6 Commonly Asked Questions About RetroFoam
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, high-performance insulation is one of the best investments you can make in your home. Quality insulation can help to reduce your home’s heating and cooling usage and costs throughout the year.
Most homeowners don’t realize that your energy costs can still soar even if your attic is well-insulated when other areas, like your exterior walls, have inadequate insulation. At Budget Exteriors in Minnesota, we help homeowners insulate their exterior walls with RetroFoam injection foam insulation. To schedule your insulation upgrades, give us a call today!
In this post, we’re breaking down everything you need to know about RetroFoam and answering some of the most common RetroFoam questions.
1. How is RetroFoam different from other types of insulation?
Most homes have a traditional approach to insulation, such as cellulose or fiberglass. However, if you are looking for a less toxic and more energy-efficient alternative, RetroFoam may be ideal.
RetroFoam is a non-toxic, odor-free, tripolymer-based resin foam insulation that creates an air seal inside your home’s exterior walls when injected into them. The resin gets mixed with water and a foaming agent, resulting in a finished RetroFoam product that looks like shaving cream.
RetroFoam is similar to spray foam in that installation involves spraying foam into open cavities and exposed walls. However, RetroFoam can also be installed into existing walls outside of a home and spray foam is sprayed into open cavities like attics, crawl spaces, basements, or the exposed walls of a commercial building.
The shaving cream consistency of RetroFoam easily spreads around pipes and wires to completely fill the wall cavity for an airtight insulation fill, which makes it much more effective than traditional alternatives.
2. How does RetroFoam work?
Traditional insulation, such as cellulose and fiberglass, will sag, settle, shift, and lose its shape over time. RetroFoam maintains its shape through the years thanks to its unique composition.
RetroFoam, as mentioned, completely fills the nooks and crannies in the wall. RetroFoam is a high-performance insulation that impacts both the convection and conduction of heat through your walls.
Convection is the airflow throughout the walls, while conduction is the transfer of heat; each of these plays a significant role in the energy efficiency of your home. RetroFoam creates an air seal that reduces air leakage.
Added heat flow resistance helps your home maintain a constant temperature, so your HVAC unit won’t have to work as hard!
3. What happens during installation?
RetroFoam is installed without the need for drywall removal or repairs. If there is a lot of loose cellulose in your walls, this will be removed during the installation process before injection.
The exact installation process also depends on the type of siding that your home has. Aluminum and vinyl siding will require you to drill holes periodically around the house. Then, we’ll inject RetroFoam into the cavity, plug the hole, and replace the siding.
If your home has a brick exterior, we’ll drill through the mortar joints between studs and then re-mortar once the project is completed.
If you then have a home with wood siding, there may be one of two processes. When siding can be easily removed, RetroFoam will be installed in the same manner as aluminum or vinyl siding. If the wood siding cannot be removed, installation will involve drilling holes through the siding to inject foam. The filled cavities are closed with wood plugs.
4. Is RetroFoam fire-safe?
Regarding home building materials like roofs, siding, and insulation, fire safety is measured in terms of fire rating. While RetroFoam isn’t fireproof, it won’t behave as a catalyst for spreading fire as a Class 1 fire-rated product. Fire rating looks at how smoke develops as well as how fast a fire spreads using a universal standard. A Class 1 rating is the best possible rating a product can be given.
One of the critical differences between RetroFoam insulation compared to other types of insulation is that RetroFoam doesn’t require additives to achieve its high level of flame resistance.
Fiberglass, cellulose, and other types of insulation frequently do require additives to meet fire safety standards. However, with RetroFoam, the product will extinguish itself once the flame is removed from the wall.
5. Does RetroFoam help to dampen sound?
When you can hear every little sound from outside through your thin walls, getting a good night’s sleep can feel like an Olympic event. One of the key benefits of updating a home’s insulation is a quieter home.
In many homes, the building materials that make up the walls and structure of the building can help to transfer sound. Unfortunately, whether it’s the sound of a train, noisy neighbors, TV from the next room over, or groaning pipes, a poorly insulated home can be anything but peaceful.
While RetroFoam isn’t wholly soundproof, it can help dramatically improve the sound levels inside your home.
6. What is the R-value of RetroFoam?
When you’re looking at insulation, one of the most important factors is R-value. A product’s R-value refers to its ability to resist the transfer of heat through conduction, also known as thermal resistance.
For example, closed-cell spray foam has an R-value of R-6 to R-7, foam board has an R-value of 4.5 to 5, and loose fill fiberglass batts have an R-value of R-2.2 to R-2.9.
RetroFoam injection foam boasts an R-value of between R-4.6 and R-5.
However, although R-value refers to conduction, spray foam also prevents heat transfer through convection and radiation, so looking at R-value is only part of the equation.
Install Foam Insulation With Budget Exteriors
Are you ready for an insulation upgrade? Whether your home is just too loud or you’re tired of drafty walls and outsized energy bills each month, our insulation pros at Budget Exteriors can help. Call to connect with our Budget Exteriors insulation installers at 952-887-1613, or contact us online and get your free quote today.