ASK THE EXPERT: What differentiates one rigid foam insulation from another?

Originally posted in American School & Hospital Facility e-Newsletter, July 2014 “Ask the Expert”

Q: What differentiates one rigid foam insulation from another? Building design and construction professionals can select from several rigid foam insulations, all of which perform well in helping buildings retain or keep out heat.  Yet, there are important factors to consider when evaluating some of the primary rigid foam products, like expanded polystyrene (EPS), extruded polystyrene (XPS) and polyisocyanurate (polyiso). Beyond product chemistry and manufacturing methods, two of the key differences among these materials are:

  • Insulating performance per unit of measure, and
  • Long-term thermal resistance (LTTR).

Insulating performance per unit of measure A common way to compare various insulations is R-value per inch. While such a figure demonstrates a material’s physical ability to impede heat transfer, it is of limited use when specifying insulation since performance vs. cost is the real driver in many architectural product decisions. To use a cliché, “what’s the bang for the buck?” If one looks at the R-value obtained per dollar spent, EPS rates highest. This property becomes more important once designers realize that insulation suffers from the ‘law of diminishing returns’ – additional insulation, beyond a design optimum, results in a very small net increases in energy savings.

Long-term thermal resistance (LTTR) Specifiers often focus on an insulation’s published R-value, yet might not realize that this figure is the initial value at time of manufacture. Many insulations are subject to R-value degradation over the product’s time in service. This is crucial as a drop in performance over time means higher heating and cooling costs over the life of the building. EPS is one of the few rigid foam insulations with a stable thermal resistance throughout its life. In other words, the published R-value of EPS does not decrease over time, compared to other rigid insulations that typically lose up to 20% or more of their insulating capacity during time in service. The reason some rigid foams have declining R values is they use blowing agents that enhance the initial R-value, but diffuse over time and are replaced with air. A simple way to check for this is to review product warranties, which will confirm a stable or declining R-Value over time. EPS manufacturers warrant a stable R-value.

Other factors The degree to which an insulation absorbs water impacts its thermal performance. Compared to some other insulations, rigid foams as a class resist moisture well. However, one misconception is that EPS readily absorbs moisture. However, when one considers that the material is commonly used in food packaging, it’s clear that moisture absorption is actually quite low. This has been demonstrated in real-world and laboratory tests comparing moisture absorption rates. For example, side-by-side testing of EPS and XPS as below grade insulation on a building foundation in St. Paul, Minnesota, showed that EPS outperformed XPS. When the two insulations were removed after being buried under soil for 15 years, the EPS had 4.8% moisture content by volume compared to 18.9% for the XPS. After 30 days of drying time, the EPS moisture level dropped to 0.7%, while the XPS continued to hold 15.7% moisture. These days, design professionals are focusing more on the ‘life-cycle’ effect of moisture on insulation, namely the ability of an insulation to not only resist moisture, but also to readily release any moisture it absorbs. Over dry/moist cycles that grade-application insulations are commonly subjected to, EPS has shown to be the most optimum performing, through its ability to retain the least amount of moisture among rigid insulations. This helps EPS provide a higher R-value over moist-dry cycles that characterize below-grade applications.

Product make-up and applications EPS, XPS and polyiso can all be used throughout the building envelope – roofs, walls and below-grade – in buildings of all sizes and types. The three insulations are recognized as follows:

  • EPS is typically white and comes in blocks and panels of various sizes and can be faced or unfazed.  Facers enhance physical properties like R-value, fire and moisture protection
  • XPS products are commonly offered as pastel or primary colored foams, depending on the brand.  The product is most commonly available as board stock of fixed size and thickness.
  • Polyiso insulation panels are comprised of foam sandwiched between two facers.

Cost-saving insulation approaches As with other commercial and institutional buildings, in healthcare and educational facilities project teams can minimize rigid foam insulation material and labor costs through careful product specification. Following are two simple ways to help keep insulation costs down.

Better targeting of compressive strength

Insulation manufacturers sometimes market high compressive strength to distinguish their products. As a result, rigid foam insulation is often over-engineered in under-slab and roof applications. Readily available EPS options run up to 60 psi in compressive strength, and are strong enough for almost all building envelop applications. A testimony to EPS’s compressive strength is its use in applications in roadways and structural earthworks as geofoam, which are specified under ASTM D6817 with tighter tolerances than traditional below-grade insulation applications. The cost of using a higher strength insulation than the application requires, can be substantial. For example, specifying a 100 psi XPS product in a below-grade application when a 40 psi EPS product would suffice, can almost double the material cost.

