Why Chose Spray Foam Insulation?
Spray Foam Insulation (SPF) helps to keep homes cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Since it is sprayed directly into cracks, gaps, and other surfaces that contribute to heat loss, it air seals and insulates thereby providing one of the most effective and easiest methods of weatherizing new construction and existing homes. The following are some of the benefits of SPF.
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Saving On Energy Bills
Homeowners that insulate and air seal their homes save up to 20% on cooling and heating costs. SPF resists heat transfer far better than most insulation materials. Since SPF insulation reduces air infiltration, it helps prevent the escape and entry of moisture vapor thus reducing the load on the cooling and heating system.
Reducing Air Conditioning & Heating Size
Using SPF, you can reduce the size of your HVAC by as much as 35% without losing comfort and efficiency.
Reducing Noise, Drafts, & Increasing Comfort
SPF is quite an effective air barrier. It helps reduce air-borne sound transmission. It is used to prevent drafts from doors, windows, floorboards, and attics thus creating a more comfortable indoor environment.
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Impeding The Entry Of Pests & Insects
Using SPF to seal gaps helps create a barrier against pests and insects from outside.
Reducing Air Infiltration That Generates Condensation That Causes Mold Growth
Humidity and moisture in the home can cause mold growth. Cracks and gaps in the building structure as well as the condensation on windows cause high humidity and support the growth of mildew and mold. If left unchecked, mildew and mold growth causes wood to rot. Air sealing the gaps between the living space and attic helps manage humidity and moisture issues.
Sealing Small Cracks To Insulate Large Areas Such As Roofs & Walls
Since SPF is applied on-site, it can better seal and insulate the small cracks common in homes. The application makes expansive surfaces easy to cover in a relatively short period.
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What Should You Expect?
If you would like to have professionals such as Sunlight Contractors come and install SPF you need to know about the kinds of SPF the contractor might use in your home. The following are some important considerations when working with professionals to come to install SPF in your home.
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Learn About The Product That The Contractor Is Installing In Your Home
If you wish to learn about the products the contractor has chosen for an installation in your home you need to ask many questions. Understand the types of products in the market, their characteristics, and performance. During the job, the contractor can discuss the specific constituents of the materials used to make the foam and will have access to the Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for the product. You can request the contractor to go over the SDS with you if you still have questions about the chemicals mixed to create the foam in Lafayette LA.
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Being Selective When Choosing Contractors
Some of the things you need to look out for when choosing a contractor are
- Proper training in SPF installation
- Good reputation and references
The contractor should advise you on the following:
- Technical specifications of the products being installed
- Safety precautions
- Where to install the SPF insulation in your home
- What you should expect during every stage of the installation
- Discussing Re-Occupancy Guidance With The Contractor
During the installation, the home will not be occupied. Before commencement of the job, consult the contractor about the amount of time before you and your family can re-enter the house following SPF installation.
Reoccupancy time will depend on several different factors including humidity, SPF formulation, degree of ventilation, temperature, amount of foam applied per volume of space and other variables.
In case you work in a commercial building or live in an apartment complex where SPF insulation is being installed, you should consult with the SPF contractor or building manager about measures to keep occupants from breathing chemical vapors during the installation of the foam.
The Contractor’s Role & Responsibilities
Overseeing An Effective & Safe Installation
The contractor will review the entire project with you from beginning to end including the safety measures he or she plans to take on the job. Part of the review may include:
- Marking off the work area
- Clearing the area of pets, children, and other workers without protective gear until the home is safe for reoccupation.
- Addressing ventilation in case of an interior application
- Taking measures to reduce overspray and control dust.
During spraying, the contractor
- Will take necessary precautions to avoid flames or high heat near the application site
- Will limit access to the site to only workers equipped with the right protective gear
To complete the job, the contractor
- Is responsible for thoroughly cleaning the work sit so that unprotected occupants and workers can occupy the building safely.
Following The Right Handling, Storage, and Disposal Practices.
The contractor should be well aware of acceptable workplace practices regarding proper handling, storage, and disposal of partially used or empty SPF products.
The Types Of SPF Insulation & How It Is Applied
You can categorize SPF insulation into two types of products:
- Two-component closed-cell foam
- Two-component open-cell foam
SPF insulation is applied by using two main delivery systeLA:
- Low-pressure spray foam kits
- High pressure systeLA
For medium-sized projects, you have low-pressure two component kits. These are used to seal and insulate medium sized areas around the home including rim joists, crawl spaces, and attics. SPF contractors and weatherization professionals are the ones that primarily use these kits. The products require use of specialized protective equipment.
