Bathrooms, Bedrooms, Full Renovations, Home Improvement, Remodeling, Renovation

Philadelphia Renovation (2/5): Insulation


This is the second in a five-part series on an extensive renovation we completed on a home in Philadelphia. Read the first post. Since we removed all the plaster and drywall and had everything exposed, it made the most sense to use spray-foam insulation throughout the house. I cannot overstate the energy-saving benefit of this product — and since we framed the new walls about ½” off the existing brick walls, the insulation was able to reach a thickness of 3”, wrap the 2-x-3 studs and ensure a fully sealed envelope.

We used Demilec’s Heatlok Soy 200, a rigid polyurethane foam that is soy-based and doesn’t release harmful off-gasses. Although the installation was pretty intense — with the workers covered from head-to-toe in white suits with masks and respirators — once they were done I was able to walk in, open some windows and work the next day.

Before we started installing the drywall, I had my floor contractor stop by to check out his part of the project. He was shocked by the (oddly soothing) blanket of mint-green insulation coating the inside of the house, and he exclaimed [in a strong Chinese accent], “Ahhh – like snow!”

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