Simplified installation with tapered roof blocks

Building professionals often create positive slopes on flat roof deck assemblies using insulation. Because they are only available in relatively thin sheets, most rigid foam insulations require stacking several layers to build up the desired slope, costing a lot of labor time and material. EPS, on the other hand, is available in individual tapered panels up to 40 inches thick. Some manufacturers have the ability to pre-cut EPS blocks into any slope 1/16 inch or greater and in virtually any custom shape to accommodate roof crickets, saddles, valleys, and ridges, along with all types of drainage systems and layouts. Since fewer separate pieces are needed, building up a slope with tapered EPS blocks requires less on-site material handling and cutting and thus installs much faster. Using tapered EPS can reduce roof insulation costs up to 30% compared to other rigid foam products.

Composite insulation

EPS and polyiso are commonly used in many roofing assemblies, and now manufacturers are producing composite panels that combine these two materials. The EPS provides a lightweight, insulating and resilient foam insulation, while the polyiso serves as an insulating cover board for enhanced durability. Some composite products, such as the InsulFoam® HD Composite panel, carry a UL Class A fire rating for both combustible and non-combustible decks, and are compatible with a range of roofing membranes – including EPDM, TPO, PVC, CSPE, and low-sloped, built-up and modified bitumen membrane systems. As many low-rise healthcare facilities and some schools have wood roof decks, such rated products provide an easy-to-install insulation for fire-rated assemblies.

EPS QUESTIONS?

Ram Mayilvahanan

Ram Mayilvahanan

Contact Ram Mayilvahanan, Insulfoam’s Product-Marketing Manager

Project Profile: A Missouri Hospital Builds Stronger with EPS

A Montana

A Missouri hospital rebuilds stronger after a tornado largely destroyed most of the health care facility.

Mercy Hospital  |  Joplin, MO.  |  View Project Profile (pdf)

After a force five tornado destroyed St. John’s Regional Medical Center on May 22, 2011, the Joplin, MO. hospital rebuilt with a new stronger facility designed to stand up to devastating wind forces.  After the destruction, architects and engineers analyzed how the nine-story structure reacted to the storm.  Today, a new facility stands stronger with a big tornado in mind….Mercy Hospital.

One of the largest changes to the hospital was the roof in an effort to harden the hospital’s building envelope.  More than any other part of a building, its roof system components must complement each other.  Insulation is a crucial component, because it contributes to a roof system’s thermal performance and overall durability while providing a substrate for the roof membrane.  Tapered Insulfoam was used to help the new hospital roof combat strength, water absorption, stability, stable R-Value and excellent performance.

By using Insulfoam 15″ InsulRoof Taper EPS as part of the roof system on the new hospital, the resulting structure is 30% STRONGER than the requirements for the old hospital.

THE PROBLEM

In the old facility, the design team learned that the metal with insulation on top was removed by the tornado and exposed the inside of the building.  The roof is all concrete decks with a double roof system and a waterproof membrane.  The result, if the hospital loses the roof system, there will still be a watertight and concrete-sealed building.

THE SOLUTION

Mercy

Mercy Hospital, Insulfoam EPS installation

Pre-cut tapered EPS blocks were used to increase roof slope for additional drainage, while offering a long term, stable R-Value, excellent dimensional stability, compressive strength and water resistant properties that meet or exceed the requirements of ASTM C578.  The thick blocks can be factory-cut into single-layer tapered pieces that eliminate the labor of stacking multiple insulation panels.  Tapered EPS can be adapted to accommodate any roof drainage system and roof configuration.

Labor Savings:  There are no complicated filler panel systems.  Tapered InsulFoam can be installed in a single layer for thicknesses up to 40″, making it significantly more cost effective than comparable rigid-insulation tapered systems.  The ultra lightweight nature of Insulfoam EPS further allowed for fast installation.

Promoted Positive Drainage:  Tapered InsulFoam is the ideal insulation for both new construction and re-roofing projects in which positive slope is desired or ponded water is a concern.

Hospital rebuilding

Mercy Hospital, Insulfoam EPS installation

Environmentally Friendly:  100% recyclable if ever removed or replaced.

Stable R-Value:  EPS’s thermal properties will remain stable over its entire service life.  There is no thermal drift, so the product is also eligible for an Insulfoam 20-year thermal performance warranty.

Proven Performance:  The same fundamental EPS chemistry has been in use since the mid-1950’s so the actual performance of the product is well known.

Water Resistance:  Tapered Insulfoam does not readily absorb moisture from the environment.

Code Approvals:  Tapered Insulfoam is recognized by the ICC-ES, and has numerous Underwriters Laboratory and Factory Mutual approvals.

 

 

Product Feature: Durable, Energy-Efficient Composite Insulation

HD Composite

InsulFoam HD Composite

InsulFoam HD Composite roof insulation system combines lightweight EPS with high-density polyisocyanurate for use in adverse weather.

FULL PRODUCT DATA SHEET

Our composite insulation panel is ideal for new or retrofit roof systems requiring resistance to misuse, abuse and sever weather.  The HD Composite panel is a closed-cell, extremely lightweight and resilient EPS foam factory bonded to high-density polyisocyanurate cover board.  The factory laminated composite insulation provides significant field labor savings, a cover board offering high compressive strength (100 psi), and high thermal efficiency that is not available with traditional foam insulation.