SPF High-Pressure System:
They typically use 55-gallon drums and are mainly used to insulate larger areas or new construction or during major renovations on roofs and walls. These are intended for professional use as well as the use of specialized protective gear including respirators.
For a standard high-pressure SPF installation, a spray rig that houses the air supply, SPF ingredients, and other items is parked near the building or home to be sprayed. Hoses are then carried into the application area and installers wearing the proper gear spray the foam.
How To Choose A SPF Contractor in Lafayette, LA
What Type Of Contractor Should You Consider?
No matter the type of product you would like installed, you will want a contractor that is able to do the job well and safely. Choose a contractor that is trained, knowledgeable, and has experience installing the product. For the high-pressure product, most manufacturers offer or require specialized contractor training. In addition, different trade associations might offer training courses that have certification or accreditation such as the Spray Polyurethane Foam Alliance in Lafayette LA.
Does The Contractor Have To Be Bonded & Insured?
Some states require contractors to post a surety bond as a legal requirement. Surety bonds have major limitations and typically do not take the place of insurance. The contractor may also need to carry liability insurance. General liability insurance covers bodily injury losses and property damage caused by the contractor that happen due to the contractor’s work. It does not cover the cost of repairing, removing or replacing poorly installed insulation by the contractor.
Insurance policies come with limits of both the amount that is payable for a claim and the scope of coverage. They also carry exclusions for particular exposures. Since liability policies differ, you may have to ask a prospective contractor about what his or her policy covers or does not cover. You may request proof of coverage, which is usually in the form of a certificate of insurance. You must also ensure that the contractor’s policy has not yet lapsed.
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How Do You Check The Contractor’s References?
Most contractors will provide references if you request them to do so. However, these references will probably be only from clients that were pleased with the contractor’s work. You can also ask the contractor whether he or she is a member of any trade associations. Membership in a professional trade association is a good sign that the contractor recognizes the responsibilities that come with being a professional.
How Do You Check The Contractor’s License?
Most jurisdictions require contractors to have licenses for any construction businesses that offer, advertise, arrange for, or do any alteration, construction, home remodeling, improvement, or repair work. This includes the installation of insulation.
The Lafayette LA contractor may need licensing even for small jobs depending on the law of the state. If the contractor holds a license, you need to check with the licensing authority to know if it is current or if there have been any complaints filed. You can find a wealth of information online from licensing authorities. You can also check with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and see whether any complaints have been filed against your chosen contractor.
Does The Contractor Have To Provide A Written Contract? What Should It Include?
Some jurisdictions require that contractors provide a written contract in case the project exceeds a particular sum. Written contracts are always good even when the law does not require them. The contract should outline all details of the agreement between the contractor and yourself about the installation.
Ensure that you read the contract carefully to ensure it is complete and that you understand it. This includes the agreed price, the product being installed, and the duration of the project. Check that the name on the contract is a match to the name in the license record of the contractor.
In case the contractor is providing a warranty, get it in writing as part of the contract. Get to know whether the warranty is offered by the contractor, manufacturer, or both.
SPF insulation installation contractors should make the necessary arrangements for removal of debris, cleanup, including the hauling away of empty or used canisters and drums as part of their completion of the job. You can sometimes include these arrangements as part of a specific contractual requirement.
Will The Contractor Get The Building Permit?
Many remodeling projects and construction of new homes typically requires building permits from the local building department. Note that even though contractors often get permits, it is ultimately the responsibility of the property owner under local laws. Talk to the contractor about who is responsible for getting the permits. Ensure that a final inspection is done once the work is complete.
Do Contractors Offer Rebates Or Incentives For Using SPF Insulation in Lafayette LA?
Product manufacturers, utility companies, government agencies, or other sources can offer incentives. The contractor can provide valuable information regarding the available incentive program.
Before The Job Commences, What Else Should You Do?
It is very important that you do a walkthrough with the contractor prior to beginning installation to help the installers find the HVAC system and view the layout as they come up with a ventilation plan. In case the installation is in the interior of a building, confirm with the contractor regarding guidance from the product manufacturer with respect to how long the occupant needs to stay out of the building after completion of the job.
Should You Call The Contractor In Case Any Issues Arise After The Installation?
Yes, the contractor is the first point of contact in case you have any questions after installation. The contractor can also help put you in touch with the manufacturer of the SPF insulation product if issues relating to the product ever arise.
Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) is truly a wonderful product that can do great things for your home including insulation, noise reduction, and many more. SPF installation requires the use of specialized equipment and specialized chemicals. This is the reason why it is advisable to use professionals for any kind of SPF insulation.