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Installing spray foam underneath your concrete slab is an ideal method to make sure that your new home will be energy efficient for the entire time it’s in use! It’s required for a lot of new structures in building codes in order to protect the concrete from water damage.
To guarantee the foundation of your home isn’t a prime source for loss of energy, it is recommended to put in spray foam insulation before pouring concrete. By doing this, you protect the concrete from water ahelplps keep heat in the home as required under numerous modern construction codes.
At the time your reading is done you’ll understand the advantages of rigid insulation and the various material options, as well as the fundamentals of installing spray foam insulation.
Should You Put Spray Foam Under Your Concrete Slab?
Concrete may seem like a waterproof material however it’s extremely vulnerable to moisture and is terrible at holding heat. While many codes today recognize the value of concrete and demand it, it’s not mandated by all building codes. The application of spray foam insulation underneath the concrete is a crucial element in the construction process.
The use of the SPF (sprayable polyurethane foam) to insulate a foundation can be compared in price to rigid foam panels, however the labor costs are much less. Therefore applying sprayable foam underneath the concrete slab would be the most efficient option. The foam insulation is the ideal solution to cut down on heating expenses while safeguarding the structure of your house’s concrete slab. It’s a popular choice within green circles of construction due to the fact that it dramatically reduces energy use. It also does a fantastic job at keeping water from the slab, thus preventing fractures or structural harm!
At least 10 percent of the heat that enters the home – and therefore 10 percent of your energy cost escapes through the floor. Two inches of spray foam insulation is 40 times more efficient in capturing heat than concrete on its own. While spray foam can be a bit pricey it’s savings over time will far outweigh this cost.
The average house in America is spending around $1200 on heating every year. If you’re reducing the cost of heating to 10% it amounts to around $120 per year, which is thousands of dollars saved throughout the duration of your home’s lifespan. That makes it nice for resale value, too, especially considering the rising importance of environmentally-friendly lifestyles.
If you live in a region that experiences brutal winters – then spray foam insulation beneath your concrete slab is essential! Since you won’t experience the winter cold and thawing, it’s unlikely that your heating costs will significantly alter.
Spray foam is sprayed on the top of the gravel and covered with a vapor barrier. Reinforced concrete is laid directly on top.
Why not try it in reverse with concrete first?
Heat wise you might not feel any difference, however, you will notice that your foundation is likely to crack and fall apart over time because of water damage.
What kind of Insulation Is Best To Use?
It is imperative to use a 2-pound closed-cell SPF because any other sprayable foam wont be dense enough to support the slab.
Compressive strength – the weight that foam can support is a key determinant for under-grade insulation. The insulation installed under slabs must be able to meet strength standards, otherwise it will slowly fall apart when weighed down, damaging the foundation of the house. Compressive strength is determined in PSI and is the measurement of how much weight one square inch of insulation can support.
Because it is true that the burden of the concrete slab is evenly distributed over the entire foundation and the insulation does not have to be as durable as you’d like. ASTM standards require that you have a minimum for 10- PSI for spray foam insulation and 15 is the standard.
Foam insulation that is rated at 25 PSI will be more durable than the ground underneath it! Of course, you’re allowed to select foam insulation with higher compressive strength however, your expenses might increase unnecessary. It could be beneficial, however especially if you reside in an area that has wet or loose soil, or clay-rich areas.
Do you need a Vapor Barrier Under The Concrete Slab?
A vapor barrier is an important component of a sound slab foundation. Because soil water gets absorbed in the insulation over time so it is necessary to create barriers to keep it between foam as well as the concrete. In the past the 6-mi (6/1000″) barriers to vapor were fairly common, but they are no longer the norm. American Concrete Institute now states that vapor barriers should never be less than 10 meters (10/1000″) in thickness.
The polyethylene material isn’t waterproof and it’s not only how thick the barrier that’s important. It must be strong enough to block even tiny water droplets. It is essential that a vapor barrier has permeance (moisture permeance rate) of 0.3 perms, which means it is only 0.3 grain of water vapor will traverse the barrier.