InsulFoam HD Composite, Product Data Sheet

InsulFoam HD Composite, Product Data Sheet

Substantially less expensive than similar Iso composite products, the lightweight InsulFoam HD composite insulation system makes an entire fully adhered single-ply roof system more resistant to abuse.  Widely compatible with a range of roofing membranes – including EPDM (M-class rubber), TP (thermoplastic polyolefin), PVC (polyvinyl chloride), CSPE (chlorosulfonated polyethylene), and low-sloped, built-up and modified bitumen membrane systems – it is also a suitable insulation underlayment for metal roofing.

The product has a full array of UL approvals, and is available in standard 4′ x 8′ panels, with thicknesses ranging from 1.5″ to 7″.  We also produce custom lengths and widths with little or no impact on lead time.

“InsulFoam HD Composite insulation brings together the best features of two leading roof insulation materials for an extremely competitive price.  The R-values of the EPS remain stable over time for exceptional long-term insulation, and the polyiso caps that off with additional insulation and a protective layer.  The product is substantially more lightweight than gypsum and OSB for fast install, while standing up to abuse.  It provides long-lasting, energy-efficient roof insulation in a range of harsh climates.”  – John Cambruzzi, Regional Sales Director

 

FULL PRODUCT DATA SHEET

 

Boosting Thermal Performance For A Reroof

Originally printed in Today’s Facility Manager Magazine, January/February 2014

Article (pdf)

Today's Facility Managers, Jan/Feb 2014

Today’s Facility Manager, Jan/Feb 2014

As with new construction, the insulation chosen for a reroofing project can mean a difference of tens of thousands of dollars in material and labor.  With the range of rigid foam insulation products available, it is possible for facility managers (fms) to reduce costs substantially without sacrificing thermal performance.  The key is understanding product options for insulation, and the physical properties of these options.

Many reroofing jobs involve a recover of an existing metal roof.  While fms can save labor and disposal costs by leaving an existing metal roofing in place, the standing seams make it difficult to create a smooth surface for the recover.  One solution can be found with flute-fill EPS (expanded polystyrene) insulation.  A number of rigid foam insulation manufacturers offer these products to fit the spaces between a metal roof’s flanges.  And an advantage of EPS over other insulations is that it can be custom cut to fit any profile or size of flute, with high compressive strength products also available for use in high traffic conditions.

As these flute-fill insulations are light-weight and fit accurately into the flute, roofing crews can readily lay such products into a metal roof’s channels, providing a stable, even base for additional roof layers.  And because the flute-fill insulation fills the flutes completely, heat transfer into or out of a building is blocked.

Another common challenge of reroofing is the need to install a large quantity of smaller insulation boards over the existing roofing.  This can be labor-intensive as crews must carry and place many separate boards.  One way to alleviate this is to use fanfold panel bundles.  Economical, code approved EPS fanfold bundles are available in accordion style sets.  By working with these bundles, crews can handle more material faster.

Such products also help prevent thermal leakage by avoiding multiple joints.  Further, fanfold products come with polymeric and metalized faces that provide enhanced moisture protection.

Another area where the choice of insulation can dramatically impact a reroofing budget is the conversion of a flat deck to a positive sloped roof.  In such cases, the slope is often built up with insulation.  Since most rigid foam insulation is available in sheets no more than a few inches thick, achieving the necessary slope can require stacking numerous sheets on top of one another.  EPS insulation is available up to 40″ thick and can be pre-cut to virtually any slope.  Such tapered EPS can reduce roof insulation costs up to 30% compared to other tapered rigid foam products, through material, labor, and also adhesive or fastener savings.

Insulation choice also impacts a facility’s energy efficiency year after year.  Often, manufacturers report only the initial R-value, when the product comes out of the factory.  However, many rigid foam insulations use blowing agents that boost initial R-value, but diffuse over time, losing up to 20% of the initial R-value while in service.  Fms should look at long-term R-value to ensure there is no thermal loss.  In the realm of rigid foams, EPS offers high insulating R-values.  And engineered EPS is a stable non-degrading product, which leads many manufacturers to provide a long-term warranty of the product’s full R-value.

Article (pdf)

EPS QUESTIONS

Contact Ram Mayilvahanan, Insulfoam’s Product-Marketing Manager

Roof Assembly Insulation: The Case for EPS

Originally printed in Architectural Products Magazine, On Spec, Insulation, Nov 2013

Read full article (pdf)

Architectural Products, Nov 2013

Architectural Products, Nov 2013

Design professionals typically want to use as much insulation as possible, not only to comply with building codes, but also to build to the highest standards.  Building owners want enough insulation to keep heating and cooling costs down, without having to ‘pay through the roof’ in upfront costs.  Performance vs. cost:  where is the middle ground that makes sense for both parties?

