Polyurethane spray foam concerns
FYI: I’m a consumer but really value your site. I’ve found out so much on here and hope you might help me with my query:
We have just done an energy audit on our house using the local Green
Building company. We have a lot of air coming in from our crawlspace through our wood floor, and that is the main place we need to seal up to get healthier indoor air as well as energy savings. Currently we just have (newly installed after a rodent infestation) Eco Batt fiberglass batts as insulation under there. I probably should have used the Ultra Touch cotton batts in retrospect due to less toxicity and environmental friendliness, but I was concerned it wouldn’t be good in a crawlspace environment. After further research it probably would have worked, but still would not have fixed the air leakage issue.
Please know before I go on that I have chemical sensitivity issues so this is why this decision is such a big deal to me.
Our choices to seal the area (as per our builder) are to take down the current fiberglass and tape and caulk the gaps in the floor from the crawlspace side , then either:
1.) Just put the Eco Batt fiberglass back up over it.
2.) Tape and caulk then apply rigid polystyrene foam boards (EPS) then put the Eco Batt back up. (I am almost totally going to take this option out of the equation as I heave been reading on your site all the concerns about EPS and XPS such as flame retardant chemicals and ozone depleting manufacturing practices)
3.) Take down the fiberglass and use a closed cell polyurethane spray foam product called Spraytite by BASF. The builder would like to do this option since it would totally seal the area and make it air tight. He firmly believes that after a 24 hour period of ‘curing” in which we would have to vacate the home, it is totally non-toxic and safe for chemically sensitive individuals. The BASF folks also tout this product as being safe for chemically sensitive people.
We have the option of doing a 2” layer of the foam and then putting the fiberglass back up over it or doing a 4.5” layer and not using the fiberglass at all.
Even with all this reassurance it will be safe for me and my family. I have severe reservations about using the spray foam even though the Green Builder feels it is safe and is the best option. While I trust him, I always need to do as much research as I can due to my chemical sensitivity. I hope you might have some information that might help me in my decision making process.
Thank you, and I appreciate you reading this. I know that you are all aware how hard it is to navigate the toxic world out there and hope that you appreciate how desperate I am for more information so I can make the right decision.
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