Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Importance of the Climate Zone Map

In order to provide the insulation material for your building, the BASF educates contractors to reference the the U.S. Department of Energy's climate zone map. The map breaks the United States up into two main areas: dry and moist, and further breaks it down into eight zones.

Each zone has specific requirements for how spray polyurethane foam should be applied. To spare you with all the technical jargon, SPF is applied differently from one zone to the next, depending upon climates.

"Both open-cell and closed-cell spray foam are air impermeable and can help to reduce energy losses and avoid condensation by increasing the airtightness of the enclosure if the enclosure is properly designed and the spray foam is properly installed. Open-cell foam is vapor permeable so care must be taken in colder climates to minimize the risk of vapor diffusion wetting of the exterior sheathing. Hybrid applications, known as “flashand- batt” or “flash-and-fill” or “combo systems” consist of spray foam against the exterior sheathing covered with a layer of fibrous insulation. Spraying foam directly against exterior foam insulation is also possible as a hybrid approach but care must be given during the foam application process." Spray Foam Guide, Building Science Corporation 2011.

As a performance-based mid-western spray polyurethane roofing and air barrier company we take understanding the reasons behind the different applications very seriously. We are committed to providing our clients with nothing less than an exception final product so continual staff education in SPF design and installation is a priority.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Why Choose Spray Foam?

Our friends at the Spray Foam Coalition provided us with a 2-page document that lists the benefits of choosing spray polyurethane foam (SPF) for your insulation and air sealing barrier needs on walls, roofs and other surfaces. You can download the document from our website or keep reading for the summarized version.

Spray Foam is Energy Efficient
As much as 40% of a building's energy is lost due to air infiltration, gaps, holes and air leaks. Spray foam closes gaps that lets air escape and can reduce utility bills. It also helps your HVAC unit as it maintains an optimal climate in your building, keeping it from working as hard. In fact, a HVAC unit can be downsized by as much as 35% when a building is SPF insulated.

When SPF is applied to the roof of a building, it can provide cool roof performance when topped with a protective, reflective coating. "Cool roofs" are designed to maintain a lower temperature than traditional roofs.
Common air leaks found in most buildings.
Source: 2011 American Chemistry Council, Inc.

Buildings can be sealed with SPF.
Source: 2011 American Chemistry Council, Inc.

Closed-Cell Spray Foam Can Improve Building Strength and Durability
A SPF roofing system is known to have effective lifespans that can exceed 30 years. A professionally applied SPF can create a strong bond to protect the roof and eliminate water seepage through weak spots. It increases a building's resistance to wind uplift, "gluing" the overall building together.

SPF insulation is highly resistant to floodwater damage. It also prevents moisture and condensation throughout the building, helping prevent mold and mildew. When closed-cell is applied in the cavities of walls it increases durability of the wall system because of its ability to conform and adhere to the surface.

Source: Spray Foam Coalition

Monday, February 13, 2012

Top 10 States for LEED-Certified Green Buildings

Back in January, The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) released its 2011 list of top 10 states for LEED-certified commercial and institutional green buildings per capita, based on the U.S. 2010 Census information.

The District of Columbia leads the nation, with more than 31 square feet of LEED-certified space per person in 2011, with Colorado being the leading state, with 2.74 square feet per person in 2011.

Other top states include Illinois, Virginia and Washington, with 2.69, 2.42 and 2.18 square feet of LEED-certified space per person, respectively.

The top LEED states per capita, including the District of Columbia, are Colorado, Illinois, Virginia, Washington, Maryland, Massachusetts, Texas, California, New York and Minnesota.

LEED is the internationally recognized mark of green building excellence, with more than 44,000 commercial projects participating, comprising over 8 billion square feet of construction space in all 50 states and 120 countries.

Most products used by Washington Roofing and Insulation are ENERGY STAR®, LEED, CRRC, Miami - Dade County approved and/or certified. 

Source: Press Release Jan. 19, 2012 by the U.S. Green Building Council