How do I know which product to use for my application?
Low-pressure one-component polyurethane foams (OCF) or one-component cylinder foam should be used as a bead application to fill gaps, cracks, small voids, and penetrations. They should not be used to seal or insulate any large area. This is because one-component foams cure upon reaction with moisture, such as humidity in the air. Without adequate moisture, the product will remain in a chemical state until moisture is introduced. Given the previous conditions, one-component foams are not typically suited for closed cavity filling where little to no moisture is present or where large areas of coverage are needed.
Low-pressure two-component polyurethane foams (SPF or PIP) expand and cure immediately upon chemical reaction of A component (isocyanate) and B component (a polyol blend) to a final volume that is three to five times the dispensed volume in typical applications. Two-component polyurethane foams are well suited for large surface areas of coverage requiring multiple layers or thicknesses. Since the product is a chemical cure, it is ideal for cavity, mold filling and a slew of different insulating applications.
What is the difference between one-component polyurethane foam and two-component spray polyurethane foam or pour-in-place polyurethane foam
Low-pressure one-component polyurethane foam (OCF) comes in a single can (or cylinder) and is tack-free within 5 to 10 minutes depending on the amount of moisture in the air. The overall cure time is typically 12 to 24 hours. One-component polyurethane foam cures through a reaction with moisture in the air.
Low-pressure two-component spray polyurethane foam (SPF) or pour-in-place polyurethane foam (PIP) comes in a kit with two containers each containing separate chemicals. Polyurethane foam is created when the two-components are dispensed through a specialized dispensing unit much like an epoxy system where a chemical reaction occurs when the two chemicals are mixed together. The tack-free time is much faster than one-component foam, typically 30 seconds to a minute and a half. The overall cure time is typically one hour for two-component polyurethane foam. Please refer to the Technical Data Sheet (TDS) and Safety Data Sheet (SDS) for formulation-specific information and physical properties.
What is a board foot?
A board foot is defined as 12ʺ length x 12ʺ width x 1ʺ thickness of coverage. It can also be represented as a dimension in square feet. Length in feet times width in feet at a thickness of 1 inch.
What is a cubic foot, and how can I figure out how much product is needed for an application based on this measurement?
A cubic foot is a measure of volume. It is defined as the volume of a cube with sides of 1ʹ or 12ʺ in length. Typically cubic footage is calculated by multiplying the length times width times height. A cubic foot is equal to 12 board feet (1 ft3 = 12 bdft). Low-pressure pour-in-place polyurethane foams (PIP) are rated in cubic feet because these foams are mold-filling or injection foams. In order for the calculation to be correct, all dimensions in the calculation must be in the same unit of measure. In order to get a final answer in cubic feet, you must convert all measurements to feet before multiplying. For help in calculating how much product is needed, use our Yield Calculator.
What kind of coverage (yield) will I receive from a low-pressure two-component polyurethane foam disposable kit?
The product description generally indicates the theoretical coverage. For example, a HandiFoam® II-205 kit provides up to 205 board feet of coverage. In other words, this kit will cover an area 205 square feet with a thickness of 1ʺ. The same is true with all other low-pressure spray polyurethane foam kits. Yields are based on theoretical calculations for comparison purposes only and will vary depending on ambient and chemical conditions, spray technique and application. For help in calculating how much product is needed, use our Yield Calculator.
How are one-component foams rated in terms of coverage/yield, and how can I measure?
All low-pressure one-component (including one-component cylinder foam) polyurethane foams (OCF) is rated in linear feet of coverage. A linear foot is the number of feet in a straight line of material generally without regard to width. For example, if you stretch a string 6 feet long you essentially have 6 linear feet of string. Our one-component polyurethane foam is also rated in bead thickness and this affects the overall linear footage of yield. Note: The TDS is based on theoretical yield, and actual yield may vary depending on the application and environmental conditions. Please refer to the TDS for product specific information and physical properties. For help in calculating how much product is needed, use our Yield Calculator.
What is the difference between low-pressure and high-pressure polyurethane foam systems?
High-Pressure Polyurethane Foam Systems
High-pressure polyurethane foam systems are used to insulate large surface areas and include significant equipment costs. High-pressure polyurethane foams are dispensed through impingement mixing, meaning the chemicals are delivered through heated hoses from supply tanks into a gun chamber where the two components react and are spray-applied at elevated temperatures and pressures. With the higher pressure of the polyurethane foam being dispensed, the opportunity for emission of chemicals is greater, so the re-entry time for a home or building is 24+ hours.
