Chemical Exposure Concerns

Chemical Exposure ConcernsAs a Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) contractor, you probably already know that SPF insulation has become a popular alternative to other forms of insulation in homes and buildings due to its excellent insulating properties.

In many applications, SPF also has an ability to protect against moisture, fill cracks and crevices, and works well to reduce airborne sounds coming through walls, floors and roofs.

As a professional contractor, it’s important to realize there are several types of SPF. The material is applied as a chemical reaction of two components parts takes place as the materials exit an applicator nozzle onto a surface. A foam is formed that then begins to cure.

A Valuable Resource

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) offers information about SPF and states: “SPF is an effective insulation and air sealant material; however, exposures to its key ingredient, isocyanates such as ‘MDI,’ and other SPF chemicals that may be found in vapors, aerosols, dust or on surfaces during and for a period of time after installation may cause adverse health effects, such as asthma. Therefore, steps to control exposures and safety tips should be followed.”

In laymen’s terms, isocyanates are chemical substances that are known to be powerful irritants. The EPA reports, “It is important to understand that even low concentrations of isocyanates can trigger a severe asthma attack or other lung effects, or a potentially fatal reaction.”

To prevent chemical exposure during and after installation, you should always use “best practices” based on the type of SPF product applied as recommended by the manufacturer.

Additionally, this includes vacating building occupants who do not have the proper personal protective equipment, providing appropriate ventilation, isolating a work site to prevent chemicals from spreading to other areas, efficiently cleaning a worksite when finished to prevent the spread of particles and dusts, and ensuring that the material has properly cured before individuals are allowed to re-enter the area.
We Are Here For You

A full service equipment and parts supplier, Intech Equipment and Supply features a wide range of industry manufacturers, providing the best in trusted foam insulation supplies and backed by accessible, expert customer service. Our online store features equipment for spray foam insulation, spray foam equipment parts and turnkey mobile spray rigs, as well as traditional roofing equipment and safety equipment.

Our new eBook: “What Happens If Your SPF Equipment Is Out of Warranty” can be downloaded for free here, and highlights why the best kind of customer support goes the extra mile, encompassing everything that can help maximize the after-sales experience—from parts, parts delivery service and training to maintenance, repair and warranty.