Polyurethane foams perform two main roles with these primary roles being insulation and air/vapour barriers. These would be the most often cited reasons although they can be utilized for many different applications. Polyurethane (PU) foams are mostly closed cell materials although there are some specialty applications and products available where open cell foams would be more applicable, like sound attenuation, and those are also available when needed. Choosing the right type as well as the correct product within that type can be difficult with expansion factor and performance criteria varying from product to product.
Single component polyurethane foams are generally speaking considered to be low expanding but that is only in relation to the expansion factor of two part foams. Most single component foams expand approximately 50-100% depending on temperature and humidity levels during application. These foams are moisture-cure so the temperature and humidity can change your expansion factor and consequently the yield. Their primary uses are to fill any gap or crack in the building envelope to prevent air infiltration. Those areas include, but are not limited to: windows or doors, pipes or duct penetrations, underneath base plates, utility panels etc.
Two-Part polyurethane foams have significantly higher expansion rates (varies from 300-500% depending on the specific product and conditions) than single component, moisture-cure materials so therefore are used in vastly different applications. The list of possible application areas for these foams is almost endless but will include: wall or attic insulation, window mullion filling, asbestos encapsulation, cold storage insulation, refrigerated trailers or vehicles, flotation devices (docks, pontoons), movie set design, tree surgery, hot tubs and many more. All foams sold are tested to ASTM E-84 fire rating to ensure a high degree of compliance relating to building codes across North America.
Tools and Accessories
Both one or two part foams require a variety of ancillary items to aid in dispensing, storing and cleaning up. These items would include hoses, nozzles, cleaning agents, dispensing guns and temperature controlling equipment.