Best Insulation Contractors Saint Joseph MN
With over 140 years of experience between our spray foam insulation contractors, our team dedicates our time in expertly providing energy and healthy indoor air quality solutions to preexisting residential and commercial clients in the Saint Joseph, MN area by using the “Whole House as a System” approach to evaluate your home insulation needs and help save you money on your Saint Joseph home energy bills with quality spray foam insulation.
Local Saint Joseph Area Insulation Contractors
Saint Joseph spray foam is available in two forms:
Open-cell spray foam insulation has tiny cells that are not completely closed and are less dense and filled with air. This gives the insulation a spongy texture and a lower R-value (although it can achieve a greater R-value if not restricted by space). Low-density, open-cell polyurethane foams are similar to conventional polyurethane foams but more flexible.
Closed-cell spray foam is much denser. It has a smaller, more compact cell structure and has a higher R-value per inch. It’s also ideal for achieving a high R-value in narrower spaces.
The History of Home Insulation
Insulation R value guide ratings are used to measure the insulation's ability to resist heat flow. The higher the R value, the better it is expected to perform. Home insulation should be purchased based on the insulation R value guide, and not thickness or weight.
One type of insulation maybe thicker or thinner, but if the R value is the same they should insulate the same. Insulation R value performance testing is done in a 70 degrees Fahrenheit environment with no air movement. However, when you need insulation the most you're generally not in these ideal temperatures or conditions. This can result in the rated house insulation R value being greater than the actual R value. The average recommended R value of insulating material for basement insulation is R-12. The Insulation R value guide in house insulation is a lot lowered when there's any air or water or moisture leakage. The standard R value for house hold insulation varies based on climate and temperature. There are different types of house insulation materials and each one has a different R value.
Protecting your house insulation and keeping your R value high is extremely important for lower utility bills. Water is one of the more important concerns in regards to R value and house insulation. If moisture of any type gets into your house insulation, it lowers the R value. The moisture weighs the insulation down, and as a result it leaves gaps or bare spots. Superseal Dimpled Membrane provides a permanent barrier against water/moisture from entering your home. It protects the home's insulation and its R value by keeping your home dry. Superseal helps protect and increase the life expectancy of your house insulation and its R value.
Approximately 11% of your home is not insulated properly due to wood framing however, wall studs are a fact in home construction. Before you cover up the wall studs, making house insulation diagrams for any future reference is a good idea and saves a lot of headaches. The R values of wood studs act as a type of thermal bridge. The R values of wood can create a what amounts to a cold area in the insulation where the wood stud meets the sheetrock.
The cold spots can lower the effectiveness of the insulation and lower the effective average R values of the whole wall. In addition to the poor R values of wood lowering the R-values of the wall, a cold spot may lead to moisture and condensation problems. Moisture can and will condense through wall studs, which generally have the lowest insulation R values, and other framing materials of the home. If moisture does get into the wall cavity, condensation can occur where the cold R values of wood studs meet the sheetrock.
The R values of wood wall studs are measured in terms of linear inches. However, wooden wall studs generally lower the R values of your insulation. The R values of wood are specified as 1.25 per inch. To help protect against moisture entering your home and further lowering your homes r values, protect your home with Superseal Dimpled Membrane. Superseal provides a permanent barrier around your home and helps protect your homes R values. Just 4% moisture in your insulation could lower its thermal efficiency, in that area, by up to 70%.
It's important to remember when buying home insulation, that the home insulation materials with the highest R value may not be the most cost-effective. When insulating your basement wall to an R value of R-12, it might not cost as much to use 2 layers of home insulation materials with an R-6 R value rating instead of 3 R-4 R value rated home insulation materials. Just because the home insulation is the most expensive, doesn't mean it's the best.