To answer that question, it is important to look at how insulation is designed.  For many years, the use of rigid foam insulation was based not the R-value per inch – the higher the better.  Today, well-informed design professionals are cognizant of the design optimum and the realization that insulation suffers from the law of diminishing returns.  Any insulation installed beyond the design optimum provides little additional energy savings, but costs a lot of money.  Efficient insulation design comes down to choosing the product that balances upfront costs with the energy savings offered over the life of the building.

So, which insulation gives the best ‘bang for the buck?’  To understand performance vs. expenditure across different rigid insulations, it is important to consider the R-value per dollar spent on both materials and labor.

Because material and labor costs for insulation vary by market, specific R-value per dollar figures often shift, but EPS consistently rates highest when compared to other rigid foam insulations.  Also, EPS comes in much higher thicknesses (up to 40 in.) in a single-layer than does XPS or polyisocyanurate, so higher R-values can be achieved with fewer layers, lowering on-job labor time and cost.  Plus, EPS does not suffer any loss in R-value over the life of the building, so the design R-value for EPS is the long-term R-value.

With that in mind, here are some increasingly popular applications in which design professionals use EPS to comply with building codes while reducing material and labor costs for roof insulation.  Read full article (pdf) to learn more about:

  • Roof recovers requiring a separator board
  • Metal roof recovers
  • Bilt-up sloped roofs
  • High-traffic areas
  • Comparison of common rigid foam insulations

“In the end, the right insulation product is the one that offers the optimum balance of performance and economy.  Such a product satisfies both the design professional and the building owner, leading to a building that is code compliant, built to high performance standards and economical enough to deliver lifetime energy savings that justify the upfront costs.”

Thermal Loss Thwarted

Originally printed in Architectural Products Magazine, Features Special Report, Insulation, Nov 2013

By:  Alan Weis, Contributing Writer

INSULATION- APPLIED AND INSTALLED PROPERLY- CAN BE AN INTEGRAL MEASURE IN CREATING AN EFFECTIVE AND EFFICIENT ENVELOPE.

FULL article (pdf)

Architectural Products, Nov 2013

Architectural Products, Nov 2013

When it comes to insulation, R-value- the measure of thermal resistance – seemingly rules.  In other words, the higher the R-value the better the thermal resistance.  But there’s more to the story than that according to industry experts.  “An insulation product’s R-value is only a starting point for understanding how well it works, says James Hodgson, general manager for Premier SIPS.

In fact, Hodgson says it’s crucial to evaluate the whole-wall R-value of the assembly, since the insulation is only one part of creating a tight, well-insulated envelope.  For example, he claims DOE research shows that a 4.5-in. structural insulation panel (SIP) wall rated at R-14, out-performs a 2×6 stud wall with R-19 fiberglass insulation.  “It comes down to significantly less air leakage, thermal bridging and convective looping for a better performing assembly,” says Hodgson.

Insulation, unfortunately, is too often treated as an afterthought, as Hodgson says it ends up getting fit around the structural systems instead of being an integral part of them, making it difficult to seal leaks.  SIPs, he notes, address this by incorporating both in one assembly.

NOW VS. LATER

Longevity is another consideration when it comes to R-values.  “It’s common for building professionals to look at R-value per inch at the time of installation, “says Ram Mayilvahanan, product marketing manager with Insulfoam.  “Yet, it makes more sense to evaluate insulation’s long-term thermal performance and the return on investment.”

R-tech

Insulfoam EPS insulation not only offers a high initial R-value, it also doesn’t lose R-value with time.

His company manufactures HD composite roof insulation, which bonds expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam to a high-density polyiso cover board, a combination that has high thermal efficiency and provides significant field labor savings.  Plus, Mayilvahanan says it can be used to achieve UL Class A fire ratings on combustible roof decks without the use of gypsum or other cover boards.

“Many rigid foam insulations experience thermal drift, which is a loss of R-value over time as insulating gases within them dissipate and are replaced by air,” Mayilvahanan continues.  “Some materials lose up to 20% of their insulating capacity during their time in service.”  One the other hand, EPS insulation, he explains, not only offers a high initial R-value, it also doesn’t lose R-value with time.  And, it can be used in wall, roof, below-grade and under-slab applications.

Continue to read FULL article (pdf) where further insulation consideration and types are described by industry experts.

“The push toward comprehensive green design has raised awareness that many building systems must work together for optimum performance,” says Mayilvahanan.  “It’s not just insulating the structure appropriately, but also right-sizing the HVAC systems and educating owners and occupants on how to operate the building for high energy efficiency.”

