I am concerned about the lingering 'smell' in my home after sealing the attic last year with Icynene spray foam. How to test?

Asked by Jeff Moddle
Mcdonough, GA

The manufacturer reported that the tested samples were normal after spending weeks last summer with an air evacuation fan running constantly. But, the smell has lingered for a year and is really pronounced on hot, sunny days. Watering eyes and dry throat are the current health systems, but who knows what the long term impact is. Finding a quality commercial air testing company in zip code 30253 has been a challenge. Can you assist? Thanks/Jeff



The problem could lie elsewhere in your home. Do you know if you have a fresh air intake on your heating and cooling system. 

  • If your home was completely insulated with spray foam it may be too tightly sealed and require fresh air.
  • Fresh air is usually introduced to the interior of the home by means of an air intake which draws fresh air in while the heating cooling system is running.

With out this you could be building up toxic levels of formaldehyde, VOC's from paint, carpet and spray foam in the attic.


For more information:

Read "We've got moisture/mold issues after spraying closed cell foam in the rafters of our 1925 home's unfinished attic." a Q&A answered by Lucas Johnson.

Also, check Randy Potter's Q&A "What is the most energy efficient way to mechanically ventilate a home to bring in cool night air, after a hot day?

Tagged In: spray foam

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