Why choose spray foam insulation vs. rigid XPS foam board in commercial buildings
Today, more than ever before, forward-thinking architectural firms are looking at commercial building materials that go beyond their traditionally prescribed function while also being cost effective. For instance, when comparing exterior air barrier wall assemblies in commercial design, it’s common for designs to specify a rigid XPS foam board solution. Yet, when compared to a high performance closed cell spray foam insulation product such as Icynene ProSeal Eco, architects are faced with the opportunity to lead with design innovation while cutting costs.
When considering steel framing exterior walls, a closed cell medium density spray foam insulation product provides three solutions – insulation, air barrier and vapor retarder. Additionally, the spray foam product provides a tight seal over minimal required wall penetrations (brick ties) as well as a lower installed cost. On the other hand, a rigid XPS solution will typically require the addition of an air barrier material which drives higher installed cost, mechanical fastening creating numerous wall penetrations as well as taping at every joint.
The graphic below shows the cost comparison between spray foam insulation and rigid XPS foam board for a steel framing assembly. The installation of a high performance, multi-faceted spray foam product like Icynene ProSeal Eco not only allows for significant building material savings but also labor cost savings and allows for construction to remain on - or be ahead of – schedule.
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