Another home insulation tip is to make sure to buy your home insulation based on its R value not its weight or thickness. Also, if you are installing fiberglass insulation yourself, remember that the fiberglass is made of glass strands. Touching fiberglass insulation material makes you very itchy. This is because the glass breaks into tiny pieces, and gets into your hands or skin. The last and most important tip for home insulation is to make sure to protect your insulation from water and moisture. Just 4% moisture in your insulation can reduce the thermal efficiency, by up to 70%.If you are in your home when the wind is blowing outside and feel a draft, it may be time to think about insulating your house. Sometimes drafts are hard to nail down. Maybe you check around and can't decide if its coming form under the door, from the electrical outlet or around the window. Before the wind gets cold in the winter, consider do it yourself spray foam insulation kits.Spray foam kits are a great idea for use around windows and doors. The foam comes in an aerosol type can with a unique spray nozzle that has an extension of four to six inches. This extension lets the foam be very targeted and get into really small crevices and cracks to get maximum coverage. The foam expands immediately upon contact with the air.But there are some things about the spray foam kits you should know: 1. Know exactly where you want to put the foam before you pull the trigger on the nozzle. Make sure you shake the can and then put the extension exactly where you want to put the foam. It expands very quickly and it is extremely hard to remove if you don't get it in the right place the first time. It is very sticky until it dries. 2. There's not very much in the can. If you a doing a small window with a minor problem, figure on one can. Even a small window may take 3-4 cans if there are lots of gaps that need to be filled. 3. It's not cheap. Each can runs between $3.00-$4.50. That works for a small area, but if you are going through 3-4 cans or more per window, you may want consider a different course of action. Spray foam insulation kits are a great way to conserve energy in homes. It can be a confusing topic, so here are the basics. Up to 70% America's home energy bills are due to heating and However, most of that energy gets wasted, by escaping through basements, attics, even cracks in ceilings, walls or windows. Quality insulation can make heating and cooling your home more cost effective.Foam insulation kits is becoming increasingly popular in green building projects, replacing fiberglass in renovations and new construction. Safe and nontoxic, spray foam meets requirements and specifications because it expands to fill cracks, even in hard to insulate areas around electrical outlets and pipes. Unlike fiberglass, spray foam insulation reduces energy wasting air leaks, noise, pollution, and drafts. By reducing air leakage, spray foam reduces moisture within the walls and ceilings, stopping mold growth.Although the foam is slightly more expensive to install, unless you purchase a spray foam insulation kit. Regardless, spray foam is typically more economical than fiberglass in the long run as homeowners can slice energy bills by up to 30%. If you insulate your homes with spray foam, it will be quieter and more comfortable. It's best to use polyurethane foam as it gives a higher R-value than any other type of insulation.You can purchase a DIY Energy Efficient Home Insulation Kit for $1,369.00. It is a 2 x 602 Foam It Green Polyurethane Spray Foam Kit. It provides approximately 1,000 Square Feet (at 1 inch thickness) + 20% Recommended Overage. Each includes a garden hose looking gun and 15 feet of hose. Sealing and insulating your home is a easy as watering your lawn. There are easy to read instructions and helpful tips. You would also get nozzles, spray fan tips, a Tyvek Suit, gloves and goggles.Step by step instructions to using a foam insulation kit:Put on gloves, safety goggles and suitable clothing or overalls. Set up the valve on tanks facing up and open the top of the carton. Take the gun applicator and hose assembly out of the carton. Through the openings in the back of the carton, connect the hoses to the tanks hand tighten, then tighten thoroughly with a spanner. Slowly open the valve on each tank. Make sure the tanks are fully opened. Check the hose and tank connections for leaks. Fold flaps is you want to close the box.The gun applicator is usually set in the "off" position when manufactured. To unlock, push the switch to the on position. Point the gun applicator into a waste container. Squeeze the trigger all the way. You should see that two strong streams spray come out of the gun applicator. Select a disposable mixing nozzle and line up the slots on the nozzle with the notch on the gun applicator barrel. Push the nozzle onto the notch and twist clockwise to lock in place. Make sure to point the spray nozzle into a waste container. Carefully press the trigger and make sure the chemicals are mixing properly.The foam should be an off-white color, not white or dark brown and should cure to a tack free surface within 30 to 45secs. If the foam is not the right color or is not curing properly, make sure the valves on both tanks are turned fully on and shake the tanks. If the foam is still not curing, contact your supplier. To stop or pause spraying, release the trigger of the gun. If spraying is stopped for 30 seconds or more, remove the mixing nozzle. To restart the spray, place a new or clean nozzle to the gun applicator.Spray foam insulation kits are best used for new construction and renovations after plumbing and electrical work has been done. Spray foam is can be difficult to add once buildings are complete and walls are sealed. However, basements or attics can be redone with spray foam insulation.