- Typically dispensed at pressures exceeding 1,000 psi
- Output at full trigger is up to 30 lbs. per minute
- Product temperature of 120–150°F (49–65°C)
- One hour startup & shutdown
- 80+ serviceable parts to gun components
- High output, high emissions, greater re-entry time (24–48 hour re-occupancy)
- 55-gallon drums to transport and dispose
- Approximate startup costs range from $15,000–$120,000
Low-Pressure Polyurethane Foam Systems
Low-pressure polyurethane foam systems are used to air seal and insulate small to mid-size areas with low equipment costs. Low-pressure polyurethane foam chemicals are combined in the nozzle chamber and sprayed at room temperatures and at a significantly lower pressure. The output of 5-7 lbs. per minute decreases the chemical emissions, allowing for a faster home and building re-entry time.
- Dispensed at pressures less than 250 psi
- Output at full trigger is 5–7 lbs. per minute
- Product temperature of 70–85°F (21–29°C)
- Quick startup & shutdown
- Minimal maintenance and associated costs
- Lower output, low emissions, quicker re-entry time (One hour re-occupancy)
- Refillable tanks
- Approximate startup costs range from $3,000–$8,000
Under the low-pressure polyurethane foam category there are three subcategories of foam based on application method; spray polyurethane foam (SPF), pour-in-place polyurethane foam (PIP) and one-component polyurethane foam sealants and adhesives (OCF).
- Low-pressure spray polyurethane foam is a chemically cured, two-component system designed to fill and insulate large voids and surfaces. This delivers excellent adhesion properties and creates a continuous air barrier completing the building envelope, which results in improved indoor air quality and lower heating and cooling costs.
- Low-pressure pour-in-place polyurethane foam is a chemically cured, two-component system specifically designed for filling cavities, molds, fixtures or holes where a slower curing and expanding polyurethane foam is required. Within this pour-in-place polyurethane foam category, a new technology emerged called High Flow Technology®, which uses a unique blowing agent that allows the foam to flow even further before expansion. This advanced technology has the ability to completely fill voids and cavities of all shapes and sizes with minimal fill points while allowing the foam to flow greater distances, making it ideal for a wide variety of applications.
- Low-pressure one-component polyurethane foam sealants and adhesives are pre-reacted in the can and undergo further reaction with ambient moisture at the time of application. One-component polyurethane foam sealants and adhesives are generally used for smaller bead applications.
What is the temperature range cured polyurethane foam can withstand?
Most cured polyurethane foam typically withstands temperatures from -200°F (-129°C) to 240°F (116°C). Please refer to the TDS and SDS for formulation-specific information and physical properties.
Why is it critical the chemical temperature is maintained throughout my application?
Chemical temperature can affect various aspects of the end product and/or application. Temperature plays a pivotal role in the following areas: yield, adhesion to substrate, rigidity, and proper dispensing. Please refer to the TDS for product specific temperature recommendations and physical properties.
What is the preferred application temperature for low-pressure one-component polyurethane foam (OCF)?
The chemical temperature (can or cylinder) should be between 65-80°F (18-27°C) for optimal results. Foam will dispense and cure at ambient air temperatures down to 40°F (4.5°C). Yield and cure time can be adversely affected by low temperatures. Higher temperatures can adversely impact shelf life of product. It is unsafe to heat pressurized containers beyond the recommended storage temperature of 122°F (50°C). Please refer to the TDS and SDS for formulation-specific information and physical properties.
What is the preferred application temperature for low-pressure two-component polyurethane foam?
Optimum chemical temperature for spray and pour-in-place polyurethane foam (SPF and PIP) is between 70–85°F (21–29°C). Foam will dispense and cure at ambient air temperatures down to 40°F (4.5°C). Never store product above 90°F (32°C) or below 60°F (16°C). Yield and cure time can be adversely affected by low temperatures. Higher temperatures can adversely impact shelf life of product. It is unsafe to heat pressurized containers beyond the recommended storage temperature of 90°F (32°C). Warm tanks to 70–85°F (21—29°C), for several days (depending on the size). Surface and outside application temperatures should be between 40-100°F (4–38°C). Please refer to the TDS for product specific temperature recommendations and physical properties.
Where can low-pressure two-component polyurethane foam be used?
Cured polyurethane foam is chemically inert and non-reactive in approved applications, and will not harm electrical wire insulations, Romex®, rubber, PVC, polyethylene (i.e., PEX) or other plastic.
How can I remove polyurethane foam from my skin?
You should always use the proper protective equipment. If you accidentally get foam on your skin, use a rag to remove liquid from the skin and remove contaminated clothing. It may cause mild irritation or temporary darkening of the skin. Persistent washing with soap and water will eventually remove all residues. If irritation persists, obtain medical attention. The foam can be scraped off using a pumice stone or nail file if persistent washing is not sufficient. See product SDS for further information. See the Product Stewardship Guidelines for more information.
How can I remove polyurethane foam from surfaces other than skin?
Since no solvent readily removes cured foam, it must be removed through mechanical abrasion such as scraping, sanding or grinding. Uncured foam can be removed with Handi-Cleaner® or acetone.
What density ranges are offered in polyurethane foams?
