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Foam Insulation Install

foam insulation

Winterizing a home with foam insulation

In an effort to save on winter (as well as summer) utility bills, our homeowner has decided to have foam insulation blown in the wall cavity of his house. The first step in the process is to remove the vinyl siding so that holes can be drilled to allow for filling the wall cavity with the foam insulation product. Here the workers have removed the vinyl siding at a level about halfway up the interior walls. They chose this level to avoid much of the electrical, telephone and any other wiring which usually resides a bit lower. They also remove siding just below the window to fill the wall cavity at this level.

This house originally had cedar siding. A previous owner had vinyl siding installed. The pink material just below the vinyl siding is foam board which is used as a surface to lay the vinyl siding over. It has a small R value but nothing too substantial.


foam insulation

Winterizing a home with foam insulation

After drilling through the cedar siding, here's a picture of the same area. The workers have already come and blown in the foam insulation. This particular brand of foam insulation expands just a negligible amount so there is no worry about damage to the interior walls because of further expansion. The workers start by injecting the foam insulation down towards the ground and then remove the injection tubing and run it up towards the ceiling and fill the cavity in that manner. Most of the space above doors and windows is taken up by headers and thus there is really no need to insulate the small cavity that may exist in those areas.


Winterizing a home with foam insulation

As you can see there is a lot of prep work involved in adding the foam insulation to the house. Our homeowner discovered that he did actually have some fiberglass insulation inside his walls that rated about an R-10. The foam insulation product rates at about R-4 to R-5 per inch. The foam insulation company's claim is that it is equivalent to about an R-19 rating. The foam (when injected into the wall cavity) simply compresses any previous insulation and fills up the entire wall cavity space. The foam goes around any obstructions in the wall including piping, wiring, etc. The advantage is that it fills the entire space and leaves no uninsulated gaps.

The foam insulation can be used on any type of home exterior including brick, masonry, wood siding, aluminum siding, stucco, and vinyl siding. For brick and masonry, the company drills a hole through the mortar, injects the foam and then refills the mortar. Installation of the foam insulation from the exterior obviously has huge advantages in contrast to installing from the interior of the house.

foam insulation


foam insulation

Winterizing a home with foam insulation

After foam injection, simply install wood plugs and replace siding. Inside this porch, they merely placed some of the white foam insulating product over the plugs. Or I could just as easily have painted over the wood plugs. The homeowner has been pretty happy with insulation results. The house reportedly is less drafty, holds heat much better, and the furnace runs quite a bit less.















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