What is Expanding Foam?

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Well there is a clue in the name, of course. Expanding foam has a wide range of uses in the construction industry, uses include filling cracks, insulating and water proofing. A straightforward and easy to use product it’s a great material for DIY projects – even for the less experienced.

On an industrial scale expanding foam is used for cavity wall insulation and while it’s possible to this job yourself, unless you are an experienced builder, this job is best left to the professionals. In older houses cavity wall insulation is a worthwhile investment, and it not only insulates but in blocking up cavities deters rats and other pests.

A common use for expanding foam is draught prevention. Older houses, in particular, have all manner of little cracks and crevices which merrily let in draughts and let out expensive hot air. A small can of expanding foam is ideal for quickly and easily blocking up small cracks and cavities.

Doors and Windows.

Experienced door or window fitters may well make a sharp intake of breath and shake their heads knowingly, if you mention you intend to fit your own windows. However, this is a relatively simple job and much easier than you might think, though some DIY experience is useful. Modern windows, whether wooden or plastic, come fully formed and ready to install. Once you have the window in place expanding foam is used to not only fix it in place, but to block draughts and seal the area between the frame and the wall. Expanding foam is great fun to work with and modern makes ‘cure’ very quickly, meaning that the job is completed quickly and an effective seal is in place in a matter of hours. Once cured any excess foam can easily be cut away and finishing touches applied.

DIY work and designer clothing.

Any DIY project will be best completed in some old and tatty clothes – if they’re not tatty at the start you can be sure they will be by the end of the job. Expanding foam in particular is not a material to be using wearing your best Gucci suit. Or in a room that contains expensive furnishings! Clear the area and protect carpets, curtains and upholstery with some good thick sheets or paper. Expanding foam sticks well to pretty much any surface and you can buy specialist varieties for most jobs – including a specifically adhesive variety. The foam will not stick well to damp or dirty surfaces, so ensure that the area where you are going to apply the foam to has been cleaned down, is dry and grease free. The foams adhesive qualities are great, the only downside is that it will stick quite happily to just about anything, including cats, children and elderly relatives. You can buy solvents that will clean the material off, read the instructions carefully – you’ll also find that petrol does clean foam off hands very effectively. The trick with any accidental spills is to get to them quickly and clear straightaway. It’s probably worth wearing gloves, because once this stuff gets on you, it is very, very sticky!

Expanding foam is a versatile and easy to use material, available in large and small amounts and takes only a very short time to become familiar with. With quick curing times foam makes any job that requires a large area filling simple and far less time-consuming than other materials.

Expanding foam is available from Somafix.co.uk, versatile easy to use and quick drying foam can be used to insulate, fill gaps and create watertight seals.

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Andrew Richards has 1 articles online
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What is Expanding Foam?

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This article was published on 2010/10/26