Low-pressure polyurethane foams are offered in 0.75 through 2.50 lbs. per cubic foot densities. Density varies based on formulation and application, please refer to the TDS for product-specific information and physical properties.
What length gun hose assembly comes with my low-pressure polyurethane foam disposable kit?
Typically, low-pressure polyurethane foam kits where both cylinders are packaged in one box, like II-105 or II-205, come equipped with a 9.5′ hose assembly. Kit sizes where both cylinders are packaged in a separate box, such as the II-605 kit, come equipped with a 15′ gun hose assembly. See the Product Guide for product specific accessory information.
If I spray a two-component kit and the foam does not cure, is soft or spongy, or crispy to the touch, what went wrong?
The material is not being dispensed on ratio. The components are designed to dispense at a 1 to 1 ratio in volume. Make sure the chemical temperature is within the specified range for use, the kit has been thoroughly shaken before use, and that each tank valve is fully open. Change the gun nozzle and resume spraying. Review your operating instructions, specifically the “Troubleshooting Guide” section for more detailed instructions.
Can fungus or mold grow on foam in damp conditions?
Foam does not support the growth of mold or fungus. Please refer to the TDS for formulation-specific information and physical properties.
Is foam resistant to water?
Closed cell low-pressure polyurethane foam is classified as a “vapor retarder.” It is not considered waterproof. The ability for water vapor or water to permeate through foam varies by product and is generally represented as the “Perm Rating” located on the TDS. The ability for the foam to resist diffusion of water or moisture is directly related to the thickness and closed cell content of the foam. It is generally not recommended to use foam in an application where the foam itself will have continuous exposure to water. Please refer to the TDS for formulation-specific information and physical properties.
Can low-pressure polyurethane foams be used outdoors?
Yes, low-pressure polyurethane foams will resist the elements. However, the polyurethane foam will eventually discolor and eventually degrade if exposed to UV rays from the sun. If the foam is coated with a UV-resistant coating, this can be prevented.
Do HandiFoam® products contain fire retardants?
Yes, all HandiFoam® low-pressure polyurethane foam products contain a certain amount of flame retardant. Some products have passed specific flammability tests, which are required in certain applications, and thus are referred to as being “fire rated.” Please refer to the TDS for product specific information and physical properties.
What is R-Value?
R-Value is a measure of thermal resistance. Thermal resistance is a measure of a materials resistance to heat flow. R-Value is used in the building and construction industry. The larger the number, the more effective the material is at resisting heat flow. The higher the R-Value rating, the greater the insulating power. R-Value varies by formulation and application thickness, see TDS for product specific information and physical properties.
What application is HandiFoam® Fireblock foam approved for?
HandiFoam® Fireblock low-pressure one-component polyurethane foam sealant (OCF) is approved for use in Type V residential construction for one- and two-family structures. It cannot be used in commercial applications and has no hourly fire rating associated with it. Always refer to the local building codes before application of product. Please refer to the TDS for product specific information and physical properties.
How should the product be stored?
Always store low-pressure polyurethane foam products upright in a dry, conditioned area. Do not expose pressurized containers to an open flame or temperatures above 122°F (50°C). The ideal storage temperature for disposable kits and refillable systems is 70–85°F (21–29°C), but not below 60°F (16°C) or above 90°F (32°C). Storage at less than ideal temperatures can cause delays in production until the product is warmed or cooled to temperature. Protect unused product from freezing. Excessive heat can cause premature aging of components, resulting in a shorter shelf life. Storage and use below recommended temperatures may affect foam quality if chemicals are not warmed to room temperature before using. Condition tanks to 70–85°F (21—29°C), for several days, depending on the size of the tanks. Protect containers from physical abuse. As with all professional products, keep away from children.
Can one-component products be reused?
Yes. Instructions for different types of product are listed below:
Low-pressure one-component polyurethane straw foam sealant (OCF): Leave straw adapter connected to aerosol can. Trim off tip of straw directly before reuse. Product must be reused within 30 days.
Low-pressure one-component polyurethane gun foam sealant (OCF): Leave pressurized can of foam attached to gun during storage. Product must be reused within 30 days.
Can two-component products be reused?
Yes, see product specific operating instructions for detailed information regarding storage and reuse.
How do I dispose of the polyurethane foam empty cylinders and cans?
Product should be disposed of in accordance with applicable federal, state and local regulations. Check with your local waste service for guidance.
- For aerosol cans: Please see the product label and SDS for detailed instructions
- For disposable kits: Please see the product specific operating instructions, SDS and the Product Stewardship Guidelines for detailed instructions.
- For refillable systems: Please do not dispose of refillable cylinders. Cylinders are the property of HandiFoam®, please contact Customer Care for detailed return instructions.
- Choosing a selection results in a full page refresh.
- Press the space key then arrow keys to make a selection.