Sometimes when you hear how great something is usually the first thing that comes to mind is, “It must be to good to be true.” Well spray foam is definitely been a topic for discussion as it becomes more and more popular over the years. Most people don’t realize that the product has been around since the 1940’s and was used by the military for varies reason. Just recently in the past 20-30 years has it made it’s way into mainstream construction. In the past ten years alone it has become as common in residential homes as any other building material. The southeast region of the United States including Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida were the last few states to actually see this product advertised as an option to insulate homes. The reason for that was because after Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005 thousands of contractors and service companies flocked to the Gulf Coast to help rebuild. Since then the area went from less than a handful of people offering the product, to the current number that is close to over a hundred as local traditional insulation contractors expanded into offering the product.
Now that spray foam is as common as traditional fiberglass batts and blown-in insulation, we can talk about how spray foam compares savings wise. First off, they don’t. Comparing the two products would be similar to comparing a wooden wagon wheel to a Mickey Thomas drag radial. They just don’t compare. Mainly because traditional insulation is designed to be installed in a way that still allows heat to build up in your walls and attic space. Basically because the r value “thickness” of the product alone is all its rated for. Unlike spray foam that completely blocks heat out of your home and bonds to the roof and cavities to seal it up. The creates a barrier or envelope.
It’s simple if you look at it this way. If we built a drink cooler out of wood and insulated it with fiberglass batts and designed the walls and lid to breathe to allow air flow to reduce the heat load. How long do you honestly think our ice will hang around for, not long right? Now if we took this same cooler made out of wood and completely sealed it to first block the heat load completely, then contain the temperature inside the cooler as long as possible. This is exactly the same concept with insulating your home. We want to completely block the heat from our homes and contain our conditioned air as long as possible.
Now this is where savings come into play, something we all are up for any day. Obviously the better you insulate your home, the more money you will save. But how? What exactly goes into play for me to receive these savings?
First, by sealing your home up you reduce conditioned air loss by 95%. Since spray foam is a dense solid it reduces heat transfer by up to 75%. This ultimately cuts the amount of time your air conditioner runs throughout an average day to condition your homes temperature to a comfortable level. Instead of constantly running and running to barely keep the temperature under 78 degrees at the hottest part of the day. Some homes with second story levels struggle to keep it even 80 degrees. So by collectively reducing all these factors your equipment runs and cycles as it was designed to do. Which can reduce monthly utility bills by 40%-60% monthly, yes monthly. These aren’t savings you will get back years from now, or some rebate that can take 6-8 weeks to come in the mail. You receive your savings instantly and usually within 24-30 months your investment pays itself off.