 

More info on Insulfoam:  Website  |  Read blog articles  |  Follow on LinkedIn

More info on Premier SIPs by Insulfoam:   Website  |  Read blog articles  |  Follow on LinkedIn

 

Product Feature: Code Approved, High Performance Metal Flute-Fill Insulation

InsulFoam Flute Fill

InsulFoam Flute Fill

Insulfoam FL (Flute Fill) is a custom-cut, high performance insulation for standing seam metal roofs in need of insulation and a roof membrane.  Insulfoam FL is versatile enough to be used across any metal deck (24 /26 ga) and can be combined with a variety of Insulfoam insulation products to build a code-approved metal-retrofit system.

InsulFoam FL can be taper-cut or square-cut to fit the metal roof system’s flutes, and can be designed to fill virtually any profile of the existing metal roof.  It comes in multiple thicknesses, widths and compressive strengths and can also be customized with taper or bevel-edges to provide a continuous seam over the flute.

ADVANTAGES

  • Versatile:  InsulFoam FL can be manufactured in a range of sizes, densities, thicknesses and profiles to meet any job-specific needs.
  • Cost-Effective:  InsulFoam FL reduces concerns with flute span ability and minimizes the need for additional insulation.  Minimizing the use of insulation above the flutes also redoes the possible need to raise curbs and other rooftop units.
  • Environmentally Friendly:  InsulFoam FL contains no formaldehyde or ozone-depleting CFCs or HCFCs, contains recycled material, and is 100% recyclable if ever removed or replaced.
  • Stable R-Value:  Designers are well served knowing the product’s thermal properties will remain stable over its entire service life.  There is no thermal drift, so the product is eligible for an Insulfoam 20-year thermal performance warranty.
  • Water-Resistant:  InsulFoam FL does not readily absorb moisture from the environment.
  • Proven Performance:  Insulfoam has been making engineered EPS insulation since the mid-1950s, so the actual performance of the product is well known.
  • Sizes:  InsulFoam FL is custom-manufactured for each specific application, and is readily available in a variety of lengths, widths and shapes to meet virtually any job condition.

Visit insulfoam.com for more energy efficient roofing products.

Long-term is the Right term – LTTR and Insulfoam Insulations

Insulfoam SP Roof Insulation

Insulfoam SP Roof Insulation

Long-Term Thermal Resistance (LTTR) rocked the building world in early 2014 with the announcement of lowering R-values for a number of insulation products – products that lose stability over the longer term.  But NOT Insulfoam insulations.

  • During manufacturing, Insulfoam does not use any ingredients that degrade or destabilize over time
  • Insulfoam insulations DO NOT lose R-value even over the long-term, a characteristic that has been verified by independent long-term testing

With Insulfoam, you get what you pay for: an insulation product that retains the same R-value when first purchased.  Which is why Insulfoam insulation is backed by a LONG-TERM thermal warranty.  For more information, contact your local Insulfoam rep.

LEARN MORE

Insulfoam Geofoam

Insulfoam Geofoam

Industry Articles on EPS Insulations:

Premier SIPS by Insulfoam

Premier SIPS by Insulfoam

Visit Insulfoam.com

Contact your local Insulfoam rep

Ask the Expert: What differentiates one rigid foam insulation from another?

Originally posted in American School & Hospital Facility magazine, December 2013 “Ask the Expert”

Q: What differentiates one rigid foam insulation from another?

Building design and construction professionals can select from several rigid foam insulations, all of which perform well in helping buildings retain or keep out heat.  Yet, there are important factors to consider when evaluating some of the primary rigid roam products, like expanded polystyrene (EPS), extruded polystyrene (XPS) and polyisocyanurate (polyiso).

Beyond product chemistry and manufacturing methods, read more on what the key differences among these materials are in American School & Hospital Facility‘s “Ask The Expert” with Insulfoam’s Product Marketing Manager, Ram Mayilvahanan.  This article includes:

  • insulating performance per unit of measure
  • long-term thermal resistance (LTTR)
  • moisture absorption rates
  • product make-up and applications
  • cost-saving insulation approaches

“EPS is one of the few rigid foam insulations with a stable thermal resistance throughout its life.  In other words, the published R-value of EPS does not decrease over time, compared to other rigid insulations that typically lose up to 20% or more of their insulating capacity during time in service.” – Ram Mayilvahanan, Insulfoam Product-Marketing Manager

EPS QUESTIONS?

Ram Mayilvahanan

Ram Mayilvahanan

Contact Ram Mayilvahanan, Insulfoam’s Product-Marketing Manager

Roofing Video: Tapered EPS roofing insulation made easy

View for yourself how easy Insulfoam’s tapered EPS insulation is to cut and install on this Arizona single ply TPO roofing project installation.  Tapered InsulFoam is cut from the same high-quality stock as our flat InsulFoam products, and meets or exceeds the requirements of ASTM C578, Standard Specification for Rigid, Cellular Polystyrene Thermal Insulation.  Tapered panels were used for increasing slope for additional drainage and offers a long-term, stable R-Value and has excellent dimensional stability, compressive strength and water resistant properties.  Video provided by StarkWeather Roofing.

