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Specific Problems with Spray Foam Insulation Contractors in Tarrant County

While spray foam insulation can provide excellent thermal resistance and air-sealing properties, there are specific problems and challenges associated with contractors in Tarrant County.

Switching from traditional (blown-in) insulation to spray foam:

When switching from blown-in fiberglass to spray foam insulation, several issues can arise, primarily due to the initial quotes often being provided by salespeople who lack in-depth knowledge of code requirements and the full scope of work needed for such a transition. These salespeople may not fully understand the complexities of reconfiguring ventilation systems to accommodate spray foam insulation.

Unlike blown-in fiberglass, spray foam creates an airtight seal, which means existing ventilation strategies, particularly in attics, must be redesigned to prevent moisture buildup and ensure proper air circulation. Failure to address these ventilation needs can lead to significant problems, including mold growth and compromised indoor air quality.

Example: As shown in the photo below, you can see they didn't remove the existing pink fiberglass insulation from the attic floor. When they spray the insulation onto the walls and ceilings of the attic, it is important to make sure that there is no insulation on the attic floor. Failure to remove the pink insulation will create moisture and mold problems. Furthermore, this space becomes a part of the living space and should be air-conditioned. You can read more about this problem by reading this article.


Problems that occur when it's installed wrong:


Chemical Off-Gassing:

  • Problem: If not mixed and applied correctly, spray foam can release harmful chemicals into the air, known as off-gassing. This can pose health risks to occupants.

  • Impact: Homeowners may experience respiratory issues, eye irritation, or other health problems due to exposure to these chemicals.

Moisture and Mold Issues:

  • Problem: Incorrect application can trap moisture within the walls, leading to mold growth and structural damage over time.

  • Impact: Mold can cause health problems for residents and costly damage to the home’s structure.

Inadequate Ventilation:

  • Problem: Spray foam creates an airtight seal, which is excellent for energy efficiency but can lead to inadequate ventilation if not paired with a proper ventilation system.

  • Impact: Poor ventilation can cause indoor air quality issues, including the buildup of indoor pollutants and excess humidity.

Cost Overruns:

  • Problem: Some contractors may underestimate the amount of material needed or the complexity of the job, leading to unexpected cost overruns.

  • Impact: Homeowners may face significantly higher costs than initially quoted, leading to budgetary constraints, or contractors may leave areas that are under-sprayed.


Ensuring Quality in Spray Foam Insulation:

  • Research and Hire Reputable Contractors: Check for certifications, reviews, and past project examples.

  • Request Detailed Proposals: Ensure the contractor provides a comprehensive plan that includes all aspects of the installation. Details of the depth of the insulation and the R-value should be included.

  • Monitor the Installation Process: Be present or have a trusted representative oversee the work to ensure it is done correctly.

  • Conduct Post-Installation Inspections: You can have a third-party inspection company perform a limited inspection of the entire installation for relatively cheap. Most inspection companies charge around $100-$150 for a limited inspection, this will give you the peace of mind that you need to make sure the installation is correct. If you need an inspection in DFW, just give us a call at 817-773-6068 or you can go to our website and schedule online.


Conclusion:

When you buy a home with spray foam insulation or if you are getting your home insulated, you have to keep these contractors responsible. You need to do your research to learn installation methods, check company reviews, look at code requirements, and hire an inspector to verify the installation was successful. Arming yourself with knowledge is the only way to make sure that things are installed correctly.


About TruGuard Inspections:

At TruGuard Inspections, we take pride in delivering top-quality home inspection services to clients throughout the DFW Metroplex. Our experienced team is dedicated to providing thorough and detailed inspections, utilizing the latest tools and technology to ensure no aspect of the property goes unnoticed. Whether it's a buyer's home inspection, seller's inspection, new construction inspection, 11-month warranty inspection, or thermal inspection using infrared cameras, you can rely on us to provide honest and insightful assessments for informed decision-making. Check out our website to learn about all the services we offer.

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