EnviroGreen Was The First To Say It
For years we’ve continued to hear that open cell should be used under sub-floors of raised homes. Sales people from almost every spray foam company have deceived homeowners, contractors, architects and even engineers (somehow) that open cell is the insulation material of choice for crawl spaces under raised homes. These contractors advertised open cell under sub-floors at the home shows, on the radio, in their marketing literature and every chance they got.
EnviroGreen can proudly say that it is the only local spray foam company that has never marketed and installed open cell in an inappropriate application. In fact, one of the reasons EnviroGreen was started was to educate homeowners as to the proper application of open cell and closed-cell spray foam.
Open cell is fluff. It is an extremely effective air-sealing fluff when installed correctly in its proper application. But, when installed incorrectly or in an application where its is not intended, and is against the manufacturer’s guidelines, it can become a liability.
Why did so many companies encourage open cell in areas where it didn’t belong?
Because closed-cell is so dense the foam contractor gets only a fraction of the coverage that it gets out of open cell. Therefore, the company has to rightfully charge more to squeeze even a small amount of profit out of closed-cell foam in today’s market. As a general rule of thumb most companies try to encourage against the use of closed-cell foam because the profit margin is much lower and therefore a sales person’s commission is greatly reduced.
Please do not take our word for it but lets look at just a few reputable non-profit or non-biased organizations’ publications that explain the most basic building blocks of heat flow, vapor travel and thermodynamics… something we feel all spray foam companies should’ve already known for years. To the right are a few documents that were written and/or endorsed by the following organizations or programs:
Countless universities, utility companies, and non-profit studies report identical results.
Our local LSU Agricultural Center drafted the results from a long-term study performed on several New Orleans and Baton Rouge homes that compared the results of open cell and closed-cell under homes among a couple other insulating methods. For ease of reading we color-coded each insulation product in the study to help summarize the results.
Open cell is a wonderful product as long as it is NOT exposed to outside/ambient elements, NOT in an area where there is high vapor drive, NOT where it may come into contact with water or UV light and not to be installed directly to metal surfaces. We love open cell in walls with a vapor retarder/barrier and in the attic, but not under a house or in a exterior wall where it does not have water or water vapor protection.
One of EnviroGreen’s main objectives from the day it opened its doors for business was to help educate homeowners why open cell should not be installed in most crawl crawl space applications. EnviroGreen was the “odd ball” at the time but, thankfully, much of our competition has finally come around and have stopped proposing open cell under raised houses. Not all have come around yet, however.
Again, we love open cell in the correct application. Open cell foam is a wonderful product for the majority of residential applications. But, it’s not ethical to spray open cell under circumstances that can harm the home and even possibly the homeowners… the most common of these being under open crawl spaces.