If you’re in search of a vapor barrier that can effectively stop water in its tracks, you should look at vapor barrier products that are in compliance with ACI specifications. In the event that a particular product is marketed as”vapor retard “vapor retard” then it probably isn’t fully meeting the ACI requirements and should not be used for under-slab construction.
How to Insulate Concrete Slab Before Pouring
It’s not as straightforward as digging a hole and filling it in. But it is a rather easy process.
Before the concrete is poured, these steps must be taken to provide construction quality, code compliance, and structural integrity:
- Dig to the appropriate depth. This could vary from a few inches to several feet, depending on the kind of construction.
- Smooth and tamp the excavated soil. Rake out rough spots, and fill in low spots with dirt. Then, tamp the ground until it is soft and firm. This packs the soil down, delivering more strength.
- Spread a 4-inch layer of crushed stone/gravel over the dirt. Make sure it is raked smooth and level, with no jagged edges sticking up.
- Spray foam insulation across the whole surface of the foundation. Butt the boards together lightly. Ensure all the boards stay flat to ensure maximum efficiency. You’ll also need to spray a 4-inch tall section of foam about the perimeter of the foundation- enough to be level with the concrete after it is poured and set.
- Lay down the vapor barrier according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Make sure there is a 6-inch overlap on the edges per roll.
- Make sure everything is level and continuous, and now you’re ready to pour!
Best Under Slab Insulation
The best way to purchase under-slab insulation is directly from a supplier; home improvement stores will likely inflate prices. Below, you’ll find the best, most highly-recommended spray foam insulation distributor.
ArmorThane is a company with a far reach and a long history of supplying quality products. They have received numerous rewards in the industry and have perfect reviews. With locations in most countries, you can be sure they can supply you with what you need no matter where you are. If you drive past local residential construction sites, the odds are high that you’ll see ArmorFoam being used.
Spray foam under a concrete slab can be a bit complex but it is vital to a green home. Not to mention, sometimes it is necessary when building codes come into play. Using foam insulation under a slab drastically lowers your energy bill, complies with modern codes, and protects the life of the slab. So, did you learn what you needed for your project? Let us know in the comments section below! Still, have questions or suggestions for other readers?
Although spray foam insulation may be among the more expensive insulation alternatives, what you receive for the price is a surprisingly impressive array of benefits. These benefits include:
- High R-value density
- capabilities for soundproofing capabilities
- fills up the entire space it’s installed
- Easy to fill in difficult-to-reach areas
- Lasts for 80plus years
However, only you as the homeowner will be able to decide whether spray foam insulation is suitable for your house and budget. Therefore, we’ll evaluate it against other types of insulation and their costs to make an informed decision.
What Happens If Your Attic is Insulated Incorrectly?
We must first be aware of the reasons why reviewing your insulation choices is crucial. A poorly-insulated attic could result in a myriad of problems which range from causing you to pay a huge bill to wood beams that are rotting. Insulation may fall, become damp from water that has been trapped or fail to perform effectively over time.
Even if your attic insulated in the past at the same time it’s crucial to determine if it’s time to be replaced. What can be the result if your home isn’t well-insulated.
Trapped Moisture, and Mold Growth
The attic’s insulation and ventilation will ensure flow of air as well as temperature control. Without it, moisture could be stuck in your attic which can lead to the growth of mold as well as mildew, wood decay or even flatten the foam insulation. insulation.
More Energy Bills
If you do not have insulation in your attic, the warmth (or cold) can easily escape from the roof of your home. This can increase your energy costs due to the fact that appliances try to regulate the temperature.
Additional Pressure to HVAC System
If you’ve purchased an energy-efficient HVAC unit however, you are at have a disadvantage in not having the right insulation with it in order for it to perform it at its highest. In order to offset the excessive energy costs your HVAC system, such as the heater as well as air cooling, will have to perform more efficiently to keep your property at the ideal temperature. This may make them require frequent repairs, and aging more quickly.
