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-   -   Foam off-gassing (http://www.diychatroom.com/f103/foam-off-gassing-174487/)

tcleve4911 03-14-2013 08:23 AM

Foam off-gassing
 
I have a customer that's hyper allergenic.
We're adding a kitchen /bedroom addition to a 1950ís home and i want to use foam insulation.
What do I do to help them with their concerns about foam off gassing.
They're concerned it will still off gas even after drywall.

Thanks
Tom

Windows on Wash 03-14-2013 08:44 AM

Spray or Rigid?

If talking about SPF:
- Open cell cures very quickly but they should be out of the home for at least the day following.
- Closed cell can off gas for months after the fact.

If talking about rigid:
- They are all usually cured up pretty solid. The XPS has the most nefarious of the blowing agents and PolyIso and EPS are the lesser of the two evils.

asinsulation 03-14-2013 09:53 AM

maybe lean on the side of caution and look for an alternative to the sprayfoam. Seems like quite a risk to install it given the circumstances.

Windows on Wash 03-14-2013 10:04 AM

+1

I was merely commenting on the inquiry but I do agree. You can do and awful lot with a can of foam for air sealing and some Roxul.

mj12 03-16-2013 08:09 AM

I wonder what exactly they are sensitive to. You could use wool, or this insulatio that is made from old denim jeans. A hyper sensitive person would never do remodeling work in their house. They are going to react to the drywall and the paint, new flooring is the most toxic. They will react to batts as well. The blown in seems to be not so bad. Put that which you are going to use in a pillow case and have them sleep with it, or generally spend sometime with it. Foam imho is toxic stuff, I would never use it. They do market those icf house to chemically sensitive people so you have to wonder. Good luck

rckkrgrd 03-16-2013 12:47 PM

I have to agree with previous posts in that there are practically no new materials that do not off gas to some extent. Some are just worse. Be careful with products made from recycled material. You just don't know what ends up in the mix. My opinion (and that is all it is worth) is that good ventilation and filtration would do the most to alleviate the problem. I have discussed this a little on my blog

beenthere 03-17-2013 11:28 AM

Blown cellulose would also minimize infiltration. Not as well as foam though.

asinsulation 03-17-2013 03:58 PM

must be densepacked though, which is not going to be an easy task for somebody who doesn't do it on a regular basis

gregzoll 03-17-2013 05:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tcleve4911 (Post 1137035)
I have a customer that's hyper allergenic.
We're adding a kitchen /bedroom addition to a 1950ís home and i want to use foam insulation.
What do I do to help them with their concerns about foam off gassing.
They're concerned it will still off gas even after drywall.

Thanks
Tom

The problem is, most of this stuff is in the customer's head, and unless they are really that hyper sensitive to stuff in our environment, I would let them know what the options are, and what the manufacturer info is, regarding material makeup, time to set up.

Most stuff like carpets & batt insulation still contains formaldehyde, which in a very air tight home, would be worse than the foam in the long run. If their place has a way to recirculate inside with outside filtered air, that would be the best way to make sure their home is not going to be holding "bad air", like most office spaces have a habit with.

mj12 03-17-2013 06:14 PM

The problem I have with insulation is many times the guy lowest on the totem pole is made to do it, when really the most skilled trades should be doing the insulation.

gregzoll 03-17-2013 07:05 PM

But also remember, that a lot of utilities will give you a credit, along with the fed's for the insulation work, so your costs would be decreased in the end.

SPS-1 03-18-2013 08:00 PM

Getting back to the OP's original question....
In this situation, you can't generalize. You would have to go to the manufacturer of the particular brand of spray foam that you are considering and ask them about off-gassing. Then also, it would be required that the installation be done exactly to the manufacturer's specifications. I have read about instances where the chemicals have not been mixed properly, and then did not cure ---- resulting in a nastly smell that would not go away.

asinsulation 03-18-2013 10:36 PM

We had the manufacturer mess up on the chemical once. It left a smell like eggs in the home. Had to remove the ENTIRE ceiling and replace.


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