Expanding foam (also known as polyurethane foam) is a useful material for building and DIY projects. It offers both slow rise and fast rise formulas that can expand to fill any holes, cracks and cavities. Expanding foam is a good insulator and is also soundproof and water resistant.
Many modern buildings have cavity walls that require filling in order to offer better insulation for the home. Sound will travel much more clearly through empty cavity walls and damp can form as well. Empty cavities can also encourage pests such as rodents. Expanding foam insulation can be an ideal way to quickly and easily fill cavity walls. You can buy expanding foam for this job in large tanks. You will have to judge the capacity of your cavity walls carefully to make sure you get the right size tank for the job. Typically tanks of expanding form insulation are sold in kits measure in square foot or cubic foot. This will relate to the size of the area they will cover.
Older homes can have a number of drafts which can cause cold spots and dampness. You can use expanding foam to quickly and easily block any small cracks or gaps that are causing the drafts. You can use a handheld tube of expanding foam for these smaller jobs and simply apply the foam where it is needed.
Cracks can appear in the exterior walls of your home and other structures such as garages. You can use expanding foam to seal these cracks and make sure they are watertight. Once the wet foam expands it will then seal and harden quickly. It provides a durable and waterproof seal to the crack and this will prevent water from seeping in to the interior of the building. If you do have any substantial cracks in your walls you will need to seek further advice from a professional surveyor or builder before you continue. This may indicate some more serious problems with the foundations in your home that will need solving quickly.
Using Expanding Foam Sealant
When you are using expanding foam you do need to be careful as this is very adhesive and will stick to anything including carpets, clothing and skin. You will need to put covers over your furniture and carpets if you are using this product inside the house as once it has dried it can be very difficult to remove without damaging the surface underneath. You should also wear protective clothing and gloves to prevent the foam from getting on your clothes and skin. Expanding foam can also give off some harmful gases when it is applied so it is also a good idea to wear a proper face mask and eye protection for this task and keep the room you are working in well ventilated.
Expanding foam is very adhesive but it will not stick well to damp areas or those that are oily or dirty. This actually causes the foam to ‘draw back’ as it is drying. This means you will need to prepare the area you are going to be applying the foam too carefully and make sure it is clean, dry and free from any oily residue.
Expanding foam is a very useful tool for both professional builders and also those carrying out DIY projects in the home. This product offers as fast, effective and affordable way to fill cracks, cavities and holes.