You have already done the research, you know installing spray foam insulation in your home will decrease your energy costs significantly. The attic, crawlspace, and wall cavities have so many gaps and crevices, you shudder to think what creatures have taken up residence there. Like any smart homeowner, you know it is only a matter of time before moisture starts causing a problem. But you are also picky. You want the job done right, not by somebody who doesn't know every corner of the house and who just thinking about staying on schedule and getting to the next job. So why not do the job yourself? After all, that paint job in the bathroom turned out pretty well. Yes, you can do it!
Anyone willing to follow instructions can apply spray foam insulation to their home. Homeowners do not need to bring strangers into the house. Besides, when you hire someone to do a job it is often on their time schedule, not yours. The best part about doing the job is the savings. Purchasing a spray foam kit is far cheaper than having a truck come in and pump up to your attic. So, yes, you can do it!
To further convince you that this is something that virtually anyone can do, here are the basic instructions:
- ensure the tanks are at the proper temperature
- attach the hoses to the tanks
- open the valves
- attach a nozzle to the gun
- spray 2 feet away from the surface in a back and forth motion, beginning with the outer perimeter of the space.
That's how easy it is. See, you can do it!
Now here a few things to remember in order to avoid issues.
Preparation is very important. Follow the instructions included in your kit, but here are a few to get you started. Clear the area of anything you do not want the spray foam to get on. Remove all the old batted insulation. You want to create a complete seal, so this is important. Cover windows completely and thoroughly so the spray does not get on them. It is difficult to get off and may damage the surface.
The tanks can by quite heavy. Plan to do your project when someone else who can help move the tanks is around. The last thing anyone wants is to be is lying immobile with full back spasms in a bed of spray foam insulation.
Cover your entire body with protective clothing. Most kits come with a disposable full body work suite and safety glasses. Do not toss these aside deeming it unnecessary. Spray foam is made from Polyurethane, not a natural substance and thus not meant to be inhaled or ingested. As previously mentioned, it is very difficult to get off of glass, imagine how difficult it is to get out of hair and off skin.
Get yourself a painter's respirator. Especially if you are spraying in an enclosed space. The airborne particles have to go somewhere, and you do not want it to be in your lungs.
Be sure to spray your layer at least one inch thick and no more than 4 inches thick. Too little insulation will not create a sufficient barrier and too thick a layer will mean it does not cure properly.
As with any successful project, the accomplishment is in the method of execution. Research, preparation, and proper application will garner the energy savings you are seeking. So do not be afraid to try installing spray foam insulation yourself! You can do it, and you can do it well.