Spray foam insulation has become one of the hottest trends in environmental-friendly living. The EPA and ENERGY STAR Commission have both heaped high praise on this new technology for its ability to keep the temperatures in your home balanced up to 50% better than traditional fiberglass insulation. So as winter rolls around and homeowners are faced with the prospect of expensive heating bills, it’s no wonder many people are turning to spray foam as a way of saving a considerable amount of money.
Spray Foam: Chemicals in Your Home
However, it’s important to recognize the potential health risks that have been associated with this new technology. Spray foam works by mixing two chemicals together in a spray gun and shooting it onto the wood structure of your home, either in your walls or (more commonly) in your attic. When the foam dries, it expands and creates a thick insulating foam that fills in gaps, preventing heat loss through air leaks. Most of the time, high-quality, properly installed foam is harmless, but only once it’s dry.
Potential Health Hazards
Even though you can find DIY spray foam kits at home improvement stores, it’s strongly advised that you leave the installation of spray foam to an experienced professional who has the proper training and safety equipment. While these chemicals are generally harmless when dry, they emit highly-toxic chemical fumes until they are. This is why most installers will require that homeowners leave during the installation process and stay away for at least 24 hours after in order to allow the foam time to dry and the toxic fumes to disperse.
Likewise, spray foam is not easy to properly install. A coat that is too thick may not dry properly, causing the fumes to remain in your walls or attic for more time. For this reason, it is strongly advised that you choose an installer who will give you a written guarantee of removal in case anything goes wrong. Additionally, a reputable installer will generally carry high-quality products. This is important because lower-quality spray foam mixtures have been found in rare cases to have traces of formaldehyde, an extremely harmful toxic substances.
If you have become ill or suffered any other ill health effects as a result of toxic substance exposure, especially after installing spray foam, review your options with a Kentucky personal injury attorney from Bahe, Cook, Cantley & Nefzger. Get legal representation recognized by Super Lawyers magazine in your corner!