One of the lesser-known hazards of a poorly-insulated attic, is the fact that it may cause pests to make through the attic and into your home. Mice rodents, squirrels, and mice are all seeking an ideal place to build their nests and usually get into attics via tiny holes or cracks. Once they’re inside the attic, they can roam free within the walls of your home.
Recurrent Ice Dams
Ice dams develop when snow or ice at the moment that your roof is heated up melts, but it then re-freezes at the bottom instead of moving into the trenches or out of your roof. Insufficient insulation can lead to this temperature imbalance that creates the formation of ice dams. If you notice dams of ice, it could be a sign that you must upgrade the insulation in your attic or inspect your roof.
drafty spots in your home
Brr! Do you ever walk into an cold corridor or cold room on the top floor of your house? It’s probably because of inadequate insulation and a great reason to examine the insulation above the room.
Water leaks can be caused by an roof issue , but it could occur due to accumulation of moisture within your attic. If you notice any water spots on your roof and attic, it’s time to investigate.
As you will observe, there are plenty of reasons to make sure your attic is adequately constructed and is in good repair. Let’s review your top alternatives to get rid of the annoying (and expensive) signs of inadequate insulation.
What makes good Insulation?
The most important factor in determining how efficient your insulation works can be determined by its R value. R-values determine the efficiency of insulation with regard to heat flow. The more R-values are higher the higher.
However, seven “zones” within the United States indicate how high of an R-value you require in relation to climate. For instance, Zone 1 in Florida has R-values that range from R13 to R49 due to the warmer climate.
In cold winter months it’s crucial to have an insulator that is dense that keeps your residence warm. Here’s a chart by Home Depot is an excellent illustration of the R-values to set for every area within your residence. Zone 7 is located near Minnesota however, needs R-values of between R30 and R60, specifically within the attic.
Note: These figures are the R-value of the entire thickness of the insulation. For instance, insulation with an R-value of 5 per inch will have to be 4 inches thick in order to achieve R20.
Sorts of Insulation (Pros and Cons)
There are a variety of insulationSome of which you might be familiar with, while others aren’t so sure. However, luckily to you that we’ll explain each type with advantages and disadvantages, as well as their R-values.
Blanket Batt or Roll Insulation: R-4.3 per inch
This is the most commonly used kind of insulation and is what you imagine when you think of “insulation.” It is offered with long, wide rolls which are simple to cut and put in the right place. It’s possible to find this type of insulation constructed from rock wool, fiberglass, or other natural fibers such as the sheep’s wool or denim.
- Pre-cut to be placed between the studs
- Easy for installation (DIY-friendly)
- Glass fibers may irritate eyes, skin, and the lungs. protective wear is essential in the installation of.
- Conduction of heat is feasible
- It is able to tear or break quickly
Rigid Foam Board Insulation R-4 to R-6 for every inch
The insulation is constructed of foam that is sold in large sheets. These foam boards are cut to fit well between walls or studs that are standard. They are ideal for flat surfaces, such as the foundation of your home or exterior walls.
- Medium-range pricing
- Does not require any special equipment or additional training in order to install
- There are no irritants within the material
- Blocks heat conduction through your home’s construction (only in its class)
- Should be carefully cut to fit around outlets and pipes
- Requires an additional sealant to ensure an airtight seal around these elements
- must be covered with either plaster or plywood. It is not allowed to be in the open as other kinds of HTML0.
LOASE-FILL (Blown-In) Fiberglass R-2.2 up to R-2.7 for every inch
It’s exactly what it’s called little pieces of fiberglass can be found within your windows. This is among the most sought-after types due to it is easy to put in and can be included in existing insulation.
- low-cost (maybe the most affordable insulation alternative)
- You can reuse it as a material through sucking it up, then relocating it to an area
- It’s not possible to have even coverage with no the right equipment
- The possibility of heat conduction remains possible , even if it is not installed properly
- is a great way to hold water
- Also eye irritation and lungs, as well as skin
Radiant Barrier: NO R-Value
Although other kinds of insulation block the conductive heat which is explained by its R-value the radiant barrier insulation/foil is able by blocking radiant energy (up to 98 percent). It’s affixed to beams and plywood to form an airtight seal. Therefore it doesn’t have an R-value.
