1What is Icynene Spray Foam Insulation?
Icynene spray foam insulation is an insulation and air barrier material that seals walls, floors and ceiling cavities against air movement, including spaces around electrical outlets and light fixtures and where walls meet windows and doors. Icynene spray foam insulation can provide an effective air barrier insulation to minimize air infiltration through walls and ceilings, preventing drafts, cold spots and energy loss. The performance of Icynene spray foam insulation means that humid indoor/outdoor air is restricted from entering the walls & ceilings and condensing, thereby minimizing the possibility of moisture entrapment & build-up within the wall & ceiling cavities. This is conducive to preventing building envelope failure due to moisture damage. Icynene spray foam insulation products include half-pound open-cell and two-pound closed-cell solutions (for commercial and industrial applications) which can be used separately or in tandem within a project to provide long-term thermal comfort and air sealing. Icynene spray foam insulation products are installed by extensively training and licensed Icynene® contractors only. Icynene® can maintain its installed R-values throughout its service life, contrary to air permeable insulation types that lose their field thermal performance over time due to the deterioration in the insulation quality (compromised &/or shrinking) and ongoing convective current loops within the insulation (up to 50% loss).
2Are there building code approvals?
Icynene spray foam insulation products are extensively tested in a range of different categories including, but not limited to, fire, emissions, sound transmission and energy performance. Icynene spray foam insulation products have been extensively assessed and evaluated by global product approval organizations including the International Code Council Evaluation Service, the Canadian Construction Materials Center and the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials Uniform Evaluation Service. North American evaluation reports for Icynene spray foam insulation products can be found on the following US and Canadian websites: IAPMO UES (link is external) ICC ES (link is external) NRC CCMC (link is external) Additional testing and evaluations have been conducted by the Saskatchewan Research Council, the Institute for Research in Construction, Health and Welfare Canada and the Ontario Ministry of Housing, Materials Evaluation Commission, the NAHB Research Center, the Oak Ridge National Laboratories and the Florida Solar Energy Center. In Europe, Icynene spray foam insulation have been assessed by the British Board of Agrément, ATec: Avis Technique, the EEA: European Economic Area and the VTT: European Technical Approval.
3What are the advantages of using open-cell spray foam?
Typically, buildings expand and contract due to temperature differentials, moisture content, wind load and seismic etc. Closed-cell insulation cannot accommodate the movement of the building. Open-cell spray foam: Provides air sealing benefits in many applications at lower cost Vapor permeability supports bi-directional drying of assemblies – critical in warm climate zones/seasons Flexibility allows it to expand and contract with any movement of the building structure ensuring long term air sealing Water-blown product maintains a lower GWP (GWP 1) than most closed-cell products
4What are the advantages of using Icynene?
For builders, Icynene spray foam insulation can reduce construction time by simplifying the insulation process and minimizing the number of callbacks due to building envelope failure as a result of air borne moisture entrapment and buildup within the cavities. Blower door tests have shown that houses insulated with Icynene and without polyethylene vapor barrier, measure 1.2 ACH @50 Pa. de-pressurization. This is well under the 1.5 ACH @ 50 Pa rating set out for some of the most stringent energy efficient home building programs such as R-2000 in Canada & Building America in US. With Icynene spray foam insulation, heating and cooling costs are typically reduced by up to 50%^ and smaller, less expensive heating and cooling equipment can be used because of the reduced heating and cooling loads. For homeowners, Icynene spray foam insulation offers the opportunity of lower heating and cooling costs from reduced air infiltration and a more comfortable home, draft free without cold spots. Furthermore, Icynene's continuous air barrier capability will significantly reduce unwanted airborne noise from the outside resulting in a quieter interior living space. Proper mechanical ventilation must be provided to Icynene® insulated houses and when merged with an air to air heat exchanger like HRV or ERV, superior air quality can be achieved for a healthier indoor environment.
5What is the composition of Icynene®?
Most Icynene spray foam products do not contain environmentally harmful blowing agents like HFCs, HCFCs or HFAs, in fact most Icynene spray foam insulation products are 100% water-blown making them better for the environment. Organic chemical compounds from petroleum extract are the main source of its ingredients.
6How long does it take to cure?
Spray foam expands up to 100 times its original volume within 4-10 seconds and cures within 24 hours. Independent studies indicate that with 24 hours' active ventilation after spraying is completed, Icynene spray foam insulation is safely cured.
7Does the foam absorb water?
No. However, water can work its way through the foam under pressure or by gravity force. When the foam is placed on water it will float and upon removal it will not contain any water and it does not lose any of its insulating properties. But, if it is immersed under water, water can be forced into the foam by the hydrostatic pressure; however, once it is removed from water and allowed to dry out, the original insulating properties will return.
