How Eco-Friendly is Polyurethane Foam?

Polyurethane foam has been making strides in the construction industry over the past 70 years. The material has been recognized for its comfort-improving properties in indoor areas, which is why polyurethane foam is used today to construct new homes, renovate old houses, and retrofit specifications.

Developments in this technology have led to a brand new variant called spray polyurethane foam, aka SPF or spray foam. Unlike its older cousin who has dimensions and requires physical installation, spray foam is packed in an aerosol form that can be sprayed onto surfaces quickly and easily, rapidly spreading out from 20 to 120 percent larger than its liquid form.

As an aerosol, spray foam maintains its rigidity, lightness, flexibility, wind resistance, and temperature regulation capabilities. How eco-friendly is polyurethane foam? Here are four interesting facts to explain why.

It Lowers Environmental Impact

The U.S. Spray Polyurethane Foam Alliance (USSPFA) proved spray foam’s lower environmental impact. According to the results, spray foam regained its production energy in one to two years and greenhouse gas emissions within nine months to eight years. This meant the material brought down carbon emissions in 60 years!

From a construction perspective, spray foam conserves physical energy and reduces carbon emissions because it requires fewer resources and manpower to apply them. They can be transported in smaller vehicles and need zero repeat trips for assembly.

It Is Renewable

Spray foam can be reapplied when the material wears out after two decades! Homebuilders usually coat a roof with the material to prevent ponding water through an even surface. It is also used for additional U.V. protection.

Coating companies provide customers with extended warranties after every re-coat, ensuring a renewable roof system that’s quickly restored.

It Is Easily Installed

Here are several interesting facts about its easy installation:

  • Many spray foam coatings/re-coatings do not involve replacing roof panels.
  • Spray foam coatings/re-coatings are in aerosol form and can, therefore, cover an entire roof’s surface area.
  • Spray foam requires less manpower and equipment to deploy compared to traditional roofing systems and polyurethane foam materials.

As such, spray foam projects can take as little as a day or even less. Interruptions to your home’s or business’s day-to-day activities are minimized while labor costs are maximized.

It Is A Seamless Material

Traditional polyurethane foam comes in bulky rolls that are cut into individual membranes. Coating companies do this to customize the areas where the material will be fastened by an adhesive.

The danger of these strips and membranes is their tendency for the adhesives to wear out, creating one or more gaps in the foam. When this happens to a roof or a ceiling, leaks and other elements seep through and damage the surface.

Adhesives wearing out also causes unsightly bumps and gaps on the surface, making the whole foam coating uneven. In these cases, all or most foam panels are removed and replaced with new membranes and held together by a new adhesive.

This is not the case with spray foam. Much like spray paint on a canvas, an entire can of spray foam can be spread onto a surface seamlessly. If one can is not enough, more can be used to achieve a symmetrical coating. Coating manufacturers repeat this simple, seamless process every 10 or 20 years.

A Final Note

Your home, community, and environment will greatly benefit from a spray foam coating on your roof, ceiling, or other surfaces. As mentioned above, it is an energy-efficient, money-, and time-saving application that protects your building from the elements and reduces carbon emissions for a greener earth.  

Talk to us at American Foam Experts to find out how to apply spray foam to your home. We’re the leading family-owned spray foam roofer that’s customized to reduce your energy costs all year round!