- Perfect for wrapping pipes and pipes or
- Excellent in warmer climates, where reflecting heat is beneficial.
- Installation is simple
- Creates a vapor barrier
- Does not degrade like foam roll, roll, or blow-blown insulation
- If it is dirty, it may impact its performance
- Not ideal for colder climates
Spray Foam: R-7 per inch
Spray foam is composed of two chemicals mixed together that spray from a bottle which then expands rapidly and sets. It is among the most effective forms of insulation because it fills all the crevices and crevices that other kinds could leave out. It’s an extremely productive material for insulation which can increase the cost however it’s well worth the cost.
- has the highest R-value density
- is closed-cell and doesn’t require any additional barriers to vapor.
- covers the entire area it’s installed
- It is easy to use around pipes, outlets and other difficult-to-reach places
- The chemicals employed to make spray foam output toxic gasses and fumes. You should wear a safety mask and be in a well-ventilated space.
- Not DIY-friendly It requires professional installation (which can be both a benefit as well as a cons)
- High cost
- It can leak through holes or gaps which aren’t in a sealed state.
Your Premium Option: Spray Foam Insulation Benefits
We’d like to go deeper into the best option for spray foam insulation. We think it’s one of the most beneficial options for your home in order to ensure it is effective and lower your energy costs. What is the reason to should you pick spray foam over other kinds of insulation?
Spray foam costs a lot, but its benefits are significant when you invest in your home.
As we said that the R-value measures how the insulation is able to resist heat flow. The higher the value higher, the better in blocking heat. Spray foam is among the most efficient R values for an inch at R-7. This implies that spray foam is more effective at insulate your home than any other kind of insulation.
A good air seals and insulation in the attic allows the attic to be completely sealed off from air to flow in or out, making your HVAC system work as efficiently as it can. The attic is well-sealed against the elements by having such a an impressive R-value. It might cost more initially, but you’ll be able to see the savings in your monthly bills over time.
Spray foam is a great option for any area of your home that require insulation for example, the basement, attic and crawl spaces, as well as the garage. Spray foam can be utilized on irregular or curly surfaces that other kinds of insulation are unable to tackle. It’s also a fantastic soundproofing agent. So if you reside in an area that is noisy or have walls that are thin, spray foam can help limit how much sound emanating from your home. It is ideal for homes with musicians
Air Seals Your Attic
According to the section on energy efficiency, spray foam helps air to seal your attic. This is a great thing as a sealed and well-insulated attic can enhance the air quality. air quality. By sealing any gaps or cracks you’ll also keep out all outside allergens or bugs that could be looking to get into your home.
Keeps Your Home Comfortable
The spray foam attic will be an area that is more comfortable than an attic that isn’t well-insulated or lacks insulation. This is due to the fact that spray foam helps regulate the temperature of your attic and keeps it cool in the summer, and warm in the winter.
Spray foam insulation is an easy way of attaining the high-quality insulation you require. The spray foam insulation, when done properly, can last up hundred years or even longer! This can be particularly beneficial to those who have bought their first home and has had to deal with several insulation problems over the years.
What is the cost of spray Foam Insulation Cost?
We’ve all waited for the answer to the question: how much will spray foam insulation cost? The 2022 price for average national spray foam insulation installation cost is $2,492.
The cost could start as low as $1200 but can rise to $3,700, or even more according to the project location. The area of your attic is the primary factor in determining the amount you will pay.
The material is more expensive due to the equipment and training needed for its installation. It’s not as easy as going through the store to pick the rolled batts you need to use for insulation. Instead, you need to hire an experienced team that can use the spray foam machine to do the job right. The video below provides an excellent walk-through of spray foam insulation installation:
Although it’s tempting to choose the most affordable option, think about making a small investment in the energy efficiency of your home and choose spray foam insulation.