Project:  Gainey Ranch Corporate Center, Scottsdale AZ

Product Used:  InsulFoam II tapered system with crickets under a 115 mil Carlisle SynTec Fleecback system.

Roofing Contractor:  Starkweather Roofing, Inc.

Project Photos:  Tapered InsulFoam installation photos

Gainey Ranch Corporate Center

Gainey Ranch Corporate Center

Advantages to using Tapered InsulFoam roofing insulation:

  • Labor Savings:  there are no complicated filler panel systems.  Tapered InsulFoam can be installed in a single layer for thicknesses up to 40″, and is significantly more cost-effective than extruded polystyrene, perlite and isocyanurate tapered systems.
  • Promoted Positive Drainage:  Tapered InsulFoam is the ideal insulation for both new construction and re-roofing projects in which positive slope is desired or ponded water is a concern
  • Environmentally Friendly:  contains no formaldehyde or ozone-depleting HCFCs, contains recycled material, and is 100% recyclable if ever removed or replaced.
  • Stable R-Value:  designers are well served knowing the product’s thermal properties will remain stable over its entire service life.  There is no thermal drift, so the product is eligible for an Insulfoam 20-year thermal performance warranty.
  • Gainey Ranch Corporate Center

    Gainey Ranch Corporate Center

    Proven Performance:  the same fundamental EPS chemistry has been in use since the mid-1950’s, so the actual performance of the product is well known.

  • Water-Resistant:  Tapered InsulFoam does not readily absorb moisture from the environment.
  • Code Approvals:  Tapered InsulFoam is recognized by the International Code Council Evaluation Service (ICC-ES), and has numerous Underwriters Laboratory and Factory Mutual Approvals.

More Product Information

Questions on this project or application?

Travis Montgomery, Insulfoam Territory Manager

Travis Montgomery, Insulfoam Territory Manager

Contact Travis Montgomery, Insulfoam Territory Manager

Email:  Travis.Montgomery@insulfoam.com

Connect with Travis on LinkedIn  |  Follow Insulfoam on LinkedIn

Energy Efficient Construction at World of Concrete

EVENT:  World of Concrete, Las Vegas   |   DATE:  February 5-8th   |   BOOTH:  N2915

ABOUT INSULFOAM

The future of architecture and construction is not only going to expand and grow at a rapid pace this New Year, but it is also becoming one of the r-tech_blog copybest industries in regards to saving the environment. When it comes to ultimate respectability in the industry, two names have come together to form one truly amazing ‘gift’ for all the building-owners and contractors out there. The name, Insulfoam, is synonymous with the creation of quality polystyrene-based engineered insulation products that have become even better than before. In addition,Carlisle Construction Materials has been known in all areas of architecture and construction for single-ply roof systems and waterproofing products that are unmatched in quality, durability, and savings. With Insulfoam, the largest manufacturer of expanded polystyrene in all of North America, being a part of Carlisle Construction Materials for several years now, these two powerhouses have shown the rest of the industry that they are not only still among the most respected names in construction, but are also constantly looking out for everyone from architects to building owners to contractors. With this ‘team,’ everyone has the ability to purchase and utilize energy-efficient construction products that are a ‘must-have’ in this ‘greener’ world. Insulfoam’s products insulate buildings, from the foundation to the roof and everything in-between. Versatility is a key word when it comes to these products. Not to mention the product line is 100% recyclable. Being leaders and visionaries when it comes to new product development, the latest in technology, and code approvals, the brands of InsulFoam® and R-Tech® also contribute immensely toward LEED® credit requirements, which is one of the biggest and most important issues to address nowadays. Insulfoam products, which have warranted long-term stable R-values with no thermal loss, are built upon sustainable manufacturing practices. Dye-free, free of formaldehyde and HCFCs, no toxic chemicals or heavy metals are leeched, and prevention of mold or mildew growth, are just a few of the benefits that come with these products. Offered under the InsulFoam® and R-Tech® brands, Insulfoam’sexpanded polystyrene (EPS) products for under-slab and below-grade applications insulate foundation walls, protect water and/or damp proofing, and can be used during backfilling in both commercial and residential projects.