Choosing the Best Insulation for Your HomeAlthough spray foam insulation as we know it today truly emerged in the 1980s, spray foam actually has its roots several decades further in the past, beginning with the development of polyurethane foam in the 1940s by Otto Bayer.Otto Bayer, an industrial chemist, actually began working with polyurethane in Germany during the late 1930s. This technology was brought to the United States in the early 1940s by David Eynon, the president of Mobay, a war effort conglomerate created from the partnering of two chemical industry giants, Monsanto and the Bayer Corporation. Although Otto Bayer worked for Bayer Corporation, he was not related to the company's founding family.During the 1940s, polyurethane polymers were used primarily in military and aviation applications. The production of war machines for the World War II conflict drove most of the applications of these high-grade plastic polymers for the duration of the war.It was not until the 1950s that polyurethane began to be used in home insulation. It was the invention of the "Blendometer" that allowed for expansion of polyurethane application to the home insulation realm. The Blendometer was the first machine able to mix components for the creation of polyurethane foam and was created by Walter Baughman in 1953.The Blendometer allowed for the strategic mixing of chemicals to create what Baughman called a plastic elastomer or an expanding foam. Liquid when applied, this plastic elastomer expanded into a thick foam and eventually hardened upon drying.Baughman's Blendometer was still a partially manual process, with humans tilting trays of chemicals to mix foam. While the machine did allow for the use of polyurethane in home insulation as well as in other home-related applications, like air conditioner insulation, it was still a technology in its infancy and one that made widespread use of polyurethane as a residential insulation material no less cumbersome.Polyurethane polymers were used in a variety of means throughout the following decades, with incredible advancements being made in the auto industry applications of the material in particular. However, it would be more than two decades before the foam would become widely used in home insulation processes.Building on Baughman's invention, the first dedicated spray technology machine was constructed in 1963 by Fred Gusmer. The 1960s and 1970s saw technological advancements which made spray foam's use in home insulation more easily achievable and affordable.It was also in the 1970s that the idea of the "super insulated" home emerged. Largely driven by the energy crisis of the 1970s, home builders and homeowners alike began to look for ways to improve the energy efficiency of homes.The crisis fueled advancements in technology that laid the foundation for modern spray foam applications. It was the development of advanced spray nozzle technology that allowed spray foam insulation to be used widely in home construction and improvement projects.The spray foam nozzle allows the foam mixture and the chemical responsible for its expansion capabilities to be separated until just prior to application. The spray foam mixture consists of several key components but it is the expansion chemical, isosynate, which is responsible for its easy application and expansive character.The application nozzle allows the foam mixture and the isosynate to be delivered to the nozzle through separate hoses, mixing only seconds before being sprayed. The spray foam arrives at its destination as a liquid but quickly expands into a foam substance and later dries into a hardened plastic upon curing.The 1980s and early 1990s saw a great deal of controversy within the spray foam insulation industry as different marketing schemes from various companies promoted the benefits of closed verses open foam insulation and as some companies tried to market water blown foam application processes.Though there has been much debate within the industry, R-value standards, used as a measure of determining energy efficiency, have cleared up much of the controversy. R-value ratings clearly define closed foam as the most effective means of making a home as energy efficient as possible.Closed cell spray foam has additionally been added to the list of building requirements for making homes in hurricane and earthquake zones more structurally sound. The improved stability of homes insulated with spray foam technology makes the use of spray foam a smart move for any homeowner regardless of geographic location. Spray foam insulation is a great way to save on your energy bills by making sure that any cracks or gaps in your current insulation are filled to prevent heat escaping. Cracks in attics, walls or any area in your home that leads to the outside can let heat flow directly from the property. Here you are basically paying extra heating bills for essentially no benefit. Because of its ability to insulate even the most difficult areas foam insulation is often used to improve existing insulation as well as in new building projects. It will obviously be better for your home to have this insulation installed from the beginning but an upgrade of older