Is Spray Foam Insulation Worth It? Cost-Benefit Analysis
As millions of homeowners choose to insulate their houses with spray foam, the general public becomes more aware of this revolutionary insulation solution. Some people love to watch spray foam insulation installation videos on social media due to the satisfying way the foam expands upon application. But is spray foam insulation worth it? Let’s find out.
Is Spray Foam Insulation Worth It For Homeowners?
Spray foam insulation is worth it for homeowners for several reasons, including superior efficiency, versatility, and durability. However, open and closed-cell foam insulation costs more than most other types of insulation. The savings on monthly energy bills and the long lifespan of the product make spray foam insulation worth it, though.
6 Reasons Why Spray Foam Insulation Is Worth The Cost
Open-cell and closed-cell spray insulation perform better than most other forms of insulation. Although spray foam has a couple of drawbacks, such as price, its benefits make it worth the cost. Find six reasons spray foam insulation is worth the price below.
1. Spray Foam Insulates Better Than Traditional Insulation
The best thing about spray foam is how it insulates better than fiberglass insulation. Closed-cell spray foam has a thermal resistance, or R-value, of 6.5 for every inch of thickness. Open-cell foam insulation has an average R-value of 3.8 per inch, and fiberglass batts deliver an R-value of 3.1 to 3.4 per inch of thickness.
Because open and closed-cell spray foam provides more insulation, they help homeowners save on their energy bills for the rest of their lives. In summer, homeowners can use the air conditioner less often and still keep the house cool. In winter, the house will stay warm long after the heater turns off.
2. Closed-Cell Spray Foam Is Waterproof
Closed-cell spray foam insulation is watertight, meaning no water enters or passes through it. When fiberglass insulation gets wet, the water displaces the air, turning an insulator into a heat conductor. If cellulose insulation comes into contact with water, it will clump together, settle at the bottom, and promote mold growth.
Sometimes, homeowners can save their wet fiberglass or cellulose insulation with a dehumidifier. Many times, however, the insulation materials must be replaced. Homeowners with closed-cell insulation do not need to worry about water damaging it during a storm.
Note that open-cell foam does not act as a vapor barrier. It can take on water and hold the moisture against other surfaces in the house, causing mold and mildew issues.
3. Spray Foam Reduces Street Noise
Enjoy some peace and quiet by having a professional insulation contractor install some foam insulation. Like other types of insulation, spray foam dulls street noise and provides extra privacy within a home. Fiberglass, mineral wool, and spray foam offer the best soundproofing.
The sound transmission class (STC) rating for blown-in fiberglass is 36, which still allows a conversation to be heard, but not understood, through walls. Mineral wool batts have an STC of 50. And spray foam insulation has an STC of 40 to 50, enough to completely silence a loud argument in an adjacent room.
4. Spray Foam Offers Long-Term Energy Savings
Only spray foam creates an airtight seal, insulating homes better than all other materials and reducing heating and cooling costs.
Air sealing a home means that the heated or conditioned air that homeowners pay for stays inside the house until a door or window opens. The result is a 15% to 50% drop in utility bills. Over the life of the insulation, a homeowner will save thousands of dollars in energy costs.
All other types of insulation allow some amount of airflow, decreasing a home’s energy efficiency and augmenting a homeowner’s carbon footprint.
Spray foams airtight seal keeps polluted air out of the house. The air leaks inherent in other types of insulation result in decreased indoor air quality.
5. Spray Foam Lasts Longer Than Standard Insulation Materials
Spray foam insulation outlasts all other forms of insulation except rigid foam board. Both insulators have lifespans of 80 to 100 years. That means homeowners can install it once and never think about it again for the rest of their lives.
Fiberglass may also last for 100 years before it requires replacing, but its performance dwindles over time. Cellulose only lasts for 20 to 30 years before it clumps together due to moisture in the air. Mineral wool may last for 30 to 80 years until an insulation replacement becomes necessary.
6. Spray Foam Prevents Property Damage Better Than Traditional Insulation
Closed-cell foam repels water, keeping it away from vital areas of the home and preventing property damage. Other types of insulation absorb water during a flood or roof leak, creating the ideal environment for mold growth and wood rot.
Spray foam in the attic does a better job of preventing ice dams than fiberglass, cellulose, and mineral wool. It keeps the snow from melting and forming ice on the roof, which can cause water damage, mold growth, sagging, and other issues.
Where Should You Not Use Spray Foam?
You should not use spray foam near lighting or heat-generating appliances. The heat from lights and appliances can cause the highly flammable foam to catch fire. Do not apply foam around wires because it can damage them as it cures. Finally, do not apply spray foam anywhere not indicated in the literature that accompanies the product.
How Long Does Spray Foam Last?
Spray foam lasts for around 80 to 100 years. The closed-cell foam tends to last a little longer than open-cell spray foam. For most households, this means that the foam will outlast the occupants, meaning homeowners will not need to worry about replacing the insulation during their lifetimes. Physical damage and improper installation can shorten the life of foam insulation.
What Are The Disadvantages Of Spray Foam Insulation?
The disadvantages of spray foam insulation include mold development in spaces between the wall and the foam. Foam can become too airtight without proper ventilation in the house. Incorrect application of foam can lead to a termite infestation or release harmful chemicals that pose health hazards to humans and pets.
Is Spray Foam Insulation Worth Having?
Spray foam insulation is worth having because its benefits outweigh the disadvantages. Foam saves a lot of energy and keeps the house well-insulated from heat and cold. Although foam costs more than other types of insulation, they last a long time. The energy savings over the life of the foam insulation may offset the initial cost, depending on the inflation rate.
Is Spray Foam Permanent?
Spray foam is permanent insulation that adheres directly to a substrate. It expands and hardens upon application, filling every nook and cranny and forming a permanent bond. It also creates a permanent seal to block out polluted air, moisture, dust, allergens, and pests. If needed, a professional installer can remove old foam before replacing it.
Spray Foam Insulation Is Worth The Cost | iFOAM
Find out for yourself why spray foam insulation is worth the extra upfront cost. At iFOAM, our professional foam insulation installers can modernize your home, making it a comfortable, energy-efficient place to live. Call iFOAM at (855) 935-4723 to schedule your consultation today!