The insulation contractor has installed the first type of insulation. Yes, we have more than one type of insulation in our house: icynene spray foam and regular fiberglass. We wanted to use Icynene spray foam insulation in the entire house because it is an excellent insulator which will help us save energy and is made of soybeans so it is a renewable resource! Unfortunately, like most green products, it was too expensive for us to use in every wall of the house so we have opted to put it in the roof spaces (i.e. between the roof trusses) and below the master bedroom floor (because it is also a great sound barrier...). Using icynene in the roof spaces will be key to saving energy for us because we have no attic spaces so our roof is essentially our ceilings as well.
We were not allowed in the house while they are spraying as the guys have to use protective gear (I assume for inhalation hazard because as we all know, we can eat soybeans.....) (sarcasm there again), and I didn't have mine with me. But we can see the final product.
In the early morning, the insulation contractor arrives and prepares the icynene by mixing it in a 50 gallon barrel in the back of his truck.
The barrel is left in the back of the truck and the material is pumped into the house (and sprayer mechanism) through the hose that is visible on the right side of the truck. They spray and spray all day! In our house, the icynene was applied in two different thicknesses depending on the application location. In the roof spaces, the icynene is as thick as the roof trusses, that is, 12 inches. In the master bedroom floor (or kitchen and dining room ceiling), it was about 6-8 inches thick.
An overview of the roof/ceiling shows that the icynene was applied to the thickness of the roof trusses.
A closer look at the ceiling in the study demonstrates how perfectly they can control the thickness of the foam as they spray it.
Look at that! You can see that the foam is exactly the same thickness as the roof truss! Okay, well, that wasn't really how it looked immediately after spraying.... Actually what they did was overspray slightly and then cut off the excess to bring it flush with the framing. As a result of the overspray and cut flush method is that it looks like it has snowed giant snowflakes all over the house.
Above we saw the study ceiling and here is the study floor
and the hallway
Snow has also fallen down the lower section of the sweeping staircase.
The icynene will stick to whatever surfaces it contacts before it dries (this is why it is defying gravity) so the contractor has to sheild anything in the roof trusses that may, for whatever reason, need to be removed in the future. This means the lighting fixtures. Although the lighting fixtures are supposed to be the green, energy efficient, never burning out variety, it is always good to be prepared. Anyway, to protect the light fixtures, the contractor wrapped them in fiberglass insulation before spraying so they have their own little blanket of insulation.
I am really hoping we don't have to replace those lights any time soon (they were expensive!).
Anyway, above we see what it looks like when the icynene is appied at the thickness of the framing. In the case of the kitchen/dining room ceiling, the icynene is not as thick as the framing so it does not have to be trimmed. When it is applied this way, the final product maintains whatever shape it dries in. This is demonstrated in the ceiling above the kitchen and dining room. Here instead of having flakes of snow on the ground, it looks like we have a gravity defying blanket of snow in the ceiling!
Zooming in on the kitchen ceiling, we can see the icynene stalactites that formed as the foam dried.
When I zoom in even closer, the stalactites start to look more like cow teats!
So now we have the icynene foam spray insulation in the main house. They still have to foam the garage roof area but we get the idea.
On a different note, I just wanted to give everyone an idea of what our road looks like on any given day. Understand that all of the vehicles on the road are not contractors coming to our house (we wish), but instead are contractors for our house and three others on the road. Anyway, the point is, we can barely get down to our house when everyone shows up for work!