8Does the Foam entrap moisture?
Icynene’s open-cell spray foam insulation products are vapor permeable to allow water vapor molecules to flow through the foam. This means any moisture in the building's concrete or timber can escape through the insulation as the building dries out, thus eliminating moisture that could cause rot or mould.
9Can Icynene spray foam change physically over time?
No. Icynene spray foam products are chemically inert meaning they will not change chemically or physically over time.
10How environmentally sound is Icynene spray foam?
Icynene spray foams are considered to be an environmentally preferred products due to their air sealing qualities which contribute to improved indoor air quality, reductions in energy consumption as well as greenhouse gas emissions. Icynene is listed in the industry-recognized GreenSpec® Directory and the Green Wizard directory. GreenSpec® products are selected based on independent research which ensures unbiased, quality information.
11What are the flammability and fire-ratings for Icynene products?
Complete details of the Flame Index and Smoke Index of all Icynene spray foam insulation products can be found in each product’s Technical Data Sheet.
12Does Icynene® contain potentially toxic PBDE flame retardants?
No, flame retardants such as PBDE's (poly-brominated diphenyl ethers) are not contained in Icynene's formulations.
13How is Icynene installed?
Icynene foam insulation is installed by fully trained, licensed Icynene contractors who spray the solution into open building envelope such as studded walls, ceilings and floors. The solution can be safely sprayed directly onto electrical and plumbing.
14How long has Icynene been available and in use?
Icynene spray foam insulation has available since 1986. It has been used in excess of 350,000 buildings across North America. It is available in over 30 countries on four continents worldwide. It has been featured numerous times on television programs such as “This Old House” and “Your New House”.
15Are there any electric wiring overheating problems?
No. Icynene spray foam insulation has been extensively tested and found to be safe. It has been safely applied over electrical wiring, as well as plumbing runs, for more than twenty-five years.
16Is the material corrosive to metals?
No. Icynene spray foam insulation is non-corrosive. This has been confirmed by extensive testing undertaken on behalf of Icynene.
17Does Icynene spray foam support bacterial and/or fungal growth?
Icynene spray foam insulation products do not offer any food value, therefore do not support bacterial or fungal growth. Furthermore, it also does not retain water, making it an unappealing environment for fungal spores. University of Texas has done an experiment on mould growth ability on three different insulation types (Icynene, fiberglass with foil face and fiberglass with vapor barrier). Icynene was found to be the best deterrent for mould growth among the types tested.
18What are the acoustic properties?
As an effective air-seal, Icynene’s range of open-cell, light-density spray foam products which eliminates the air gaps through which airborne sound travels. As a result, these spray foams are able to noticeably control mid-range frequencies noise, which includes the most common sounds, the human voice and stereo music. Icynene open-cell, light-density spray foam thereby adds to the acoustic property of the building envelope.
19Is Icynene urea formaldehyde?
No. Icynene is not and does not contain urea formaldehyde.
20Does Icynene® break down or shrink?
No, Icynene foam insulation is stable. It does not shrink. The reaction that creates Icynene foam insulation is irreversible and it cannot break down into its constituent parts.
21What makes Icynene spray foam better than traditional types of insulation such as fiberglass?
Icynene insulates and air-seals to control unwanted random air leakage – which traditional cellulose and fiberglass insulation can’t do without the use of extra sealing materials. Traditional insulations can also leave gaps and seams around electrical boxes or light fixtures (compromising performance), but Icynene fits perfectly around all detailing for a complete air-seal. The result is a healthier and more efficient home.
22Can Icynene insulation improve indoor air quality and comfort?
Icynene seals tiny cracks and penetrations that would otherwise allow unwanted airborne irritants to invade the living space. Home occupants are protected from outdoor allergens, pollutants, and humidity. Icynene makes it easy to get a tight fit around wall openings, such as windows, electrical/cable service entry points, and light fixtures. Icynene’s 100% water-blown light density spray foam makes it an even healthier option for homeowners. Icynene is recommended for spaces occupied by people with allergies, asthma and other particular respiratory issues.
23Can Icynene insulation help control moisture build-up?
Most of the damaging moisture within a building envelope is the result of air movement through the cavities. When warm air meets a cold surface within a cavity, it condenses; and if not found in time, it can lead to mould and rot. Icynene creates continuously insulated, tight walls and ceilings – exactly the leak-free building envelope that is needed to minimize the potential for moisture, condensation and mould. Icynene has been tested and proven not to be a food source for mould.