Disadvantages of Spray Foam Insulation

Disadvantages of Spray Foam Insulation

Spray foam is a building material that has been around for many years, but before you try using it for construction you should first learn if it’s the best insulation material for you.

Find out the disadvantages of spray foam insulation below.

Missing Cavities

Spray foam insulation is a flexible solution for improving energy efficiency in homes, but if it’s not done right it could become more of a problem. 

Attics are the main places where people need insulation, but they’re also often filled with unusual shapes, gaps and spaces. Air bubbles can form in these spaces that spray foam can’t reach as it expands. 

Once these air pockets form, the house won’t be as insulated as you want it to be. Instead, it will be warmer in the summer, and colder in the winter, and sound will pass through the walls easier. 

Water Damage

When air pockets form during the installation, your house can also be at risk of water damage due to leakage. The pressure change from the missing cavities can encourage water to seep through your building’s imperfections.

You may face premature damage to the roof and walls of the structure. Damages of this kind may be difficult to recoup outside your insurance policy, so it’s going to be quite costly.

Difficult Installation Process

Apart from potential mishaps in installation, the installation process of spray foam insulation itself can be difficult and time-consuming. Spray foam cures quickly once the installation begins, but as it cures the material tends to fold over itself which creates unfilled areas that are difficult to see.

Some installers can miss whole sections because of this. Spray foam installers also need to be careful about how much product they use, because if they apply the product too heavy or too thin, it will give the homeowner a ton of problems in the future.

Spray foam also poses health hazards because the material will emit gas once sprayed into the wall or ceiling. This gaseous odour can be harmful when inhaled, so installers need to use full-body protection before using it.


Another disadvantage of spray foam insulation is the high initial cost. It costs at least two to three times higher than other types of insulation products.

Because of the nature of the product, you will also need more spray foam material to fit construction standards compared to other types of insulation.

Spray foam also needs to be installed by professional contractors which factors into the high cost.


Additionally, spray foam may start shrinking as the product ages. When this happens, the insulation capacity is reduced.

This outcome is more likely to happen if your home is located in geographic locations which experience extreme changes in temperature. 

Advantages of Spray Foam Insulation

Many of the disadvantages of spray foam insulation are related to problems in the installation. If done right by an experienced contractor, spray foam insulation actually has great benefits as well.

Here are some of the known advantages of spray foam insulation:

  • Extraordinary thermal qualities
  • High energy efficiency; lowers energy cost
  • Improves air quality 
  • Resists mold and mildew
  • Long-lasting and durable
  • Environmentally-friendly product
  • Provides structural integrity
  • Higher R-value for your home

More Resources

To get the complete benefits of spray foam insulation, you need the best contractors on the job. Find the best spray foam installers in Edmonton here.

Meanwhile, you can find more construction resources in the following articles: