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Foam Insulation

Hi, I just bought a house in Brooklyn , NY that was built in 1920. It is a semi attached house so only one side had windows. I'm doing a full gut out job on the house and I wondering about the foam insulation. From what I understand it is an energy saver and its worth spending the extra $$ even though i'm working with a tight budget. IS that true? When I call the Insulation contractors they offer a few different once 1- High Density 2- low density 3- Cellulose. Which one would make more sense? And how do I know what the contractor will be using? Also do i need to use this insualtion on the side that is attached or should i use a diffrent type of insulation to save some $$. And last what is the average price per SF.

Re: Foam Insulation

I had my house spray foamed a couple of years ago and am very happy with the results. The two types of foam the contractor you called are usually referred to as open-cell (low density) and closed-cell (medium or high density). The open-cell provides about the same r-value as fiberglass about r-3.6 per inch but conforms to the wall and thus greatly reduces any drafts coming through the wall. The closed-cell provides around an r-7 per inch and can be used as a vapor barrier and also provides some structural support in that it adds to the shear resistance of a wall. As far as the cellulose that is not a foam but is generally made from re-cycled newspapers that are treated with boric acid to make it flame resistant and the critters don't like it either. Cellulose is usually blown into walls that remain in tact but can be blown onto open walls.

In my house which is about 900 sq-ft I had the exterior walls and roof done with closed cell foam as well as a 400sq-ft garage (walls and ceiling under the attic) for $5300. Its not cheap but if you are going to stay in the house for a while it is definitely well worth it and will pay for itself within a few years.

As far as the attached side you do not need it there but may want to use a sound deadening insulation there. You will know what they are using because it should be written in the contract you get. This can be a very messy job. You should get references and ask people about the reliability, workmanship, and how well they protected the job site from the foam, and how well they cleaned up. This stuff sticks to everything so you don't want it anywhere where it is not supposed to be. Hope this helps you out.


Re: Foam Insulation

Thank you very much for the information. It will definately help me make a decision.


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