How Does a Spray Foam Machine Work?

Have you ever stopped to think about how an actual spray foam system works? How the spray gun interacts with the heated hoses, and how the proportioner brings it all together? First, let’s go over what spray foam is made of.

Spray Foam Overview

Spray foam is a plastic material formed by the reaction of two different chemicals that, when mixed in specific quantities (that define its density, compressive strength, closed-cell content, and R-value), harden into plastic. The foam can then be used for insulation, as an air barrier, or as a roofing membrane in new construction and remodeling projects. There are three key things to note in this process.

Material – The first is the quantity of each chemical that is mixed for the spray foam. If one chemical prevails over the other, the foam may not deliver the necessary density, strength, or R-value. This difference in ratios may lead to material waste and reduced product performance.

Temperature – The second is each chemical’s temperature during the whole process until it cures. If the substances are not heated and maintained to an ideal temperature (usually between 70˚F and 80˚F) for spraying, it affects the ratio between the chemicals and leads again to inferior foam.

Mixing – The third is the mixing of both chemicals. A specific gun needs to be used that allows both substances to be mixed in a single chamber in exact ratios. The mixed compound is then released in a spray form when the trigger is pulled and begins the curing (hardening) process. If a spray gun’s chamber and the tip is not cleaned after spraying, the residual chemicals can clog the gun and render it useless.

The Spray Foam System

The three main components for a spray foam system are:

  • Proportioner
  • Heated hose(s)
  • Spray gun(s)

An electric source powers the proportioner to energize the motors and heaters. It requires the material to be pumped from their containers into the system. The materials go through an initial filter for contaminants and are then pressurized inside. Pressurized chemicals go into the preheater, where they need to reach manufacturer recommended temperatures. The fluid modules then launch the chemicals separately through different tubes within the heated hoses. The hoses’ responsibility is to keep the chemicals at the ideal temperature until they reach the spray gun. When the spray gun trigger is pressed, the gun’s chamber mixes the incoming chemicals. After this, the mix is shot through the gun tip using airflow until you release the trigger. Every time the trigger is released, the spray gun supplies a burst of air to purge the chamber and gun tip from chemicals to prevent clogging. Hence the name, air purge gun.

Not all Systems are Created Equally

When choosing the ideal system for your insulation jobs, always ensure that the proportioner delivers the exact ratio between both components to guarantee a consistent and robust foam. This will reduce waste and take care of your reputation. Second, look for equipment that can ensure that both chemicals remain at the ideal temperature until they reach the spray gun. If not, the ratio will also be off and ruin the foam. Heated hoses that can keep the temperature stable during an entire spray job are critical. If the substances start to cool off in the middle of a job, you must pause and wait until it heats back up. Therefore, more money and more time spent.

The Carlisle IntelliSpray™ system has been designed to address all these issues. The IS40™ proportioner guarantees a 1:1 ratio throughout the whole job. The QuickHeat™ hose provides faster and more consistent heat while providing real-time monitoring of the chemicals’ entire trajectory. Finally, the ST1™ Air Purge Spray Gun provides more consistent spray patterns and better ergonomics to reduce fatigue in extenuating jobs.

Contact Us Today!

Whether you are a sole operator, have a small crew, or multiple rigs running daily, our spray foam insulation machine maximizes your most important asset: your reputation. The Carlisle Fluid Technologies IntelliSpray reduces the risk of off-ratio jobs, is easy to operate, is built for durability, helps you get jobs done faster and increases your profitability.