Lower your energy bills By Using a Professional Spray Foam Application
Your home’s performance is dependent on a few factors such as a high-quality roof and windows that are well-made and a high quality insulation. Here at First American Roofing & Siding We can assist you to attain the best performance for your home. If you’d like to know more and discover what we can do to help contact our team of experts immediately to start the process.
There are many books and articles that outline the best ways to run businesses across a variety of sectors, but spray foam is one that has a specific set of practices that are specific to our industry. In this article, we review some of the universally significant practices and give some suggestions specific to spray foam.
The primary goal of companies is getting the money you deserve for your labor! It’s a simple concept, however lots of spray foam contractors fail to pay their bills promptly and thus have a tough time receiving the money they’ve put in so much effort to get. Your management team must follow this simple rule of thumb:
Repairs, rework, call-backs Whatever you want to call them, they destroy profits more quickly than other things in the business. Most common callsbacks to spray foam contractors are to apply foam when it has been sprayed too thin or not present at all. We’ve all seen the ease of sprayers wearing proper equipment to leave a tiny area or gap in foam in the window or next to an outlet that is electric however, the majority of spray teams have a frequently overlooked team member who is able to almost always spot the mistakes as long as they’ve been properly trained to spot them.
The assistant is the last person who will see the majority parts of foam and If they’re educated to recognize these flaws and avoid them, the majority of calls are prevented. A simple checklist could be developed to help train and establish the required quality standards for the job. And the quality standard should be followed by all employees of the business to prevent calls backs.
A smart business owner can create and categorize images suitable foam applications. Everyone within the organization must be taught about how important it is to adhere to the company’s quality standards and be able to discuss the design and appearance of different jobs. For example, spray foam might be used to meet the R-20 wall cavity code by using medium-density closed-cell foam. The stud cavity will not be filled to capacity, however certain builders may not be aware of the superior thermal properties in spray foam and insist on the SPF contractor returning to fill the cavity completely. This confusion can be avoided if salesperson has your photo with the contract that was signed by the construction company. The photo must be taken to the construction site to allow the team to be aware of the requirements. This is easy and will save you from costly calls backs.
A checklist is your step-by-step plan for each task that is completed by any person on your team. Sales representatives have specific forms required to start an assignment. A checklist should be used to define the conditions and, once completed, it is required to file it with the other paperwork for the job. One of the items on the checklist is to include a photograph of the agreed-upon look for the foam at the site. Checklists that the estimator uses will allow them to pinpoint commonly overlooked areas or job conditions that could make the task more challenging, and a list of the steps to break down the bid can help avoid the chance of confusion later.
The crew is provided with an agenda for preparing to rigs, another one for cleaning the building or house as well as other checklists to address all possible scenarios they could face. If a step on the checklist isn’t implemented, then discuss the issue and make changes to the list or modify the way the crew is acting. These are permanent documents, and should be followed so that you can maintain the safety of workers and complete the task effectively.
Checklists are fantastic when everyone is aware of their value and is willing to use them. Checklists can also make the calculation of compensation more straightforward as performance on the job can be easily tracked. Accepting and understanding the checklist is a part of training that each SPF contractor is accountable for. The training to learn about the quality standard of the company and how every team member helps to achieve “Zero-Defect” tasks is the most effective way to success. Participating in the creation and managing those checklists can make acceptance and constant adherence to the standards more simple. Many SPF contractors complain that they have to spend an enormous amount of time and money training personnel who leave their company, however that it’s more expensive to not educate them and make them remain! Workers who aren’t trained cost the company time and money, therefore the need for training is vital. A customized training plan for each employee can be designed and a checklist developed to define expectations and understand when to alter the compensation.
UTILIZE AVAILABLE TECHNOLOGY
We’re so lucky today that every member of the team has a laptop computer that is in every pockets! Cell phones and inexpensive storage of data have transformed how we run our businesses and train our staff. The salesperson is now able to “walk his job” in virtual reality, or live in a recorded version for the team. The salesperson can highlight the areas that need attention and tell the crew what’s expected. Photos taken before and after the spray foam application must be added to the work record. If the team encounters issues with the application, a short video and some pictures will guide the salesperson, so mistakes and omissions are prevented in the future.
