FoamRite – Insulating metal walls in an Industrial Building [Video Transcript]

Hi, I’m Jim Ahles from FoamRite Insulation. We’re here in Saint Claire County Michigan insulating a large manufacturing facility with spray foam insulation. The customer had brought us in here to insulate his building because of the huge cost of heating a building this size. Spray foam was by far his best choice from keeping the air infiltration, losing the warm air from going outside, keeping the cold air from coming in.

What we’re doing here is Eric is filling in all the corrugation on the corrugated metal, trying to fill them in flush before he puts his final pass on. That way it gives you a much better looking finished product on the steel. You can see the foam expands about 30-50 times it’s original volume when first applied and it cures hard within two to three minutes. That’ll allow him to come back and put his second pass on there.

As you seen earlier, we were spraying up and down to fill the corrugation. The reason for that is you’re trying to fill it to make it a smooth surface so on the second pass we can make a much smoother looking product in the end. The idea is to get all the indents filled first then come back with a second pass, make it look as flat as possible so the customer’s got a good looking project.

What we’re spraying here is closed cell polyurethane foam. The reason we chose this for this product was the sheet metal, the foam adheres itself right to the sheet metal, completely fully glues itself right to the metal and allows no air infiltration. No drafts, completely bonded, and this product actually is very rigid when it dries. Now if you were to put fiberglass on there, you’ve got the possibility of the air infiltration coming through. Cellulose wouldn’t stick to the wall, there’s no way of making the cellulose stay on there, so the foam was the best choice to put on there.

There are two different kinds of foam you can use for spraying foam. You can use either open cell or closed cell foam. The closed cell foam in this application is a very rigid, it resists moisture and a complete structural rigidity in it. Very strong product. The open cell foam would have been a poor choice for this building because of the fact it actually absorbs more than 40% of water by volume. Because the open cell has a tendency absorb a lot of moisture, if in fact it does on a sheet metal building, you’ve got the chance of the rusting of the metal and you lose all your insulating properties whenever it absorbs moisture. To learn more about metal buildings, visit

Right here what you’re going to see is one of the best advantages of using the spray foam over a fiberglass or cellulose product. What you’re going to see right down here is a huge air leak right here. When we’re done spraying foam with this it’ll cure hard within a few minutes, that air leak is completely solved. It’ll be 100% done. Now you can see after Eric has sprayed this, this is completely sealed up, all your drafts are gone. Within two minutes the foam is already getting hard and this problem is solved. No more air leaks here, that problem is gone.

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