insulation can easily be achieved using this versatile spray.is a cost effective and green solution which will effectively insulate even the most hard to reach areas. It will also keep out water. The foam is applied to any area and will then expand within a few minutes to provide a complete seal. The money saved over the long term will far outweigh the higher installation costs associated with foam insulation.Kits which can be operated by a home owner are purchased for less than $2000. They will be sufficient to complete any small insulation project in your property. Instructions are included along with all of the necessary hardware so this one investment will be all that is needed for you to begin saving money immediately. Can you afford not to make it?You will need to take safety precautions when using kits including wearing protective eye wear, gloves and overalls. The procedure will be safe as long as the manufacturer's instructions are followed carefully. The instructions will contain details of how the foam should be applied along with what kind of performance you can expect from it. The procedure generally involves a quick set up of the equipment followed by aimed spraying. The foam will then dry and turn solid within minutes so you can see the results straight away. The procedure is easy to follow even when insulating areas which would usually prove difficult. This is possible without any real issues due to the foam expanding and filling even the smallest gaps once it has been sprayed. As long as you are able bodied and capable of aiming the nozzle at any area which requires insulation then the process should be a satisfying one for you.
Home insulation is important for houses in this age of high energy cost. Home insulation helps to reduce the cost of utility bill in terms of low energy usage. Moreover, it also boosts the values and livability of houses. Therefore, home insulation is especially a must for houses that are more than 10 to 15 years old which tend to be not insulated when they were built 10 to 20 years ago. Even if they were insulated at that time of construction, the insulation technology or the material might not be as good as today's technology. Therefore, it's better for you to replace or remodel the insulation if they were installed a decade ago.
The first step to installing home insulation is to identify areas of the house that need to be insulated. The general guideline here is to look at places where there is contact or leak between the interior of your house and the outside world. A good example of this scenario will be the window. During the winter, when you open the window, you can feel the cold air from outside tends to rush into the house. It's the same in the summer where the heat will enter the house once the window is open. When this situation happens, heat loss or heat gain is occurring.
One thing to remember is that heat exchange is not restricted to just the window and the door. It also happens at places that are intact such as the wall, ceiling and the roof. Even though the wall, ceiling and the roof is a poor conductor, heat loss and heat gain will still occur. If there is a crack in the wall or a hole in the ceiling, heat loss or gain will be accelerated at a faster rate. Therefore, we need insulation to reduce or better eliminate completely the rate of heat loss and gain. With that being said, areas such as the walls, ceiling, basement, attic and the roofs are the critical areas that require to be insulated.
Once you have determined the insulation areas, next step is to choose the insulation material and types of insulation. Some common insulation materials that are affordable to most households are fiberglass, wool, paper, wood and cotton. The more expensive material is the popular polyurethane that is used in spray foam insulation. The polyurethane can cost up to several times more than the conventional materials such as fiberglass, wool and cotton. New and non-conventional insulation materials are being developed constantly in the market.
The good things about these newly developed insulation materials are most of them are made from recycle materials and are absolutely environmental friendly. With the advance of technology, scientists are constantly developing materials that are non toxic, water resistance and fire proof. One good example of a sophisticated insulation material is the one developed by Warmcel which is made of 100% recycled newspaper. Another one is the glass wool developed by Earthwool which is made of recycled glass and sand. One good example of non-conventional and environment friendly spray foam which is made from recycled plastic materials and renewable soy oils is developed by Heatlok Soy.
To recap on the importance of home insulation, houses that were not constructed with insulation installed are encouraged to be reviewed by contractors or better yet perform a home energy audit to check on the amount of energy that can be saved with insulation installed. Insulation not only preserves the limited non-renewable resource with the use of more environment friendly and recycled materials, it also boosts the sale value of the houses and makes the occupants comfortable.