Spray Foam Insulation Costs

Main entry Spray Foam Insulation Costs

Worth the Expense

Spray Foam Insulation is an expensive material but what does it cost – really?

The capital costs of spray foam

A Spray Foam insulation contractor has a significant outlay of capital in order to start his business.  The equipment required includes a proportioner, a generator, an air compressor, drum stick pumps, a refrigerated air dryer, fresh air breathing system (and filters), his hose, guns, tools and a commercial truck to place it all in.  The capital outlay runs from $65,000 – $140,000 for most spray foam trucks.

The cost of raw material

Now that he is ready to start spraying, he needs to buy the raw material that will make your spray foam.  The product alone accounts for more than 50% of the total cost of the project, as opposed to most trades where labor is the expensive part of the equation.  This is the reason that Spray foam insulation is expensive and remains so in spite of new competition entering the market.

Open cell spray foam and Closed cell are very different

Spray foam insulation comes in two types, open cell foam and closed cell.  While they share the same basic ingredients, they have vastly different properties.  Open cell foam rises 120 times its original volume and is light and soft to the touch.  Closed cell rises a mere 30 times its original volume and sets up hard and rigid.  The two are used in very different applications accordingly with open cell foam making a very good sound barrier while closed cell foam is unmatched in its thermal properties.

The cost of Spray Foam for each project is different

There are numerous factors that go into the pricing of a spray foam installation and these cannot all be addressed in this article.  Below you will find benchmarks that will give you rough ideas of the cost to install both open cell and closed cell spray foam insulation.  Factors that will be accounted for include location of job site, size of project, details requiring additional preparation and cleanup, and variations in the specific market place

Open cell spray foam, the numbers

Open cell foam is generally installed to fill the wall cavity and thus the cost depends on the framing you have in your home.  2×6 walls provide a higher R-value at a greater expense than 2×4 walls.  In a 2×4 wall, the cost to install open cell foam will come to not more than $0.80 per board foot and result in an R-value of 13.5.  In a 2×6 wall, this will result in an R-value of 21.  It must be understood that because open cell foam is installed to slightly overfill the wall cavity so that it can then be shaved flush with the wall studs, there is a bit of waste built into the estimate.

Closed cell spray foam costs.

Closed cell foam is generally installed in walls to R20 which does not require the full depth of the wall cavity to achieve – even in 2×4 construction.  For this reason there is no waste materials as a result of this installation.  The cost of closed cell foam is significantly higher than open cell foam, however because it forms an air barrier and vapor barrier there is no need for a 6 mil polyethylene sheet, which saves time and money.  Closed cell foam is installed at a cost of between $1.25 and $1.50 per board foot though there are again factors that will affect this both up and down.

Get a quote from a trusted spray foam contractor

If you are interested in using spray foam in your project, the best course of action is to contact a trusted local contractor and have him come out for a site visit so that an exact quote can be prepared for your job.  You may be surprised at just how affordable spray foam can be.

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