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What is Spray Foam Insulation?

Insulation when building a home is not a choice – it’s required to properly protect your home. But, there are many options to choose from – fiberglass, cellulose, and spray foam. Touted as an environmentally friendly insulation option, Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) was introduced to the market in 1986. When applied correctly, it can provide many benefits: sound control, deterring mold, reducing airflow of drafts, and potentially lowering your energy bill because of its efficiency.

Spray insulation works by expanding up to 100 times its original size to fill every possible space – resulting in almost perfect insulation. However, when applied improperly or by applicants wearing inadequate protection material, the spray insulation foam can have serious health implications. The drive to go “green” is good for the environment but in the case of Spray Polyurethane Foam, it is detrimental to the health of those who apply it and those who are exposed to the air after spraying.

Have you been injured by spray foam insulation? You may qualify for a spray foam insulation lawsuit.

 

What are the Dangers of Spray Foam Insulation?

When applied correctly and given enough time to “cure”, there are not any dangers of spray insulation – but if the applicators aren’t wearing personal protective equipment or the foam isn’t applied correctly, dangerous reactions can occur.

Exposure and injuries to spray foam insulation can result from a number of things, including:

Causes of Spray Foam Exposure:

When applied, the foam releases certain vapors that are dangerous to respiratory systems. If applied and vented for 24 hours or more, the vapors and aerosols will evaporate, but if an individual comes in contact with the room without protective equipment, they can suffer from a number of health issues, including difficulty breathing.

Cutting or trimming the foam as it hardens can release chemicals in the air. Also, dust particles from the spraying can pose a risk for up to 24 hours which is why a proper 24, or 48 hours as an extra safety measure, ventilation process is required after applying spray insulation.

If a fire were to occur in the home, the fumes and smoke would pose a risk to anyone in the general vicinity, including responding firefighters. Full-supplied air respirators are recommended when fighting polyurethane fires.

Drilling, welding, soldering, grinding, sawing, or sanding can result in airborne chemicals.

Two-Part Spray Foam Insulation Dangers

Two-part spray insulation foams are of greater concern to health risks. Rather than one-part insulation foam, the two-part requires mixing of chemicals, referred to as Side A and Side B on-site. The chemical mixture is applied as an insulant.

Side A consists of highly reactive chemicals called isocyanates which are powerful irritants of the eyes, gastrointestinal, and respiratory tracts. If they come into contact with skin, inflammation can occur. Contact with isocyanates can “sensitize” workers which essentially means that if the individual comes into contact with the chemicals a second time, severe asthma attacks can occur. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) says preventing exposure through engineering systems, personal protective clothing, and worker isolation is key in eliminating any health hazards.

Side B is a “polyol resin blend – the principal ingredient being polyol — and smaller amounts of amine and/or metal catalyst, blowing agent, surfactant and flame retardant,” according to Spray Polyurethane Foam Health and Safety. While less is known about the risks of the chemicals in Side B, the same precautions should be taken and direct contact should still be avoided. The CDC is currently investigating the chemicals and the risks associated with the Side B component of spray insulation foam.

Without proper protective wear, or if done improperly, these dangerous chemicals pose a serious health risk to users.

 

Do I Qualify For a Spray Foam Insulation Lawsuit?

Did you apply spray foam insulation to your residence and subsequently suffer health issues? Were you a homeowner who experienced side effects from spray foam insulation after it was applied in your residence?

Contact TorHoerman Law to speak with a chemical exposure lawyer about filing a spray foam insulation lawsuit today.

If you were exposed to spray foam insulation at work and subsequently suffered health injuries, you may need to contact a construction accident lawyer or a workers compensation lawyer, depending on the details surrounding your injuries.

TorHoerman Law offers free, no-obligation case consultations for all potential clients. Contact today to discuss your legal options.

 

 

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