roofing copyStudies have shown that R-Tech® below-grade insulations have some of the lowest levels of long-term water retention among below-grade insulation products. Combined with high compressive strength and long-term stable R-values, these properties make Insulfoam’s products among the most efficient in below-grade insulation. When speaking about wall installations, Insulfoam offers a variety of insulations that cover applications ranging from exterior, interior and cavity wall applications to tongue-and-groove sheathing, whole wall, and gable end applications. Not to mention, these products are extremely lightweight and have physical properties that are well ahead of their time. But below-grade and wall installations are not all that Insulfoam is renowned for. It also makes GeoFoam, a geo-synthetic structural fill that literally exceeds the requirements of ASTM D6817 Standard Specification for Rigid Cellular Polystyrene Geofoam. This is a fantastic alternative to other fill-materials, providing excellent lateral-load support and dimensional stability as a soil and slope stabilizer in various engineered applications.  And, yes, before one asks - roofing applications are also completely covered by offering roof insulation panels that help reduce overall energy consumption, and end up creating a fantastic and comforting environment for the occupants of the building. The company has a wide-range of code-approved composite roof insulations that work with fully adhered, mechanically attached and ballasted roof systems without the need for coverboards or slip sheets. Insulfoam’s high-density composite has code approval for direct-to-combustible decks without a thermal barrier, an excellent illustration that Insulfoam products work for virtually every type of roofing system. And what’s one of the most important words to hear when it comes to building and construction products? Cost-effective! Insulfoam’s products provide some of the best R-values per dollar. These products resist almost everything, which makes these products necessary for a long list of projects ranging from highway retaining walls to parking structures to foundations, loading docks, levees, underground utility protection, railways, runways, and so much more. Are you working on an entertainment construction project that will involve theater or stadium seating? This is what you need. Working on creating that pool with deck outside? …Need I say more? Even the website that is available discussing each and every one of these products proves how efficient and up-to-date this company is. Data, research, analysis, facts, figures – even instructional and technical information is offered on each one of these products, leaving absolutely nothing to doubt. And this includes questions and data regarding global warming, RA standards and the true goal that Insulfoam and Carlisle have to decrease our ‘carbon footprint and make this a healthy place where the next generation can thrive! For more information, head to this amazing website now and get to work making that next project the absolute best and ’greenest’ it can possibly be. http://www.insulfoam.com

Reduce Material & Labor Costs with EPS Roof Insulation

Professional Roofing, January 2013

Professional Roofing, January 2013

More than any other part of a building, its roof system components must complement each other.  From the deck to the insulation to the membrane, careful selection and installation of all roofing materials are necessary for a high-performance roof assembly.

Because insulation contributes to a roof system’s thermal performance and overall durability while providing a substrate for the roof membrane….decision of which insulation type to use can profoundly affect your profitability.

Read the full article featured in Professional Roofing magazine’s January issue, Foam Up Top.  John Cambruzzi, Insulfoam director of sales and national accounts,explains that expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam insulation is one insulation type that should be considered with the wide range of products available and the ways EPS can help reduce labor and material costs.  John takes you through EPS insulation product selection options and installation considerations.

Roof Insulation Systems With The Most R-Value Per Dollar

PROVEN AND TESTED RIGID INSULATION.  MOST R-VALUE PER DOLLAR.

Roofing-Sub-Chart_blogWhy Insulfoam EPS?

With a broad range of insulation types available, it’s easier than ever for contractors to construct an energy efficient roof system.  Insulfoam EPS (Expanded Polystyrene) rigid foam insulation has been used for decades by smart industry professionals looking to achieve high thermal properties for a cost-effective price.  The benefit of lightweight EPS goes far beyond price, since it also helps decrease material and labor expenses.  And, unlike other rigid insulations, your roof insulation will remain stable, as Insulfoam R-Values don’t drift or fade over time.  Backed with a 20-year thermal performance warranty, you can be confident that Insulfoam’s EPS products are the best option for your project.  Read on to find what Insulfoam project best fits your roofing or reroofing insulation needs.

A Truly Green, High-Performance, & Economical Roof Insulation

Cost-Effective

  • More R-Vale per dollar than any other rigid insulation
  • R-Value doesn’t degrade over time
  • Most cost-effective insulation – typically 25-50% less than other rigid insulations
  • Easy to install- reduces install labor costs by more than 50
  • Complimentary 20-year thermal performance warranty available

Engineered for Versatility

  • Available in 1/2″ – 40″ product thicknesses
  • The right product for any job.  Available in multiple densities, a compressive strengths and panels sizes
  • Suitable for use under all major BUR, Mod Bit roofing membranes:  TPO, PVC, EPDM & CSPE
  • Code approved insulation (ICC-ES, UL, Factory Mutual) at an economical price
  • Meets or exceeds ASTM C578 requirements

User Friendly

  • Lightweight panels – easy to install
  • Highly durable, yet resilient
  • Simple to cut in the field with a saw or hot wire kit
  • Custom, job specific sizes with no additional lead time

Environmentally Sustainable

  • 100% recyclable, may contain up to 25% recycled content
  • High long-term thermal performance (stable R-Value) conserves energy and operational costs
  • Contains no dyes, formaldehyde or ozone-depleting HCFCs
  • ENERY STAR Qualified
  • Contributed toward LEED energy efficiency points
  • Does not support mold or mildew growth for improved indoor air quality (IAQ)
  • Naturally water resistant- does not readily absorb moisture from the environment
  • Regional manufacturing throughout North America reduces transportation costs to job-sites  and environmental impact

Visit Insulfoam website for more information.

