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Manic Monday, Part Two: Spray Foam Insulation

by Tara

I am mid-plaster stroke, and positively covered in plaster, when Tyler comes running up the rocky ridge towards our house, followed by Will, a man we met a couple weeks ago a party we attended with Charlie and Becky. Will works at Vermont Foam Insulation and Tyler has been trying to set up a time to meet. We've been uncertain how we'll insulate the pony wall and the eaves, and had been considering wool insulation, regular fiberglass insulation, and blown cellulose. Now, Will his here to check out the house and tell us what he thinks about it being a candidate for foam.

I continue plastering (I can hardly stop when it is drying before my eyes!) and listen to Will and Tyler talk. Will is funny and informal. "This is some real hippy shit, right here" he says, smiling and surveying our house. We are sold on his Permex close cell foam when he tells us that at an R-value of 6.5 per square inch, we'll get great insulation using just 3-4 inches of the stuff. Since we have about 18" to work with, we'll have loads of storage space left.

We could even build nooks in our eaves, he says, making the most of the space between our knee-braces. I am simultaneously thrilled by this idea and preemptively exhausted. (More space! But more things to build...) We're even more sold when he tells us that he'll do it for $500 bucks cash, and that his team is doing a job just ten minutes down the road, and he thinks they're overstaffed. He could send a guy over to do the job in just an hour!

But in order to do the job, the house will have to be cleaned out. As soon as Will leaves, Tyler drags all of our tools and materials outside, creating a massive jumble of stuff. I cannot stop what I am doing (the plaster will dry!) to help, but Tyler is quick and efficient, if a bit stressed-out. I have to get back to work! he mutters as he moves.

Will is as good as his word. Less than an hour after he leaves, a friendly man arrives with a big truck and a long hose and a full-body protective suit. In under an hour, we have a fully insulated home.

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