When applying spray foam insulation, it's important to keep safety in mind to prevent injuries and chemical exposures. A good way to ensure spray foam safety is to have a checklist of protocols that team members are expected to follow. This should include the following items:
- Do not allow workers to smoke, eat or drink in the application area.
- Make sure other contractors and workers leave the work area before spray foam applications begins. Let these workers know when it is safe to return, and don't let anyone return before this time.
- Ensure that all workers know who to report to in case of a spill or accident.
- Provide chemical resistant coveralls, goggles, head gear, and gloves for all workers involved in the application and cleanup processes.
- Always follow manufacturer instructions when applying any spray foam product.
- Ensure you have enough workers on scene to prepare the site efficiently and watch the equipment closely for malfunction.
- Always apply spray foam in layers to achieve the recommended final thickness. Never attempt to apply the spray foam in one thick layer to save time.
- Ensure that the application area is well ventilated, not just during application, but also afterwards while the foam sets. This includes using exhaust fans to create negative pressure and "suck" vapors out of the working area.
- Always keep the exhaust fans running until the spray foam has fully cured.
- Clean equipment and surfaces that have come into contact with spray foam immediately after application is finished, and while workers are still dressed in their protective gear.
- Dispose of any unused spray foam products according to the instructions on the label.
Spray foam safety is covered carefully in NCFI's applicator training programs. Visit our website to learn more about becoming a certified spray foam applicator.