Insulfoam Roofing Insulation Products: New & Reroofing Applications

Insulation Solutions at Greenbuild

Greenbuild 2012 We are in full swing with final preparations for Greenbuild 2012 in San Francisco Nov 14-16, the largest international conference and expo dedicated to green building.  With 35,000 participants expected this will be one of the largest Greenbuild shows ever.  Exciting!

1,000+ exhibitors, how do you decide what booth to go to, who to talk to?  Ok, we aren’t Kohler who seems to have one of the BEST booths possible every year (and the one booth I always make sure to sneak away and visit), but  we do have plenty of good information to help you with your next insulation project and meet your energy efficiency goals.  Insulfoam (booth #3169N) provides insulation solutions from roof to foundation and everything in between.

High Performance.  Lower Cost.  Most R-Value Per Dollar.

With a broad range of insulation products available, it’s easier than ever for designers to create an energy efficient building project.  InsulFoam EPS (Expanded Polystyrene) rigid foam insulation has been used for decades by smart industry professionals looking to achieve high thermal properties for a cost-effective price.  In fact, EPS offers more cost savings and higher R-Values than any other rigid insulation.  The benefit of lightweight EPS goes far beyond price, since it also helps contractors significantly decrease material and labor expenses.  EPS is also one of the most versatile engineered insulations, making it a designer’s dream product.  You tell us what you need and we make it fit within your design.  Not limited by stock sizes InsulFoam blocks can be molded, cut, shaped, tapered into virtually any design need, regularly solving challenges for contractors on the jobsite.

InsulFoam EPS is the only rigid insulation that does not experience “thermal drift” (loss of R-Value over time).  In fact, the R-Value is backed with a 20-year non-prorated thermal performance warranty.  ISO and XPS rigid insulations don’t come close in warranty, so you can be confident that Insulfoam’s EPS products are the best rigid insulation option for your project.

The following Insulfoam product lines will be highlighted in our Greenbuild booth with specialists to talk you through technical attributes  applications, projects and more.  And not to mention we got some pretty great and easy to talk to guys!  As you gear up for planning mode this coming week, put Insulfoam’s booth #3169N on your route.

Premier SIPs by Insulfoam

FRAMING SYSTEMS:  Premier SIPs by Insulfoam:  Structural Insulated Panels are an extremely strong building panel that need no additional frame of skeleton for support.  Premier’s large, pre-fabricated SIPs make the framing process faster than other building methods and enable a more airtight, well-insulated building for high energy efficiency.

Insulfoam Below Grade Insulation

BELOW GRADE INSULATION:  Insulfoam’s Below Grade Insulation products are designed to insulate the foundation wall or slab and protect the waterproofing or damp proofing, especially during backfilling for both commercial and residential below-grade applications.  Compressive strength, moisture protection and thermal stability.

ROOF INSULATION SOLUTIONS:  Insulfoam’s roofing insulation applications are green, high-performing and economical products that help reduce overall energy consumption, create improved comfort for the building’s occupants and provide an excellent substrate for a new or retrofit roofing system.

Insulfoam Roof Insulation Solutions

INSULFOAM GEOFOAM:  InsulFoam GF provides structural and architectural void fill  applications that are lighter, easier to handle and faster than soil.  Hardscapes, landscapes, soil remediation and load reduction.

Insulfoam Geofoam

For real time updates before, during and after the expo follow us on Twitter:  @PremierSips @Insulfoam @InsulFoamGF.  Be sure to also check out Greenbuild’s official twitter feed, @Greenbuild and conversation at #Greenbuild.

For more event information:  Greenbuild Schedule  |  Greenbuild Expo Tools & Map

Saving money with EPS Insulation

Did you know that hospitals spend more on energy per square foot than all other building types (except for food service and food sales)?  And U.S. schools spend more on energy each year than they do on computers and textbooks combined.  So how do hospital and school facility managers, architects and contractors find ways to lower energy usage costs?  Given that heating and cooling account for a large share of electricity and natural gas consumption in buildings, insulation is crucial for energy efficiency by keeping heat/cool in and out via the right type of building and roof insulation.  There are many insulation types, Facility Management and Insulfoam’s Director of Sales and National Accounts, John Cambruzzi, outline why expanded polystyrene (EPS) is growing in popularity by reducing material and labor costs while meeting energy efficient goals for hospitals and schools.

Read more at Facility Management, Tips for cost-Effective High Thermal Insulation.   In this article you will learn:

  • EPS Insulation in Short:  what is EPS and it’s key performance attributes
  • Ways To Save Money With EPS Insulation:  EPS product options and their cost saving benefits
  • More Solutions:  what other capacity EPS can be used in

Learn more about Insulfoam’s EPS Insulation and view project photos.