You Don’t Know Foam
Whether you use a gun or a straw, there’s more to filling a gap than pulling a trigger.
Synopsis: Whether you use a gun or a straw, there’s more to filling a gap with expanding foam than pulling a trigger. Project House editor Justin Fink shows the ins and outs of spray-foam technology, from can yield and bead control to maintenance and other expansion-foam products for an array of applications. For more information, browse the following links:
The first time I saw a professional spray-foam gun was when my friend Andy pulled his Pageris gun from a green protective case to air-seal and insulate around a window he’d just installed. The gun had a larger can than those that dispense foam through a straw, and it offered far better control over the size of the bead. In addition, Andy didn’t have to come up with a use for the other 90% of the can’s foam that he didn’t need on this job. I decided right then that I was done blowing foam through a straw. It took me much longer to learn how to maintain one of these guns, though.
Andy’s gun and carrying case cost more than $100, but I opted for an entry-level gun from EFI (efi.org) that cost $30 — essentially the other end of the price spectrum in this category. That first gun lasted about a month before it became too clogged to function. I replaced it with a different model, then killed that one by snapping off the trigger while forcing it too hard. The next one met its end when I bent the barrel. This buy-break-replace pattern continued until I spoke with Peter Conlon from Todol Products — a company that specializes in polyurethane foam and that imports the Pageris gun Andy owned. I was surprised that Peter didn’t laugh at my stories of repeated gun failure, but…