FALL (Sept/Oct/Nov) is the season when many a thought will turn to having a brand new kitchen renovation done before the holidays! Sorry, but if you are not already well along in the process, you will have to choose another gift for yourself.
Starting at the beginning, you will have been doing your homework for some time and will have a pretty good idea of what you want in a kitchen (Houzz, anyone?). Once you engage a professional Kitchen Designer (your official beginning point), you will likely spend 4-8 weeks refining & detailing your renovation plans/specifications. Your Building Contractor will need about 3-4 weeks for his planning/pricing and another 2-3 weeks for permits (if needed). The construction phase could take 8-12 weeks, depending on size/components. That means, for a final pre-Christmas completion of your beautiful new kitchen renovation (also known as that BIG gift to yourself), you will typically need approx. 4-6 months and an official beginning point as early as sometime in JUNE!
Energy consumption in homes is certainly a hot-button topic these days, with high-efficiency furnaces, tighter building envelopes and upgraded insulation all combining to deliver the most cost effective options for both new homes and home renovation projects
As an example, expanding foam can deliver tighter seals in perimeter walls than batt insulation, thus cost savings over time due to reduced heat loss (and gain). Consider two BASF products, Enertite and Walltite Eco, that are installed in Calgary by Beyond Foam Insulation (beyondfoam.com). Enertite is an open-cell ½ lb. foam (pale yellow in color) that delivers approximately R-20 insulation value in the 2 X 6” stud walls of a typical new home. This product requires a 6 ml. poly vapour barrier over it. Walltite Eco is a closed-cell 2 lb. foam (purple in color) that delivers upwards of R-20 in the 2 X 4” stud walls of a typical older home (see photo) built before the Building Code required 2 X 6” perimeter walls for residential construction. This product has a built-in vapour barrier, so 6 ml. poly is not required. Both of these applications meet the current Building Code requirement of R-20 insulation value for new walls.
Walltite Eco color has changed from blue (above) to purple
So whether you are building new or renovating, expanding foam can provide significant benefits in the above applications and many others. These products are also eco-friendly and once installed, produce no off-gassing. Most new homes being built today offer a combination of batt insulation and expanding foam because the foam products are more expensive, but if you are thinking long-term energy savings, foam may be the way to go!