If you’re considering getting spray foam over this winter, you might be wondering if there are any limits to just how cold it can be to apply spray foam. This is an excellent question because, like all chemical products, the reaction of mixing spray foam will depend partially on the weather. Find out more about when is it just too cold to apply spray foam and what is required to apply it during cold weather.
The Risks of Applying Spray Foam in the Winter Months
Cold weather always deals home improvement projects a harsh blow. Spray foam insulation, especially the closed-cell type, tends to expand differently in very cold weather. This is even more true if it is being applied to metal surfaces. It takes a well-seasoned expert to apply spray foam in temps below 32 degrees. The resin in spray foam is more sensitive in the cold, causing it to become thicker and possibly even freeze. The plastic component does not freeze but it can form crystals and become unusable. Since Chicago winters are well below 40 degrees and can go below zero, does this mean you need to wait until Spring to apply spray foam? Not if you use the experts at Chicago Green!
Tips for Cold Weather Application of Spray Foam
Luckily for Chicagoans, there are winter blends of closed-cell spray foam made to work within very defined temperature ranges. Unfortunately, open-cell spray foam cannot be altered to this degree. This means that, in order to apply foam successfully, ambient air, and substrate temps must be within an appropriate range (at or above 32 degrees and below 19% humidity). At Chicago Green, we can also use portable heaters and indoor heating units to warm up the insulation space and keep it within the proper temperature range until the spray foam is installed, contractors should also plan to have the roof on/ water tight with a temporary furnace using natural gas running full tilt for days prior to install as both temperature and moisture play a role in us being able to successfully install foam. While some contractors will tell you that spray foam can be applied at temps of 5 degrees, at Chicago Green, we want to ensure that our installation is quality and goes off without a hitch. We use heating methods, such as those mentioned above, to keep temps at or above the 40 -degree recommendation.
Can a Metal Structure Be Insulated in the Winter?
If you’ve got a shed, garage, shipping container, warehouse, or other metal structure, insulation is important for keeping your items warm and dry. No one wants to spend money on constructing that perfect storage space for your car or the greatest workshop ever only to find that condensation is causing your pole barn to drip moisture from the roof! Open-cell spray foam is typically used in metal buildings, which means that the building itself will need space heaters to help the substrate temperatures be correct. If you’ve got a metal outbuilding, call Chicago Green to discuss your condensation and temperature regulating issues and how spray foam can work for you.
Which Type of Spray Foam Works Best?
This will depend solely on the application. Closed-cell costs more but it is superior when it comes to resisting heat and moisture. Open Cell is lighter, but it provides protection from mold and offers substantial noise reduction. If you aren’t certain which type would work best for your application, call the pros at Chicago Green today. We will be happy to discuss your need and concerns, as well as answer all your questions.
Doesn’t All This Cost More?
Yes, it does. In the same way that heating your home to 75 degrees will cost more than heating it to 65 degrees, spray foam will cost you a bit more to apply during the coldest winter months. Heaters for the stored product, fuel for heaters, weatherization products, and ensuring that the product gets applied properly all have their costs. We try our best to not pass on any more of the costs of winter installation than necessary because let’s face it, no one wants to pay more than they need to.
The Bottom Line
Spray foam can be installed in nearly all types of weather, even during a cold Chicago winter. There are special requirements to be sure, but the pros at Chicago Green are up to the task!
Why not call us today while you are thinking about it? We will be happy to discuss all your options and answer any questions you may have.
Remember that Comfort is only a FOAM CALL AWAY! 847-987-3626
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