ArmorThane has a group of highly trained technicians who are just one phone call, text message or video-chat away. Sometimes, a few minutes of video-calling could mean many hours of downtime. The Ar tech service team is able to assist with most issues when they’re manageable before shutting down your equipment. One of the best things to check off on your checklist is to include the contact details and name to the ArmorThane tech representative on the checklist for the jobsite.
A PLACE FOR EVERYTHING
The most successful companies around the world employ a system known as “5-S” to manage every part of the business. The shop, office and sales vehicles, rigs all of it! This rig is more secure once it’s organized, cleaned and created to Shine. Once it has been Standardized and a system is designed to support this system The spray rig can be at its maximum performance. As long as the rig’s performance isn’t improved, the crew isn’t as safe or efficient as it is possible. There are many excellent books and articles on 5-S, sometimes known as”the “Toyota Quality Management System.” The program is easy to implement and highly effective. when the entire business works in concert to implement the 5-S plan, everyone is more productive and happier, and the business will be more profitable.
Plan for Success
Who could have predicted 2020’s events? Who was ready for both the crash in the spring as well as the boom that would follow? We’ve been a long-time advocate for SPF businesses to continuously contribute to a fund for growth that they can use to buy the latest spray equipment or to fund an additional middle or salesperson until they are capable of paying themselves. The fund for growth could have been appreciated when the business industry came to a grinding to a halt after we entered the COVID lockdown in March. The bills kept coming in and overhead costs didn’t slow down as quickly as revenue, but businesses with a reserve survived those months of uncertainty. They were also able adjust to the increasing demands for spray foam during the time after. This is a must for the long-term viability of any company and is essential for businesses that rely on labor, such as spray foam.
Spray foam is a fan of warmth. The rig is at its best when it’s warm. This means that the chemical flows much more quickly and consistently and the foam adheres to warmer surfaces more easily and yields will be significantly higher when everything is warm. Heating is possibly the best investment you could make for your business. You can add heat to your chemical storage system to reduce many hours of preparation time every day, specifically using low density, open-cell foam. Include heat in your equipment for a more relaxed and more secure crew, and to help your equipment run more efficient. Incorporate heat into the substrate to increase adhesion and ensure the hose heat is operating properly. Every list of checklists for sales and operations should include the issue of heat and how it can be controlled to achieve optimal performance.
Spray rigs can be costly to maintain. Those without an established maintenance schedule and a checklist for confirming that they are completed will be more expensive. Regular maintenance should be done in the workshop instead of on the field. A spare gun for each machine is a great investment to ensure that the crew doesn’t have to stop and repair or replace the gun. A drum pump at least in the workshop is vital. A temperature sensor for fluids along with other components that are that are known to fail must be in hand…in their appropriate position and always in working and in working order.
The aim of each SPF contractor is for each rig spray at least six hours per day. Utilizing a tiny tip on a large proportioner the set of chemicals can be processed in just 100 minutes. It’s not unusual to find spray equipment to spray properly-processed foam in less than 3 hours each day. Find out your average production rate and collaborate with your crew to establish expectations. Training and adhering to checklists, in addition to maintaining the equipment, however without it the equipment won’t make money.
Be aware of your worth
The majority of us working in the industry typically believe the fact that spray foam is the best insulation and air-seal material on the globe. Making a value proposition for your company is a great method to engage every employee in the organization to establish the direction for the company. As the business itself contributes to the building industry and the SPF employees add value to the business. Giving thanks when each task is accomplished is a great way to show appreciation. Informing everyone about the benefits the business brings to the construction industry assists them in understanding the ways they contribute towards energy saving, reducing the amount of greenhouse gases, and slowing the pace of climate change. Everyone from the CEO to the site assistants is making a significant impact, one home and one building at an time.