in a continuous foam envelope sealing it tightly so only filtered fresh air is brought into the interior of the home. Final blower door tests need to be tight enough for our Energy star 2 label. Healthy indoor air and a high-efficiency cozy home!

foam insulation
continuous Spray foam insulation makes tricky details a breeze

For more information go to NET ZERO or ENERGY STAR high-performance building information pages

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