Types of Spray Foam Insulation

Spray Foam Insulation is a two-component system consisting of petroleum oils, plastics, and resins. Polyurethane foam comes in two distinguished types, open cell and closed cell spray foam. This foam is a highly versatile material available in a variety of final physical properties and densities.

Although the two types of foam are very similar in their chemical structures, their characteristics and capabilities differ in many ways. This makes it necessary for the user to understand the differences between the two materials to determine which is the suitable foam for insulating basement walls and other home areas.


1. The cell

In open-cell foam, the cells are deliberately left open, making the foam a more flexible and softer material. On the other hand, closed-cell foam is made up of entirely closed cells, making the closed-cell foam more rigid and stable than open cells. That is why most homeowners give more preference to the closed-cell spray foam in Canada


2. Expansion

It is one of the most significant differences. Closed-cell foam can expand about 1″ of thickness when sprayed. But open-cell foam can expand up to 3″ of thickness, which means only one application is enough that makes it an affordable option. However, it has a lower R-value than closed-cell foam.


3. Density

Closed-cell foam is much denser than open foam. Most of the open-cell foams have a density of about 5 pounds per cubic, while closed-cell foam can reach over three times, making it an ideal option for insulating basement walls.


Advantages of each type

You might still be trying to determine which type of spray foam insulation is right for your project. So, here’s a quick view on both for you to understand it in more detail:

  • Closed-cell spray foam: since it’s rigid in nature, it adds to the structural integrity of the building. Furthermore, it has a high R-Value which helps it act as a vapor barrier, so moisture will be less likely to get inside the house, and the foam itself is unharmed by the moisture damage. Due to moisture-resistant properties, it is one of the first choices for insulating basement walls in Ontario.
  • Open-cell spray foam:the most significant benefit of this type is that it expands so much after being applied. It means less quantity is required. Besides that, it is excellent for soundproofing too.


There are many things a home or building owner should take into consideration when considering the type of foam that should be used for their particular application. Although both types of foam are by far the best insulators on the market, each type of spray foam possesses its characteristics and capabilities.

Now that you know all the differences and benefits of both open cell and closed cell spray foam, we hope it is now clear to determine which type is best suited to your requirements. If you still need more help, you can call a reliable spray foam insulation contractor near you to get expert advice on this matter.

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